"Ok, so let me get this straight...you are saying I need 16 ounces of fluid, a salt tablet, and a gel for each hour of exercise?"
Here's five important things I've learned in the last two years. What are yours?
1. DO NOT BRING YOUR ENTIRE TOOL BOX (COMPLETE WITH A DOZEN EXTRA TUBES) INTO THE TRANSITION AREA.
Because you will look like a complete tool (pun intended). There will be no room for it. Usually, there is a local bike shop on hand to handle any last minute adjustments. And since the chances that your bike will break down between the time you grab it off the rack and the time you get to the mount line are so infinitesimally small, you will not be able to get back to your tools even if you need them. I learned this at my first race.
2. DO NOT CHECK YOUR WRIST WORN GARMIN TO SEE HOW FAST YOU RODE THE LAST MILE WHEN YOU ARE ROLLING UP TO A RED LIGHT IN FRONT OF A HIGH SCHOOL.
Because it you do, you will forget to un-clip from your pedals and fall over. Chances are very good that when you pull this stunt school will be getting out for the day and about 500 kids will see you tumble. And it will take every kid's collective strength to keep from laughing at you. Ultimately 4 or 5 kids will be weak and fail to be discreet. You will be ridiculed. I've done this twice.
3. MAKE SURE YOU REGULARLY TIGHTEN THE SCREWS ON YOUR CLEATS.
Because they come loose pretty easily. And it's the last thing I used to think of. My right shoe came unattached from the cleat once and it sucked because I lost all 3 screws. 2 had already fallen out, and I couldn't find the 3rd. This happened to me a few months ago. My crank started to spin back and my foot kept going forward. Not a situation you want to find yourself in.
4. DON'T FORGET TO EAT.
Today I barely ate anything. Then I went on an hour bike ride and a forty minute run. By the end of the run I could barely crawl into Jamba Juice. And obviously my brain was also tweaked because I'm not sure I would normally choose a healthy smoothie when I'm seconds away from starvation. To add insult to injury, the line was out the door.
5. A HEART RATE MONITOR IS NOT WORN TO HELP YOU AVOID HEART ATTACKS.
Talk about the pinnacle of naivete. Until I pulled my head out of the sand (or feel free to pick your own word) and read a few articles about what a HRM was actually for, I honestly thought they where protection against blowing your heart out of your chest. Why write more here? Enough said.
I hope everyone is having a good weekend.