Thursday, August 24, 2006

Splitting them out

As you can see, I am still on the program! More importantly, I'm feeling strong, fit and most importantly, healthy. This old dog might just be doing some racing next season. woo hoo!

Having restarted from zero, I'm making a conscience effort to do this correctly. Since running is my weakest sport - mainly because of my weight - it is the cornerstone of my program this time around. Frequency and consistency lead the way. I run every day during the week and then ride trainer sessions somedays afterwards. The large TSS spikes are the few times that I managed to get up early enough to ride outside with some friends. I'll start dieting once boating season ends. :)

To the right are three PMC charts depicting an overview of my training. The top chart being the combined program. The bottom two being only running and cycling respectively.

I believe in the fundamental premise that fitness is always either increasing or decreasing. So, (referring to the top chart) I am ramping up my CTL while staying below the 5 TSS/d change per week limit that many are starting to recognize. But, you'll notice that to get those 5 TSS/d, I am driving my TSB down (to my self imposed limit of -30) and then recovering back up to near zero. Why do I make my TSB roll? I believe that Dave Harris over on the wattage list knows why. Take another look at the first sentence of this paragraph again to see my reasoning. Just remember, there are two parts to a workout: the training stress AND the recovery. The only reason that I can think of to actually stay at a low TSB for any length of time is to delay a peak (since you can't control the date of a race).

Now, some people might be confused by looking at my top chart and seeing a pretty high NP5 happening when I am supposedly pretty fatigued. How can that be? The PMC must wrong. Or, maybe I should be using different time constants. Nope. Look at the cycling chart. My Cycling TSB is rising due to the focus on running. My CTL is also still relatively low. So, my running fatigue isn't yet greatly effecting my cycling in a negative way.

OK, a few questions have been flooding my inbox lately.

How do I create a PMC? Easy, go to the athlete's home page in WKO+ v2.1 and choose "Options Add a chart to this page Performance Management Chart". Use the default values for everything except dates unless you have less than six months of history. In which case, you have some work to do for now. I'll discuss what to do then some other time.

How do I tell WKO+ about my running and swimming TSS? Easy. Add the workouts the normal way. Then, select the workout in the athlete's calendar and right click the mouse. Use the "Override values..." menu item.

How do I calculate a TSS for running and swimming? Good question. We don't have an official response yet. Of course, we're working on it. :) Actually, I use a trivial home-brewed spreadsheet that's highly inaccurate but serves my purposes very, very well. No, I won't post it right now (because I don't want to defend it's use). But, if you send me a nice, thoughtful, comforting e-mail and ask nicely, I'll send you a copy.