Triathlon Magazine Canada - - BIKE TRAINING - BY SEAN MACKIN­NON

Equip­ment prepa­ra­tion

There is noth­ing worse than hav­ing a bike-re­lated me­chan­i­cal is­sue when out on a long ride. Any­one who has cy­cled for a long time can re­late to this prob­lem – the aw­ful call to some­one who does not want to spend an hour com­ing and col­lect­ing you from the side of the road. While break­ing a chain, wheel, or de­railleur is out of a cy­clist’s con­trol, you should be self-suf­fi­cient when it comes to flats or other bike prob­lems that a well-stocked sad­dle bag can fix. I al­ways leave the house with two tubes, a pump, tire leavers and a multi-tool. These five things are usu­ally enough to get me through any of the train­ing rides.

Un­less I am at a train­ing camp or rac­ing, most of my rides above 100 km in­clude a cof­fee stop. I like to use a des­ti­na­tion to break up the ride and re­fuel. It is def­i­nitely a rit­ual with most of my rid­ing friends, and I have a soft spot for some good cof­fee and a pas­try. No mat­ter the dis­tance, you can’t go wrong with a cof­fee stop to break up the ride. Next time you are map­ping out a ride, check out some of the towns your route goes through and see if there is a lo­cal spot worth a stop. Not only does stop­ping for a quick cof­fee on an easy day keep me go­ing, it be­comes an es­sen­tial part of my 200-plus km rides when fuel stops be­come nec­es­sary. My favourite kinds of rid­ing loops cover long dis­tances, so they of­ten in­clude a few great lo­cal spots.


One of the most ben­e­fi­cial, and some­times over­looked, tools for tack­ling a long ride is the fuel you bring with you. En­sure you have a drink mix that meets your needs and some snacks that will keep you go­ing. If your long ef­fort is a full-dis­tance sim­u­la­tion, you’ll want to carry as much of your fuel with you as you can. I al­ways try to take an en­ergy drink with me for rides longer than 90 min­utes and when I am rid­ing longer that two hours, I bring along some food.

There is no bet­ter time to give some longer rides a try than in the sum­mer months. With the days get­ting longer and the tem­per­a­tures ris­ing, chal­lenge your­self by adding some longer ef­forts to your sched­ule. There is noth­ing bet­ter than hit­ting 100 km and it’s more sat­is­fy­ing to hit that 200 km mark.

Sean Mackin­non won two bronze medals at the 2015 Pan Am Games in Toronto in the team pur­suit and in­di­vid­ual time trial.

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