To perfect the time trial position for your given anatomy and physiology, it can take years of trial and error. Sometimes, becoming a contortionist is the most appropriate way to describe the skill you must master to find the fastest, most aero position.
That raises issues: Riding in such a time trial position increases the functional load when compared to road riding.
For instance, the wider the handlebars, the wider the base of support, and, conversely, the narrower the bars, the narrower the base of support. These different approaches yield different aerodynamics, but simultaneously address some of the load characteristic of such a contorted position.
In this episode, Colby discusses the key components to creating an effective time trial position based on his decades of experience, tinkering, and experimentation.
Welcome to the cycling and alignment podcast, an examination of cycling as a practice and dialogue about the integration of sport and right relationship to your life.
Colby Pearce 00:25
Greetings and salutations, listeners, seekers of knowledge, finders of truth, you’ve come to the right place, because I literally know everything. Though sarcasm, you know me well enough by now to know that the last thing I know is everything. I do know some things. And I’ll try to share some of those things with you today. And my dream is that you find them helpful. And then it inspires you to think critically and go forth into the world with love and compassion, because I’ll just say that at this moment in time. Everyone can use more of that. today’s podcast is a solo episode. Why? Because Chris case is sick of me. No, not really. Well, maybe. But that’s not the reason why the reason why is because I’m home recording from my office, hence the amazing acoustics. I’ll try to keep my muzzle next to the mic, and we’ll get down to business. Today we’re going to talk about understanding the functional challenges of Time Trial positioning. What is this craziness, you ask? Why would I care? Well, how many times have you heard yourself or other people, your racing colleagues, your competitors talk about how they just can’t quite seem to make as much power in the time trial position as they can on the road bike. I can do this much power for 20 minutes, 30 minutes, but it’s always less in the TT bars. Why is that?
Colby Pearce 02:03
here’s why we’re gonna break down the arguments in the discussion. And I’m also going to use some tips on how you can battle said Tom trout demons and become your most truest inner self, your most arrow like your most directional pointed towards the finish line like an unstoppable missile of speed and efficiency. Writing in a time trial position is an increased functional load when compared to road riding. Just outline this discussion, when you’re riding on a road bike, let’s say you’re on the hoods, you are generating force with the distal segments of the lower extremities, which is a fancy way to say you’re making lots of power with your legs. And if you think about the body, in a stick figure format, we’ve got a control center in the pelvis and another Control Center in the shoulders. And the reason those are control centers is because when you make force with the any of the distal segments, that’s with their hands or with your feet, that force has to be anchored or stabilized. And the stabilization progressively moves more towards the core, or the distance between those two core centers, right or between those two control centers. So when you’re pedaling really hard, and the force originates at the hip or the knee and then makes its way will say down towards the foot and pushes on the pedal, that pedal offers resistance. In the case of cycling, most of the resistance is open chain, not closed chain, which means that the pedal is moving away from you as apply for as you apply force. Closed chain would be as if the pedal didn’t move away from you as a applied force. Or think about doing a lunch on the ground, when you push into the ground doing a lunge, the ground does not move normally, unless you’re really strong. So that would be closed chain. So open chain mean means that it moves away from you. And as you make that open chain force, the knee will respond to that movement of the foot, and ankle, and the hip will respond. And all those micro movements are that force has to be organized somehow it has to go somewhere. And if you have a strong stable core, then that can help under high force loads under low force loads when you’re just humming along and 100 watts, you don’t really need to stabilize that much force per se. Because it’s not enough force to move your hip. But when you start to really push harder that pedal Think about it. If the crank arm was horizontal at three o’clock and you push down on it really hard, hard enough, your butt would come off the saddle. See the problem? So there’s a lot of forces happening at the hip that occur as you make a complete circle, a revolution of the pedal. How do we stabilize the forces that come into the lower control center the hips or the pelvis? Well part of that stabilization is through the core muscles, the deep core, the inner core will say, which is comprised of primarily four muscles broadly speaking, the bottom is the pelvic floor, the backside is multifidus. The top side is the diaphragm, and the front side is transverse abdominus. There are layers of core outside of that, as well which contribute. And when you pull on the bars or when that force, actually from the lower extremities is strong enough to influence the upper control center or the shoulders, then you start to counterweight with the arms and the lats. So, push really hard. Imagine seated climbing on a very steep grade, and you’re pushing really hard on the pedals. And there’s a rocking counterforce that’s applied with the upper body. This is what I talked about in my how to pedal up bike podcasts, 111 and 102. And 102. It talks about that gentle rocking rhythm that contralateral and ipsilateral tension in the arms to pull gently on the bars, which helps stabilize everything and kind of have a rhythmic motion almost a controlled snake like motion to the upper body that contrasts and complements the power being driven into the pedals. Right. And inherent in that system is a certain amount of leverage. We have arms, the length of the arm provides a lever to counter a pose the force of the either same sided ipsilateral arc, opposite sided contralateral leg, depending on the pedal stroke and the force, etc, the cadence, the amount of torque you’re producing, those things change based on all that.
Colby Pearce 06:44
those levers are influenced by the geometry of both your body and the bicycle. The wider the handlebars, the wider the base of support, the narrower the bars, the narrower the base of support. So that leads us right into one of our first points about time trial, positional challenges, narrow base of support. But before we get into the specifics, let’s be clear riding in a time trial position is let’s not be let’s not be confused at all on this point, it is an act of contortion ism, to be arrow on a time trial bike, it is a wholly unnatural thing you are fighting for every gram of drag. The higher your airspeed is not groundspeed airspeed, the more arrow you ought to make yourself if your goal is to go fast. So road riding doesn’t have a strict of a demand of an event in that respect. Why? Because many, many points in a road race you are on someone’s wheel or in a peloton and your dynamic drag is greatly reduced. You’re on a steep climb, where aerodynamic drag is we’ll say close to zero depending on conditions. But in a time trial. You are always battling error. It’s just a question of how little or how much. You’re never drafting unless you’re cheating. Don’t cheat. So this race is full of a bunch of cheaters. So when you are any time trial, the primary battle you’re having is the amount of power you can produce against CDA or your coefficient of ordinary drag. For some reason and science papers they referenced in CDA, it’s abbreviated CDA, which would technically be coefficient of drag a little a aerodynamic as opposed to coefficient of drag, F for friction or something else. People don’t think in these terms very conveniently or very commonly, in my experience. Some of that is due to the popularity of Swift, but it’s also because of the ease of measurement. Swift always references watts per kilo watts per kilos, really easy math. watts per kilo is what we think most people should be focused on most of the time. However, if you’re chasing that dragon, you’re not seeing the full picture. The only time watts per kilo actually plays a direct outcome in bike races, is when you’re racing in a vacuum, which I’ve never done. Maybe you have races in vacuums all the time. But when you are racing on a really really steep climb with a slight tail end or no wind, then watts per kilo is pretty much a direct indicator or predictor of performance. However, most bike races are not in this condition. Most bike races are messy, but that means they’re taking place in the real world. And it means the riders are subject to various wind conditions and as soon as you’re in the wind, watts per CDA, or gram of drag or coefficient of drag becomes the more significant predictor of power. Come. And then that of course, means things get even Messier. Because you’ve got to consider tactics. Do you initiate your sprint at 251 meters before the line or 242 or 168 depends on the grade, the direction of the wind, the strength of the wind. Your the strength of your sprint versus the strength of your colleagues to sprint is your sprint more acceleration based or more top end based? Is the sprint uphill or downhill Is there a headwind or a tailwind or side when all these factors these nuances play out in the result of the race, and so timing and tactics become more and more important whenever a race outcome is determined by CDA, a master race. But people tend not to think in terms of watts per gram of drag. Also, because most people have no idea what their CTA is. And that’s partially because CTA changes more than watts per kilo watts per kilo, you can measure someone going out the door with a training kit on and their water ball in their hand and pretty much get a really good idea of where they’re going to be even in an hour or two of riding, the only time they’re going to lose some weight because of dehydration and glycogen depletion.
