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Ted's Season - Part II - Winter Training..

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By Ted Treise

Tucson, Dimond Bikes and 7K swim sets -  I love MN. It’s the greatest place. The people, the farmed country side with paved roads gridding away creating endless routes and the pretty mild summers. The northern woods of Duluth. BUT in the winter, things are a bit tough for training. So, Dani and I escape to Tucson each spring for a month or so. We’ve been doing it for a few years starting on the east side – base of Mount Lemmon, then now settling on the west side, Oro Valley.

The weather is amazing and I love the training buddies there but I am just going to complain a little here as I get so sick of those roads. IF you watch a Lionel video and he’s outside and it’s not riding Mount Lemmon. He is on Park Links. A 20 mile flat road in the desert north of town. Don’t want to ride 20 miles on a frontage road which mile deep heat cracks to Park Links? You can either do the shootout loop – south through town which takes 45 minutes to get to OR head west and do Big Square by Gates Pass or head over Gates Pass. Also the roads around Gates pass are the worst. You think for a national park they could get some Biden bucks and resurface their chip seal goat paths. Sorry, but I am the worst and just needed to complain about the roads there for a bit. I will say it is beautiful going through the unique scenery and various mini-mountains that blanket the landscape. It’s a challenging and powerful place to train....

In Tucson this year, the focus with David was volume and lots of it. I took some PTO once a week to get a 6-hour ride in and was regularly doing a few 3-hour rides throughout the week on top of that. Plenty of 7,000 yard swims and some decent runs. It was just a grind. To be honest, I’ve never worked that hard in triathlon. On one ride, maybe two.. no more than 4 rides.. I got so hungry I stopped at speedway to get a roller hotdog. It was so good. Something salty after hours of sport drinks. David didn’t approve after hearing of my Columbus like discovery and it was scratch lab ice cakes from there out. *sigh*

But yeah training was hard. Not in the sense of, ‘oh this interval is hard. Ofta!’ But just the day to day fatigue that keeps rolling. The hardest thing is eating enough. 100%. Stacking 25-28 hour weeks is a ton of food and you just get sick of eating at some point. I would finish and ride and put down about a half gallon of chocolate milk because it’s A.) high in calories and B.) a liquid as I’m dying of thirst in the desert. This is where Chipotle comes in too. The food god intended us to consume regularly as it’s always delicious and full of calories. I probably went to Chipotle 3 times a week and this tough to space it out. Just so good!

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As I mentioned before, each week I’d have convos with David. Most the time, it ends in ‘alright keep plugging away, doing great!’ But one week he recommended some aero testing from Jim Manton of ERO sport. Jim was coming back from Texas to his home in Cali after a bike fit with Sky and Tucson was right on the way.

Now, how an aero test works in Tucson, Az is not with a giant wind tunnel with bright lights, cool smoke trails going over the athlete and a control room. It’s me and Jim on the side of the cracked chip sealed road ( we went to lionel’s favorite road, Park Links). He has his aero senor that goes on the front of my bike, Kickr rolllers and some allen keys. I have my kit on and a few helmets to try.

The process is; You do a baseline run to see what your current CDA is, the measurement of drag you have – usually around .19 if you’re small and slippery & up to .26 if you’re sitting up and a big guy or gal! Each run has only one variable introduced to see what the affect is. This may be getting your hands up higher, a new helmet or a drop in stack. All runs are at race power and last about 5-8 minutes on an out and back – you’re smoked after a day of testing and do not do any other wkos. On the out and back is a section between two checkpoints is where the test takes place. You get up to speed, hit the start of the checkpoint and hold race power and a good position until the next checkpoint. The calculated drag between these two checkpoints is where the data is collected.

What we found is that if I can get bit more reach, drop the stack and raise my saddle, I can save about 20ish watts or so. A big finding and well worth the price of admission. The issue arose when I was already maxed out reach wise on my Dimond. The frame was a bit tight for my lanky 6’2” frame.

Keep in mind this is all stuff that super fitter, Chris Balser, in MN could tell me. He could get me 95%, maybe even 99%, of the way there without all this testing but I feel like in order to be competitive in the pro field, I need that 5%.

After the testing, Jim, David and I had a call to go over the figures. It was exciting to get to a low .23 but a tough decision was made during our call this week and that was to get off the Dimond moving forward.

Leaving Dimond would mean I would be without a bike sponsor which kind Is a tough blow knowing I’ll be about $10k poorer. But it being in February, I had a very very low shot in getting a contract through Canyon or Trek (two Jim said would work). That’s fine and all is it gives me the opportunity to ride a Trek Speed Concept which Gear West sells regularly, but man, it was hard parting ways with TJ and Dimond.

I just loved being on the Dimond, an out of the box frame design made in the Midwest by TJ Tollakson. It looked cool, I could get a custom paint job and if anything was needed, TJ was there to help. I am not going to be able to text the owner of Trek or hang out with him in the factory on a Saturday. Dimond was a home and meant the world to ride for them the last two years.

But like Nate, the circumstances called for a change. I got a Speed Concept from Gear West and it fits me very well and I love ridding that bike. Although, a pain in the ass to travel with but that’s life I guess! Following the Tucson camp, I headed straight to Clash Maimi for the first race of the season.

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