March 21, 2016
by ALP Cycles Coaching
We think the most important thing a coach can do for her/his athletes, is to ride with them. So much knowledge and information can be gained from seeing an athlete on their bike. A power meter won’t tell you how their bike fit is or how smooth of a pedal stroker they have. A ride file won’t show you their cornering skills (or lack there of). An email can’t do justice in describing a course and explaining how to race it. Intervals done alone will never be as intense or as fun as riding with 10 strong, competitive riders.
Here at ALP Cycles Coaching, we make it a priority to ride with our Colorado athletes. Last weekend was our March ALP Ride and we focused on criterium skills and drills. We rode to the Louisville Criterium course, a moderate course with 1 tough corner and an uphill finishing stretch that is usually windy.
We took a couple of laps on the course together and discusses the things we noticed-rough pavement, open corners, where to pass, where the wind was coming from, and how to get out of the wind. Then we took some laps working on our cornering-looking ahead, carrying speed, navigating around slower riders, etc.
From there, we split up into 5 teams of 3 riders and did 3, 4-lap, mock races. Each race had a goal for the teams to focus on and try to execute team work and team dynamics. The 3 coaches split up and coached on bike-gave directions, helped, told riders where to go and what to look for. We talked about sprinting, making breakaways, knowing which breakaways would stay away, and how to approach the last lap. A lot of information was covered because a lot can go on in a 40 min criterium race.
It was a successful day and a very challenging workout with harder than race pace efforts. The Louisville Criterium is in 2 weeks and we are hoping our hard work during the ALP ride will pay off.
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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, 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://alpcyclescoaching.com
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