The Importance of Race Weight

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The Importance of Race Weight

This week's blog post is a throw back to one of our more popular posts. As the season draws near (or, in this case, it’s here), should you be focused on pounds, watts, both? 

Power to weight ratio. Watts per Kilogram. Race weight. Three different ways to say it, one simple meaning; however much you weigh, you must have the strength and fitness (power) to move that weight. The theory simply states the less you weigh, and the more power you have, the faster of a bike rider you will be.

Does this mean we all need to go on a diet and get as lean and as small as possible in order to be a fast bike rider? No. Well, it depends. It depends on what your goals are. It depends on what type of bike riding and/or racing you do. It depends on what type of bike rider you are and what body type you have.

Power to weight really comes into play when you are fighting gravity- i.e. climbing. The more body weight you have, the more you have to fight gravity and the stronger you need to be. For example, if I am riding uphill along side fellow ALP Coach Paddy, who weights 25-30 pounds less than I do, I would be riding along at ~250watts while she is “only” riding at ~215watts. Now imagine if I lost those 30 pounds but kept my power. I would fly up the hill. However, there is a good chance, that in losing those 30 pounds, more than half of those pounds would be muscle mass and thus, I would lose power and not be nearly as strong, as powerful, and as fast on the flats.

In determining your ideal race weight, first evaluate your goals. What kind of riding and racing will you be doing and what is the terrain of those rides/races? If your answer is long sustained climbing, rides/races with big and or steep climbing, then perhaps, in addition to gaining fitness and power, it’s time to look over your diet and training to see where you can shed some pounds. On the flip side, if the answer is flatter and/or rolling terrain, sprinting and/or sprint finishes, or a moderate amount of climbing, then focus on a good clean diet, but mostly, focus on getting as fit and as powerful as possible. Plus, there’s a good chance that while getting as fit and as powerful as possible, you lose a few unwanted pounds anyway.

In all honesty, I think too much emphasis is put on the power to weight ratio. At the end of the day, the person with the most determination, never-give-up, suffer like a mo-fo attitude will beat the person with better power to weight ratio who can’t suffer and gives up easily. We all want to be lean mean fighting machines. Some will be leaner than others and some will be meaner than others. Focus on your goals, your training, your diet, your mental toughness and fortitude, and success will come—weighing 150 pounds or 125 pounds.

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Join our ALP Cycles Coaching Family. 4 Coaches and 3 Coaching levels to choose from. We ride with our athletes, spend quality time with each athlete (in person, on the phone, over email), and really take the care needed to develop each person into the best cyclist they can be. 

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What I didn't know then....we'll teach now- Criterium Clinic

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What I didn't know then....we'll teach now- Criterium Clinic

By ALP Coach Alison Powers

My first roadie race was in 2005 in New Hampshire. It was a Criterium, and other than watching the Tour de France on TV, I had never seen a road bike race. I knew nothing about racing a criterium and I made many mistakes that day. On April 27th, my fellow ALP Cycles Coaching coaches and I will be coaching a criterium clinic from Specialized Boulder. We are going to teach the things I didn't know 14 years ago in New Hampshire. 

4 things I didn't know about Criterium racing.... we'll teach in 3 weeks. 

1) Tactics. I had no idea about race tactics in a criterium or really any race at all. I had a fair amount of mountain bike racing in my past and I just usually rode away from the field on the uphills and hoped to not get caught on the downhills. That tactic didn't work in this criterium. I rode on the front of the race for the entire race, pulling the rest of the Cat 3/4 field around and around. 40min later, with 200 meters to go, everyone- EVERYONE- sprinted past me to the finish line.  In this year’s clinic, we will teach you different ways to win bike races based on the course and your own strengths and weaknesses.

2) How to ride in a group, especially around corners- Part of the reason why I rode on the front of the race, that day in New Hampshire, is because I was afraid to be near any other riders. And, going around a corner in a pack of riders, forget about it. That made me really nervous.  Riding in and navigating through a group of riders is a skill. We’ll teach that skill.

