Shawn and my first official CX camp is over and it was a success! We had 7 riders and utilized three different locations.
In the parking lot and grass we worked on body position drills, and cornering techniques. After lunch (from Salto coffee) and a discussion about CX specific equipment and preparation, it was on to dismounts/remounts, and stairs. We finished the day by watching video of our skills learned and practiced.
Day two brought Valmont Bike Park were we worked on the pump track, shouldering the bike, sand riding technique, and start practice. We ended the day, and weekend, with a coach athlete meeting.
All in all, it was fun and a great success.
Now is the time to dial in your CX skills. Practice, practice, practice. CX is at least 50% skills (cornering, carrying speed, keeping momentum)– fitness matters, but if you don’t have the skills, you’ll never reach your true potential.
As we head toward the end of the race season- Don’t Settle! Finish Strong! After many months of diligently prepping, training, and sacrifice, it’s time to put on a show. Good luck to ALP athletes racing at Leadville 100, Breck Epic, Steamboat Stage Race, Missouri State TT Champs, Green Mtn Stage Race, Shenandoah Valley ride, and LOTOJA and Masters Nationals (in Sept and still training hard!).
We finally had a chance to catch up with our ALP Cycles Coach, Alison Powers who, in May became the current National Road Race, Time Trial, and Criterium Champion, which has never been done before. We had a few questions for her that we thought others would want to know as well.
ALP Cycles Coaching- Big congrats on your “Triple Crown” of National Championships. How does it feel and has it sunk in yet? It feels absolutely amazing. Yes it has sunk in and I can’t believe that I have accomplished this amazing feat. I always thought people who won multiple national titles had something special about them that I never did. But, I don’t feel special, I just accomplished something special.
ALPCC- At the National Championships, the past three years, your results have steadily gotten better and better. Top 3-5 in 2012, Top 3 in 2013, and now 1st in 2014. What do you contribute to your success? I’ve become a better and smarter racer over the years. After I broke my arm in 2011, I really learned how to race smartly and how to save energy during a race. This has paid off over the past few seasons.
ALPCC- Did you race this year’s race any differently? Yes, this year, thanks to the strength of my team, UnitedHealthCare, I raced an extremely smart race. I never went hard and never went into the Red until the very end when I attacked for the win.
Other years, I have been the best climber and the best sprinter on the team so I had to do both. It’s hard to sprint well if you have climbed Full Gas. This year, both of my teammates were better climbers than I was. When they went up the road on the climb, I allowed myself to get dropped from the main group because 1- I had confidence I could catch on the descent and 2- if I didn’t catch, then I still had two teammates up the road and that was fine.
Honestly, I didn’t care who won the race as long as it was someone on UHC, so I was willing to lose the race. That’s the thing with winning—you must be willing to lose in order to win.
ALPCC- For 2014, what, if anything did you change? The #1 thing that has helped me this year is my new team UnitedHealthCare. The team is run so well. It’s a well-oiled machine that has taking care of the riders down to a science. When I show up to a race, I don’t have to do anything other than ride my bike. No worries about where the grocery store is, doing laundry, which bed will I get in the host house etc. All of that is taken care of for me. No stress, no mental energy wasted on little things.
ALPCC- Was your wintertime training any different than in years past? Yes. I had more training camps than I ever have had—we went to Scottsdale AZ with UHC twice- and raced in Argentina in January. I also did my own training camps in South Carolina and in Solvang with ALP Cycles Coaching. When I was home, I incorporated our (ALP Cycles) off-season strength-training plan into my training. I loved the plyometrics and the on bike sprints. That was my favorite workout to do.
ALPCC- What training tool do you consider the most important? The one where you don’t train at all—rest.
ALPCC- Do you do the same workouts you give your ALP Cycles Athletes? Yes, definitely.
Have more questions for Alison that we didn’t ask? Let us know! We’ll ask her.
This was our first year doing a Leadville 100 Training Camp. This camp was open to all ALP athletes who are racing the LT100, and to any of those who just wanted to ride mtn bikes with us on course. We had 4 ALP athletes for the 2 day camp, ride support from Herbalife, and a great two days of training and riding. 11hrs of riding, 114 miles (most of it on the LT100 course), and a higher level of confidence for the race that is in just over a month.
Other things we learned and dialed in-
Pacing strategies– both by HR and watts
Where to eat and drink as well as what to eat and drink
Lines to ride on the climbs and descents- where is smooth, where is rocky, what is fast
How to “ride like a roadie” on the pavement and dirt road sections
Gearing for our 1×11 bikes
Pre race routine– when to wake up, what to eat, where to park, etc.
We are dialed, ready, and excited for this years Leadville 100.
ALP Cycles Coaching
August 23-24th 2014
CX is a challenging sport as it combines the fitness and tactics of road racing with the bike handling skills of mtn biking. Riders who want to be successful (and have fun) in CX need to be proficient at both sets of skills. Join ALP Cycles Coaches- Alison “Triple Threat” Powers and Shawn Heidgen for a two day camp that will change your life as a CX rider and racer.
Skills and Topics to be covered are:
-Bike handling- an under-appreciated and usually neglected skill in training.
-Mounts, dismounts, carrying, and shouldering the bike
-Barriers, sand, stairs, and obstacles
-Race day strategy- preparation, equipment choices, and how to go faster than you’ve ever gone before.
-Video analysis of all skills
- Hands on coaching with small groups (camp is limited to 10 riders)
-Daily lunch from Salto Coffee, ALP Cycles Coaching swag, Osmo hydration, ride food and snacks.
- Guarantee to have fun
2-day Camp Price:
-$225 for ALP Cycles Coaching athletes
-$300 for non-ALP athletes
-This camp is designed to be a small group learning environment, so register now to reserve your space as it will fill up quickly.
For more information or to reserve your spot: