Veloce Podcast No. 1: Race Preparation

In this week’s Veloce Podcast, Pat and Aaron discuss the start of the cyclocross season, the ending of La Vuelta España, and their tips and experience regarding race preparation.

Depending on your personality, race preparation can look very differently! Some people stress out over every minor detail, spending a ridiculous amount of time arranging their items, double checking their lists, and, ultimately, WORRYING! Instead of focusing on the event ahead, the cyclist is sidetracked with stress.

On the other hand, there are a good number of cyclists who simply don’t prepare enough. This kind of cyclist shows up to a race only to discover she is without water bottles! (Or even worse–her shoes!)

It’s clear that either one of these approaches could be detrimental to your performance in a race or event. So, what should you be thinking about?

1.) First, it’s important to focus on the fundamentals. Kit, helmet, shoes–just about everything else can be problem solved! Forgot your sunglasses? You’ll make do! (Or may be able to borrow a pair from someone!) Forgot your shoes? Well, you’re just plain out of luck.

It also helps to focus on the fundamentals because it’s less items to worry about. If your list of essentials is a page long, you’ll be driving to the race second guessing whether you remembered half the items!  But if your list is only 3-5 things, you’ll have piece of mind when you can mentally recall each specific item.

2.) Secondly, make sure to collect some intel on the location. Of course you probably know generally how far the venue is from your house, and when to leave, but do you know where you’ll park when you arrive? What streets will be closed and impassable? Where will registration be set up? It’s a good idea to answer these questions before you leave your home.

3.) Finally, give yourself time at the venue. While there is no sense showing up hours ahead of your event, you don’t want to feel rushed while pinning on numbers, waiting to use a restroom, and warming up (which is super important!) Even if it means waking up a bit earlier in the morning, having “buffer time” at the event will allow you to enjoy the process, rather than stressing over it!

Racing should be fun! With the right amount of preparation, you can eliminate most of the stress and focus on ‘getting in the zone’ and performing well.

Have some thought or ideas about The Veloce Podcast? Leave them in the comments below! We’d love to here ’em!

Aaron McNany


Originally from Michigan, Aaron has lived and cycled in several states, including California, New Mexico, Colorado, and Pennsylvania. His primary discipline is road, but he's not afraid to get a little dirty during cyclocross season! A graduate of Summit University, Aaron is presently in the MBA program at the University of Scranton. He has a wife and two children, and loves to hustle.

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