So with that the goals for 2018 have changed from previous years and now it's all about the bike, the mountain bike. I'll still run a little to cross-train and to race with Sarah at trail runs and I'll still splash in the pool occasionally to enable a few Xterra Triathlon's in 2018 but the main objective is to really see what happens when I focus on the bike. As a triathlete you never really focus on any one sport and as a result you become sort of ok at three things but not good anything. That meant I was training 10hrs (or so) a week chopped up with 5-6hrs riding and the rest swimming and running. Now the plan is to ride 9-10hrs with additional strength training in the gym....almost doubling the time spent on the bike.
With that being planned the goal races somewhat varied and layered. The ultimate goal is to race the Andalucia Bike Race in early 2019, a 6 day MTB stage race in Cordoba, Spain which is really why 2018 is a "base" year to get prepared to race that. In the meantime it will be about transitioning over to the bike as a focus and the following races for 2018:
1. Monster Cross - Feb 2018: Early season 50mile MTB race to see how the winter training has developed.
2. Tour de Pocahontas - March 2018: An entry into MTB stage racing with three stages over a weekend on the same trails as Monster Cross.
3. USAC Marathon MTB Nationals - May 2018: The USA Cycling Marathon MTB National Championships in Arkansas over 50mile course. This will be one of our destination races for 2018.
4. 6 Hours at Woodstock - June 2018: A great local race that I jumped into in 2017 with minimal endurance training so will be a good gauge on progress.
5. Shenandoah 100 MTB - Sept 2018: Another race I jumped into last year with minimal preparation but had a blast on great trails. This will be the kick-off to the specific training block aimed at Andalucia Bike Race.
Other races will be added but the main races are the five above with USAC Nationals and Shenandoah being the "A" races....for Nationals just aiming to be as good as I can be and then for Shenandoah to improve from my time in 2017.
In the meantime it's training time....inside and out!