Newsletter 42 | Air Quality & Maintaining Motivation

Air Quality and your Cycling

This last weekend in the Sacramento region we surpassed the total number of “Spare the Air” days we had in all of 2017.  It’s been a rough season for air quality to say the least.

In our latest post on the blog we take a closer look at the Air Quality Index (AQI) and how to better utilize this tool to decide whether to ride outside or stay home.  If you’re short on time here are a few of the highlights

  • Start by understanding the AQI in your local region.  Green is good, yellow is moderate, red is unhealthy.
  • Riding in poor quality air comes with consequences.  Weigh these risks before heading out to ride.
  • Unless you feel you absolutely have to ride, take some extra time off the bike until the air clears.
  • Ride early in the morning for a better shot at improved air quality.
  • As best as possible, stay away from traffic.
  • Shorten the duration of your rides.
  • Complete a short workout indoors.

Head straight to the post by clicking here.

Maintaining Motivation

The deeper into the summer the harder it can be to maintain a joy of riding the bike.  Poor air quality, high heat, and general training fatigue can easily derail late season goals and objectives.  Here are a few core training adjustments I’ve found to be useful to make it to the end of you race/event season holding onto your best fitness.

  • Get your primary training intensity from group rides or races.  Riding hard on the bike in a competitive environment is typically the least “psychologically expensive” way to stay sharp deep into the season.
  • Limit yourself to only one demanding interval session a week once you enter the final months of the season.
  • Get more variety in your cycling.  Don’t be afraid to spend workouts on your MTB or cross bike even if your goals are road oriented.
  • Do some longer fun rides without any training targets.  Long endurance rides can help to restore the “fun” of cycling as well as maintain a high level of aerobic fitness.
  • Take a week off the bike.  Few things help to maintain motivation more than stepping away from the bike entirely for a week.  Whatever small hit in fitness you might suffer, you’ll gain back with more enthusiasm and passion for the bike after a solid week of rest.

Nate Dunn
Founder/Head Coach
Data Driven Athlete