Eat those Carbs??

The myth about Carb-Loading and why I say that. Why eat more carbs before a long distance event or any event for that matter? My first example is a 5k you don’t ever need to load up for this particular distance, it’s just not long enough and for that matter neither is a 10k. As a matter of fact if your doing your TAPER (which is cutting back on training before your big event) correctly, you are already dropping your energy expenditure which means… your burning less fuel and storing energy. Adding extra calories on to that if your dropping your workout only means one thing… WEIGHT GAIN.

The only weight you should be gaining before a race is from water and that’s usually from decreased sweat loss. You add extra carbs and calories to less activity and to me that does not add up right.

Carbo loading doesn’t mean upping your calories, it means adding carbs and taking away from something else like maybe fats. Or ideally, since at this point you should be so trained that your nutrition has been great all along and you don’t have to add much except maybe starting 2 days before the race adding a sport drink like Accelerade or PowerBar drink mix. Keep things bland and usual no one likes race day surprises. AND you really don’t want to feel bloated race morning. Also, adding carbs the day before the race.. that’s like studying for your finals the night before.. Good Luck, but you’ll probably get an F and I say you deserve it. Be PREPARED, practice during training, not during your race or you’ll get a DNF and that means did not finish, which just sucks.

If you make sure your nutrition is good the WEEK/WEEKS leading up to your big event as long as you did your training… I expect nothing but a stella performance!!!!!Now GO EAT SOME NOODLES:)

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Follow you Heart

Following your heart, so much easier said then done. Sometimes this just leads to heart break and drama. Other times it breathes new life into us. Our heart gives us passion, love, and emotion. But our physical heart gives us LIFE.

Our hearts can tell us almost immediately if we are, or are not in shape. Sometimes it just takes a few minutes. Our hearts can also tell us if we are sick.

For training, our heart is a real indicator for how well we are doing. First thing in the morning, our Resting Heart Rate, or RHR tells us if we are overtraining, tired, or… doing everything just right.

We’ll try to keep this simple because heart rate training can get a bit scientifical and complex and technical and I really don’t wanna lose my crowd.

So first thing is getting a BASELINE in the morning.. RHR and by that I don’t mean get up start cleaning, getting ready, drinking your coffee (for me DietDP..We all have a flaw right?) whatever you do in the morning. STOP!!

STAY IN BED.. Lay there and RELAX. Take 2 60 second counts of your pulse. Write it down, this gives you a starting place. If this goes up during training you could be overtraining or overtired. Try to keep a log and make a habit of this especially if you are training for a race.

Now for the ZONES.. And NOT the Speeding kind even though we love to speed.

For training purposes I’m going to use 6 zones:

REC(Recovery)40-50% and below- Is just that. Your body is recovering from intense physical activity

AERO(Aerobic)50-60%-this is the zone where you strengthen your heart, improve muscle mass, reduce fat, cholesterol, blood pressure and other degenerative diseases. This is not the zone that will increase your fitness, strength or endurance but it will ward off health issues.

LT(Lactate Threshold)60-70%- this zone starts burning the fat, something we all have on some level. This zone increases your bodies ability to use fat for energy or fuel.

AC(Aerobic Conditioning)70-80%-this is where you are actually increasing the size of your heart muscle, your lung capacity and respiratory rate. In this zone is where the body increases it’s ability to exercise for a longer period of time.

AT(Anaerobic Threshold)80-90%-the “BURN ZONE” and it feels good, we just usually can’t stay here for more than an hour. This zone is used for tempo training. Here is where we get FASTER, LEANER, and STRONGER. Our intensity here is much higher.

VO2max-this Zone is saved for all out bursts or training intervals, with recovery and aerobic zones to get the full benefits. This is an extremely High Zone and the risk for injury can be potentially high so make sure you know your zones.

Training your heart and following your zones is crucial to gaining fitness. So get out there get that blood pumping and GO BREAK SOME HEARTS!!!

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Feeling FLAT?

Well, I don’t know about you, but I do not like to flat. EVER! In my life or on my bike. Sometimes flats in life take longer to fix and I am definitely not the one to ask.

