A Better Way
To Train

By; Carl Cantrell

- Pro-Tactics
- Racing Strategies
- Sports Psychology
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Since the early 1990's, a phenomenon has developed in which people have become more concerned about their equipment than developing their bodies and minds.  This has largely been caused by misinformation by the cycling media over hyping the latest racing equipment to sell magazines.  With this short essay, I want to try to get people thinking right about training in relation to equipment.

In the US, the average racing speed of a cat 4 racer on any bike will be about 18 to 20 mph. On the exact same bike, the average cat 3 rider will race at about 24 to 28 mph and the average US pro will race the same bike at about 30 to 35 mph with the average Euro pro racing the same bike at from 33 to over 35 mph.  In some cases, the average amateur bike racer in the US has better equipment than the pro's who can ride circles around the amateurs.

Understanding that EVERY pro was at one time a cat 4 who raced at from 18 to 20 mph and would now race at 35 mph on the same bike, that is an increase in speed of at least 75% from fitness and development alone. I dare any one on this planet to increase the speed of ANY cat 4 by 75% by giving him a better piece of racing equipment!!!

It should only be common sense that the human is more important than the bike and improving the human will do more good than improving the bike. Yet it absolutely amazes me that there are so many people who can’t see the obvious and will spend THOUSANDS of US dollars to gain a tiny fraction on performance but won’t spend $30 to purchase a book or hundreds of dollars for coaching that will improve the performance of their body and mind by much more.

The truth is that the bike is only about 5% of the race and the human is about 95% of the race.  Therefore, it is only common sense that you will get more return on your dollar by spending hundreds to improve the 95% than spending thousands to improve the 5%. 

Any pro riding a cheap touring bike can ride away from any cat 4 on any bike.  Invest in your body and mind and the benefits will be greater and last longer.

I have never seen a champion made in a bike shop; they are always made on the road, one pedal stroke at a time.

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