April 01, 2019
by Alison Powers ALP Cycles Coaching
For the past 3 years, ALP Cycles Racing has had Spring training camp in Grand Junction, Colorado. Each year, it has proven to be so much more than a training camp. This year, was no different with a daily exercise of flexibility.
This past weekend was year 3 of our Spring Training Camp. Split between 2 houses, we had 18 riders and 3 coaches. Routes, complete with daily skills and drills, were planned. Road bike, mountain bike, team work, Bobo bars, NBS Hydration, and food. We were ready!
Day 1's plan was to arrive mid day, quickly kit up, and do a lap of the Colorado Monument. 10 min into our ride, the skies opened up, and temperature dropped. We changed the route, practiced double pacelines in the rain, and arrived back home 90 min later half frozen. It was a good learning lesson in how to deal with the cold rain (vaseline, embro, clothing, fenders), and how to ride as a team in the rain. Not one person complained. It was a day of HTFU'ing as a team.
Each night, we ate dinner as a team. Everyone would go to one of the houses and share cooking and dish duty. We ate appetizers/dinner/dessert, talked bike racing, learned about each teammate, and really bonded as a team. Our coach lead topics included, the 7 Guiding Principles of bike racing and how to apply them in races, cornering and line selection, and climbing how-to.
We woke up to 35 degrees and rain on Day 2. No ones to sit around and do nothing, each house did a core workout, talked about power meters and head units (Garmin, Wahoo, etc.), and waited for the rain to clear. When it did, we had a great ride working on rotating pacelines, attacking with a teammate, chasing as a team, and getting more 3 hours in our legs.
Day 3 would be our only sunshine day and we were ready to make the most of it. We finally were able to ride the Monument. While doing so, everyone worked on climbing while in and out of the saddle, and on the back side, descending and cornering. Back at home base, we split into 2 groups, 1 - more roadie ride time, and 2-mountain bike rides. This is our first year having an official mountain bike team, so this was a big deal. Our first mountain bike ride as a team.
Day 4, Sunday, brought more rain and cold. We made the decision to pack up and head back to the Front Range for our final day of riding: race simulation practice. Breaking into small teams, we did team pursuit style racing. We then did 2, 4-lap mock crit races. With 3 coaches everyone got great feedback and learning (and tired legs).
While we did not log long miles with teammates in the sunshine, we did log long miles with teammates in variable conditions and at varying times of the day. This lesson and training in being able to be flexible and roll with the punches is very important in bike racing. There are many things you can not control in bike racing but having the ability to stay positive, be prepared, and get the most out of each day is how champions are made.
Here's to a great 2019 race season!
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ABOUT ALISON POWERS
Alison Powers only recently retired from cycling, finishing her final season on the UnitedHealthcare Women’s Team. Her career has spanned a wide array of wins, including the 2013 USA Cycling Professional Criterium National Championship where she won in memorable fashion by soloing after an early breakaway that obliterated the pro women’s peloton. Other standout results during the 33-year-old’s 2013 season include the win at Redlands Bicycle Classic, second at the Tour of Elk Grove, third at the US National Road Championship and the US National Time Trial Championship, and stage wins at Cascade Classic, Tulsa Tough, Tour of the Gila and Redlands Bicycle Classic. Hailing from Fraser, Colorado, Powers has been racing bikes professionally for eight years and is a true athlete with her career beginning as a teenager in mountain bike racing. In her mid 20s, she added in alpine ski racing before switching over to the road. In addition to being the current Criterium National Champion, Powers has two other national championships (Time Trial, Team Pursuit) and 2 NRC titles (2009, 2013).
About ALP Cycles Coaching
ALP Cycles Coaching is located in the mountains of Colorado, and is a cycling coaching company with over 25 years of professional sports experience. ALP Cycles Coaching is unique in that we have 4 coaches, Alison Powers, Shawn Heidgen, Jennifer Triplett, and Patricia Schwager who each brings her own coaching strengths and personal experiences. We work together to create a training plan that works for each and every person. Visit them online at http://alpcyclescoach
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Pactimo is a Colorado company known for quality, reliability and unsurpassed customer service. Since 2003, we’ve shipped nearly 2 million garments to Olympians, national champions, teams, clubs and individual cyclists around the globe. We hope you feel the inspiration of Colorado and our passion for cycling in everything we do.
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