• Bloomer Park, Rochester Hills, MI

  • Racing the Provincial's Crit 2014

  • Forest City Velodrome - London, ON

  • Larkenville Challenge, Buffalo, NY

  • Winning the Sprint at the ForestCity Velodrome

  • Track Nationals 2014: Keirin

  • Track Nationals 2014: Points Race

  • OCUP #1: Feb 2015

Here is a good story I found in a email from Coach Veal from one of his clients:

"A bear is chasing two friends and the one says to the other "RUN"!!!  The other says, "We can't out run a bear?!?!"  His buddy replies, "I don't need to out run a bear... I just need to our run you!!!"   Last one to quit wins!"

So, one gets eaten by the bear and the other gets away. Remind anyone of a bike race? It happens to me all the time on the track. It is often the difference between DNF and finishing the race, albeit sometimes in last place. I can recall two weeks ago or so. I did a race at the track (Forest City Velodrome). It had a lot of "A" racers in it. I knew it was going to hurt. Off the starting whistle, attacks started. But, as always, when the pace pickups up, it eases up. Although this time, the easing up lasted only a lap or two before the next attack. But 4 laps to go I was done. The legs were giving out. I could see riders coming over me and the last rider slowly edging away. I told myself, I WILL NOT DNF. I didn't care if I came in last place. I was finishing the race. The bear in this case was the DNF. It was the hardest race I have ever time. 9 mins riding at or above threshold. I finished the race, and later discovered I was 8 of 10. 2 others dropped out. I know have to learn to push myself in these situations to get out of the saddle and sprint. The bear needs to change from just finishing to not being last. I know in the elimination races, I am succeeding on this front. I have work to do in the endurance races.

I will say this much. It does take practice to push yourself the edge and keep going. Over and over again. I know with racing the track, every race night is a different race depending on who is in it. It is always a test of wills. Who can go hardest and risk blowing up to make it across the finish line in the best place.  But I guess that is what racing is 50% 99% mental and 50% 1% physical.

Update:
Big Mike Mandel suggests:
 99% mental. Your mind tells you to train,race,not to quit.Bodies adapt to stress but it is your mind that gets you to the line. 

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