Sunday, February 25, 2007

Off the Grid

Christy and I had a little "Off the Grid" exercise this weekend. It started when I was talking to Thad yesterday afternoon. He said that they had no electricity in Webster City. I told him that, even though I had lived in the middle of nowhere for 23 years, I've been lucky in that I've never lost power for more that a few hours.

After that I went downstairs and had a great 2 hour workout on the rollers. I started with 30 minutes of zone two, then went to 2 x 20 minutes of zone 3 tempo, and finished up with 4 x 6 minutes of cruise intervals. Cruise intervals are zone 4-5a with a very short (2 minutes) recovery between each interval. I mostly stayed right at my zone 4-5a boundary (167 bpm) during the intervals. On the cruise intervals (my first of the season) I was surprised at how well I recovered on the first couple of intervals. On the last two my recovery was not as quick. In the last interval I put it all out there, and went for my max heart rate. I got as high at 183. I felt strong at the end, and felt like I was putting out enough wattage to power the house. That must have been the case, because as soon as I quit pedaling, the house went dark.

That's what happens when you tempt fate. But Christy and I had fun with it. We lit a fire in the fireplace, lit a few candles, and with nothing else to do we . . . .

. . . listened to a battery powered radio.

In the morning we made eggs and potatoes on a gas stove, made toast over an open fire, ground coffee with a rolling pin, and made coffee with a French Press. We are really roughing it! Then we planned out how we were going to get through the day without electricity. We were actually a little disappointed with the power came back on at 11:00 am. It was fun while it lasted.


Anonymous said...

Sweet. Cosy fire and French pressed cafe. Hope your power has been or will be soon restored.

What class/division are you racing this year in the IMBCS?

Paul Varnum said...

We actually lost power again Sunday shortly after I made this post, so we got another night to enjoy the fun. Be careful what you wish for. The power came back on Monday.

I'm gonna race Sport Open. I don't want to do Sport +45 again, and I'm no Expert. I know of several guys that are moving up from Sport to Expert this year, so I think I can keep my head above water there.

If things really turn to crap I may start racing single speed. We'll see how it goes.

What class are you goning to race in?

Bruce Brown said...

Sounds fun, Paul.

After we talked at the banquet last year, I'm contemplating venturing into the Sport Open class as well, but that might be a stretch for this 45 year old. On the other hand...what the heck? We already have our wooden plaques from last year - so we can race for water bottles, Cliff Shots and swag as our primary goal this year. ;-)

Paul Varnum said...

Hey Bruce, welcome my humble abode. Sport Open seems like a good choice. We can pit Freil's methods (that what I'm doing) against the your Morris plan.

Last I heard Nick Wooley was planning on Sport Open also.

Bruce Brown said...

That is if I survive the next month of intervals Morris has prescribed. ;-)

I enjoyed stopping by your Blog. Found a link or two on a couple of other Blogs that pointed me in your direction. I didn't realize so many guys in Iowa had cycling blogs.

Dang, if you, Nick and I all sign up under Sport Open - talk about your geriatric crowd! Everybody else ought to at least spot us a lap don't ya think?

Paul Varnum said...

I saw you started a blog also. Nice work. I find the writing helps me to organize my thoughts and training plans, and also helps with the sharing of ideas and the sharing of suffering.

See you in a six weeks in the quad cities (is it only six weeks)? Are you doing any of the spring gravel series that is promoting?

Bruce Brown said...

Are you doing any of the spring gravel series that is promoting?

That doesn't sound like my cup of tea. I couldn't find a link. Do you have one?

I'm pretty swamped at Simpson in the spring semester and will be lucky to get away for the Sylvan Island and Camp Ingawanis races. I'll have to miss Sockum Ridge due to teaching a May Term class that will be on a road trip out to the Black Hills from May 7 - 18. I hate to miss that race because it has been a favorite of mine the past 2 years. Oh least I'll get to ride some pretty nice trails in the Black Hills.

Paul Varnum said...

It's put on by roadies, but is mostly on gravvel, so I figure some MTBers will show up.