Monday, July 31, 2006


When I time-trial, I have 3 things that I always focus on and think about. I constantly try and evaluate these 3 things and try to improve on them constantly. They are: 1. Pacing. I train with HRM and power, but I race "in the dark". I'm always listening and feeling my body, trying to evaluate if I'm going hard enough, but not too hard. This skill will develop as you do more and more TTs.

2. Technique. I try to relax and keep my upper body as still as possible. Little or no head movements, TT helmet flat and touching my back. Correct cadence.

3. Mental toughness. Focus on work tasks. Concentrate. And most importantly - being able to be tough and hard towards yourself. TTs will hurt, period. This becomes especially important during the last 5-6km and races are usually won here. From 5k in it's an all-out, nothing held back, effort. This is going to hurt and the winner is often the one that can dole out the most hurt.

All I do during a TT is focus on these 3 tasks. Simplicity is important, just go through them over and over again. When I evaluate my performance after an effort, I evaluate it based on these 3 items, NOT my placing. Placing is irrelevant at this point.


Blogger Tim Jackson- Masi Guy said...

Excellent. That's how I like to race too. I look at my computer for the basic numbers, but I try to race on feeling. If you know your body, it'll tell you more than the electronics can.

By the way; that 3K Pursuit time was 4:13:06, but it was a really slow day with the wind.

Blogger Tom Stormcrowe said...

Good post, Mags! It gave me some fuel for thought, thanks! By the way, trainig is going well, doing "Sprint"ervals on a short but STEEEEEEEEEEEP hill right now to work onmn breakaways and other than that, I'm working on building and maintaing a higher avg speed.

Blogger mags said...

Tim - Yes, the so-called perceived exertion is most important, in my opinion.

Tom - thanks for the comments. Good luck with the training. :)


Blogger servento said...

Hi, Mags.

I enjoyed reading your last entries, and I found them interesting. But I wish you could tell us about how you're doing in your training and racing, like you used to do when you first created this blog. You don't have to give us all the details, just tell us how hard you rode and how you felt.

By the way, I'm going to participate in the local Kretsmesterskap (I don't know the english word for that :) in track racing next week. I'll do the 500m time trial and the 2000m pursuit race. I practiced doing the sprint a couple of times today, and I know what to do, but I could need some advice when it comes to the 2 kilometer race. Especially since I only have a regular road bike, without any aerodynamic equipment. Should I keep my hands on the drops or lean forward with my elbows on the bars? I'll probably do some 2K time trials during my training to see what works best, but if you have any input on what I should do, that would be great.

- Servento

Blogger Dub said...

Mags - Keep up the good work (your goal and the blog! - It shows true spirit)

All the very best

Blogger mags said...

Dub - thank you very much for the encouragement. :) And thanks for stopping by.

Servento - Nice to hear from you again. I'm glad you are still stopping by. Stay tuned for more "training and racing" related info. I'm working on a few things.

As for your question - The 2K TT is very short, so go as hard as you possibly can from the start. Hands in the drops would certainly help, if you can develop the power you need. As you get towards the end of the race, get out of the saddle and give it all while sprinting. As for putting your elbows on the bars, that could work depending on your comfort-level and bike handling skills.

Also, if the course is flat, straight and not technical you might want to use that technique. Or maybe you can borrow someones clip-on aero-bars? If you do, make sure you train with them first. :) Let me know how you do!


Blogger Dub said...

Might I make a suggestion? To encourage new people (like me!) to re-visit your site, without first having to read everything that's happened since you started your blog...

Could you add some info in your About me / profile, please? "Read my blog!" is a little too terse - Perhaps state what your aims are, and how the journey's been so far - I will be coming back regularly (just added this to my RSS reader)

I'm sure your long term followers know what's what, but us new visitors have loads of reading to get up to speed

Blogger mags said...


I understand what you are saying. The blog was sort of started as something that friends/family could read and keep up with my racing, as I'm living in Europe for most of the year (pretty far away from family). I also wanted to give my humble opinions on racing / training for anyone interested in it.

I'm surprised I still have readers returning, since I don't exactly post very regulary. So, here's an update for you - Dub: :)

My goal is simple - to become the best bike racer that I possibly can.


Blogger Dub said...

...with an aim to get to London in 2012?

Blogger mags said...

Dub - As a philosophical goal; yes.


Blogger Dub said...

Good luck

Blogger mags said...

Thank you very much!



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