Worth a Read

Just on my way out the door but I’ve got time for a quickie post. So training today did not go as planned but in the end it all worked out. Plan was to do a gym work-out before work and then a road ride after work. Smooth. Get to the gym – hmmm, it is completely dark and there is no music playing. Huh, no power. Oh well, there are still people working out. So I start my work-out. I just get settled in nicely to a round of back squats followed by jump squats and I’m told we have to leave. Bummer.

I must admit I came home a bit cranky. I was stressed trying to figure out when I could get this work-out in. Hopped on my bike for the ride to work. That is when it hit me, missing the gym session was not the end of the world. I will try to do it on Thursday, if not no biggie. Priorities for the week are really to be well rested for the racing this weekend and to get in a solid session tomorrow on the ‘cross bike. I caught myself before letting the missed gym work-out snowball into something bigger and worse.

Got in some excellent time on the road bike today. All about recovery so it was nice to be out enjoying the sunshine and listening to some Vinyl Cafe podcasts while pedaling along. When I got home I read the second part of Jeremy Power’s interview on CX Magazine. A pretty good interview. One part question really struck home with me and I thought some of you might be able to relate:

CXM: For those looking to progress to the highest ranks as a cyclocross racer, what words of wisdom do you have?

JPow: I think the biggest thing is to listen to the people around you and what they are telling you. One of the biggest things that I do, and one of the biggest aspects of my life, is I ask people to critique me. I am always asking what can I do better about this, what do you see? People say, “Well, I see you do this when you race in the mud, and when you get back on your bike.” Work on anything you possibly can. Because you are putting in 20 or 30 hours a week riding your bike and you’re not doing those things, then you’re not giving yourself a full chance. I think it’s important to just look at yourself from the outside in and say, “o.k. what can I do to make myself better, what do I know that I am not good enough at?” If that’s running, or if that’s riding in the mud, or if that’s just power, all of those things can be worked on. You can run more, you can train harder at intervals, you can go out and wet down your back yard and ride around in circles in the mud. You can make sure that you do all these things to at least give yourself an opportunity, and if you don’t give yourself that opportunity, then you have stumbled out of the start gate as if you never even tried. I would say breaking it down piece-by-piece and then taking your game to a different level is the hardest thing to do, but you have to look at each individual piece and then focus on one at a time and just knock them off. That can take years.

You’re looking at the top end of a sport, and when you look at the top end, there is going to be a really high range of guys. Some courses may suit you better genetically than others, and you may say that in that flat grassy race you’re awesome but then you get in this mud race and it’s not that great. You just have to look at those things and try and work on them one at a time.

Some very good words to think about. I know I am. Okay, gotta jet. The new Ottawa Cross clothing is going to look hot. Many many thanks to Fearless Leader for an excellent design. I’m off to get some forms faxed to Champion Systems so I can get myself some slick new racing and training duds.

Huge shout out to Clif Bar for getting my order to me so quickly. You guys rock. Pretty jazzed about the new Shot Blok packaging and looking forward to trying some of the new flavors. Had my first chocolate brownie Z Bar today – mmm, quite addictive.

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