Posted by Editor on 02/3/06
Victoria PacificSport National Cycling Centre January Camp
Courtesy Rick Thiessen, Assistant Coach
Jan 25-Jan 30, 2006
The second camp of the 2005/6 season ended Monday with 20 athletes cycling up to 750km on relatively balmy Vancouver Island. National team riders Erinne Willock and Max Plaxton, Symmetrics cycling team member Brad Fairall, as well as top BC, Alberta and Saskatchwan riders took part. The fully supported rides were lead by head coach Houshang Amiri, and assistant coach Rick Thiessen. The quality of training was very high, given all the climbing and specific intensity.
Day 1: 10C, some light rain. On cue it started to rain as the athletes left the PacificSport parking lot, but no one was complaining, especially the riders from Alberta and Saskatchewan. Riding a bicycle outdoors in January is a treat for any Canadian cyclist. The camp started off with a relatively easy 3 hour tour of the Saanich Peninsula. A 2 hour gym session featuring; stretching, medicine balls, dynamic leg workouts, core exercises, and 0:45 of hand ball finished off the day.
Day 2: 7C, overcast, a little rain. The group rode out to Willis Point, and did a 6km individual time trial up the hill. They then rode around the peninsula to Sydney, where they did an 8.5km flat time-trial. These time trials are done regularly by the Centre athletes to determine their fitness, and it was a good gauge for the coaches to see where the new riders fit into the group.
Day 3: 8C, mostly sunny. One group rode from Sooke to Jordon River and back for about 100km, while the other group rode out to Port Renfrew. The 2005 provincial road race course is very quiet, winding, hilly, and has stunning views of the Juan de Fuca Strait. The longer ride was only 130km, but with the constant hills, a tough ride.
Day 4: 7C, overcast and turning to rain later on the ride. The group split up and rode around the peninsula again, but this time Willis point was the destination. Each up and over lap is 22km, half of it climbing, with 290m elevation gain on each lap. The number of laps ranged from 2-4. The athletes met back at the centre later for a talk by Houshang regarding the importance of a good warm-up, and how to personalize it for yourself.
Day 5: 5C, overcast and windy. Groups of 4 did 4-8 laps of the 8.5km Sydney TT course. The goal was to do 85% efforts at the front, and keeping the exchanges smooth. We lucked out as a fierce storm broke out right after the ride.
Day 6: 7C, mostly sunny. The last day of the camp took the riders up the Malahat to Shawnigan Lake. Two times up the 9km climb to Goldstream Heights was all that was needed to finish off even the fittest legs. The days' climbing was close to 1600m. The camp ended with a yoga session and potluck dinner in the evening.
There are still a number of spots available for the next camp running Feb 23-27th. For details regarding upcoming camps and information regarding the National Cycling Centre programs go to www.pacificsportcycling.ca. Happy Cycling
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