A HAPPY WEEKEND WARRIOR!
My love for the cycling sport and joining the MAMIL club (Middle Aged Men in Lycra) started to developed about 2 ½ years ago in August 2013. I entered my first 94.7 road cycle event in November 2013 with a finish time of 4h30 on a 29er MTB. My training consisted of a few spinning classes during the week and some rides out at the Cradle on a Saturday. A year later I made the transition from a MTB to a road bike, after time in the saddle on a MTB the road became too painful and managed to improve somewhat on my finishing times on the road.
Between a professional job and a family whom I love to spend time with, I have limited time to devote to training in order to improve on my personal competitive goals (that must come from our male testosterone hormones). Thus as a weekend warrior who wants to use his time effectively I was on the lookout for other means to use my training time the best way possible. One day in April 2015 (10 months ago) I saw the REDHUB CYCLING studio and met Willie there. One thing led to the other and in no time he had me on my bike on one of his Wahoo Kickr trainers and in no time he had me sweating huffing and puffing. The end result for me was a disappointing max threshold power of 240 watts and a power to weight ratio of 2.46 watts/kg (must be that male ego that expected something like 300 plus watts).
However, I was very excited and impressed with the Wahoo Kickr trainer and immediately joined the club of serious indoor trainers at the Redhub and started to train twice a week there, adding these two training sessions to my other regular training sessions. Together with Willie’s well structured training programs on the indoor trainer I immediately experienced the benefits and the resultant improvement in my muscle and strength endurance, also improving my aerobic and anaerobic ability.
Five months later I was riding in one of my 2015 bucket list items, a 6 day stage event, in Namibia called “Desert Knights” (http://www.desertknights-mtb.com/). It was a superb experience riding all the way from Hobas at the Fish River Canyon to Sendelingsdrift in the Richtersveld. What makes any stage event like the one in Namibia or a road event even more enjoyable is when one has the suitable fitness and strength levels that can only be gained from proper and efficient training sessions. The indoor training sessions at the Redhub has made a huge difference in my life and helped me to gain a significant improvement in a 10 month period to reach a current max threshold power of 280 watts and a power to weight ratio of 2.95 watts/kg (that is a whopping 20% improvement), and I aiming to push that up to achieve that holy grail target of 300 watts and more (must be still that male ego or something).
The indoor training sessions also had the result of completing a very successful 2015 94.7 road race (a very tough one with hot and windy conditions) and I also completed this year a first time and successful “The Value Logistics Fast One” race in the Midvaal. Together with Willie’s efficient training programs on the Wahoo Kickr, my other training routines and a few more road race events I am aiming for a second Cape Town Cycle race in March. My personal goal is to go out there and to enjoy the ride (fun and enjoyment should always be one of your aims) but also to finish in a suitable personal best time. Sadly however, I don’t think I will be able to beat my last year’s personal best time of a sub-two hour. But then again it must have something to do with the fact that last year they reduced the distance to about 48km due to all those terrible fires they had.
If have read this article and you are an aspiring weekend warrior seeking to improve on your personal competitive goals, my advice to you would be, go for it – it is worth it.