The Tour Of Sufferlandria 2020 - Part 1

Funny how I wrote about wanting to increase training volume... careful what you ask for...

Stage 1 kicked off with It Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time (ISLAGIATT). While I haven't ridden this as a standalone too many times, I've done ISTLA (the extended mashup with Thin Air) many times, so I'm very familiar with it.
Mostly, I'm doing these workouts on the "Focused" mode, so they are slightly reduced in their power targets not to derail the training plan by too much.
I'm not looking to utterly destroy myself during the stages, considering that I plan on riding into Knighthood on the last day and have a 4DP test coming up in two weeks.
So ISLAGIATT was solid tempo fun at ~3.1 w/kg weighted average for the 2 hours.


Then, stage 2...
I was looking forward to The Bat. The new workout that replaced the NoVid "Batman Intervals" with this Mental Toughness themed workouts. Good marketing!
There are 6 intervals with 30sec MAP efforts at the start and end, and 4min Threshold in between — easy peasy with 3-minute recoveries.
The greatest thing about this workout is the amazing Swiss backdrop - on roads I know well from past adventures. Climbing St. Gotthard with the peloton is fantastic and reminds me of my ascent there, a day before the Tour Of Switzerland went the same route, some years ago.
The MTP focus is also a great help and certainly motivating and fuelling the commitment to drive through to the end of the effort.
I was so curious about The Bat, that I rode it at 100%. It seemed like a good idea at the time.

The Bat was stage 2a. Following, was the "new" Fight Club. Same workout, new video.
The new video is excellent - featuring the 2019 UCI Women's Elite World Championships in Time Trial and Road.
I watched both these races live, so it's super exciting to be able to ride along with The Sufferfest app.
I did stage 2b with the "focused" option, slightly reduced.
Initially, I felt I could give it more, but as things progressed, I was glad I made that decision.
Towards the end of the stage, I noticed that I'm only ~20 minutes away from the opening of Stage 3 - GOAT (more Switzerland!).

So... what does a Sufferlandrian do when faced with a brick wall? Pulls out the Hammer, of course.

I qued up Extra Shot and kept going for another 20 minutes. Then, rode G.O.A.T as soon as it opened.
It was hard, and my muscles were nearly failing, but it was a good exercise considering my plan for next Sunday.
As it happened, I was riding the entire course on Zwift's Mega Pretzel Route, a 107km ordeal, and did not have much further to go at the time G.O.A.T. was drawing to its end.

So....I went immediately into Open 60 (even more Switzerland!). I rode at about 3 w/kg to the end.
All in all, I spent a lot of virtual time in Switzerland that day! Twice up St. Gotthard :)

ToS Stages 2a, 2b, 3, and a little more

Turned out to be 3h:43m with 108km on Zwift.
It was excellent practice for the Knighthood Attempt (There Is No Try!) as I had to manage nutrition and hydration well. Preparing enough food for the long ride is going to be critical, as I found out. It will take more than a gel and a banana to fuel a ~10-hour ride.

In a way, I'm one day ahead of the ToS in my timezone, so I can actually work in a rest day if I need to.

I did not miss a Strength workout this week and did Intermediate 5A just before jumping on Team Scream.
Needless to say, I have aches in new places, but I enjoyed Team Scream immensely! I can't believe I haven't ridden it yet. I was laughing out loud in the intro, and #SirNeal should certainly get an Oscar.
It's a darn good session, immersive, entertaining, and challenging - loved it!
So now, with the trouble I have standing and walking, I'm looking at Violator coming up in a few hours. This is another session I haven't done yet and looking forward to smashing to bits.

All in all, having a great time riding the 2020 Tour Of Sufferlandria. I can certainly feel the extra workload in the legs, but my thoughts are with the Knighthood ride on Sat/Sun...

As a reminder, the Tour Of Sufferlandria is a fundraising event for the Davis Phinney Foundation - helping people with Parkinson's. If you've read this far, why won't you help with a tiny donation? click here: