We asked a few of our athletes to provide some of their top tips for event preparation. With Ride London coming up in a few weeks we thought these may help fine tune the prep!
Training for an event can give you lots of motivation to get to your peak level of fitness.
The number one tip I can give is to set attainable goals that will help you get to your final destination. Things that I find work are to lay out a week by week schedule with mini goals like – Week 1 – healthy eating (focusing on getting most nutrition out of your meals).
Week 2 -focus on the recovery aspect of training as detailed as possible. Feet up whenever you can, protein shakes, lean healthy food, etc.
Week 3 – Cut alcohol, or caffeine, or sweets, etc. I find that cutting something out of your normal diet not only makes you healthier, but switches something in the brain to help really focus your mind on the end goal. If you are making small sacrifices, your mind will focus and allow your body to get the most out of training.
On top of goal setting is just having fun with the training and enjoy the process. You can easily get lost in the grand process of getting fit. Remember to look back on how far you have come and don’t get caught up in the small stuff.
From personal experience, make sure on the day the products or food you are going to eat mid ride is something you’ve trained with and your body is OK digesting.
Don’t set off too hard too early. Hide and wait as long as possible to save your legs closer to the end. Much better for moral to finish strongly then be hanging on your last legs in the final 20 km!
Drink and eat little and often, it can be hard to remember and before you realise it’s too late. So if you have a bike computer like a Garmin for example, you can set a 20 min buzzer to remind you to have a drink or small bite of a bar.
Always make sure you’re relaxed and comfortable on the bike. There’s nothing worse than something bugging you on the bike, especially when you’re in the middle of nowhere.
Try not to do last minute mechanics, as you can do more harm than good and you never really enjoy the ride if you’re stressed over something if it isn’t right.
Train for what you’re going to be doing, so if you’re doing a 45 mile ride, don’t do 200 mile slogs.
Last but not least, enjoy it! It’s what it’s about!
Always take food/spare money with you. If you find yourself without food when your body needs it can be a bad sensation and finishing the ride can be a struggle.
Take an extra vest/arm warmers/ rain cape in your back pocket if the weather can’t make its mind up. If it suddenly rains and the temperature drops it can make you feel horrible. Always be prepared.
If your short of time because of other commitments it doesn’t mean you can’t get fit. Focus more on intense sessions and specific training. You’ll be surprised that you can keep up with people doing 100’s of miles a week.