Joe here – I successfully completed Race Across Italy 4 weeks ago achieving the third fastest overall time and notching a win in my age category. The effort left me with a seriously empty tank. That’s exactly how you want to finish an endurance race by the way.
The road, and the race demand everything to deliver a winning performance.
That’s the deal.
Learning how to empty your tank and access deep reserves is both an art and a science for the rider and their support crew.
So what is beyond the finish line? First up is recovery. Now that is a science and not one to be ignored, as our team nutritionist Jillian will tell you.
It is relatively easy to replenish glycogen levels as long as there is enough food volume. On the other hand, protein levels must go up to at least 1.7- 2grams per kg of body weight, long chain essential fatty acids need to be supplemented and all micro nutrient levels have to be replenished with nutrient dense foods and fluids.
It is a process that requires patience and organisation. Feed little and often, supplement, sleep and turn the legs in an easy rhythm. All of this enables recovery, which is another way of saying it allows the training benefit of Italy to fully integrate and be available to call upon for the next performance.
The next performance is always the goal that drives me forward. During the darkest hours and days of fatigue and recovery, when my body simply cannot move comfortably, I know my mind can.
Belief starts in the mind – we visualise our goal, we think about it, we dream about it, we think some more, next we decide to act. Then, we start to move towards it. Once we are moving it is only a matter of time before we arrive.
So what is beyond the finish line...really? The next start line of course.
Team Joe Barr will see you all on the 23rd of June at the start of the Donegal Atlantic Way Ultra Race 555km of demanding, rugged and beautiful Donegal.
Something tells this old road warrior that it is going to be a fast and furious race. We will be ready!
Whatever your ‘start line’ is, we hope that you are moving towards it too.
Happy riding folks and we'll see you on the road.