PACTIMO REWARDS(0)  |  FREE SHIPPING ON $50+ ORDERS  |  877-291-6238  |  NEED HELP?   “US “British “Euro”

How to Stay Motivated for Racing in the Summer Months

June 20, 2016

How to Stay Motivated for Racing in the Summer Months

“Before training for Goal #2. it’s really important to take a mid season break.”

by Alison Powers, ALP Cycles Coaching

It’s finally summer time. The weather is nice and the days are long. However, for many bike racers, June is a tough month, motivation wise. Early season races have come and gone, goals have either been met or not quite achieved, you pretty much know how your season is going to turn out, and the motivation to train and race is weaning. Just as bike riding is at its best, people are tiring of riding and training.

The question becomes how to stay motivated to train and race through the entire race season which can last until September.

For most of us, having a goal is the #1 motivation to ride our bike. This goal can be as simple as finishing a charity ride or Gran Fondo to something more intense such as winning a national caliber stage race or Master’s Nationals. However, if your cycling goal is in the spring or in the beginning of the summer, once your goal ride or race is finished, it’s easy to lose the motivation to keep riding and training. This is why it’s so important to have another goal in mind for later in the season. This way you keep your bike riding and racing motivation going strong.

Before training for goal #2, it’s really important to take a mid season break. After 6 months of solid training and racing, our bodies and minds are tired. This mid season break usually comes in June (depending on race goals) and lasts in duration from 5-14 days. My “recipe” for a mid season break is 4-5 days off the bike (no hiking or running either), 1 free day to ride as much as you want to, then 2 more days off the bike. By the end of this mid season break, the athlete is fresh, motivated, and most importantly, excited to ride their bike.

Alp Cycles Coaching

While training for goal #2, it’s important to keep it fun. By this time in the season, most of us are tired of doing intervals, and are tired of riding the same raids over and over. The best ways to beat these “midseason blues” are to find ways to mix up your riding. Try riding new routes with new people or riding at different times of the day. Mix up your interval sessions by doing them up a hill or change the length of each interval and rest period.

My favorite way to keep training fun is to ride different bikes. If you are a roadie, summer is a great time to hone in your bike handling skills (not to mention build great seated power) with mountain biking a couple times a week. You can even through in a short track race here and there to take place of your VO2 intervals. If you are a mountain biker, spend some time on your road bike and add in a road race or two to test out your fitness and race tactics.

Cyclocross racing is a great goal #2 or #3 to have. Cyclocross mixes both road racing and mountain bike racing and is a fun way to stay in race shape and work on your skills in the fall and winter months. Come June and/or July, if you are tired of racing and training, it’s the perfect time to take a break from racing, spend some fun time on your bike and aim to ramp up for the Cyclocross season that starts in late September.

Here are a few workouts to keep training and motivation fresh-

-Bottom to top intervals- using the terrain available; ride hard from the bottom of a climb to the top of the climb. Really push it all the way to the top. Recover on the back side.

-Hour of Power-put that power meter away and just go out and ride hard. Sprint to speed limit signs and push the pace after the sprints.

-Friendly attacking or group rides-Ride with a friend and take turns “attacking” each other as you would in a race or join a sprinted group ride that challenges you with city limit sprints or climbing out of your comfort zone.

Happy training and remember to enjoy each bike ride.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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



Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Related Stories You Might Like

  • Swimming the Current

    No matter what level of racing you're competing at - these tips will come in hand to elevate you to higher levels.  By: Jennifer Sharp, ALP Cycles Coaching As a coach, I'm always looking for ways to improve my coachin...

  • How to Stay Motivated in the Fall

    How do we manage to maintain fitness while giving ourselves a mental break? By: ALP Coach Patricia Schwager Fall is right around the corner. The road racing and MTB season is coming to an end, many of my athletes have...

  • What Does it Take to be the Best?

    “For me, my hard work, focus and sacrifice were 100% every day.” by Alison Powers, ALP Cycles Coaching While visiting my parents a few weeks ago, my Mom asked me to clean some of my old stuff from the closet. I found ...


Also in Training & Coaching

Team Camp 2017 - ALP Cycles Coaching
Team Camp 2017 - ALP Cycles Coaching

April 21, 2017

Last week, ALP Cycles Racing, had their team camp in Grand Junction. We call it a "team camp" instead of a "training camp", because camp was so much more than training. It was about the team; building team bonds, building team skills, and starting to think as one team. Everyone rides for the greater good of the team.

Read More

Why You Shouldn't Train Through Sickness...
Why You Shouldn't Train Through Sickness...

April 07, 2017

Lately, a lot of people are dealing with nasty seasonal viruses/flu that are going around. Athletes are a primary target because after intense training, our immune system are compromised and they can’t protect us, causing an "open window effect". That “open window effect” has a duration of about 3 to 72 hours. This is why it is very important to get enough and proper recovery especially after a hard ride, workout or race!

Read More

The Art of Being Prepared
The Art of Being Prepared

April 04, 2017

The art of being prepared comes down to one simple thing—no surprises on race day.

Preparing for race day is more than training and recovery.  Success on race day requires precise preparation. This means the things you can control should be dialed in, ready, and give you confidence to have the best performance possible.

“Fail to prepare and prepare to fail”—famous quote by someone who inspires people to get their sh*t together. 

Read More

Find us on Google+