How to dig a hole... Train really hard to hit the ground running in your first season in elite. Be dead happy at how you put in a stonking performance in round 1 and then build from there.
Then under prepare for rd2 by training too much and resting too little I'm between. Ride around with your forks locked out and then Snap your chain In a rage of fury at how bad you're going.
Continue to search for answers to your poor performance by entering an A4 road race on the following weekend to try and pick up your confidence. Crash heavily at 25mph after 8 minutes and end up in A&E with a suspected fractured femur. Be glad that its just a massively dead leg. Hobble around for days and force yourself back on a bike to try and make round 3 before the next weekend. Ride round 3 like a person who thought his leg was broken 7 days previous.
Continue to ramp up your anaerobic sessions. These are the intervals that will make the difference. Its true! But its intervals plus rest that does it ... You know this... But fall into the trap of pushing on In the hope you are superman. Go to round 4 in Limerick. Realise half way through the race that its a long one and 3 bottles aren't enough. Be relatively competitive with a podium possible. Blow up like a big balloon with 10 mins left when the screw is Turning. Sit in the car for 6 hours home and then wonder why your legs don't work for days afterwards in their dehydrated glycogen depleted unstretched state.
Go to rd5. Put in a class performance. Always measure your performance against yourself and what you know you can do. Even if it is your lowest position. Ignore the fact that you had enforced rest up to this one. Get back on the hole digging asap!
Continue to ramp up your CTL in WKO+ and get sick. Bonk on 3 rides in a row and race with manflu anyway. A new low!
You are now wondering whether you should stop the season here. Or travel another 700mile round trip to get your ass handed to you on a plate at the nationals in Killarney. Of course you choose the whipping. You lose motivation to ride and train and increase your ever growing appetite regardless.
...And a whipping it was. Power figures all time low. Couldn't ride the bike at all through the off camber and despite starting poorly... Every lap got poorer!
Well. 2 really good races and a whole book of lessons to take home and learn from. Not a wasted season at all but should have been much better.
A 3rd in the NPS table despite never finishing higher than 4th in a race. A trophy for persistence and fulfilling the rules. 5th in elites at the nationals but a pony trek off the men who mattered. Looks ok on paper.
Who reads papers though?