Last year’s criterium clinic had almost 50 women

Last year’s criterium clinic had almost 50 women

2) Sprinting- I was a typical ride-by-myself-hammering-at-all-times kind of rider. I never changed pace, I never got out of the saddle, and I had never sprinted on my road bike. Sprinting is so much more than fast twitch muscles. It’s about body position, muscle recruitment, gearing, timing, and positioning.

4) Cornering- I did not know that my "normal" cornering skill and ability was faster and more confident than most other rider's abilities. 14 years ago, I slowed down to wait for the group to catch back up with me after each corner (I did not know about attacking, or breaking away, or finishing solo). Fast cornering, on any terrain, is about confidence. You must have confidence in your body position, where you are looking, what your bike/tires can do, and most of all, be able to relax and go through the corner with speed. We’ll teach you how to find that confidence, ability, and speed.

After coaching and teaching for 10 years, I now know that my mistakes above are common "unknowns" for many bike racers- both new and experienced. Come join Jennifer, Patricia, Brie, and me April 27th for 3 hrs of criterium racing 101 learning, practicing, training, and becoming more confident and faster. It's only $50 and the proceeds go to ALP Cycles Racing to pay entry fees for team races. Pre registration is required and up to 5 upgrade are points available. Register here

In 2013, I won the Criterium National Championship out of a 2-person breakaway

In 2013, I won the Criterium National Championship out of a 2-person breakaway

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Spring Training Camp

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Spring Training Camp

For the past 3 years, ALP Cycles Racing has had Spring training camp in Grand Junction, Colorado. Each year, the riders and our ALP coaches look forward to logging long miles with teammates in the sunshine. 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.

Somewhere in there are 5 bikes, 3 coaches, and 2 riders.

Somewhere in there are 5 bikes, 3 coaches, and 2 riders.

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. 10min into our ride, the skies opened up, and temperature dropped. We changed the route, practiced double pacelines in the rain, and arrived back home 90min 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.

Foundation Training as a team

Foundation Training as a team

We woke up to 35 degrees and rain on Day 2. Not ones to sit around and do nothing, each house did a core workout, talked about power meters and head units (Garmin, Wahoo, etc), and patiently (sort of) 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.



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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 ride. 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.

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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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The Art of Being Prepared

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The Art of Being Prepared

By ALP Coach Alison Powers

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. These 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 shit together.

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Preparation begins the weeks leading into the race.  Do your homework and learn things such as- what is the length of the course, what are the fitness and skills demands of the course/race, when do I need to register for the race, who will be my competition, winning times from previous years, average weather temperature for that time of year, etc. Once you know this basic information, talk it over with your coach, and come up with a plan for success.

Preparation continues the week of the race.  During this time, make sure your equipment is dialed in. Bike is clean and in good working condition- same with tires, cleats, suspension, etc.  Missing the winning breakaway because you couldn’t get it in the big chain ring is not a good excuse for a bad race.

The day before the race is where little things you do to prepare can make big differences.  These include, pre riding the course, checking who’s pre-registered so you know your competition, eating and hydrating well, preparing your race bag (clothing, shoes, helmet, extra clothing, recovery drink, etc) and day of and race food and resting and sleeping.

SnowyMountain Photo

SnowyMountain Photo

Preparation continues the day of the race. Most successful racers have a well-tested pre-race routine and they stick to it. Dialing in your own pre-race routine will ensure that you arrive at the start line feeling calm and ready. This pre-race routine includes things like; having a schedule for when to eat breakfast, when to pack the car, drive to the race, pick up race numbers, and pre-ride the course. This will help ensure you don’t forget items at home and you’re ready for everything.  This routine also includes food, drink, bathroom, etc. The goal is to know exactly what to eat, when to eat it, when to pee, and when and how much to drink.

