I’m taking a great training class this winter, led by a professional coach and using professional equipment (Computrainers). At my most recent class the coach encouraged us not to “give away watts to poor technique.” What a great mantra.
When training, it’s important to build fitness by exerting a lot of energy. You need to be in the right training zone for the right amount of time in order to build strength and endurance. But if you allow your technique to become sloppy, you’ll be a mess on the road. A strong mess, perhaps, but you won’t be fast (at least not as fast as you could be).
When the rubber hits the road this spring, you need to be fit and efficient. That’s how you’ll shake and bake your friend, “win” the next club ride, or get to the next racing level.
It can be a lot to focus on, and ultimately you need to meld all these little details seamlessly into your riding. It’s not unlike working on your golf swing. But just as in golf, the devil is in the details (and practice is key).
So keep working hard. Build endurance. Build strength. And hone your pedal stroke – Don’t give away watts to poor technique!