Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Skills: Staying Upright

I read this blog from pro triathlete Jordan Rapp (aka Rappstar) this week. He has a great story (almost died on a training ride and has come back a champion), and he is a good athlete and competitor. He is also a true professional (similar to Hillary Biscay, whose "no walk" and "no DNF" rules I admire), and I appreciate that. What I like the most from the blog is this:
Rough water swimming is a skill. And at the professional level, I don't think we should mitigate the impact of a lack of skill.
In my sport, there are many things I forget are skills; some I take for granted, so I don't work on, some I just don't think about. One of those is staying upright and staying on the bike, regardless of what happens around you (such as crashes). That's a skill I needed for at least two important-to-me races last season (State Crit, Cookeville; Village VW Crit, Chattanooga), but I didn't appreciate or really even think about it until I was reminded. It definitely made me consider focusing on such a skill when training!

Obviously there are macro skills like being able to ride and sprinting and climbing and cornering, but there are also micro skills like clipping in at the start line and reading the competition and communicating with your teammates. I will be working on all of these and more this season.

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