Charlotte Motor Speedway Time Trial Series Race #5 2017
I finally got some time to debrief the last race and wanted to share my review. To create accountability I try and pick one race each season and do a coaching review like I would for a client for myself. This helps me take an objective look at my training and find ways to improve as well as hopefully be able to see my coaching from my clients perspective.

Context:
I have been racing this 6 race series since 2012 and I choose this race series to compete in for a variety of reasons. Convenience, cost, level of competition, My goal has been to remain competitive in my age group (top 3 positions).

The things I want to get out of this series:

  1. Use Polar wearable technology to track performance throughout race season.
  2. Incorporate Flow Science techniques into my training and race tactics.
  3. Try and maintain I high level of performance even with limited training time
  4. Finish top 3 in my age group in the points series championship AG

 

Race #5 August 16, 2017 at Charlotte Motor Speedway
Came into race number five feeling pretty solid. I won race #4 and was tied for first in the points race with 54 points. I struggled for training time after the 24 Hours of Booty event. Super intense busy summer at Kinetic Heights so only got on the bike twice in 2 weeks. I was going to really have to use mental focus and the Flow techniques I have been visualizing and self-coaching. Hyper focus and clarity of the goal. My goal was to try and stay under 24:00 again since it was the time that got first last month. I knew there were going to be more racers from out of town since the Team Time Trial was going to be held tonight as well. There are some really amazing athletes that come race here so I knew that time would not hold up I just had to stay ahead of the racers in my age group that were in the points race. The start times got moved up to fit in the Team event after. So not as much time to warm up as usual. Dialed in the TT bike and did a 20:00 warm up on the inside track to about 150 bpm. Very little wind and very hot and humid. Rehydrated, and take one energy gel.

I used my Polar V650 pro level cycling computer with a H10 Bluetooth HR sensor to capture my warm up and racing data for the night. I had my V800 watch as well as I am tracking activity/sleep data as well everyday.

Rolled up to the staging line at 6:30 PM and waited about 5 minutes to start. Set the gear on the 15 gear and cue the V650.

 

10 miles is 7 laps around the 1.5 mile track.

Goal 3:20 lap-time splits goal time 23:30 25.2 mph

 

 

 

My little buddy Ben raced his first time trial race tonight!

 

 

Lap One:
3:19 First split time right on plan for pace and a little high on heart rate at 170 bpm, rode the whole first lap in the 13 gear at 90 rpm. Seemed more windy than the flag was showing. No too much lactic build up as I was right on anaerobic threshold (170 bpm). A little into the red at the end of the lap to try and keep the speed up through the finish/startline.

Lap Two:
3:19 Hold the pace a little above threshold 174 but still at 85 rpm and use 11 gear for half the lap. Feeling pretty solid and able to hold pace at 175 bpm

Lap Three:
3:24 Right on pace with a little wind gust right at the line so I lost 5 secs as it gassed me a little to hold the RPMs above 80 rpm. Another pretty sustainable pace even though the HR was at an all-time high. I was thinking be careful and don’t got too deep in the anaerobic and bonk and lose time.

Lap Four:
3:21 Holding on tight and digging in to hold the pace at 26 mph and 85 rpms. HR 177 and I am thinking yikes that’s a little high with 3 laps still to go. Down shift to the 13 gear to increase the reps and flush some if the lactic and drop the HR slightly. Solid through the split timer another solid lap right on time for a sub 24:00 ride. Given the lack of training time I thought this would a stretchy but realistic time to go for.

Lap Five:
3:27 Taking it down a gear to recover cost me 7 secs so I shifted back up into 11 gear and dug in with 3 to go, one accelerated lap and then all in for the last lap. Pedaling hard into the back straight and felt a little gust of wind that put me at 180 bpm and started to bog down so I had to downshift to keep from popping. Kept the cadence up but lost a few secs as I gassed a little on the start/finish line split. Starting to really feel the lactic tolerance just not there like it usually is. The lack of training time was showing up now and it really hurt.

Lap Six:
3:36 Really just trying to hold on and ride the anaerobic threshold as close as I could without blowing up. The cadence slowed to 80 rpms as I tried to turn over the 11 gear at 182 bpm I was close to maxing out. Down one gear to the 13. Dropped another 14 secs off the pace but still on track for a sub 24:00 ride.

Lap 7 (last)
3:32 Just 3 and half more minutes to go so time to really just dial in to the goal close out the pain and concentrate on the cadence. Shift up and dig in, HR is gonna be what its gonna be. 183 BPM I am at my max and just pedaling as fast as I can. Seeing the cadence settle in at 85 reps through turn one and two, on the back stretch and just going hard as can be and trying not to listen to all the signals my body is telling to STOP!  Turn 4 just keep pedaling and feeling the lactic about pop my leg muscles and my lunges feel like they can’t breathe in even on more molecule. Straight across the finish line at 23:57! Made it!!!

About to pass out and trying to catch my breath going down the cooldown chute. Holy cow how did that just happen? On the back stretch I was about to just explode and watching the time tick away, somehow some way I had what I needed to get the time I had set as my goal.

Checked in at the scoring table and it showed 23:58 for my time. Thinking ok that’s a pretty solid time and should be a good time and should get some points. Printed out my results and it was 5th place AG. Not what I had hoped for (top 3). A few guys that came in to race the Team event raced in my age group and man were they fast. This time last month was good enough to win, this month only 5th place. The competition here is very strong. Still got 12 points which puts me at 66 and second place AG for this years points race.

Conclusion:
The mental toughness training I have been working on really paid off. The clarity and specificity of the goal really help me push my body harder than I have ever done before. New HR ave PR 177 BPM for 10 miles. Previous PR 174 bpm.

Take away:
The strength of your mind is stronger than your body will ever be. Develop your mental toughness by continually challenging yourself to do more, or continue to perform at a high level even when you are not at your best fitness. Always finish your training sessions with your biggest effort of the whole workout. Use technology to get very specific about what you want out of your training and keep track of your training and performances. Keep working at it until your get it. No matter what the challenges.

Personal Reflection:
This year has been an unbelievable ride. Launching Kinetic Heights, developing our special needs outreach programs, sponsoring the 24 Foundation event, summer camps you name it. All at the same time. Race anyway, no excuses. When things are at their hardest is when we need our best self to emerge. This year’s race season has been symbolic of how even when things are not going according to plan you can still focus yourself to being your best anyway.

“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.” Henry David Thoreau