Colby Pearce 11:19
So you can have a really accurate picture of how many watts they’re producing, versus the amount of mass that is pulling them towards the center of the earth and thus influencing how quickly they go uphill in a vacuum. But because of wind conditions, wind is is such a it’s not that we don’t understand it. It’s just a much more complex model. And also a writer CDA changes based on their positional changes. So drops, hoods and tops, you got three different CDs, floppy jersey, tight jersey, Aero helmet, non Aero helmet, booties, no booties, shaved legs, not shaved legs, fast wheels, not as fast wheels. All these factors influence how much drag a rider makes. So it’s harder to measure, it’s harder to know. And that’s harder to track. And as the old saying goes without which is measured improves. I would add to that and say, yeah, you can measure stuff and you can improve it. But then there’s a point where you no longer need to measure it. Right? That’s the end game, put the sword down, step away from the power meter son. You don’t need that thing anymore. Okay. So what I’m trying to say is to rewind to reconnect some dots. time traveling is an act of contortion, ism contortion ism, you have to be a contortionist to get into a good aerodynamic position. Maybe not as crazy as you think. Sometimes, we might be putting people in too aggressive of a time trial position or Aero position, then needed it may not be getting as much benefit as we think unpacking how to solve that equation can be a bit complex, however, we do have tools to do it. Let’s begin by breaking down the demands of our event. Bike fitting is always up polarity between two objectives. On one side of the spectrum, we have the physiology of the rider what is the rider capable of on the other side, we have the demands of their event. So if someone’s training for the unbound gravel race, formerly known as dirty Kansa. And they’re doing 207 miles or whatever it is, in aerodynamics are not a huge concern in that event. Handling is important. Endurance is important. Comfort is important. That’s a different demand than if someone tells me they’re training for national Time Trial championships, which will probably be around 40 kilometers depending on what age category they’re racing, pro One, two amateur masters, juniors, etc. Two different events, two different demands. So the fit of their respective bikes, of course, would be tailored to meet the demands of that event. But we’re also limited or perhaps enabled by the physiology of the writer, what is their range of motion? how flexible is this athlete? And range flexibility is one consideration. The other is just because you can bend into a position doesn’t mean you can make a power in that position. Those are two different things. So this is passive range of motion versus active. So these are the balancing acts that we play as fitters. We have to evaluate and understand the athlete physically and then we have to determine how those parameters play out into the actualization of their position based on what they’re trying to accomplish on the bike. the demands of our event for a time trial We’re talking 20 to 60 minutes in length in arrow bars, full dark mode skinsuit helmet, all the bits. Number one is we are going to fold at the hip probably close to maximally Why? Because generally speaking and we’ll unpack this a bit more later. I keep saying we you know why it’s because I’m a Gemini, there’s at least two of us in here. We’re gonna unpack this further. Folding at the hip is important to horizontal eyes, the torso generally speaking, the more horizontal the torso is, the faster the writer is the lower their CDA is. However, that obviously comes with some challenges. The more you horizontal eyes, the torso, that means at the top of the stroke, the closer the femur comes to the rib cage, and the more acute the old hip angle is hip angle, are red herring. The thing we must avoid at all costs, or do we? Well, let’s talk about that. But before we get there, we’re going to talk about our primal movement patterns. palecek teaches six primal movement patterns.
Colby Pearce 16:10
According to his philosophies, all sports can be broken down to these six basic movements, no matter how complex the sport is. And the movements are a hip hinge, a squat, a lunge, a twist, a push or a pole. So let’s think about that for a moment. What is cycling, which of the primal movement patterns apply to cycling? And why do we care? Well, first of all, Cycling is a hip hinge, no question you are bent or folded at the hip. And if you’re doing it correctly, you hinge around the hip and not in the lumbar, or thoracic spine. So statically, you are bent over. When you’re riding a bike. You’re also bent when you’re sitting. Hmm, this eliminates a point. If sitting is the new smoking, Cycling is just more sitting. sorry to tell you. So that’s number one. We’re bend at the hip hinge at the hip. Number two is Cycling is a series of lunges. But how much cycling actually bears weight on both legs at once? Well, aside from descending on a mountain bike, none, Cycling is not bilateral. It is a unilateral sport, meaning we are using one leg at a time we’re pushing with only one leg at a time. So if you’re in the gym, and you’re doing tons of squats and deadlifts and you’re never doing any unilateral lifts, you might be missing something from your program. Just a little seed planted there. Okay, so we’re statically hip hinge or lunging? That’s two of the prevalent patterns check. Let’s see what else do we have three? Do we have a squat? Well, no squats are bilateral and there’s no bilateral movement in cycling. So I think we’re pretty much safe on that one, the exception possibly being descending. While the cranks are horizontal on a downhill mountain bike, that’d be the equivalent of a split stance squat. Which gets really close to a lunge. Let’s see number four, we can pull Yes, we definitely pull in cycling, we pull on the bars when we’re standing. Again, either with the contralateral or opposite let the opposite side or ipsilateral, same side of leg depending on the scenario. And I’ve said that quite a bit. So I’ll just unpack that really quickly. If you accelerate hard from a very low speed and a big gear on your road bike, let’s say you’re going 20 an hour, not very fast, and you put it in big ring and a couple Cox from the bottom of the block and you stand up and sprint you’re going to pull hard with the same side arm as you push down with a given leg. So if I push forward with my right leg, I’m going to pull hard with the right arm to counteract that force. And then as the right leg descends down, I’m going to pull hard with the left arm to counteract the force of the left leg. That’s common. You can also pull with the opposite arm on steep climbs at times on the bar. And sometimes you can pull with both hands on the bar. If you’re in an M noxious Li big gear from a dead standing start. That would be how you would do a standing start on the track, you would use both arms to pull to counteract the force of one leg. And there are two reasons for that. One is you want to keep the bike vertical so you pulled both arms, not one so that bike doesn’t flop over. And two is when you’re pushing maximally with the lower extremity of one leg. That’s a lot of muscle. Because you’ve got if you’re doing it right glutes, all the quads, the hamstrings and the calves. add up all that muscle mass and compare it to what you got with the arm. Most people’s legs are much bigger than their arms. So you might need two arms to counteract the force of one leg and keep the bike vertical. Okay, do we have a push Push is one of our primal patterns. Well, I would argue that we have a static push to a degree because we’re holding our upper bodies up by pushing into the bars. It’s not an active push, per se, but it’s a static push. And I would also argue that you can push in mountain biking when you’re pumping the bike downhill. For those of you who wrote it, who are roadies, or trackies, or maybe even cross racers, you may not know this, but you could get free speed by pushing a bike down a little mini downhill without pedaling. It’s this cool thing that I learned from one of my friends many years ago.
