How to Stop Sabotaging Your Race Day Efforts

July 23, 2015
Racing at Peak Cycles / BikeParts.com

Racing at Peak Cycles / BikeParts.com

Before a race or a big event, do you ever feel overwhelmed? Nervous? Anxious? For the most part, experiencing those sensations is normal. Yet, oftentimes, negative self talk can exasperate the problem.

Thoughts like, “I haven’t trained enough” or you find yourself caring too much about what other people think.  Maybe looking around the start of an event you take a mental inventory and think other cyclist look more fit or have better bikes. Worst case scenario, you notice the weather and assign its condition as to how you think you will perform.

Whatever the case may be, managing self sabotaging thoughts and behavior is well within your scope of control.  Being mindful of your pre- event thoughts allows you to fully maximize your training efforts while reaching your race day or event goals.  Granted, pretty much everyone that enters an event suffers from nerves of some sort. However, the post, 5 Simple Strategies for Overcoming Race Day Nerves, guides us through easy ways to shift the perspective of nervousness to be an enabler of positive sports performance. And there are other ideas for managing self defeating behaviors too.

Develop race day strategies that work for you.  Preparing mentally, physically, and being bike ready will instill confidence leading up to the event.  When your mind drifts to negative self talk, re- direct it to the strategies you’ve set for yourself.  As an example, develop personal race day rituals.  Crafting a pre-event routine is an important part of building a successful race experience.  Consider having a checklist of race day activities to help structure your preparation to the start line.  Include items such as nutrition, hydration, clothes, gear, extra bike parts and basic bike tools. This way, you won’t be forgetting anything as you prepare for your start.  You will show up on the line having confidence in your bike, your bike parts, and nutrition so that you can solely focus on the event ahead of you and not what other cyclist are doing or riding.

A little preparation can aid in reducing anxiety too!   Know the course and the conditions.  Check the weather ahead of time. Do a mental dress rehearsal of the event using this information. Visualization offers you the chance to “try things on” in a way so that you get more comfortable at adapting to the random things that occur during events.

Ultimately, the more at ease you are going into an event allows you to be more relaxed and focused on the start line  Limit any self sabotage you have by preparing in advance.  You’ll enjoy your event and it will also pave the way for a longer and enjoyable cycling career.


Inspire New Cyclist! Share the Cycling Love this Bike Month

April 30, 2015

10623813_987186804692036_6260883211829631960_oAs cyclist, we know the more we ride, the more we want to ride!  So, how can you make cycling get even better?  Make a whole month celebration of it!  Whether you bike to work or school; ride to save money or time; pump those pedals to preserve your health or the environment; or simply to explore your community, May is National Bike Month and is an opportunity to celebrate the unique power of the bicycle and the many reasons we ride.

As cyclist, we experience the benefits that cycling has to offer but to those new to the sport, embarking in unfamiliar territory may seem a tad intimidating.  National Bike Month is an opportunity to inspire others to our sport.  Fortunately, bike commuting is on the rise!  In fact, among the 51 largest U.S. cities, 43 hosted Bike to Work Day events in 2010. The City of Denver reported the highest rate of participation with one out of every 28 adults participating in its 2010 Bike to Work event. That effort makes a difference: Many people who participate in their Bike to Work Day promotion as first-time commuters become regular bike commuters. But Bike Month is more than one day — or week! It’s an entire month!

There are countless ways to inspire others to bike commute, ride, or race this month.  See which activities inspire you to help others enjoy our fabulous sport!

Inspire with a bike-friendly shopping program.  Everyone likes to shop, right?  Inspire new cyclist with bike parts bling!  Many aspiring bike riding enthusiast appreciate a shop that offers quality bike components along with solid advice on bike parts and cycling apparel. Convenience helps too.  Look for a shop that offers online and store front shopping to aid in your cyclist needs.  Fortunately, Peak Cycles offers both!

