Friday, November 7, 2008

New Season Starts Now

Wow is it already November? Normally I like to test at the very end of October to see where my baseline is for the first period of training starting November 1st. Yes I am a big dork. But this year on November 1st I was at a Bissell event in Grand Rapids with Tom Zirbel and Ben Jacques-Maynes as well as new director Eric Wohlberg and team manager Glen Mitchel. If Glen ever gets me the pictures he took than you can see me stepping off a certain private plane. It was very nice. Oh look the pictures "finally" arrived. It wasn't all fun and games on the plane. Below you see half of Eric Wohlberg looking very seriously wondering if this thing came with parachutes. Tom and I engaged in a very serious conversation about how we were going to split the season. Ben was next to us (out of picture) but he remained mostly silent. The second photo is Tom negotiating whether or not I could win some time trials. Jeez the guy just can't give one up. And of course the group shot. Bissel team complete with team manager, bike-washer, director-sportif and star riders. Finally Tom giving me a piggy back ride into the plane. It's about time he works for me.

Instead I had to postpone my tests to the first week of November which I am sure will completely undermine my season by missing all of my goals by exactly one week. I wish I had good news but I don't. My test results were absolutely horrible. I was trying to gain power and loose weight but instead I gained weight and lost power. Max of course always sees the positive of everything and says it will be fine don't worry. Don't worry! Crap I have a part time job in worrying. Here is a picture that Teddy King took of me doing a Vo2Max on his handy iPhone. Notice the exhale coming out of the stomach. That's a new breathing technique being employed very successfully by the Iranian national team. I did 80 Watts less than at this time last year on the Vo2Max test and 40 Watts less on the Lactate Test.
Teddy had an awesome test. Damm you Teddy. And there was one other certain Bissell rider there by the name of Tom Zirbel. Oh poor Computrainer. I'm sorry about that. Tom almost snapped his bars at 500+ Watts and the Computrainer was crying uncle. The big man did it again. Burke Swindlehurst was suppose to come and see us suffer but instead he had a late night at a play with some other to be un-named bicycle rider.

So now the work begins. I'm really looking forward to riding in the dark in Central Park and trying to avoid the squirrels. Indecisive little bastards. They go one way then they change their minds and come back the other way.

Oh and one more thing. Bissell team roster was announced this week and I am on it again. Portuguese MSN picked up the news. What the hell? My job will be to once again make my teammates look good by acting as a decoy for the other teams. I'll attack, draw some riders with me because they see the Bissell jersey and then when I can't pull through and the break is doomed one of my more capable teammates will do the coupe d' force and launch the successful attack. Look I don't like it but its the job that I have been given and I will execute it with pride. Besides the looks on the Health-Net or Kelly Benefits guy's face is just too precious when they realize its moi.

Now seriously. This will probably be my last year racing with Bissell and I want to make it count. Last year was a great year but a fairly disappointing year performance wise and I am going to change some things around this year to take advantage of the times of year that I am good mainly in the beginning of the season. I'll focus on that and take a break in April after which I am hoping to be well recuperated for the May criteriums and June nationals.