But, I can help you fix the flat on your bike and you can feel confident that when it happens you can handle it and maybe even have a chance to show off your new mad tire changing skills. It takes practice though, just like training to get better, stronger and faster. Practice on the front and back, until you have it down. It may not be the fastest change but it doesn’t matter. This will give you confidence when your on the road by yourself or your riding with someone who has not read this or ever changed their own tire(you’ll look like a pro).

1. Rear Wheel flatted, make sure you shift into your smallest cog (gear) and the reason is it allows your cassette to slide right past your derailleur when you remove your wheel. Otherwise your struggling and pulling it around your derailleur which could get damaged if your not to careful.

2. Release your brake.. There is a lever that you move in the up position on the brake itself, open it up. Now you can take off your wheel. Make sure when you lay your bike down MOST IMPORTANTLY: MOVE TO THE EDGE!! I have seen people change tires in the middle of the bike lane.. what are they thinking?? Lay your bike down with the driveside up (Chain up). Hopefully you have a tire lever. Makes removing the tire a bit easier. Grab the rim opposite the valve stem. Pinch the tire with your other hand and put the lever in dragging it around the rim to release the tire. If you don’t have a lever .. GET ONE.. or you can always pull the tire up and over the rim away from you body and use your thumbs to pinch beads over the rim at once.. Usually hurts your thumbs though.. At least it does mine.

When the beads are loose pull the tire and rim in opposite directions. It will pop off and waa-laa tear out the old tube. Give your new tube a little air to give it some form otherwise it’s flopping all over the place and hard to do anything with. I usually carry a small pump. CO2 cartridges cost more and why? I’m not racing I’m riding and training. Just seems a little wasteful. But do learn how to use these as well, they come in handy on race day if you do flat. Now that your tube has some form, place it inside the tire. Before you do that though run you fingers in the inside and outside of the tire to make sure whatever caused the flat is not stuck in the tire or you’ll keep flatting and if you ride 650’s like me unless your close to a bike shop your outta luck.. Seems like I’m one of the only 650 riders around in my area.( that’s tire size by the way, there are 2 sizes 700’s and 650’s) you most likely have a 700, make sure you check this before you buy spares.

4. Now put the tubes valve through the hole, holding your wheel parallel to the ground. Starting at the hole, start cinching your tire back on over the rim with each hand working opposite of the tire. Once the beads start getting tight, roll each over your rim with your thumbs and fingers, and/or the ever functional tire lever.

5. Fully inflate your tube and put your wheel back on your bike. Make sure your rear derailleur is out of the way. Now close your brake-release with the lever.

**** Super Glue****

Now if by chance your tire has a cut or hole in it carrying a small tube of super glue and putting it in the hole of your tire(not your tube) will seal that tire until you get home and buy a new set of tires which is usually the case.

NOTE**

Make sure to check that your tube is properly in your tire so you don’t give yourself a pinch flat.

Before fully inflating, make sure to push up on the valve to make sure it’s seated fully in that portion of the tire. This portion of the tube is thicker.

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Time is Now

In the final week before my next race I feel strong and confident, this is an A race for me which means it’s the race I have been training for this entire time. It didn’t start that way though. I was actually coaching a friend and felt that since I was doing the distance I should do the race. “Do the race” that’s funny to me, and it’s because I never just DO anything. I give it my all. I commit and I train, I finely balance all that life throws my way, put my head down and go foward full force.

Somedays are great, others not so great but it’s putting all those pieces together in the final days that I see the results. Will I question and second guess myself? Absolutely, every single day. Even as I race I have to struggle with that, I think we all do on different levels. Just today as I was swimming the words I told myself over and over.. You are a FIGHTER, You are STRONG especially when that self doubt starts to creep in.

For as long as I can remember I have struggled with self doubt. For as long as I can remember I have stared that self doubt in the face and said “I’m going for it anyways.” The Time is Now .. I don’t want to look back and wish I could have done more. What do you want to do.. Go out there and Just do it!!!

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