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Sunday, March 25, 2012

Wind at Your Back

Awesome triathletes
Christine Haskins and Dana Jones

Part 2 of 3:  Biking

The bicycle has done more for the emancipation of women than any thing else in the world.  ~Susan B. Anthony

Minimum training equipment:
·         Bike
·         Helmet

Additional training and race day equipment:

·         Water bottle holder and water bottle
·         Odometer/Cadence meter
·         Various types of equipment bags to hold tissues, gels, chapstick, etc.
·         Gloves
·         Pedal cages
·         Clip shoes and pedals
·         Aerobars
·         A seat fitted to your rear
·         Sunglasses
·         Flat tire kit or Fix-A-Flat

16 Tips for Biking Success: 

·         Get a Tune Up:  Get your bike to the shop to ensure your gears are working properly.  Find out what pressure your tires should be at and keep them properly inflated!  Make sure your seat and handle bars are properly adjusted to your height.
·         Go the Distance: Train until you are able to complete the race distance without stopping.  Then start riding further than the race.
·         Head for the Hills:  Find the closest big hill and ride back and forth over it on a regular basis.  Practice standing up as you go over the hills.  The ones you train on are not as steep as those in Clermont.  Once the course is posted we will go ride the course. 
·         Technique Matters:  When you ride, think about keeping your feet flat through your pedal strokes (like scraping gum off your feet.)  Slide back in your seat and keep your chest open as you climb hills. 
·         Use Your Gears:  The key is to keep your cadence steady.  As the terrain changes, be sure to change your gears to ensure you are as efficient and speedy as possible.
·         Ride with Others:  Group rides help you practice riding and passing others safely. 
·         Safety First:  In the battle of bike versus car, the car always wins.  Be sure you check every intersection.  You MUST follow the rules of the road!
·         Leg Work:  After each ride, park your bike and do a short run/walk to get your legs used to making the transition from bike to run.  At first it will feel like you’re bowlegged! 
·         Mounting, Dismounting, Running:  Practice getting on and off and wheeling your bike around.  Stand on the side opposite your chain and you should be able to steer with one hand as you walk or run alongside. 
·         Flat Tires:  You must either learn to fix a flat and carry a tire changing kit or use Fix-A-Flat.  A video for tire changing is here.  The website for Fix-A-Flat is here.
·         Ready, Set: Be sure your bike is set in a low gear at the start to ensure you can get moving easily.  Clear your odometer if you have one.
·         Get Control:  This will be the longest part of your race.  Don’t go out too fast!
·         Stay Right:  When you ride the course, you must always stay on the right and pass on the left.  You will hear the words “on your left” when someone is about to pass you.  This is not an invitation to move left.
·         Fuel:  The ride is a good place to eat a gel or gummy and drink fluids. Small sips more often are better than a few big gulps, but be careful!  Practice this skill!
·         Finishing the Ride:  In the last mile you should ride in an easier gear and increase your cadence.  This loosens your legs and gets them ready for the run. 
·         Transition:  You may NOT ride into the transition.  Walk/run your bike in, rack the bike, remove your helmet, change your shoes if needed, and put on your race number.  Off you go!

Please feel free to add your questions or suggestions below! 
You never have the wind with you -- either it is against you or you're having a good day. ~Daniel Behrman

Train safely, eat well, hydrate, stretch, sleep.
Safe Journey.  Wind at your back.  

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