To kick off Cycling Week 2017 we are catching up with Cyclance Pro Cycling's Alison Tetrick, who recently was crowned Queen at the Dirty Kanza 200. Alison lives and trains in Southern California.
How did you get into cycling as a sport? I played NCAA tennis and after graduation, was still filling the competitive drive. I was working in a biochemistry research lab, and took up triathlon. My Grandfather, who is 86 and still races bikes, encouraged me to try out bike racing. We went to a race together, and even though the whole pack left before I was clipped in, I was hooked. It turns out cycling is in my blood.
Who has been your biggest inspiration or mentor during your bike racing career and why? Definitely my Grandpa. He has taught me that sport is ageless, and we can find challenge and humility through sports.
Cylance Pro Cycling has had an extremely successful women’s racing season. What’s your secret sauce? Cylance Pro Cycling's success is built on a great team of not necessarily all super stars, but together we are stronger than most and the brightest start out there. Team dynamics mean a lot when it comes to finding success, since only one person receives glory for winning the race, but it takes a whole team to get that person to the line. The team has a great ability to find balance through it all. We laugh, we have a lot of fun, and we are professionals and get the job done when it matters.
What are some personal highlights from the season that you are most proud of? I am most proud of winning the Dirty Kanza 200 a few weeks ago. It is this epic gravel race covering 206 miles of dirt in Kansas. It was a tight finish and I broke the course record by 30 minutes.
How do you think we get more young girls into sports? I think the most important thing for young girls, is just to get outside and get active. We can learn so much about ourselves in sports, when it is tennis or soccer or track. Follow your passion in sports and learning to work with a team, and be able to challenge yourself, all help you in the grand scheme of life.
What does a typical in-season week look like for you? I train about 20 hours a week on the bike and balance working in communications as well. I don't have that many hours in my day, but I make it work. I even went to grad school and worked full-time while racing. It is about balance and focused training. Do things that you love, but continue to invest in yourself.
How much do you train during the “off-season”? I love to run! I continue riding my bike if I want to and I do a lot of trail running. Running is so simple. Lace up your shoes and go!
What is the best workout and or tip you’d suggest to someone who wants to build their fitness, but doesn’t have a lot of time to ride each day? I think the trainer is a great way to get good fitness in an hour with concentrated efforts. Even if you just do 3x15 minutes of "tempo" in that hour, you can build a tremendous base!
When you are training, how do you take GLUKOS? When I am training hard, I use the energy drink and rely on the bars to get me through the day. If it is extra hot, I bring some of the gels along to help with additional fuel and hydration.
During a race, how do you take GLUKOS? When I race, I usually have both bottles of energy drink and only use the gels and gummies. I just like the simplicity of this product and quick absorption.
You recently had a bad crash while racing in Knoxville. (Get better soon!) Any tips on avoiding spills on the bike? Unfortunately, 2k to go to the finish, a couple of riders got their wheels caught in some seams in the road and went down right in front of me. It was a hard spill since I didn't have time to brake. Always look at your closest exit and stay in control of your front wheel. If you can own the "box" around you front wheel, you can stay safe.
Any big/important races left this season that we should stay tuned for? I think I will need to attend the Gravel World Championships!
Thank you Alison!