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There are no right or wrong answers. These questions are about understanding yourself so you can respond most effectively.

Do you get fired up easily? If not, then blare Bon Jovi’s “Shot Through the Heart” race morning or whatever else gets you fired up. If you answered “yes,” avoid the temptation to feed that fire and skip the pre race music entirely. It also helps to include a short 10 min warm-up run to escape the nervous energy of the race start. And if you race out west, mentally prepare yourself for Steve King’s voice; it could pump up a flat tire.

Have you ever over-trained? If you are a ‘more is more, harder is harder’ and often over-trained type of person, do not be afraid to take a rest day. If you’re debating whether or not you are too fatigued, you probably are. One day won’t ruin your training. Staying healthy and consistent over the entire season is what leads to success. If you answered “no,” do what ever you can to get out the door. If necessary, watch the trailer to any of the Rocky Films (excluding Rocky 5).

Do you blow up in time trials? If the answer is “yes,” fight the urge go hard at the start. Even if you’re feeling the magic, save that magic for an awesome last half. If, on the other hand, you always feel great at the end of time trials, then make it your personal goal to blow up hard. You will either come away with a PB or a great learning experience.

Does talking to others give you energy? If not, plan your travel plans accordingly. Stay a little further away from the race venue and avoid the pre race hype. You may even need to have a tough conversation about space with friends and family members travelling with you. If you do like to be around other people, soak up the experience. Travel with a group to the race. Just don’t stay out until 2:30am like Johnny Manziel, I don’t know anyone that works well for.

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Do you race your best when focusing purely on data? If so, then there is plenty of great technology out there to help and an infinite amount of ways to apply them. Power Meter’s, GPS’s Heart rate Monitors… you name it. If you answered “no,” find ways to broaden your focus. Turn off your technology. Give some encouragement to fellow competitors, crack some jokes, or thank a volunteer. During power intervals I find I can crank out more watts if I sing The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme song in my head.

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