Thursday, June 13, 2013

Everything Counts

Training for the Dirty Kanza can be fun or absolutely miserable.  I chose a plan full of fun with several helpings of miserable.  I began the process by building my foundation or as I like to call it.... building my beast.  I started working out at Club Fitness in Sept '12.  I had an amazing trainer, my son.  While there I learned I am stronger than I think-- great for the ego,  and how important it is for a cyclist to have a strong foundation/core. We are not just strong legs, we need to be the complete package. I was taught how to lift properly, punch a bag, and sledgehammer a tire. There was some box jumping, rope work, TRX, and several hundred flights of stairs with a rucksak full of weights.

I was already in a routine of running a mile to 1.5 every morning.  In November I  bumped it up to 3 or 5 mile runs.  To stay motivated I signed up for several trail half marathons, a couple of them were held in less than ideal conditions.  Yeah, the SHiTR took place during a 30 degree monsoon and Quivering Quads featured a torrential downpour that would have made the trails easier to navigate in a kayak.

Since I was shooting for a specific goal time I thought it was wise to enlist the help of a  professional, Zach  was my man.  My plan would start in mid-March about 12 weeks before the DK.  Zach incorporated the gym, run, and bike time into my busy life.  I wasn't able to follow his plan perfectly but the plan had been written with a little wiggle room.  When you have two kiddos under 8 you need wiggle room. Mother Nature was also throwing her weight around so there were several indoor pedals.

He wasn't much help but he held my beer

I believe that ANYTHING that gets your heart-rate up and gets your body moving is considered training. That being said, I thought out of the box with some of the activities I chose.  Often the activities were chosen for me.  That one day in March when Mother Nature dumped over 14 inches of heavy, wet snow comes to mind.  I sholved two, two hour sessions that day, my arms were noodles. More often than not, I can get a great one hour work out cutting my grass, my mower is not self-propelled.  My garden needed tilling and I couldn't get my hands on a power tiller sooooo I hand tilled it with a Rogue Hoe, three times. There was some time spent at the Skating Rink too.  Yay me, I only fell once.


  Topping off my fun list were some really awesome rides on my singlespeed Kona and jumping on the trampoline. Well, the trampoline was not really that fun for me, rather fun for my daughter.  These jumping sessions were hard to do after the long rides but they were easier than saying no to my daughter.


In late April, I purchased this book.... Get Faster by Selene Yeager.  I grabbed a highlighter and got to reading.  Selene has a no nonsense approach to getting fit on the bike and riding strong.  There are also chapters devoted to weight loss, nutrition, and developing a good mental attitude.  Her book is filled with practical advice along with some scientific backup.  Included were lots of simple adjustments to make yourself faster on your very next ride.... yes, you can ride faster if you are in the drops----- And many exercise and stretching suggestions complete with pictures.  I really think she thought of everything and shared it in her book.  Did you know she took the DK down in less than 14 hours and scored a third place womens podium?

Stuff I had in my mountainfeed bag

I packed for anything and everything

During your training period you will want to try out all of your nutrition ideas and make sure they work, especially on the long rides.  Payday bars worked very well for me during my training but I couldn't manage to get a single one down my throat on race day.  I could only suck on them for a while and spit them out.  My main source of calories was CarboPro and it worked very well.

Four large freezer bags marked Leg 1,2,3, and final

 Eight scoops in the camelbak and all I had to do was remember to sip on it.  I take in a lot of liquid calories over "real Food".  I did have a couple bananas and a peanut butter and honey uncrustable courtesy of my support crew.  During training I used Gatorade G2 and had no issues.  Come race day I could not stomach Gatorade after the second leg.  It was okay, I just drank more water.  When my mouth got dry and dusty I popped a piece of Extra gum or a jolly rancher.

Experiment with your set up on your bike during training. Whatever you will use on it during your race try it before hand.  My hubby came up with a way to keep bottles from ejecting while riding gravel. Coozies!

Don't lose your bottles
 If something doesn't feel right... FIX IT!  I had a bike fit early in the year, which was good because my fit was way off.  My hip stopped hurting and popping on the very next ride.

New girlie saddle with two tubes and levers underneath

Try a new saddle if your present one sucks. You will be spending many hours on it.  Spending money to keep your butt happy is money well spent.

You have plenty of time to get yourself together for next year rumble.  If you have any questions or comment you can leave them below.  Thanks for reading.


1 comment:

  1. The best way to keep your bottles on your bike is to buy the Salsa stainless steel bottle cages. Never had a bottle leave the bike yet. You can bend them if they loosen up without worry of breaking them like aluminum.