Get ready for your next challenges with Bkool and Mikel Azparren



Train with Bkool and Mikel Azparren

Bkoolers, this Orbea Week, the challenge was ridden by Orbea ambassador Mikel Azparren,  an ex-cyclist and trainer who has also ridden numerous long-distance challenges, yet another incentive to have trained with Bkool this week. Also this week, Mikel wants to share with all you Bkoolers his experience as a trainer to help you answer questions that all cyclists have, and to show you how to face all those challenges and competitions you’ve set for yourself, from the point of view of an expert trainer. Here’s the video of the Bkool Challenge that Mikel rode so you can learn from his performance, though he himself was surprised by the high level of the Bkoolers.

Tour of Qatar 2016- Stage 3 Bkool Challenge with Mikel Azparren 

What questions should you consider before preparing for your next challenge?

Reto Mikel

How do I plan my training?

Do I do 4, 5 or 6 weeks of long-distance rides?

How’s my strength training?

How do I build up endurance?

How can I improve my climbing?

How can I improve on the flats?

Do I change up my pace?

Do I rest once or twice a week?

When do I stop strength training?

Is the trainer good on an empty stomach?

Do I go out riding on an empty stomach?

Morning or afternoon sessions? Could I do them?

Do I go hiking or swimming?

Do I ride in a group or by myself?

Do I take supplements?

What do I have for breakfast?

What do I eat during the ride?

Are all those gels good for me?

Do I drink only water at the start or salts+water?

Do I go out if it rains?

Is my weight a big factor on a ride or race?

Can I put in some quality training at the start?

Mikel Azparren

These are just some of the questions that many cyclists ask themselves during the season. Not just beginners, but many who have been riding for years. I’m of the opinion that nothing’s written in stone and not everything works for everyone. But it’s obvious that it’s not a question of going nuts either. For most people, riding is a hobby, though as the months pass by, we all like to get a little better at it.

I’ll try to give my points of view on all these questions and many more. As an athlete and trainer, I’ll tell you that I really like to use logic, and especially to KNOW the person I’m training, their habits, personality, goals, etc.

Going back to the beginning, not everything works for everyone. It’s true that all pros use certain principles based on what they believe to be best for each individual. But those parameters, like everything else in life, are “standard” parameters that come from studying hundreds of people to yield an estimated and objective average, which is then applied to real-life practice.

But obviously, within that average there are extremes. The average of 1 and 3 is 2, but notice how far 1 is from 3. That’s why I always insist on not going overboard with data, even though it’s crucial for providing a baseline to work with. I say that because it’s a common mistake to be obsessed with workout zones, thresholds, watt/kilo ratios, etc.

Something else to keep in mind is the time you have available to ride, which is why it’s very important to consider three things when setting goals or targets:




Why dream goals? There are undoubtedly harder goals that will be more gratifying than previous goals and that will drive us even harder. With humility and objectivity, but with ambition. Ambition in sports isn’t bad at all if you realize that to reach the goal you’ll have to experience a lot of suffering that will make you stronger and more realistic. Real or realistic goals help keep you aiming for your dream goal without getting frustrated. If you achieve your dream in the end, great, you will have reached the end of the road. If not, you’ll have to decide whether to modify your dream or let it continue to guide you season after season.

For example, finishing a race in 6.15-6.30, but my dream is to finish it in 6.15.

Every week we’ll give you small tips on training and especially on how to schedule your weeks and months so you can even out your training load.

TAKE CARE!!!! Until the next training tips 



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