Summer Training Begins

Photos by Rob Taylor
The moment the Florida Cup awards ceremony was over you could already hear people talking about next year. When you live for a sport like BMX, regret is a worthless commodity. The next goal is always close to your thoughts, the next lap is only a weekend away.

For myself, training has been a long term exercise in overcoming stubbornness. I have a tendency to reinvent the wheel, come up with my own training systems instead of listening to the Pro's suggestions. As each race passes with a less than desired result, the walls of stubbornness fall one brick at a time.

The most recent brick was that of the local race. When I started racing I held locals to be of the utmost importance. I figured that I needed to try my hardest in every race, pushing my body to the limit in every lap. I would build up to a local and gave too much credence to the outcome.

Now my focus has changed. Proper pre-race warm-ups including Plyometrics and practice laps have made local races into training days. Instead of resting up before the start, I'm now tired by the time the gate drops. The focus is entirely on performance.

The first test of this method came on Sunday at Charlotte BMX. That morning I went through the steps - Pilates done, Plyo done, practice laps done and now I slowly walked up the starting hill with three opponents for the race. My energy was spent and the heat wasn't bearing down on my black helmet but this is how it's going to be at locals especially for the summer.

In almost every lap I had to resist the temptation to go all out. I was here to perform, not to win. I was here to make the correct movements, not to overexert my muscles. I was here to train, not to crash.

Charlotte riders gathered with their Trophies
I stayed steady throughout, made the main and took third. I was really feeling the results of the workout. On the next day as I write this I'm satisfied with the progress and pretty worn out. The idea is that training days should be much harder than a big race day. On a big race day you are rested, fueled up and energized by nervousness. Compared to this Sunday, racing a Qualifier is a piece of cake.


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