Yesterday when I got back from a 2.5 mile run in the heat at St George, my hotel neighbor, a 60 year old Ironman from Germany, teased me saying that it was too late to start getting ready. Yes, it is. Last Sunday at the Spring Sprint I was talking to Jim Vance, telling him I was going out to do St George. He smirked and commented that it would be a training day. He knows me well, because those were my thoughts exactly. It’s hard to consider an Ironman a training day, because it is such a unique experience, but I have to look forward. My goal on the bike is to take it take it easy and contribute more to my Zone 2 work. That may also sound silly since even a fast Ironman race is primarily Zone 2 work, but I’ll be shooting for the lower end of the zone rather than the upper end.

For the past two weeks I have been trying to get more zone 2 work in, and here is the power distribution I have:

Only about 35% is in Zone 2. I am hoping to show in a couple weeks that I’ve pushed that up closer to 50%, with the Zone 1 work coming down from 34%.

Why Zone 2? I need to reestablish my aerobic base, which will happen faster by doing long lower power rides. Zone 1 could do that, but I also want to start improving my FTP. As my aerobic base returns, I will focus on more Zone 3 and 4 work to push my FTP up with shorter workouts. The ‘sweet spot’ for power training includes Zones 2-4, but the lower the power the longer the exercise has to be to have any impact on FTP. Also, building FTP purely with Zone 2 work really only prepares you for the longest rides.

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