The goal of all this preparation is to give you the best possible chance to have a successful race.  During the race, you must put this preparation into place. Have a pre-race plan and stick to it as best as possible (or have a plan B and/or C incase plan A didn’t work). Make sure to eat and drink according to plan, and trust that all the hard work you have put in will pay off.  

Finally, your preparation continues post-race. After cooling down, make sure to have a change of clothes, post-race nutrition (food and/or recovery drink), and give some thought as to what went well and what you can improve upon so come next race, you are better prepared for success.

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How to approach Stage Racing.   Study hard, Relax harder

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How to approach Stage Racing. Study hard, Relax harder

by ALP Cycles Coach Brianna Walle

It is officially the start of “Stage Racing “season and riders are priming their legs and lungs for the first set of performance(s). All the off-season training and preparation will be displayed as athletes anxiously await in the final countdown before “game time”. There are two aspects behind preparation for a Stage Race: the physical time and energy and the mental aspects.  Physically, you’ve done your homework training and tapering for the event, but how does one cope with the anxiety and stress behind the mental preparation?  Below are some of my personal tips on how to mentally get zoned in and equally zoned out for optimal performance.

Mental preparation: studying the courses

2016 North Star Grand Prix : Cannon Falls Road Race Notes

2016 North Star Grand Prix : Cannon Falls Road Race Notes

  • Once available, skim through the race bible, making a mental “map” of the general flow and rhythm or the race. 

  • For me, it was helpful to draw a “map” of the stage and include visual cues to help digest the week ahead. 

  • If a race bible isn’t available yet, use the previous year (s) bible as a guide.  Make mental notes of adjustments to the courses and take in any “word of mouth” changes as well.

  • Take each stage one day at a time. Similar to chapters in a book, each with an individual theme with characteristics.

  • Note your strengths as a rider on particular days and hone in on those skills. Example: if one day is a “power climb” type of day, write “strength- power climbing!”. 

  • Note challenges or struggles to keep in mind ie: longer hilltop climb finish days and historically going out too hard in the first half of the climb- include a cue such as “ride within, know thy zones” or a cue to remind yourself of your steady “pace” on that climb. 

  • Maybe it’s even helpful to write “ride your guts out” or “beer on top!”. It is really anything motivating or distracting if the climb is daunting. (rider preference;-)) Point is to use your strengths and know your weaknesses.

  • “Maps” are especially helpful for Time-Trials. In my race career, I would draw out the race profile, with my own personal cues and notes to help me visualize the course. I would include my own notes from doing a course recon on the actual course. Basically, notes to help me pace my race.

2016 USA Cycling Nationals Time Trial: 4th place

2016 USA Cycling Nationals Time Trial: 4th place

2016 Gatineau Grand Prix Time Trial

2016 Gatineau Grand Prix Time Trial

Mental preparation: riding the courses

  • Once the theoretical studying of the courses has been completed, go out and ride the courses. We’re all visual learners- fill the gaps.

  • Take additional notes once you’re on course. I would bring my phone, sometime take videos or pictures of parts of the course and write notes in my phone or voice messages. Basically take in all and everything that you can.

  • Focus on lines (especially for TT’s), wind patterns, obstacles on the course and note areas where you think there may be break-away opportunities. In TT’s, I would note places on the course to go a specific zone or exertion, making notes of a physical cue ie: a BBQ stand on course

  • If you are not able to preview the race courses in person, use Google Maps (street view!) to virtually explore the course. Any preview is better than none.

  • Doing a recon will reduce your anxiety on race day

Mental Preparation: RELAXING HARD and good distractions

  • It’s super easy to get fixated on the racing- teammates are talking about it outside of “team meeting” timeframes, you’ve got a nervous roommate, etc…it’s equally as important to relax and let your mind flow onto other topics. Otherwise it could be detrimental to your race performance.

  • It’s ok to be focused, but it’s also important to sprinkle in the fun to keep you balanced- this keeps the anxiety levels lower and reduces “performance pressure”

  •  I would always make sure that in the days leading into racing, I had time carved out for : pedicures, coffee, a nice lunch, etc. this is especially good to do with teammates to cultivate team-chemistry and enjoy some fun before it’s game time.

