I wanted to write about preparation today. With the Argus just days away, it’s an important topic to consider. If you have certain goals for the race I hope you’ve done your training and in that sense are prepared for what is to come on Sunday, but there is still much to prepare in order to be fully ready on the start line.
But first, let me stray for a second. This morning we took on the 3rd stage of the Bestmed Tour de Boland. The 140km stage would see us start in Tulbagh, head north through Porterville, turn in a westerly direction towards the N7 and Moreesburg and then South down to the finish in Riebeeck Kasteel. The gutter wind after Porterville is where the day’s selection was made. I had attacked just after the first sprint hotspot and tried to force a move but it was not to be. Shortly thereafter with a 15man split went away with the Lights by Linea team represented by Stefan.
With some of the GC guys missing the split the chase was on for a while but eventually it felt as if we were freewheeling most of the way to the finish, eventually 7 minutes down. The good news though was that Stefan had taken second on the stage! A great result for our small team.
Another image from the Lights By Linea Hero Challenge criterium on the weekend, had to post this one because my Mom said “I look so pro”…
Image Credit: Chris Hitchcock
#throwbackthursday Tour de Boland 2009. I had owned a TT helmet for a year and still had not had a chance to ‘test it out’, using it in a hill climb TT was not the best idea. 40C up Tall Monument.
Image Credit: Ronelle Rust
Back to the topic of preparation, in cycling and in life (how profound), I’ve learnt to control what you can and don’t stress too much about what you can’t, easier said than done. Nonetheless, as the team arrived on Wednesday morning I again landed up bringing the biggest bag. Whilst temperatures were forecast for the high thirties this week, you never know if the weather can change and hence if you go scratching through my bag you’ll find undervests, knee and arm warmers and rain jackets! Additionally I have certain things that I like eating, for example homemade muesli that Ash makes for me that I bring along. So whilst it may seem that I bring a lot of sh!t along, and I know I do, I’ve got most of my bases covered. This extends to certain medication you may need (legal of course!), race nutrition, equipment, spare parts or even your teddy bear to help you fall asleep at night.
Take these principles and apply them to your Argus come Sunday. Bring anything you may realistically need. Have your bike serviced ahead of time, test it after the service. If there’s a problem sort it out today! Not on Saturday night at 10pm.
The night before the race get your kit laid out, pin your number on, put your gels and bars in your pockets. Get your breakfast out and ready to eat in the morning. Essentially it’s all the little things that make a difference, do them right and don’t waste the hard training you’ve done over the past few months because of a silly, avoidable mistake. It may help to write down a list of anything that you can think you may need to do, then tick it off as you go to ensure you’ve got it all down.
Anyway, last stage of Bestmed Tour de Boland for us tomorrow, the shorter 115km stage will have a nasty sting in the tail as we have mountain top finish on Franschoek Pass.
Till next time, ciao!