Dealing with disappointment

A light bike doesn't replace good fitness.

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by mvogt46

Question for the racers on here, how do you guys deal with a dissapointing race? I took part in my first race for 9 months on the weekend and was a little off where I expected my performance to be. I'm feeling a little upset at all the hard work I've been putting in for the last few months hasn't been paying off. How do you stay motivated?

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Tinea Pedis
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by Tinea Pedis

Hold on mate, aren't you quite an experienced racer? I seem to recall a lot of good advice from you in the past.

So first of all, I'd look at some of your own great advice :thumbup:

Secondly, I'm the same. But I take stock, really focus at what went right and only then look at what can be improved. It's hard to not see it as a disappointment (or in my case a failure), but if I can get a ride in later in the day (when it's a TT or a mental early road race start) or the next day it's perfect for reflection.\

That 'disappointment' then becomes fantastic fuel for training.

You're only as good as your last race, sure. Cycling is a tough mistress, she takes no prisoners. However there is always an opportunity to redeem yourself.

Also keep in mind, unless you're being paid to do it, who and what you are are not defined by your last race result. That's losing or winning.

Now I just need to try and remember all this myself :lol: when it means so much it can get hard.

And I should add none of this, for me, would be possible without my outstanding coach! He is a legend :thumbup:

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by theremery

lol....dude...IT HAPPENS!!!
You may have noticed that the sun still came up the next day and your bike was still there and still ridable (though I once punched a dent in a top-tube as an angry and disappointed emotional Junior racer).
Take stock. Use the data. Fix what you need to.
recently, I hadn't trained for a few months then on the prompting of the lad I talked into racing but dropped a few grades so I'd survive (I'm primarily a sprinter so getting to the finish of even a short race could have been an issue). I got there comfortably but got smacked over by the fat-boys in the sprint!!! Gutted!!!
Conclusion?? Sprint training time (and a few K's of course).
A week later and a slightly smarter game-plan.....I rode the 2nd top grade and got 5th.
Did the training make any difference? Not after 1 week, I'd suggest (other than "waking the muscles up") but a better game plan certainly did and the training analysis is still correct, I think (5th will NOT DO!!) so therefore....just get on with it ;)
Updated: Racing again! Thought this was unlikely! Eventually, I may even have a decent race!
Edit: 2015: darn near won the best South Island series (got second in age
-group)..woo hoo Racy Theremery is back!!

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by Gem

I find that disappointment comes in two versions as far as racing's concerned:

1. Tactical naivety, spending too much time on the front or in a doomed break that affect my chances of placing. I generally deal with this by convincing myself that it's been good training.

2. Physical shortcomings. More prevalent these days as I move up the categories and particularly timely as I was shelled from a race this weekend. If this happened all the time then it'd become a problem but for the moment it's motivating me to train harder so I can hold on at the sharp end.

One poor performance in your first race in 9 months isn't necessarily symptomatic of poor general condition & as theremery points out some days things just don't click.

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by Asymptotic

As others have said, the only way to handle the disappointment is funnelling it constructively into smarter/harder training. I think for me the hardest thing to cope with is when you know you are training so much more then other people your racing, resting properly and still losing.

I've had a disastrous season so far, to the point where I went to get my race number for a 6hr mtb enduro this weekend and taped to the number is the phrase good luck Mr. Mechanical

So far this year I have managed to:

- DNF 7 times in XCO races due to punctures that 200ml of Stans seemingly cannot repair, one of these includes the tyre blowing of the rim at the start line.

- During a out of saddle sprint I cracked the carbon plate that the cleat is bolted too and I crashed - 5 mins later my XO rear mech cage simply snapped off the rest of the RD body, the hanger wasn't bent at all.

- The worst incident was in my warm-up for a 5 day stage race that I had spent 8mths training specifically for, I didn't see a pipe in the road around a corner and came off going about 8kmph. My watch band snapped and the now serrated pins dug into my wrist, after morphine and 5 stitches I started stage 2 the following day using my pinkie to brake as the tendons were damaged for my other fingers. I ended up having two top 20 finishes out of 180 competitors.

None of these past events are going to be present in my mind before the race this weekend because every race is different and the only way to get better is learning from each mistake. :wink:
Norwood & Adelaide Uni CC

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by Juanmoretime

I don't like taking se one but to place better in a race you have to have trained hard, have good equipment and be having your "A" game that day. Everyone has a day they give it their all but fall short of where they want to be. As others have mentioned you need to analize your race and training and take whatever steps are necessary to achieve your goals.

I also think that mindset is a part of any highly competitive athlete. I used race multi sport and won almost all the local races. The strange thing was while I was glad for the really recognition of winning but I would then study those that were behind my and agonise over what I had to do to stay head of them so I essentially got very little satisfaction from a win.

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by thecounty

1 lousy race? MOVE ON and do another race. If half my races aren't shitty (DNF, not in the top 15/raining/ is what I consider shitty) I'm happy.

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Tinea Pedis
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by Tinea Pedis

So, did you race again this weekend?

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by duz10s

also sounds like you may have been in a hard training phase so maybe a little more rest might have helped, as others have said its one bad race, first race for 9 months i wouldn't think bout it to much just learn from it and have another crack.
2015 RCA with Di2

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by mvogt46

I had been sick the week prior to the race and still had a bit of a cough but didn't think it was a big deal. I ended up going to the doctors mid week and got diagnosed with a mild case of pneumonia, so now I'm on some antibiotics!

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