  • REST HARD between the Stages- feet up, take in your nutrition and watch a funny comedy, for example. Play cards, read, etc.

  • The day/evening before the next stage, briefly (10-15 mins) read through your “notes” and re-familiarize yourself with the day ahead.  This can help alleviate the race day jitters…then, put your feet up, do something fun and later something relaxing before bed.  Ie: bath or shower, meditate, read, some stretching, etc.

Remember, you’ve done your homework. Now it’s time to shine! Re-evaluate and revise your race goals daily, be flexible and most importantly HAVE FUN! If you have FUN, you actually go FASTER, and this is a FACT.

What isn’t to love about a Cinnamon roll the size of your FACE!

What isn’t to love about a Cinnamon roll the size of your FACE!

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How To Transition Your Indoor Fitness Outside

By ALP Cycles Coach, Jennifer Sharp.

Once winter retreats enough to thaw out the bike lanes in your neighborhood, hordes of people will take to the streets again to breath in the fresh air and feel the wind in their face. All of the fitness you gained while anchored to the trainer is more than ready to be showcased and what better way to test yourself than in a group ride? I’m sure I’m not the only one eager to reconnect with their cycling tribe - finally seeing them in person and getting a glimpse of what new jersey colors will fill the peloton. And as excited as you may be, there are a few things to keep in mind once you’re back out on the roads that will keep you and the group safe. Below are some tips to ease this transition and keep you upright and rubber side down. 

Bumping drills with friends and teammates helps!

Bumping drills with friends and teammates helps!

  1. Dial in your equipment. Tires pumped, chain lubed or waxed, screws tightened on your headset, water bottle cages bolted down, etc. Paying close attention to details and addressing any issues with your bike now can save you an Uber call when you’re stranded later. Some additional things to check: tires for tread wear, brake pads and maybe replacing your bar tape if it’s in bad shape. Remember - a clean and well cared for bike is a happy and fast bike. 

  2. Bike handling practice. Spend a little extra time dialing in some bike handling practice in your driveway before you take to the streets. Familiarize yourself with how your bike moves in tight, slow turns and looking over your shoulder. Get up and out of the saddle to reacquaint yourself with how your bike moves without the restraint of a trainer. Remember: look where you want to go not what’s directly in front of you and anticipate what’s going to be in your path.  If you want to accelerate your acclimation back into a pack, recruit some friends and do some bike bumping and wheel touching drills and even some emergency bike braking drills. These simple drills train your brain and body not to over react when an accidental contact happens. You’ll know how your bike reacts to different brushings and how to position your body in order to steer clear of any over reactions. 

  3. Rules of the road. Staying to the right goes without saying and so is knowing the rules of the road and stick to them. Every state in the US has different rules, as do other parts of the world. (For those stateside, check out this handy link by The League of American Bicyclists.). Being predictable is just as important within a group as it is for other motorists. I’m also a big fan of rear blinky lights to give drivers a second pause that could save your life due to increased visibility.

  4.  Group ride etiquette. Communication is key and pointing out hazards in the road is super important and helps avoid unnecessary crashes. The safest place to ride with others is either bar to bar or bar to hip. Protect your box (which extends the width of your handlebars to the tip of your front tire) and increase your odds of staying upright. Call out and point at upcoming turns, oncoming runners, potholes, and even passing cars to alert your fellow riders to potentially dangerous obstacles. 

  5. Clothing. 90% of being fast is looking good, right? Get close fitting clothing that doesn’t flap in the wind (loose jerseys =lost watts) tuck extra clothing tightly into pockets, etc. Bright clothing can help motorists see you and take it from the Trek-Segafredo team - they value their racers they provide them with a bright neon training kit that is 300% more visible than their discrete racing kit. Awareness is key and saves lives!

