LONG TIME READERS OF THIS BLOG <- I've promised myself to never start a post with "long time readers..." but, if I didn't start at least one post this way then you'd never know my true feelings... I want to barf now --> anyway, I've brought my heart rate monitor (HRM) back to life.
Turns out I've been riding slow as hell for the last 6 months.
How do I know this? Because this morning I went out for a Zone 2 spin and the following happened: I went 18 mph vs the 14 mph I've been doing lately, all in about Zone 2.5. 2.5 is nothing, and I felt great afterwards... energized and ready to take on the day.
Why was I going so much slower before? Because I was riding on perceived exertion (PE). PE is old school... not super old school... super old school was go ride at 18 mph for an hour today then 2 hours at 23 mph, all mph based... PE was cutting edge at the time and was thought to be a big step forward allowing us to ride easy if we were tired. Fortunately, PE led us to the trusty heart rate monitor.
What possessed me to stop using my HRM? I felt like I'd turned into a Zone Zombie... spending more time looking at my screen than enjoying the ride. It also seemed like a good thing to do at the time, which was at the end of a long season. Oh, and the battery died.
Speaking of cool... one of the cool things you can do with Strava Premium is check your Fitness and Freshness. This is a useful tool to see how fresh and ready you are for an event, how over trained you might be, etc. Unfortunately, you need a month or so of HRM data... none of which I have accumulated.
If I was really cool... I'd be using a power meter.
But I'm not.
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