Back in the Bubble.

I ran into Richard Tilton at the store the other night while I was out shopping for cake mix with my wife. Yes, I am that kind of wild man. At first he didn't recognize me because my face looked thinner, but my fat rolls gave me away.
  
Turns out that the Dome is happening again on Sundays.
 
I'd been looking at their schedule, which previously had made no mention of either cycling or a 7:00AM opening on Sundays. For me to get anything out of it before I go to Alyeska to coach, both conditions would have to be met. I had resigned myself to a purely trainer diet. In fact, after 17 straight days of trainer workouts, Sunday was supposed to be a rest day.
 
Sunday wasn't a rest day.
 
I got up early, picked the bike that was in the most ride-able condition, slapped it on the roof rack, and drove out to the Dome. Joey was texting me good-natured threats to ensure my attendance. As I entered, I saw several faces I didn't recognize already doing laps, which is a good thing. The more demand we demonstrate, the more chance it will continue.
 
Joey, Aris, and I did laps at a conversational pace. Joey had taken a tumble on his fatbike the day before and suspected he might have cracked a rib or two, so he was exploring the boundaries of his condition. He set up a breakaway scenario for Aris and I, where he would play the peloton and we would try to lap him. The point was to figure out the other guy. I led out at a decent 400 watts, figuring if we caught Joey in five minutes or so I could hang. Otherwise, I just wasn't feeling it. Aris took over and looked good, so I figured I'd try to massage things so he was doing most of the work.
 
After a couple laps, Joey yells out that he was catching us. I sat up and drifted back to Joey, the guy with a suspected broken rib that just cranked out more sustained watts than I've done in a while. We both eased up, and Aris pressed on his breakaway, eventually lapping Joey thanks to my selfless sacrifice. Without the distraction I provided, the catch probably would have taken at least 50 more meters to achieve. Aris has a very big diesel.
 
A few more laps went by and I had to call it quits to hit the hill with my new group of Mighty Mite Chipmunks. The Dome and coaching makes for a long day that Training Peaks doesn't quite comprehend when calculating training stress scores. I had a lot of fun, but I'll pay for it this week.
 
Time to re-shuffle the schedule. The Dome is a thing again.

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