W2W Training Program May 2017
So you’ve secured an entry to W2W, and hopefully you’ve already chosen a partner … more on this a little later.
Remember to progress the workouts according to your fitness and ability. Be sure to start on a level of interval you can achieve. This is very important!
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Understanding the Characteristics and Demands of the FNB W2W
The FNB W2W is a fun event for all types of riders to take part in, but is filled with challenging singletrack. The demands of this event therefore will place a lot of emphasis in good technical riding ability, as well as strong endurance. Over the next few months, Daisyway Coaching Systems will help guide you with, not only a free training plan, but will also hold Training Camps in the Grabouw area, to help those needing to improve their technical skill levels. We will post dates for those and booking is essential. Please sign up for our Newsletter so you can be notified when these dates will be.
Training elements for the demands of this event:
- Technical terrain riding ability
- Climbing technical terrain
- Bike portage
- Sandy terrain riding
- Rocky descents
- Endurance to ride an 80km route, 3 days in a row, and ability to climb 1300m of climbing daily
Key Training priorities:
- Skill up: learn to control your bike and discover how good skill is like having free speed
- Climbing legs: train your legs to handle steep and long climbs (TIP: climb one gear harder on your favourite hill starting today!)
- Do the distance: many riders are fit and strong until a point and then fall apart ….. train for the distance
- Learn to ride with your partner
- Learn to pace yourself for the distance: you and your partner may climb at different speeds, so don’t blow your self apart trying to stay with partner.
The Dynamics of Racing with a Partner
Choosing the right partner for any team event is often overlooked, but is hugely important!
Your partner needs to have the same goals as you, should be of similar fitness and has the right temperament to handle good and bad situations in his/her stride.
The single biggest issue we see in team events, are bad partnerships – this makes or breaks an event in many ways. The rider experience of the event is mostly effected by the day’s riding, so if the day’s riding is spent suffering behind an unsympathetic partner then that rider will find the day tough. It’s vitally important to find someone who is your strength and/or skill level, or who is willing to ride at your ability level.
Tips for picking partners:
- Pick someone you know well, who understands how grumpy you can get when you’re tired and vice versa
- Pick someone you train with and can train with going forward so you find your team rhythm (also accountability to train and not let your partner down)
- Pick a partner who has opposite skills to yours – eg. you are technically and mechanically minded – you take care of the bike maintenance and issues (including a spares list), and your partner is admin driven – get your partner to take care of logistics and things like that. It’s a team event, so work as a team to strengthen the bond. Divide and conquer
- The most important part of all of this: be kind to each other – remember that not everyone is strong everyday – you may too, experience an off day and you would expect your partner to be nice to you (this DOES happen!)
RIDING AS A TEAM
Now you have your partner sorted out, the two of you should go find a few single day events to go race together to gain race mileage as team.
Any event is fine, it’s a trial run to see how each of you compare to each other and to see where each of you need to improve etc. Doing “mock” races together is a great way to see what happens in race situations, eg. some riders say they never have tyre issues, but put them under faster, more stressful race conditions and they end up with the cut tyre. Does that rider then know how to fix the tyre efficiently, to not lose time? This is why racing together in these types of “mock “ races is great, they are learning experiences that will save you time and money for the main event.
Things to remember to practice during a “mock” event and the FNB W2W:
- Both riders must finish – together
- Never lose sight of your partner (especially if you’re the stronger rider)
- You’re as fast as the slowest rider – if you burn out your partner too early, you’ll land up going slower than if you just slow down a little earlier on
- Know each other’s strengths
- Respect one another’s weakness
- Communicate at all times – especially under unplanned situations (medical or mechanical)
- Be kind to your partner if they’re having a tough time – remember, even stronger riders have bad days
- Always put stronger rider behind (climbing, descending) – check your partner’s preference
- Don’t be afraid to admit you are suffering
- Water points:
- Communicate with your partner so you don’t misunderstand when he/she goes for a P and you think he/she has gone already – you go chasing after him/her, mean time he/she is still looking for you at the water point (this happens ALL the time!!)
- Have a plan for water points – park your bikes, literally on top of each other
- Make water point stops as quick as possible (± 2 – 4 mins)
- If you have to push your partner, don’t do it on Day 1, rather slow down a little
- Pull rather than push, where terrain allows
Events to use as training races:
- 6 May 2017: Trucape MTB
- 6 & 7 May 2017: Houwhoek Tour 6&7 May
- 13 May 2017: Rhodes Gravel Travel 13 May
- 27 May 2017: Darling Brew Extreme 27 May
Over the past 25 years we have seen just how important a proper bike set-up is – for riders of ALL levels – especially new riders to the sport of mountain biking and cycling. This remains one of the biggest factors linking comfort, performance and injury-prevention to the all-round enjoyment of the sport!
Everyone is built differently and has a different riding and pedalling style. In conjunction with the actual bike set up, the positioning of cleats for each persons different pedal action, rounds off the perfect pedal stroke. The effects have been amazing – ranging from:
- no more sore knees,
- no more sore back
- no more sore ITB
- more power throughout pedal stroke
- better pedalling efficiency
- better bike control
Think about this: if you are currently only using 50 % of your pedal stroke (and most of us are), and you could increase this to 60 % or 70 %, how much faster would you be on those climbs?
Don’t leave this too late – to make any changes to your bike set up in the week prior to your event can result in a worse scenario.
To book a bike set up and/or pedal stroke analysis appointment (road and mtb), please call Spook on 083 60 11 22 1 or email him on email@example.com
MTB SKILLS AND TECHNIQUE COACHING
Between now and the FNB W2W you should be developing your fitness but also your skills and technique. Without technique you can be wasting energy, and without skill you increase your chances of having an accident. Better technique and skill = efficiency, time saving, energy saving, more fun and is better for your confidence.
We see a huge number of riders not making it through stage 1 due to lack of conditioning to riding singletrack, so with this in mind we urge you to get outside and ride loads of singletrack. There is a huge difference to being fit enough to ride 80km on your road bike, compared to riding 80km of bumpy up and down singletrack!
TRAIN FOR THE DEMANDS OF THE EVENT!
To book a Technique and Skills session/s, please contact:
- Lance – 0834571558 or email Lance@daisyway.co.za
- Erica – 082 22 00 00 2 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Spook – 083 60 11 22 1 or email email@example.com
Feel free to email us if you have any general questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
Until then, HAPPY TRAINING!!
Next Months’ Topics:
- Being sure of your equipment
- Hydration and Nutrition
- How much training and what
- Bike Setup
- Skills Coaching