How to Identify Your Race Strengths
When figuring out your race goals, it’s important to know your strengths. Being confident in what you do well will set you up for success.
Racing can be complicated.
Not only is fitness required, but so is mental strength, technical execution, understanding of rules, and having good strategies and tactics. Knowing where your strengths lie will help you refine your race goals and plan.
How do you know what your strengths are?
If you are an experienced racer, you will have past results to review. Where did you rank in your category? Overall? What kinds of courses do you tend to do better? Flat? Hilly?
If you don’t have past results, or are still learning, use your training to help you out. If you train with others, how do you compare? Do you tend to pass others going up a steep trail section, or on the downhill? Do you find short bursts of hard efforts wear you out, or you can keep going? What kinds of workouts do you enjoy the most?
As I mentioned above, not all strengths are physical. Perhaps you can push your limits more than others (regardless of where you fit in the pack). Or maybe you have a good understanding of race strategies and tactics, which allows you to set up a plan to your advantage.
If you collect training and racing data such as power and pace, the charts in software like TrainingPeaks or WKO+ can also help identify your stronger areas.
Knowing what your strengths are and monitoring them over time will help you set up better goals and plans for your training and races. It often takes time to collect the data and review results, and some introspection on how training and racing is going, but very valuable in the long run.
This is just a piece of my race goal setting system that you can use to focus your training and performance for your next race.
You can get it for free right here:
Share in the comments below your best race strengths.