  6. Have fun! A happy, relaxed mind is a steady and smooth one, especially in group settings. Loosen your jaw and use piano fingers on your bars if you’re over gripping and tight. Position yourself on a side with an out - either towards the gutter or the opposite lane so if something were to happen, you’ll have a little more wiggle room to work with. 

Get comfortable riding close next to others and don’t be afraid of a little contact.

Get comfortable riding close next to others and don’t be afraid of a little contact.

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Tips& tricks for Race day

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Tips& tricks for Race day

by ALP Cycles Coach Patricia


Race season is almost here. Some of our ALP athletes already completed their first race of the 2019 season, others will kick off their 2019 season very soon. Everyone is excited to finally pin on a number and make use of all the training during the winter months. But in order to have success, you should be well prepared for race day. Ideally one should have a race day routine and maybe even a checklist that will help get the mind into the game.

Have a checklist in order to be well prepared

Have a checklist in order to be well prepared

Here are some tips and tricks:

-Check the condition of your bike. Is your bike in good working order? Are the tires, brakes, drive-train and shifting in good condition and working? If the bike needs any work done bring it to the shop early enough to have the bike “race ready”. Especially after winter training, it is important that your bike will get a good maintenance check. Also make sure the cleats on your cycling shoes are in good condition.

-If your bike has electronic shifting; check the battery status and charge the battery if needed.

-Pack your trainer or rollers for a proper warm-up, especially for Time Trials or Criteriums

-Talk with your coach about the race course, strategy and how to approach the race

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-Look at the race course, profile, past results (how did the race unfold/ end last year?) and check weather forecast. If needed write a stem (or top tube) tape with some important cues. The stem notes will help you to remember important key points during the race.

-Pack your bag the day before the race to avoid any stress on race day. Don’t forget to bring your race license. Pack bike tools, pump and any other items you will need. Bring enough clothing options and layers even if the weather forecast looks good. Having an extra jacket or arm/ knee/ legwarmer as options is always good. Bring also some warm enough clothing to wear during the warm-up and after the race.

-Nutrition: prepare your race bottles and race food the night before. Bring food and hydration/ water for pre and post race. Remember that you should have a recovery drink within 30 mins after finishing the race plus a snack (solid food)

-Pre-talk with your teammates: show up at the race venue with enough time to pick up your race number, warm-up and also to have a chat with your teammates about the race. Having a plan/ tactic for the race is key for sucess. Have a back-up plan ready (plan B) in case plan A is not working out during the race.

-Pre-ride the race course or the last few miles. This may not be possible for every race but if you can pre- ride a course or at least the final few miles of a race it will be an advantage for you in the race. If you live close enough to the race course you should pre- ride the race course in training.

-Post race: put on some dry and warm clothing, have your recovery drink and go for a cool-down ride (spin your legs out with an easy gear for 10-15mins) Don't forget to have your post race snack. Have a chat with your teammates and coach about what went well and what could have been better/ can be improved for next time.

Good luck to all our ALP Cycles Athletes for the 2019 race season!

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Training to Train

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Training to Train

By ALP Coach Alison Powers

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Two weeks ago, while in Leadville for ALP Cycles Racing’s Winter Training Camp, a few of the riders asked me if I had started to train yet, and if so, how it’s going.  A bit of history here; 3 months ago, I signed up for the 141 mile Steamboat Gravel race in August. My reply to the if I had started to train or not question was, “I’m more in the training to train phase. Meaning I have to get my body back to a place where it can handle the training load required.”

 I quit professional bike racing 5 years ago. During this 5 year span, I have continued doing many of the things I did when I was racing, but more at a just have fun level.  Things that weren’t fun or were costly disappeared (stretching, core strength, massage, body maintenance). Things that were fun, I had the freedom to do more of (short lunch time rides, rides with friends, no riding if I didn’t feel like it).

