Happily Ground Down to a Nub

My Chronic Training Load (CTL) is currently over 95%. That doesn't refer to how much wacky tobacky I've been smoking, but rather how much stress I've been placing on my body over the long term. For much of the year, I hover in the 55-70% range, but since May my numbers have been climbing as I put in more and more hours on the bike.
What does this really mean?
I'm tired.
Managed properly, this surge in training load will result in me making great strides in performance. Janice sets up my training calendar to achieve this goal. I ignore her directives and have sub-par performances. This allows me to have a ready excuse to deflect attention from my athletic inadequacies. I wasn't able to follow the training plan because of [insert excuse here], so I wasn't properly primed for [insert event here]. I'm sure I'm not the only one that abuses Janice's services thusly.
Although I'm too lazy to actually delve deeply into the numbers, I watch the pretty patterns on TrainingPeaks and use them as further justification for slacking off. If my Training Stress Balance (TSB) is low, I must be tired- even if I'm bouncing off the walls with boundless energy. That gives me the motivation to swap an interval workout for a trip to Cold Stone Creamery. The numbers back up my well-reasoned decision, and you can't argue with science.
The Tour of Anchorage is a couple weeks away. Before then I have a Recovery week of easy rides with small bursts of intensity here or there. That should bring my TSB back up and limit my potential for Cold Stone sessions. I should roll into the event at the peak of whatever meager potential I may have.
I won't.
Despite what my extended family said while I was on vacation as I wolfed down just about anything that was put in front of me, I'm still fat. I didn't gain any weight, but I didn't lose any significant weight either. I put a decent amount of miles under my tires, but I matched that with equal amounts of pulled pork barbeque.
Most of the miles I did in Virginia were not high-intensity. A single group ride near the beginning was the only time my eyes actually bled. It wasn't all junk miles, and my diesel certainly benefitted, I have a feeling my top end suffered. How that will translate depends on the strengths and tactics of the Masters 45+ field and how I respond to them. If history is any guide, very strong riders will beat me down and in response I will ride on the front until I explode in a pathetic manner.
Nope, I think my 3rd Place in the Spring Stage Race (with a sprint 2nd and win) and my dominating win in the Arctic Warrior Olympics over a field riding beach cruisers will remain the highlights of this season. That doesn't bother me, because I've come away from other seasons with less. I've come to learn that in this case, more is better- even if they aren't the most prestigious palmar├Ęs. As I get older, I take what I can get.
Guys like Jens, Chris, Markus, Ed, Bill, and Craig will crush me at the Tour of Anchorage. I apologize if I neglected to mention anyone else. Chances are, you'll beat me in a humiliating manner too. Guys I rarely, if ever, see at a race will show up and clean my clock. That's part of the game. If it was easy, I would lose interest and wander off aimlessly until I found some other industry to support with my non-disposable income.
I'm tired. I'm lazy. I'm fat.
I'm ready.


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