Colby Pearce 20:36
there’s some pushing is there twisting, that’s our final primal move pattern. Yeah, there’s a bit of twisting. Arguably, when you corner especially in an off road situation, your butts off the saddle, there’s quite a bit of twisting, without going down the rabbit hole of cornering technique. Some people corner quote with their hips, which means rotating your hips from side to side, you can twist when you pull hard on the bars. You you may encounter some twisting or eccentric load to keep the torso stable, that’s part of that, keeping the core strong between the two control centers of the pelvis and up the hips. So of our primal movement patterns, we are heavily relying on the hip hinge, and the lunge and the pole. Those are the three dominant patterns in cycling. Okay, why do we care? Well, if you can’t do those things, well, then you can’t perform the basics of cycling. So this is one reason why my fit studio to understand how a rider makes power on the bike. First I break down what they do into some of these core elements, we can use a great cook functional movement screen is one example, to see how our writer uses a hip hinge or a lunch or other types of movements. And this can tell us a lot about how stable a rider is on the bike or how functional they are, what their range of movement is, how stable is their ankle and foot under that unilateral load that lunge load? If you don’t have a stable angle on ankle or foot, how are you going to make good strong power on the bike?
Colby Pearce 22:12
So that’s demand number one fold at the hip maximally horizontal eyes, the torso. And if you don’t see what I’m getting at here, why is that hard? If you’re wondering why that’s hard in your head, consider that many riders find it easier to do intervals on the tops or the hoods than in their drops. And that’s because when you fold over at the hip, you increase the tension across the posterior chain. I will unpack more about that in a moment. Demand number two, we have to pin our elbows together. So when you’re in a road bike and you’re in your drops or your hoods, you’ve got a fair amount of distance between your elbows. And that leads to it increases the ability of the rider to support the torso under the load of the distal extremities, the lower extremities, the legs, making all this force that generates a little bit of movement and rocking in the hips in different planes. And when we do that, that tension has to be stabilized that movement has to be stabilized that can be stabilized by the shoulders and the hands and the wider the hands are apart, the easier it is to do that stabilization. Don’t believe me? Or would you like an example to illustrate it? Well, you can do some push ups, try some push ups at a natural bandwidth and then move your hands closer together. Was it harder or easier. You can do the same thing with a squat. Try squatting with your legs, your feet almost together, try bodyweight squat and imagine or try if you’re skilled enough, put a barbell on your back with quite a bit of weight on each side. And now ask yourself even even as a thought experiment that should be intuitive, is it going to be easier for me to squat and more stable for me to squat that load with my feet at shoulders with distance apart or narrower than hips width distance apart? I think it’s pretty obvious that if the barbell sticking way out on the side, you’ve got all this demand that represents your distal extremities your feet making power at the pedals, especially if your cranks are really long. The longer the crank, the bigger the circle, the more emotion there is at the foot that has to be stabilized at the hip. So if you’re squatting with that barbell on and you put your feet you pin them together as your ankles are almost touching and then do a squat, you can see immediately you’re not going to be as stable so we are progressing the exercise of cycling when we narrow the base of support. What do I mean by that? When you go in the gym, you can either progress or regress any exercise. How do you progress and exercise IE make it harder, you either narrow the base of support or you put yourself on an unstable surface. If you want to make squats really hard, try doing them on a stability ball.
Colby Pearce 25:02
If you want to regress a squat, make your legs your stance a little bit wider. Makes sense. So, when we pin our elbows together, we’re doing a couple things, we’re taking out the entire bottom lever arm of the arm, we’re removing the forearm from the equation. Also, we’re removing the hand from the equation because you don’t steer arrow bars with your hands, you steer them with your elbows, at least if you’re doing it right, your hand should be passive. But we’ve lost that entire second lever of the arm. And we also made that stance narrower, we brought the elbows close together, in most cases, having the elbows pretty close, it’s going to make a writer more error. So we reduced the base of support. Three, we’re going to drop your head. Arguably, anytime you’re in a high wind speed situation, your head should be dropped to ideally the level of the shoulders or close to it depending on the physiology, the writer and their position, etc, etc. But when we drop our head, a lot of writers have a big problem with this, it increases the facial tension specifically in the thoracic spine, and it causes a lot of discomfort. If you’ve got tight shoulders and a tight upper back, dropping your head down to be enlightened with your torso is going to be a big challenge. So that adds to our load. As we progress down the list of these demands of the event for the time trial position, it adds load. And eventually, when the writer is not capable of handling that much facial load, or total Nervous System load. There’s a response and the response is what I call a relief valve. And I’ll get down with that. I’ll break down what that relief valve means. It’s really easy to see how that relief plays out when you look at photos of local time trials. So when we drop our head, we increase that global factional tension. And most riders will feel it as a tension between their shoulders, that’s your thoracic spine. You just feel this little bit of tension there. And you may think for the first few minutes that it’s not a big deal, and it probably isn’t. But when time trials are 20 or 30 or 40 minutes long. And you’re under a race paced load that tension becomes quite significant or non trivial. We’ll put a link in the show notes to the anatomy trains, superficial back line artwork. This is a drawing of a person and it demonstrates what the superficial back line looks like. And to be clear, Tom Meyers, who is the creator of anatomy trains will say this point blank, there aren’t really lines in fascia fascia is a continuous fibrous sheath that and wraps envelops the entire body. It wraps around all muscles between some muscles between the organs, it connects bones, muscles and organs to each other. When we’re considering how fashion impacts the movement of a human, it can be really quite constructive to break down the fascia artificially into these lines. And this is what Tom Meyers the creator of anatomy trains has done. Although he’ll be the first to say that fascia isn’t really broken into lines per se. So when we see this anatomy trains poster of the superficial black line, what we notice is the fascia line that is dictated here travels from literally the underside of the foot from the toes around the angle up through the calf, through the knee through the pelvis passing through the SI joints, up both sides of the back on the backside of the neck and then wraps all the way around to the top of the head. From the top of your skull, from your crown chakra all the way down to the little piggies at the bottom of your feet is one continuous structure. And this fascia is what is under tension when you are in the trial position. So think about that fascia as a rubber band. And when you hinge at the hips, you can see that you’re going to put more tension on that rubber band. And then you drop the head you’re going to put more tension on that rubber band. And what adds tension to that rubber band even more is when we produce maximal effort. As you increase muscular tension and the fibers of the muscles fire under load. The tension of the muscles expands. This is inherently obvious right when you go hard your muscles become engorged with blood but also the fibers are firing and the muscle becomes hard. You are flexing your muscle you get in swell and that adds to the tension of this fascist system since the fascia envelops all the muscles and when you are not a flexible person, one of the biggest limiters in mobility can be Facial tension.