Inspire with bike education programs.  Having the right bike setup, cycling accessories and gear makes all the difference.  Consider offering a bike safety class for new riders or participate in a bike maintenance class.   All tools aren’t created equal – some are good for mountain bike parts while others are designed for road bike parts.  Knowing which tools to use on the appropriate bike components can make all the difference in making bike maintenance easy.  Our post, Bike Inspections: A Guide for Injury Free, Enjoyable Spring Cycling, offers bike inspection tips and bike accessories you need to maintain your bike.

Inspire with a list of rides and events.  Colorado has some of the greatest road bike rides in the country. Some are shorter, convenient rides whereas others offer steeper, longer climbs and extended distances. Locals and vacationers alike welcome the challenge of pushing the limits while taking in breathtaking views that only Colorado has to offer. Inspire new riders by checking out a few of 20 Colorado Front Range Bucket List Rides or invite them to spectate at one of the MTB races in Colorado.

Inspire with bike events!  Check out one of the events held in your area.  The League of American Bicyclist has countless events scheduled. Keep in mind, in 2015, Bike to Work Week will be May 11-15, with Bike to Work Day on May 15.  To  keep the momentum going, join our shop ride on Wednesday evenings and like our Peak Cycles Race Team Facebook page to keep informed of other rides and events.

Have fun, be active! Enjoy and inspire others to enjoy the outdoors and experience the joy of cycling this National Bike Month!


Do You Know the Right Way to Train?

January 23, 2014
Charlie Knoll racing the 2012 Teva Games, Pro category

Charlie Knoll racing the 2012 Teva Games, Pro category

Your heart is pumping, your legs are burning, and you’re dripping enough sweat to put out a small forest fire.

You are suffering.

But is your suffering worthwhile?  Are you “just riding” every day without a strategic approach to your training?  Are your efforts hard enough to force physical adaptations? Do you take easy days for recovery so you can repeat your critical workouts?

Having a strategic approach and structured training means every workout has a purpose.  Every step, pedal and stroke is being performed with the confidence it’s the right thing to do and performed the right way.  The post, The Right Way to Train, shares four essential components of deliberate practice, and based on these four components, there is a 4-step process that embodies the right way to train:

  1. Set a specific goal
  2. Get expert instruction
  3. Perform structured training
  4. Get immediate feedback

Having a strategic approach includes not only having the tools needed, but also, including a comprehensive plan.  Meaning, a plan that includes training on the bike and off the bike.  Daily nutrition and sleep habits play a vital role in training properly.  Managing your overall stress levels, including time management, ensures  proper recovery.

As you prepare for your 2014 season as an athlete, make sure you have all of the components to training “the right way” to achieve your goal.

Having ambition goals for the season is great.  Discover what you need to support your training in reaching those goals.  Do you need a cycling coach? Maybe you need a bike fit or training software? Having the right tools, systems, habits, and overall strategy in place can make the difference between suffering through your season with disappointment or making big gains in reward and satisfaction.


We’re Not Done Yet! Colorado Races and Tours on Tap for August

August 15, 2013

Course strategies, break aways, riding in a small group or a large peloton – these are the thoughts and questions of cyclist wondering how to win at bicycle racing.  With only about a month and half left of the Colorado cycling racing and touring season, many are filling up their calendars with the last big events of the season hoping to capitalize on the fitness gains made during the season.   The Colorado races and tours on tap for August include:248096_459813457429376_203222675_n

08/17/2013

  • 24 Hours in the Sage
  • Steamboat Stinger
  • TOUR de CURE Colorado

08/31/2013

  • Big Mountain Enduro – Durango
  • Grand Junction Off-Road
  • Steamboat Stage Race
  • Tour de Fat – Fort Collins

The best way to approach any of these rides is to come prepared: mentally, physically, and have fully inspected your bike parts.  Functioning brakes are essential on the long, fast descents.  Proper gearing can make or break your chance of making a climb.  And, having the right bike toolscycling accessories, and extra bike parts on hand make a difference between a stellar ride and a bail out.

Also, if you are looking to finish your season super strong, consider a bike fit.  Leg strength, endurance, and fitness are at the heart of cycling speed, but without a proper bike fit, you are sabotaging your training efforts.  The 2013 season is (almost) nearing the end.  Let’s finish strong! Finish fast!