You will fail…
I remember my first mountain bike race way back around 1995, damn have I been racing that long?! I had a great new Cannondale Killer V bike, the latest clothing etc. I went to the race and with all the hype and excitement of doing my first race I went home feeling crap because I got a DNF.
Why? Several reasons really and a classic example of all the gear and no idea.
Wrong training methods, to be fair I wasn’t even training back then just riding my bike all the time
I would say poor race prep but to be honest there was no race prep other than making sure my bike worked
Nutrition. I would say a lack of definitely contributed to my DNF
Partying hard the night before. Going to a club in that 90’s, dancing until 1am and back then everyone smoked in the clubs so I was passive smoking shit loads of smoke and dry ice
No idea how to pace myself. I remember thinking it was awesome being in the lead group on the first lap…
I could go on but you get the picture. The point is there will be race days and training sessions which do not go to plan. You will fail. It’s what you do after that failure that is important.
Since then I have won races and been on the podium steps at several events. As a team we have all succeeded and failed many times. Keeping training and nutrition notes and a diary is a great tool to help analyse what is working and what isn’t. Never before has there been so much information out there to help you achieve your goals. In fact, I would say there is now too much information and we don’t know what to use and what is bullshit. Speak to your trainer and be honest with them and yourself about what is working and what isn’t.
Find what works for you and keep consistently practising, training and refining until you become bloody good at it!
Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently - Henry Ford