Colby Pearce 30:02
So you can see that when you fold over at the hip and pin your elbows together and drop your head, we’re adding to the facial tension of the superficial back line. It should be obvious from the photo, if you think about it from a thought experiment three dimensional type perspective, which I know everyone can do. We’re also going to pin our shoulders to our ears. When you look at a rider from the front, and you consider very simplistically their frontal area, one of the biggest areas that can be influenced, assuming you have the mobility is the sort of triangle between the AC joint or the basically the end of your collarbone the far end of your collarbone out towards the shoulder, that triangle between the point there and when the torso is forward, we’re sort of forming a triangle between the top of the shoulder and the collarbone. And so when you pull that AC joint in towards your shoulder, or excuse me, when you pull that AC joint in towards your ears, we’re minimizing that frontal area. When you expand your shoulders out and stand in military posture, we’ll say, then that area off the top side of your torso, that triangle there becomes larger, and you start to smash air into it and you become less arrow. So really, really, what we’re doing is we’re making the shoulders narrow, and pinning those shoulders to our ears. This also adds to the demands of the event. It results in increased muscular effort, your your shoulders don’t do that unless you hold them there. There are some tools that people use to help offset that load. Including I’ll put some links to some of these in the show notes. We’ve got arrow coach is a company in the UK that makes an arm pad with a vertical wall on the outside of the pad that kind of pins your elbows in and helps your arms from flopping out that can be effective. Some athletes will take their shoulders with kinesiotape to be in a narrow position. Using an incredibly tight skin suit with incredibly narrow shoulders helps put you in that position. Of course, you can always just train your shoulder strength, stability and mobility by doing things like scapular push ups. If I’m inspired later, I might put a video in the show notes for you guys, I’ll be doing some basic shoulder mobility exercises that I found to be pretty, both challenging and useful for cyclists. We’ll see how my day plays out here got a lot on my plate. Strong and functional shoulders are a central to any cycling discipline where it doesn’t matter what we’re talking about. And it’s one of the most neglected aspects of cyclists bodies from what I’ve seen. It’s pretty dreadful. How how crappy a lot of cyclists shoulders are not to not to be all thrown shade on my clients, because I love you guys. But it’s a pretty common theme, shoulders and ankles who the end goal of the first four points about the function of time trial demands, one fold at the hip to pin the elbows together, three, drop the head and four pin the shoulders to the ears. The end goal of that is to close the hole made in the front of the body when you’re in the arrow position, that is where the wind can come in and just below your chin between your arms, and above your hands. We’re trying to close off that hole. The fifth point in our checklist of two dues on the trail bike is drive the pedal from 12 o’clock. This is when the crank arm is vertical straight up and down. We want you to start to push forward and down from that point. And there’s a lot that goes into this. And the biggest one is when people slam the saddle all the way forward to alleviate hip angle, the red herring of bike fit in the world of time crawling. When you slam someone’s saddle forward, they cannot drive the pedal down and forward with a lot of force or really they can’t extend the hip from that position. Because the saddles too far forward to allow it to happen mechanically, I don’t need an EMG. To prove this point. I don’t need any fancy science. I can see it from joint angles. And if the hip is not extending, then glued, glued is not being active. Pretty simple. So I’ve unpacked a bit of this in my how to pedal a bike one on one on one or two but just to briefly explain this is this is the central debate around time traveling right here. And we’ve had a lot of hangover on this from the world of triathlon. Specifically triathlete triathletes have requested I’ll say I don’t know what the origin was, whether it was the fitter or the athletes or combination of both.
