Last night's Training Crit was beyond miserable with 10-15mph wind and gusts over 20, and I was completely spent after 35 minutes. I was mad, I wanted to stay in the whole 45+2 and I kept thinking about what exactly is going wrong. I decided to check out my training log and see if I could find any clues and I now know why I'm not performing at the level I was last year.
I finished the State Champ Cat 5 Road Race with a 10th place finish and did not touch my bike all winter. My log shows that my first ride of the year was February 2nd. Further, it shows a total of 171 miles during February and a total of 161 miles in March, there is also a distance lack of interval work in those months. Sitting here on the 16th of April I have 227 miles, 1 race, 1 day of intervals, and 2 crits that acted as pseudo interval sessions.
My problem right now is simple volume and intensity. Until April I was not riding enough and I was not riding enough really fast miles. Once I get a few hundred more miles and some interval sessions in my legs I should be back where I left off last season and I should be riding better on a much more consistent basis.
Taking the entire winter off from the bike was an ill advised move on my part as well. I can't say it was a total loss because my understanding of performance in relation to diet and my understanding of my body have improved markedly. The strength I gained has made my snap acceleration much more violent with very little added bodyweight.
In summary, my training log let me know I was an idiot for riding too little and expecting too much from my body. It did tell me that I'm not far from where I should be and that I need to up the intensity. I guess training logs are good things to have, but if I could only get my hands on a PowerTap I'd be able to over-analyze my training to the extreme edge of excess.