Sunday 7/29

Central Park farewell to Iron Matt Henry. Yep. Matty is leaving town on Monday, so my old bud suggested a little farewell training session in the park from his place as a good send off. After driving all over creation around the UN (I think I hit about every street and ave in a 10 block radius before he radioed me in to Tudor City) and getting a fabulous traffic ticket for making a right in a bus lane (so awesome when you are already pissed), I found a smiling Iron Matt standing in a parking spot outside his building, ready to kill anyone who was coming to take it.

We went up to the Apt with the gear and said hello to the Mrs. and the Squirt… and off we went. I had re-fitted the Jamis (my trusty old road bike) to be her old tour ready self (I had previously fit it for aerobars and a more forward ride) and she was ready to strut her stuff around the park. Man was she a great ride, I forgot what a great bike it is as I’ve been staying to the Roo as much as possible trying to get used to the tri specific riding. It was like riding a Cadillac as opposed to a sports car, but she could still hold some pace even if she’s a little heavier. Oh yeah, and I sure could tell the physical differences in the setup of the bikes. I once thought this angle/aero stuff was a load of crap… but I’m singing another tune now! These two rides have totally different demands on your musculature and it is so noticeable now that I’ve gone away from a UCI certified race bike to the time trial and back again.

So Matt and I zig-zagged up a little ways to the park entrance and proceeded to knock out a 40k ride in the park. Here was the plan:

  • Lap 1: low gear ring, 3rd or so on the rear cluster – warm up, high cadence.
  • Lap 2: same low, 4th or 5th on the rear cluster – still high cadence.
  • Lap 3: low gear ring, 7,8,9 (high gearing) on the rear cluster – feel the burn.
  • Lap 4: high gear ring, mid to upper gearing on the rear cluster – put in an even deeper burn that would be felt in those legs for some time to come.

The rules were simple. Do not stand up on any climbs. Do not drop below the warm up pace. Do not whine. We were (or at least I was 😉 feeling it by that last effort in the big rings.

I gotta say, I was happy with my climbs in the bigger rings. It felt good to be passing people heading uphill in a big gear charge (I usually just drop it down and feel for consistent output, but this was mixing it up a bit for me, sort of the way running intervals do). Matt is one heck of a coach (he just loves the sports and has so much experience) and is of course, one fearsome IronMan.

So we wrapped up the whole day with around a 30-something mile ride (we guessed we averaged about 18.something mph doing the 40k in around 1:20ish), grabbed a quick shower at his pad and were off for burgers and beers at Dukes on 3rd. The rain came down as we were fueling up. We walked back to the Apt and my car and off I went. What a perfect way to see this guy off. He’s all class. We’ll miss you Matty.

~ by philiplavoie on July 31, 2007.

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