Colby Pearce 34:58
But the end result is that triathletes assign their saddles way forward, far, far, far over the bottom bracket. And fundamentally, to me, this is an error in logic because what they’re doing is trying to turn cycling into running. And you might think this is a funny point for me to make given the fact that I’ve argued in my other podcast that all Cycling is based on the gait, cycle and walking and that fundamentally, that’s what humans are meant to do. And that Cycling is a modification of that. And that is true, however, hinges on hips and pushing your butt back behind the bottom bracket is a core demand of cycling. It is an essential point of cycling for a bunch of reasons. So when we slam the saddle forward, you can perform this experiment at home on a trainer if you want. Push your button, the saddle, got to be a trainer, you can use the brakes, put your crank at 12 o’clock, slide your butt all the way forward to the tip of your saddle. What happens because your foot is already at maximal dorsiflexion your foot rotates around into a toe down position. When you are toe down at 12 o’clock, the only way to apply force to the crank is to extend the knee, which is the same thing as kicking a soccer ball. That’s how you kick a soccer ball with the toe of your foot. When you toe, when you kick a soccer ball with the toe, you extend the knee, the hip doesn’t change. But when we use only the quad to drive the pedal forward, that is not a strong or sustainable way to drive the bike, we want to use multi joint muscular action. In order to do that we have to slide the butt back so that when you push down, you are extending both the knee and the hip. When you extend the hip, you use glute and glute is the biggest muscle in the body. It is also the strongest hip extender in the body. Hence the strongest muscle to drive down into the ground. That’s why when you’re in the gym, people tell you to keep your butt back to use glutes to drive the bar away from the ground using doing a deadlift or squat. This is strength one on one people. So when we do this, when we keep our butt far enough back to begin to pedal stroke at 12. What happens is we begin to smooth out the pedal stroke. And this is the essence of time travel. You hear this all the time I can’t say stable on my saddle. I keep creeping out to the end. When someone’s time traveling and their butt is coming out towards the end of the saddle. I call this the typewriter. If you’re less than 30 years old, you probably don’t know what the hell a typewriter is. But fundamentally a typewriter works its way across the page and then you hit the return stroke and the carriage. I really sound old now goes back to the other side. So on a bike that looks like you start with your butt in the middle of the saddle where it should be or just we’ll just say arbitrarily the middle and you creep forward on every stroke millimeter by millimeter. That’s the Dik Dik Dik Dik Dik Dik Dik Dik. And then when you get to the end, you’re about to fall off or you realize that you are too far forward into into saddle offset world you’ve lost your saddle offset your butts come forward over the bottom bracket and you want to scoop back and the scoop back is when the character turns. So the pattern is deep, deep, deep, deep, deep, deep out to the tip and then King to the back. That’s the typewriter. Nearly everyone understands this example intuitively when I explained it to them, and about 80% of my clients bring up the famous time trial that Commodore did at the end of one of the years of the Tour de France when even the commentator pointed out that he was typewriter and on the cell, he was not able to stay stable in the saddle. And it’s unbelievably common for time trials to have this seemingly unsolvable problem. And one of the more perfect textbook cases of the example of this is Tony Martin, one of the most picture perfect examples of this entire scenario playing out is Tony Martin. One year at World Time Trial championships he elected to fasten glue attach some sandpaper to his saddle in order to attempt to keep his butt from typewriter out to the end of the saddle. And the result was holes in a shimmy and a bit of blood. pretty unbelievable. So even at the highest level people are struggling with this problem. Why? When the saddle is too far forward, it will put you into quad dominance when you are quad dominant. The stroke by definition becomes punchier. When the stroke becomes punchier, the pelvic stability goes down, and the result is that you come forward out to the end of the saddle. Additional confounding variables are the saddle in most TT saddles it’s way too padded and way too flat. ischium are not flat bones, they are rounded bones. So when you put a round bone on a flat surface, you get instability. When you add a whole bunch of padding, which is a one size fits all solution, you get instability. So we have horribly designed Time Trial saddles
Colby Pearce 39:58
with poorly placed saddles. And then if you add bad technique on top of that you get instability. That is the equation that results in people typewriter going out and constantly battling being on the very, very tip of their TT settle. And yes, I’m talking about all the common Kontrol saddles made out there today. I won’t name names of manufacturers, but yes, the answer is yes.
Colby Pearce 40:26
if you have specific questions about time trial saddles, feel free to ask me and I will address those individually on email. That said, I’ve got an unreal pile of email right now. So I appreciate your patience. Doing I can hear, there’s only one of me. I haven’t gone into the transmogrifier yet and made more copies like Calvin did. But I’m working on it. We’ve got a couple of cardboard boxes in the living room. So stay tuned. Okay, back to our list of things that we must do in order to ride a time trial bike, one fold of the hip to pin the elbows together, three, drop the head, four, pin the shoulders to the ears, five, drive the pedal from 12 o’clock. If you don’t do that, you’re going to be cruising forward all the time. Six. Oh, this one’s easy to overlook maximum load, you have to go as hard as you can. And that increases facial tension. It also there’s a there’s a relationship. A teeter totter between the amount of effort we can produce and the amount of technique we can consciously enact. It’s really easy to be conscious of pedaling technique when you’re writing in zone one or zone two because you’ve got more brainpower to consciously focus on those specific aspects of technique, fluidity. Applying power to certain part of the stroke, observing your knee tracking, keeping your your mind in your actual extension of the spine for examples. But when we go hard, our role gets small and the reptile brain comes out because we feel as though we are under threat. Because we are in reality. We are incurring Nervous System stress. And this stress influences how much attention we can pay to technique. This is why it’s essential to train technique under lower loads, and then progressively add load to that technique until you can actualize it on race day. That is how training works. It’s not only about creasing, increasing your functional threshold power. All sports are by definition technique intensive. It’s just we get a hall pass in cycling because bad technique is camouflage by fancy equipment. If you have crappy technique, when you run, you’ll get injured or you’ll use hokas which is a workaround and then you’ll get injured eventually anyway. Do not run in Hocus. There I said it. Or if you have crappy technique and cross country skiing, you’ll just fall over man. It’s way too hard to skate ski with bad technique. If you have bad technique and swimming, you’ll drown. If it’s really bad, don’t drill. You’re not done yet. You have more work to do on this orb. Okay, what are the results of all this global tension when we pin those shoulders to the ears drop that head go really hard. Everybody looks really tidy for about the first k of a TT and then there are two really fouls that happen. One, think about our superficial backline our anatomy trains model, if you’re looking at that picture, you can probably see where it is and figure it out. We look at that superficial backline. Two things happen one, the head periscopes up above the shoulders, and the face goes to vertical or vertical eyes ation of the face. Some of that you might argue is to see where you’re going. But if you know what’s going on aerodynamically and you’re trying to close off that hole where the wind is hitting you in the chest and in the hips and in the junk. Then you want to drop that chin height as low as possible. That is essential.
Colby Pearce 44:08
that’s number one, the head periscopes above the shoulders way above the shoulders, that’s a sign that the riders TT position is challenging their global facial tension too much and they can’t handle it. And they may have been able to handle it under zone one or zone two load, they might be able to ride really fast and be super Aero looking when they’re cruising around in the neighborhood on their TT bike, but you put them in a 20 K and about three Case in point that head pops up. The second is the heels will come up especially on the backside of the stroke and someone who pedals with a relatively flat foot on the road bike because their saddle slammed forward and because they can’t handle the increased facial tension of being in that time proposition especially under maximal load. their toes go down and their heels come up and they turn to a ballerina. And if you want to know why we care. Again, this is just joint mechanics. This is basic understanding of human movement. If you want to drive the bike with posterior chain meaning with your glutes, which is the strongest hip extender in the body, you need a close to flat heel during the power phase of the stroke. And when you torch your foot angle by pulling up at the backside of the stroke, or it gets torched by global posture, faster attention, because you don’t have the flexibility or mobility to be hip hinge to that degree, then you kind of cut off your nose to spite your face. Because you’re setting up your a poor power phase, when you come over to 12 o’clock, if your toe down, you can’t engage with a flat foot. These are the demands of our event. How do you stack up? Do you want to know? Have someone film you going hard on a TT bike? Do it for five minutes and then take a film for the last 20 seconds. look at photos from your local TTS. What do you look like? What are your What are your compatriots look like? your competitors, your competitors? Your puzzle heteros on this journey of time trialing wisdom. Oh, that was esoteric. Okay. So do some some analysis here do some, some digging, when you get in a time trial bike, are you incredibly uncomfortable? Or can you hang out in the aero bars for a long time, these are signs that you need to do more work on it. And I’ll say one of the biggest reasons that people have such a big Delta, not everyone, but it’s very common for people to have a big delta between how much power they can make in the roadbike for a given period of time and how much power they can make in their time trial bike. And it’s not uncommon for people to build and make 20 3040 watts less in the TT bars. And that is for all the reasons we just listed. When you ride your road bike all the time, and then you go to your time trial bike and the demands of that event are more challenging, and the functional demands go up. Then of course, you’re going to make less power unless you’re adapted to those additional functional demands, we have progressed your exercise, time traveling is a progression of road riding, it is more difficult to ride hard on a time trial bike than it is on a road bike. And most people ride their road bikes way more than they ride their time trial bikes. If you’re a time, Charles, do you really want to smash TT nationals or TT states or whatever your goal is this year? Your onus is to ride a lot in your time trial bike under high load. Yes, you can do zone one and zone two rides during recovery rather than time trial bike. Yeah, yes, it’s better than nothing. But you’re the bang for the buck. Man, that’s hard efforts. That’s where you’re going to adapt, you might need to start with low intensity efforts with recovery rides or zone two rides, especially if you are horrendously unflexible, or have a really poor capacity to generate good muscular tension and constant force on the pedals in that arrow position, you may be really well served by doing some zone one and zone two rides. But you’ve got to progress to the point where you’re doing hard efforts in the aero bars at full speed with your head as low as humanly possible. And your shoulders, pinch your ears, that needs to be your, your new home, your happy place, your safety closet, whatever you want to call it.