 During these 5 years of retirement, in addition to nearing 40 (aging), my body was starting to slowly fall apart. After 2 career’s of professional sports (ski racing and bike racing), the injuries that comes with those, and 10 surgeries, I was starting to feel and ache like an old women. Bike rides started lasting 60-90min not because that’s all I wanted to do, but because that’s all my back could handle on the bike.

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Signing up for this gravel race was just the kick starter I needed to start taking care of myself again. My goal for this race is to ride it fairly fast, faster than any other female. The training required to win this type of race is very different than the training to just finish a race.  Plus, I’ve never ridden 141 miles at one time in my life.

 

This brings me back to the “I have to get my body back to a place where it can handle the training load” statement.  If I can’t ride for 90min without pain, how am I supposed to train for and race an 8+ hour race and expect to win? I can’t, that’s not realistic.  

For the past 3.5 months, I have backed up, and started from ground zero. Consistent strength training and core strength have been the base of my “training”.  I’m back to stretching and rolling every day. I visited Specialized Boulder for a Retul bike fit.  This work on top of the body work I was already getting, and I no longer feel like an old women.  I did a 2.5hr ride and not once did I have to stop, get on the ground and do some kind of strange twist or stretch to try to relive my back pain. My body is starting to feel like it will be ready to train again. To handle the training load required to ride fast and hard for 141miles.

 The training before the training might be the most important training period in the yearly training plan. However, it is the step that is most easily brushed aside, and forgotten about. As coaches, we recommend that athletes stick with coaching on a year round basis.  We can help you work on your weaknesses in the off season, and build a strong base of “functional” strength and fitness before focusing on the bike. 

 It has taken me 3 months to start feeling like I’m in a place to be ready to train. While I haven’t officially started training yet, imagine if I had waited until March or April to start thinking about my bike fit, my core strength, how to deal with my back pain, etc.  I would be way behind the 8-ball and would not be in a good place to reach my race outcome goal in August.

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No doubt I will need to stay diligent on my core strength, and mobility through this process (and throughout life), and I’ll be able to focus more and more on the bike soon (but first cross training, Nordic skiing, strength training) to reach my outcome goal in August.

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Team Bonding, Exiting Your Comfort Zone,  and Views, Views, Views

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Team Bonding, Exiting Your Comfort Zone, and Views, Views, Views

Alp Cycles Women’s Racing team headed to Leadville, Colorado for #alpfatcamp—three days of fat biking, Nordic skiing, yoga, and team bonding. Some teammates were meeting for the first time, and others were completely new to fat biking and Nordic skiing. At 10,000ft with cold temps and new equipment, we were all in for a great adventure. Our group included an array of talented women, including: Doctor, pharmacist, veterinarian, students, mothers, coaches, and many more that took time out of their busy schedules to enjoy being active outdoors with friends.

Day 1: Colorado Mountain College Trails

Seven miles of singletrack trails are accessible from campus at Colorado Mountain College in Leadville with an additional seven to ten miles of wider groomed Nordic trails. The mellow terrain is good for all ages and abilities—rolling, easy and enjoyable. This was a good spot for our first ride as we had just rolled into town. We were a small group as the others hadn’t arrived yet, so our goal for the ride was to stay together and just enjoy. We had a few tumbles as riders were just getting used to the feel of riding a fat bike in the snow, but towards the end of the ride everyone improved greatly! It always helps to have a little encouragement from your teammate when you’ve sunk into the snow.

Riding on the CC trails

Michelle taking a tumble and Libby there to help!

Day 2: Yoga & Mineral Belt Trail

The group headed to Ray of Light Yoga in the morning to get loose for the day ahead. It was a good experience to share together as some riders were less accustomed to yoga and others were clearly regulars. It was inspiring to see teammates with such flexibility and core strength. Our instructor Erin was kind and encouraged us to set an intention and connect with how our bodies were feeling and responding to different movements. After feeling rejuvenated and limber, we headed back for a quick snack before hitting the Mineral Belt Trail. 

Stretching!

