This past Sunday I took a ride down to the lovely spit of land that juts out into Lac St. Louis, about 10 km from home. it is called Parc Levesque and is a long thin peninsular that leaves the mainland and lances straight into the lake. What’s really magical about it is that a bike path has been built along both lengths of the spit and each is exactly one kilometre long. You know what that means? It’s perfect for those dreaded but effective intervals.
It’s also a terrific place to snap some pictures as the park is littered with all these interesting sculptures and other oddities. Too many to feature in this post alone I will surely be going back often over the course of the summer and so will include a few more in the future.
As mentioned, the park with its one kilometre straights is ideal and interval training, but I was not there for that. You have to mentally prepare for intervals. For them to be effective you have to be ready to go balls out down one straight, recover down the other, doing your best to resist your body’s urge to vomit, and then go hard at it again as soon as you turn the corner. Each ‘on’ kilometre seems to get longer and longer the more fatigued you get, and the ‘off’ stretch starts to feel like you’re still on, even though you’re moving at a fraction of the speed.
You know when you’re doing it the right way when you lungs are burning so hard you literally feel like throwing up and your lactic acid has no time to drain from your legs on the cool down run, meaning that as soon as you stand in the pedals again your legs have never in fact stopped screaming. They are effective, however, and you will notice a difference in your short burst power on longer rides. Useful for showing off up those short but steep climbs.
Now I normally do intervals on the VR2. I’ve not done them yet on the fixie but I am suspecting that it will add a new level of pain that I have hitherto not visited. Take away your ability to coast, and you have rendered your cool down lap not useless, but certainly slower acting. May be it’ll work the other way and in fact make it easier to recover as I will be forced to continue to motion in my legs? Hmm, I shall have to investigate that. Either way, stay tuned for an upcoming entry where we explore that world of pain. In the meantime, ride safe.