Colby Pearce 48:35
to break down, when I fit someone on a time trial bike, I’m balancing kind of a spectrum of things. On the one side of the spectrum, we sort of have this perception that there’s an ideal aerodynamic position. And usually in our head, there’s a model that as we approach that ideal aerodynamic position, power production will go down. Now there are a couple confounding variables in this equation. As a general model, that’s a good starting point. But one, it depends on the function of the athlete. How good are they at getting in these positions to how adapted are they to the TT position. So if someone’s really not adapted to the time trial position, you put them what in what we ostensibly think is their most arrow position or a really arrow position. And they’re horrendously, not adapted to it. If they are dreadfully far from being able to make good power in that position, then they might just need time. So there’s kind of two ways to handle it. One is you just put them in that position and say, Go expect that this is a long road and you’re not gonna be able to make good power in this position for six months, nine months, three months, it depends on how good you are doing your mobility work, how much time you spend in the narrow position. If you overdo it and injure yourself, which is unlikely but possible, it’s more likely you just can’t really make good power. But it’s possible. If you’ve got if you’re Functions really bad, your backs really sensitive. And you’ve got a history of low back injuries, for example, and you go out and do a bunch of big your efforts and your time trial bars for sure you could hurt yourself. There are other examples as well. So that’s one way to do it. The other way is we sort of say, Okay, this position is too aggressive for you to make good power. And now, but we think you might get there. So we’re going to progress to that position, we’re going to start with a more conservative position, a higher bar height, and then we’re going to work your way down in 10 mil increments over the next few months. The challenge there is that most TT bikes have integrated cables and all kinds of fancy gizmos. And there aren’t that many bikes on the market that are really easy to adjust. So every time you do 10 mils lower on the pad height, you got to hire a mechanic to redo your di two. There are ways around that if you do a tap, of course, that makes things simpler, there are different handlebars that are easy to adjust, etc, etc. But that’s pretty common. So if you want to own if you want to own a TT bike, and it’s really fast, you basically signed up to own a Ferrari, you got to hire a mechanic do the work on it, it’s really expensive to do the work, it’s just part of part cost of doing business. You can go a little simpler and bias develop p3, which has exposed cables, and probably is 98.2% as fast as most super integrated Aero bikes. But it doesn’t look as cool.
Colby Pearce 51:26
as a fitter, what I’m doing is I’m trying to see how Aero someone is and then evaluate how close I can get to that based on their function. But there are some assumptions that I have to make there. Because again, CDA isn’t that easy to measure. And most of my clients who come to me do not have CDA numbers, not like they say to me, Well, when I’m in this position, my CD is here. And when I drop it four centimeters, it goes to this, the majority of time, that’s not really true. So I’m using what I call my eyeball wind tunnel. And I’m forced to knowing what I know about aerodynamics and fluid dynamics, I’m forced to put that rider into what is basically a bell curve position, I think you’re probably going to be fastest about here. Is that sustainable or achievable based on your function. And I’ve had the position where I’ve had a few writers who have done fits with me and then gone to a windtunnel afterwards and come back and given me good feedback in the form of, well, your eye actually turns out to be a pretty good wind tunnel. So that’s convenient. And that worked with those writers. But that doesn’t mean it works with you. Because the number one rule about fluid dynamics is it is highly individual and super complex. So what we’re talking about is three dimensional shapes moving through a fluid, you think air is a gas, but in science, we call it a fluid isn’t that fancy. And when that fluid is swirling around you, you get little Eddie’s of currents and, and relationships between boundary layers, and other parts that Eddy and swirl off of you. So what we have as a result is the three dimensional shape moving through that viscous substance creates different negative pressure points. What I’m saying really is how arrow is your ass. Because when the air comes off of your head, goes past your shoulders, engages with the shape of your spine, and then comes off your pelvis. Does it reform quickly, or does it create a big negative space. And when it creates a big negative pressure behind your butt, you’re kind of like, the faster you go, the more you get sucked into your own black hole. That’s a way to think about it, we all carry around a black hole. And that that low pressure behind you kind of retards forward motion. This is why you’re faster when someone’s on your wheel. So for those of you who got really mad at someone who is who is wheel sucking your wheel in a criterium and you got upset with them, because you didn’t want them to benefit from your hard work, before you go yelling at them and screaming at them the next time, consider that you’re going faster when they sit there, they are feeling that negative void space with a body and that makes you effectively twice as long it’s almost like riding a tandem. And a longer shape generally speaking is more Aero.