The Mineral Belt Trail has been listed as one of Colorado’s top 10 mountain trails. The 11.6 mile loop travels through the historic mining district, and follows along old mining-camp railbeds. The riders were cruising through the loop with ease, and stopping to take a few photos of the spectacular views. After one loop we wanted a little more, so we went on a few other trails. Solid day on the bike with far less tumbles, many great learning opportunities, mentoring from coaches, and team bonding.

Homemade burrito bowls for dinner were accompanied by a great group discussion with the leading question—If you could have a cycling superpower, what would it be? A few good answers included:

  • Having endless energy and not needing to take nutrition or water while riding

  • Being able to hear the thoughts of your competitors

  • Ability to control the race

At the top of the Mineral Belt Trail—Great views!

Alison instructing the riders

Day 3: Tennessee Pass Nordic Center

Before heading out for the day, the team gathered around the TV at 7AM to watch the Cyclocross World Championships. It was a great opportunity to talk about bike racing and cheer on our favorites. After the race concluded we started to suit up and get ready for the day. It’s important, especially when exercising at altitude to stay well hydrated and nourished. The team uses NBS Nutrition for hydration and recovery. After bottles were filled and bags packed, we jumped in the cars and headed to the Tennessee Pass Nordic Center.

The Team watching the CX World Championships

Mollie got very patriotic, cheering for Team USA

Today riders had the option to nordic ski or fat bike. With a combination of both, it made for a really fun day. Of course we need to make most things a competition, so the fat bikers and skiers would try to race. A great moment in the day came when a rider was told to go outside of her comfort zone and try a very challenging black diamond trail on the fat bike. The climb was long and very steep but she did it and felt much better afterwards. Sometimes you need a friend and coach nearby to give you a little extra push ;)

Tennessee Pass Nordic Center

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Top of the Black Diamond trail

Later in the evening we returned to the CMC trails for another ride as the sun went down! By this time all the riders were much more confident and really crushed the trails.

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Above photo: All of the riders at the Tennessee Pass Nordic center, keeping warm with our KÜHL neck gaiters and hats

We are all grateful to have experienced such a beautiful, challenging, and rewarding camp. We tried new things, bonded together as a team, and in the end we have become better bike riders and teammates.

Big thanks to KÜHL cyclist Jill Cederholm for opening her beautiful Leadville home to us!

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4th Annual ALP tour of Colorado

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4th Annual ALP tour of Colorado

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 We'd like to invite you to our 4th annual ALP tour of Colorado. A 3- day tour, in and out of Avon, through some of the biggest mountains and best scenery Colorado has to offer. July 28-30 2019. (lodging starts on the 27th). 


The 3-day tour starts and finishes in the small town of Avon near Beaver Creek. 

Day 1 - Avon to Aspen over Tennessee Pass and Independence Pass. 7,000ft of climbing over 95 miles.

Day 2 - Aspen to Carbondale - up to Ashcroft, up to Maroon Bells, then down the bike path to Carbondale 4,800ft of climbing over 80miles.


Day 3 -  Carbondale to Avon- 66miles, 3,000ft of climbing. 

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WHAT'S INCLUDED

3 nights of lodging (double occupancy)                           

-Breakfast each morning                     

-An opportunity to ride with and learn from ALP Cycles Coaches Alison Powers, Patricia Schwager, and Brie Walle.                                                                

-Wine, cheese, snacks, happy hour in Aspen and Carbondale.                                                   

-On bike nutrition and hydration (NBS/Breakthrough Nutrition and ride food/snacks/boom in your belly sandwiches)        

-SAG/Follow Van                                                                                                                  

-ALP Schwag

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PRICE

Price for the 3 day/3 night Tour (double occupancy) - $775
Bring a friend incentive: Bring your spouse, a family member, and/or a friend and save $50- $25 each to $750

Early bird price (commit by February 28th) -$725
We are limiting this year's tour to 17 riders.

If you have any questions and/or would like to join us, shoot an email: alison@alpcyclescoaching.com

#alptoc

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