The last couple of months have found me riding and running new and unfamiliar routes. In the last week I’ve revisited some of my tried and true, if somewhat recently neglected, routes. I often desire to seek out new scenery, new stimulation in my training. Along with this, time constraints force me to closer, well-worn trails–Often with a sense of drudgery.
That sense of drudgery never lasts very long though. Once on the trail, I begin to relish in the training.
Recently, I’ve run a couple of my old standbys, and found myself remarkably stronger in certain dreaded sections. Over the years, I’ve steadily improved on these hills. However, the recent improvement has been dramatic and surprising. Particularly so, given the time away.
Hence, another, more practical benefit to familiar routes is their benchmark factor.
When you’ve been away from one certain dreaded hill for several months, and return to it, never quite hitting the wall, still strong as the hills begins to top out–you now have confirmation that the training has been paying off.
Another reason to Praise Familiar Routes.