Colby Pearce 54:20
when I’m fitting someone on a TT bike, I’m sort of have to use my crystal ball a bit and see how Aero I think they are. And then I evaluate that against the function. A couple of interesting points there. One is that every Federer has to do this to some degree, we don’t really have a convenient way to do it any other any other way. methodologically. There are some options. You can go for example to a wind tunnel and get a bunch of data and then come see a fitter, and then they can sort of evaluate your function in each of those positions and say, Well, I think this one’s realistic. This one’s not and that itself is a crystal ball equation because it’s really hard to predict how much an athlete will adapt to an arrow position over time, their power might be total crap. The week you put them in that position, but nine months later, they might be just fine. Maybe they’re not. Maybe they only get to 85% of their roadbike FTP, but that’s still the best position for them. Because really the cross section isn’t power to CDA, it’s actually
Colby Pearce 55:20
That’s the end goal. And at what point does the writer have the highest speed, how much power we put in and how much CDA we take away results in a given speed. So we push on those two levers to get the highest average speed. And it may be that the riders highest average speed is only when they’re at 60% of their FTP, but they can ride ridiculously low. And aerodynamics is more important than power production for that particular athlete. It depends on their body type, and all kinds of other things that we haven’t figured out a way to, to model yet. Or at least I haven’t, there’s probably someone out there who has. So
Colby Pearce 56:00
equations are quite complex, these these factors, these levers that we push on to influence performance. So everyone should be aware of that when when they go to a fit with a time trial bike and they have no data. They’re asking the fitter to be to do a lot of guesswork. And that guesswork depends on how much experience they have in wind tunnels, and how much time they have figuring things out in the real world. And I’ve got some but not nearly as much as many other aerodynamicists out there. Another option would be to use er o testing, I’ll put a link to these guys in the show notes. Jim Manton is one of the main dudes there he might be the Grand Poobah chief owner. I’m not exactly sure on his title, but I’ve worked with him a bit. And this is a system that uses a wasp, which is not a small insect, but it’s actually an ant plus device. And it communicates to a laptop on the infield of a velodrome. And what you do is you sync your power meter to the wasp and the wasp to the laptop and then we send writers out for say three k of baseline and then you come in change a helmet send them out for three K, and you see live CDA on the laptop as a result of the equations using the power meter, the air density, the temperature, the humidity, bubble bot, math, physics, etc. And the interesting part is we can see live changes in CDA based on that writers change trial to trial. So you can try a different booty or different shoe or a different sock, you can use a different helmet skin suit, you can lower the bars, raise the bars, put the hands up, put the hands down, etc, you can make small changes and see immediate results. So that’s an actionable way for people to learn more about their aerodynamic limitations. global changes are harder. And there’s some just like in any testing protocol that writer fatigue comes into it. So you do 12 runs by the 12th run, sometimes people just get sloppy and the data is crap, and you got to throw it out. So you have to be realistic about that. You can also go to a wind tunnel when tunnels are really expensive. The other option is you can use a chunk method and go out on the road. This requires more data crunching, more knowledge about numbers, more estimations of coefficients of drag and coefficients of rolling resistance and those types of things. But if you’re willing to research all those numbers and and turn those rocks, you can do a fair amount of error testing on your own. The last idea is one that’s a bit challenging. It’s an arrow pod, or they’re a couple other devices on the market that are made to do the same thing. But the opposite one I’ve got a little bit of experience with and when I say a little I mean I battled the software for a while and it was an apple thing that just made me want to smash my head through a window and I have at this point been unable to conquer it. So it has to do with Apple not wanting third party firmware software and hardware. That’s about all I can say about that because I can’t spend too many brain cells on this stuff. But an arrow pot is a little device you attach to your handlebars and it also gives you live CDA in the real world. No velodrome needed, you just get your, your coefficient of drag aerodynamic while riding down the road. And thus you can see how your CDA changes when you sit up on the hoods sit up on the tops go to the drops when you get behind a writer when you pull around that writer when a truck passes you when the wind changes when you stop and put on a different helmet. So this is an option for people to potentially get some data about themselves and start to hack away at those little CDA gains. And if your goal is to smash a world record in your age group, or when national championships, then that might be a few rocks that are worth on turning because aerodynamics again is by far the most dominant dominant factor in the outcome of that event. In terms of passive, passive metrics,
Colby Pearce 59:54
it’s easy to assume that lower handlebars equal more arrow however, That is not always the case. And if you’re curious what’s going on there, I want you to look at a link I’ll put in the show notes to a photo of Rohan. Dennis Rowan is my textbook example of someone who has performed repeatedly at the world level and doesn’t necessarily have a dead horizontal torso. In fact, you can see what’s going on there, his torso, ankles, actually somewhat conservative, and he, but he’s able to drop his head, his chin height very low and keep his hands very high and close off that front angle and produce a lot of power in that position. So this is the solution that’s been come up with Rohan. If you look through some of the photos, you can see his positions change at different years and at different points on different bikes. And that’s probably the influence of different bio mechanist looking at him and different coaches and things like that. But there’s dominant theme, Rohan tends to not ride super, super low like some other athletes do. And that is obviously the conclusion that all these brilliant minds have come up to when it comes to Rowan’s arrow writing. So, I love to bring him up as an example to illustrate that even at the world level, we don’t have to be super turbo slammed. Think about fluid dynamics three dimensionally, or the total shape. And the easy way to kind of get away from that mindset of looking at how low the torso is only is to look at yourself from the front. I’m a huge fan of narcissism when it comes to indoor training. And you should have a mirror directly in front of your trainer. It’s amazing to me how many people come to my fit studio and they’ve never seen themselves ride a bike. I film them and they’re like, Oh, that’s what
I look like. Like, well,
Colby Pearce 1:01:34
yeah, and especially today, I mean, there’s no excuse for this. We have iPhones, we have iPads. Like it does not take a lot to film yourself. You don’t even have to bother your spouse or girlfriend with this problem or boyfriend, you can let him go do his ride. And you can just put your iPhone on a bookcase, it just takes about three or four minutes of fine tuning as far as the height and the lighting so you can see yourself well. Also, the slow mo is really useful to look at your own pedal stroke, seed planted. We have the technology, we will make him stronger.
