Last night I did Jason's famous race simulation workout for the second time. The first time was back in April, but my training has since been occupied with a lot of endurance, peaking, and rest. July has been about getting my fast back and it's really working.
Last night's workout was 3 minutes Vo2, 5 minutes Threshold, and 8 minutes Sweet Spot in rapid succession. Although April's workout was broken up a bit differently (2/5/10 minutes), I average 15 watts higher at 175 watts. More importantly, I finished feeling like I could have averaged 180 for a full 20 minutes had that been my objective.
I haven't done an actual 20-minute threshold test the entire season. Jason has just been calculating my zones based off of the two simulation workouts and the two road races I did earlier in the season. When I have workouts like the one last night, I'm left wondering how I would do if I did an official test. I might blow it away, or I might crack under the pressure of a TEST; I'm not sure.
I wish I had power data from the first 16 minutes of a real mountain bike race to see how much it actually looks like this workout. In theory the workout seems like an accurate simulation of the the start of a race or at least one with no bottleneck start. But as I rolled out to Bottom Road yesterday, my intestines were not in knots and I was thinking "200 watt for the first 3 minutes won't be THAT bad." However, the first three minutes of a real race usually involves stomach cramps, trying not to crash, and thinking, "Oh the pain! Oh the pain!" It's sad, but I think I need my little yellow friend to tell me whether I'm really hurting or not.
Unfortunately, I'm going to have to wait a little longer to find out how this month's training translates into the real world. Adam has a family reunion the same day as the DINO Versailles race, so I will likely not see any more actual competition until the Logansport race on August 16. DRT Consulting is putting on a dirt TT at Brown County on August 2, but I'm not sure what to expect from that.