10 Questions to Evaluate the Success of Your Cycling Season

November 7, 2013

What makes a successful cycling season?  It is having a good coach? Having a really fast bike? Having the right bike parts for each race or event?  According to Mike Ricci, head coach of the 2013 National Champion CU Triathlon Team, it is consistency that pays off.  This means consistency in hitting your workouts week in and week out, month in and month out, and year in and year out.

As the 2013 cycling season comes to a close, now is a good time to reflect on what worked and what didn’t work in meeting your goals and objectives this past year.  How did training consistency play a part in your success or lack of success this past year?  How should you be planning for 2014?  And, what other questions should you be asking yourself to improve upon this past year’s performance?

While the year may not be quite over, many are already planning their 2014 race and cycling season.  Sure, it’s fun to have lofty new goals, new ambitions, and new venues to fuel your cycling passions through the winter months, but not pausing to reflect on what has recently come to pass is missing a valuable opportunity to make personal gains that only you can make.   Personal reflection offers insights to truly optimize your training and racing regimen.

The post, Athlete-Coach Season Review, poses 10 questions to review your past season’s performance:

  1. What was the highlight of your season (for example, best race or greatest accomplishment)?Why?
  2. What was your greatest disappointment? Why?
  3. Review your top three goals for this season. Do you feel these were achieved?
  4. What did you do in training this season that you feel made you faster?
  5. What did you do in training this season that you feel was not productive?
  6. If you could change your training, mental preparation, or race tactics/strategy this past season, what would you do differently?
  7. Was there anything missing in your training this season?
  8. Do you feel that you trained enough and worked hard enough in training this season?
  9. Do you feel that you had adequate rest during training and before races?
  10. Do you have any extra comments and insights on this season?

With these personal insights in mind, you are better equipped to plan and execute a rewarding and successful 2014 cycling season.

Are Your New Year’s Cycling Resolutions SMART?

December 27, 2012
Happy New Year from BikeParts.com


New Year’s has always been a time for reflecting on the past year, and more importantly, looking forward to the coming year. It’s a time to reflect on the changes we want to make and resolve to follow through on those changes.  However, for all too many resolutions, failure is virtually assured at the offset because the resolutions are not made with serious intent and deliberation.

The first trick is to choose the right resolution, for the right reasons, and making them SMART.  When you make your resolutions SMART  (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-bound), not only do you boost your chance of  attaining your goals, but you also  become a better cyclist in the process.  Aside from the traditional resolutions to ride more, to loose weight, and to explore new rides, consider taking on some different resolutions.

Set a personal goal for the miles you want to ride in 2013.  Using a cycling computer, heart rate monitor, or power meter offers options in calculating mileage and other fitness related variables.  Try a new tool and see if it makes adding up the miles a little easier.

Learn to maintain your own bike. For some, bike maintenance  can be a chore, but having the right set of bike components and tools can make all the difference.  Consider creating a pre-ride bike check or an ongoing maintenance program to follow.  Bike maintenance can be a great way of engaging in your cycling passion the whole year long.

Bike commute and do it more often. Bike commuting improves fitness, health, saves money, and also benefits the environment by keeping one less car on the road.  If you aren’t a bike commuter now, maybe in 2013 you will be.  And, if you already bike commute, perhaps resolve to commute by bike more frequently.

Inspire others to get out and ride.  Bike inspiration comes in many forms, from DVD‘s, to books, to new bikes and bike parts, to riding with others.  Share your bike passion with others in ways that are meaningful and inspiring to them.  How many friends do you think you could inspire to be two wheeled friends in 2013?

Give Back.  Cycling by nature brings out the best in us all.  Consider volunteering your time, skills, or resources at local bike races and bike events.  Event participants will be in your gratitude but you may get back more than you give!  Many volunteers are inspired to participate, race, or take on bigger goals than they previously imagined due to volunteering and helping others to reach their goals.

Commit to a Positive Attitude.   Nothing is more contagious than a positive attitude!  Resolve in 2013 to embrace power thoughts and bike parts that motivate you to get on your bike and ride. Surround yourself with fellow cyclist aiming for similar goals.  Remember, your attitude determines your altitude.

For cyclist, attaining goals is part motivation, part perspiration, and part having the right tools to help you reach your goals.   Here’s to a bright and rewarding New Year ahead!