Monday, September 24, 2012

Taper Away

Taper = Smooth sailing? I think not.

Tapering. If ever there was a part of training/racing that I did not enjoy, this would be it. No matter what I'm told or read, I always feel like crap the week or two of my taper. Sure, past experience has taught me that it ends up working well, and of course there really isn't any "form" I can add in the 2 weeks leading up to race day, but still... you go through months not missing 2x workouts a day, and all of a sudden... off days. What the hell am I going to do with an off day? It's not like I have a social life any more... and even if I did, would going out for drinks really work out for taper week? :P I quit playing video games and watching movies so long ago I question whether my PS3 will even turn on any more. Of course I have my old fall backs (my Kindle and trolling BT / ST) but you can only dedicate so many hours to a screen. Sunday I managed to fit 13 hours of sleep in... but, oddly, even that gets a bit boring.

My worst enemy at times like this however, is gluttony.
Holy Crap. Searching "gluttony" in Google images turns up some creepy sh*t.

Ok, it's not all that bad. I mean, I'm not on the verge of gorging myself in biblical proportions or anything... but I do like my calories. You get used to consuming 5-6 solid meals a day plus whatever fuel you get during a workout... and then, bammo... drastic drop in activity level. Oh, and did I mention boredom. Yes, I like to think I can eat my way out of a boring situation.  Now I like to try to keep it on the healthy side, but really, at a certain point you just have to admit that you love salty @ss chips and salsa more than you do carrots and lettuce. I have to keep my mind focused on this kind of stuff, as I feel much better weighing in at under 150lbs than above 150lbs! I'd really prefer to be racing at 140'ish, but this year that's not been in the cards.

Now on to the good things about being restlessly bored during taper. Most importantly, I don't spend my time worrying about race day... which a lot of my friends will do. Heck, the night before a big race I sleep like a baby. I think that comes from being very prepared in the weeks leading up. I had my gear selection / nutrition / plan pretty well settled a few months ago. The last piece of the puzzle was what tire I would end up running on my back wheel and what front wheel I would run.

I settled on the Continental Grand Prix TT over the GP SuperSonic in the end, despite the TT not having any published Data. I'm generally not so paranoid about "race" tires, but this time I've decided that just a little more protection (the vectron breaker strip in the TT) is worth it over the SuSo's seemingly superior RR.

As far as the front wheel goes, I'm 95% sure it will be the Hed3 / Bonty Aerowing combo. Again we have a flimsy (and narrow - 19mm) tire to deal with, and on the front as opposed to the rear (which is a bit less flat prone) but nonetheless, there really isn't much option if you want an "optimal" trispoke. The 5% is for my Jet9. Although wind isn't going to be a deciding factor, if it is raining heavily on race day I'll probably run the Jet, since the Bonty R4 Aero tire is a bit thicker and IMO a safer choice in a deluge.
Hopefully not Augusta this year

So, with me leaving for Augusta on Friday morning, I suppose this will be my last update until after the race. Hopefully I'll be returning "victorious," (sub 4:30, podium, Vegas spot...fame, women, glory) but no matter what I'll return giving the best I possibly could on race day.

Until then, wish me luck.

-Christopher Morelock

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