Colby Pearce 1:02:10
how do we handle this problem? This red herring of hip angle in the TT position? How can we how can we get someone super low or very low with the torso and not nuke their hip angle? So they’re not hidden cells in the ribs with their femur? when they’re at the top of the stroke all the time? What do we do? Well, okay, there’s some actionable points, one, train hip mobility. Do a deep Spider Man stretch, a deep lunge stretch? A deep pigeon stretch, external and internal rotation of the hip don’t only do it in the sagittal plane. Yes, that’s how you’re pedaling. That means you need to work outside that plane to have a global impact on your mobility. How far can you rotate your hip in and out? Can you do a 9090 stretch worth anything at all, it’s amazing how bad some cyclists are at this, I will put a link to the 9090 stretch in the show notes as well. Paul check has a great video on how to do the 9090 stretch, if you don’t know what I’m talking about, go forth make the keyboard mudras you will see
Colby Pearce 1:03:16
in addition to working mobility of the hip, we also have to train not just range of motion passive range of motion. We also need to train making force in that range of motion. A great way to do that is isometric work. Put your foot on a big platform, go to almost maximal dorsiflexion go to almost maximal hip flexion and push hard. Try it for 30 seconds, see what happens? Are you seeing stars? Or is everything burning? Are you getting cross-eyed? Can you not get into the deep angle that you have yourself set up on your bike and make any force at all. That’s just one small example. I’m not going to go down a rabbit hole of strength and conditioning for TT stuff here on this podcast. Because I’ve already said a lot. And while I’m all for long format, going super dense sometimes loses the stars for the horizon. I’ve literally just made up that expression. I don’t even know if it makes sense. We’re gonna go with it. So increase your ability to make force in that deep hip flexion also work on dorsiflexion What the heck is dorsiflexion you said that so many times in this episode Pierce dorsiflexion is how much you can move your foot and you have to be able to move your foot into a good range of dorsiflexion which means your ankles have to be loose in order to apply good power at the bike on the bike. How do we train dorsiflexion well stretch your calves stretch your ankles. If you can’t remember the difference between dorsiflexion and plantar flexion you know for sure what a dorsal fin is on a shark. It’s the fin on the top. So dorsiflexion is When you point your foot up, like the fin of a shark, now you’ll never forget it isn’t that convenient. Just think of jaws. We’re gonna need a bigger boat. Here’s the most artful, elegant, simple way to not nuke your hip angle, keep your saddle far enough back on your TT bike and still fold well at the hip, shorter cranks. Another discussion I will not descend into today is all the arguments about why shorter cranks are actually not worse will say for power production, the old line of thinking is longer cranks equals more leverage equals more power. But that’s, that’s baby talk, that is second grader look at what is a graduate level problem. There’s a lot of physics and science that goes into it. Maybe at some point, I’ll Break That down. Maybe I’ll get Jim Martin on the pot if he’s willing. And he can talk about that he’s the the pro on that equation for sure. There might be other people who are really good at explaining this type stuff. But I’ll give you the cliff notes. Now the science is pretty clear, cleric length doesn’t really matter that much in terms of power production. So if you’re ramming yourself in the chest with your thigh every time you pedal on your TT bike, or if you’re having impingement of the arterial blood flow at your hip because your hip angle is too acute, which really rarely happens, but as a reason a lot of people want to use to to demonize hip angle. If that’s the case, put on shorter cranks, there are three ways to change the amount of leverage you have on the rear wheel during pedaling a bike, one. Change your front derailleur to shift your rear derailleur three, change your crank length, I should have said, shift your front derailleur Anyway, you got the point. All three of those things impact how much leverage you have to move the rear wheel on space as you pedal hard. So we do it all the time is the point when we’re shifting, unless you’re always riding a single speed or on the track, which I’d be impressed if anyone on this podcast was actually always doing that. So shorten your cranks, there are two really good articles, I’m going to put in the show notes that explain a lot of the science behind why shorter cranks are okay. So if you are wanting to work out on this, I send these to my writers all the time, there are great ways to break down these arguments. Also, there’s some good podcasts out there with Jim Martin who where he discusses this issue. But he’s on my list of people to have on the pot later. So heads up, yo. Also, you just need lots of time and efforts in the time trial position. This is how we adapt to this problem. How do we how do we make ourselves faster in the time proposition, I mourn the time proposition ride lots.
Colby Pearce 1:07:49
last little bit, I will mention I’m going to put one more resource in the show notes. It is a cool video I found of the 2019 world Tantra championships. And it is someone set up a camera with as close to a head on view as you could get. And they just filmed all the riders. And there’s cool little techno music in there. And they have the writers name and the country and you can watch them go by and see their frontal area. This is a very illuminating video for a lot of my clients. When I show them this, they realize it emphasizes how much of an act of contortion ism it is to make yourself a fast time trials and also what’s required to compete at the world level. There’s a lot that goes into it. So check it out. If you’re interested, it’s a super cool chance to study up on people, you can see the subtle differences and how people apply power. The ones that are better at keeping their head low. The ones that are more dynamic, they’re looking up to see where they’re going and then dropping their head ultra low versus writers who just hold their heads static. But notice how small the hole is above the hands and below the chin between the arms. That’s the essence of a time trial position is making power or minimizing that hole so the air doesn’t go in there and hit you in the hips. That’s everything. That’s the entire big picture goal. If we’re looking at TT riders from the moon, that’s what we want to see is a small hole. So when you see this video, you’ll see really clearly and quickly the difference between how some riders are much more effective at minimizing this gap between the arms, chin and hands and others are much more effective. And of course we have UCI constraints to consider in this assuming that you are a UCI constructed constraint writer that is writing it nationals or worlds or maybe state championships depending on the state and what category you’re in. If you’re a none of those things, then you’ve got a little more freedom to play with. That buttons up I can’t talk about Tom trawling any more today if I say Tom try one more time I’m going to hurl myself in front of a bus. I love you guys. I hope you enjoyed this episode and got some cool stuff out of it. I also hope that there are more time trials. For me it’s a it’s a core aspect of the sport. It’s just so basic and fundamental. Yeah, it’s not real exciting for spectators. You know what a lot of bike racer isn’t. It’s about doing not about watching depends on what you’re talking about. But man, there’s nothing more essential or basic than just going out and going hard for half an hour by yourself, and seeing how hard you can push it. I know that goes against many riders lines of thought. But if there’s one thing we can do in 2021, even if there are no bike races, we can go out and do Strava challenges. I’ll say that. So if you’re a promoter out there, I know that your job is thankless and probably doesn’t pay you much. That’s my understanding of how most promoters lives are. I think in 2021, and even moving forward, I would implore you, I would ask you, I would request of you that you consider putting on more time trials because it’s just core. And man, it’s a great it’s a great way to bring people together but in a socially distance way. Also, if you make the time trial uphill, or at least partially uphill, then we take the whole equipment thing out of it. And that’s even tinier, because then people can show up on the road bikes. And then most of what I just said doesn’t apply, but it doesn’t matter. It’s still core to the sport. Just freakin go hard. Anyway, there’s price a contra like nine more times. Now I gotta go hold myself in front of a bus. Thanks, everyone. Questions, comments, you know where to hit me. Make the keyboard mudros. info at cycling in alignment.com. Stay tuned for more pods, more exciting guests. I appreciate your listening to my ramblings and I sincerely hope that you find all this work meaningful. It’s rewarding for me, but it is not without challenge. So many blessings.
Colby Pearce 1:11:52
Attention space monkeys public service announcement. Really, technically, it’s a disclaimer. You already know this, but I’m going to remind you that I’m not a lawyer and I’m not a doctor. So don’t take anything on this podcast to constitute lawyerly or doctorly advice. I don’t play either of those characters on the internet. Also, we talk about lots of things. And that means we have opinions. I guess opinions are not necessarily reflective of the opinions of anyone who is employed by or works at fast off labs. Also, if you want to reach out, talk to me about things, feedback on the podcast, good, bad or otherwise, may do so. At the following email address. info at cycling in alignment.com gratitude