SMALL details that can make a BIG difference

Photo via Breakaway Training


by Felipe Loureiro

Over the years, as an athlete and a coach, something that always surprises me still to this day is how little attention is paid to little things that can really improve your performance and make your training a lot easier.

Here is my list:

1)   Tire Pressure: Typically a road bike “clincher” tire range is from 95psi to 105psi.  You should pump your tires every time before a ride, so having a good floor pump at home or in your car is key. Riding with low tire pressure can affect your ride in more ways that you can imagine:  it can cause you to crash since the handling and turn of your bike is not efficient, it will increase the chance of a flat tire, and will make you ride slower and harder.

2)   Running Shoe “Life”: Running in old or worn-out shoes is one of the most common causes of running injuries. How long can running shoes last?  It varies from runner to runner, but usually between 300 to 400 miles. Don’t wait until your running shoes are beat and too old change.  Sooner is always better than too late!

3)   Cycling Shorts “Quality”:  If you have been riding for quite some time, you know how important it is to have good cycling shorts.  It can be a game changer.  Spend a little extra on this department and your ride will be a lot more enjoyable. Padding is the number one factor in good cycling shorts.

4)   Bike Cleats: Bike cleats are a very important piece of equipment but receive very little attention. Periodically you should check the bottom of your cycling shoes and check the cleats.  You will know when is time for a new pair because they will be worn down. It is a very affordable and easy exchange but will make a big difference.

5)   Sunglasses:  Sunglasses are another essential item in a triathlete’s life. The lens can be darker, lighter, polarized, prescription, or clear... always make sure you are wearing a good pair during a workout, your eyes will appreciate it!

6)   Running and Cycling socks: How many times have you finished a long run or a hard bike ride with a bad blister? At least once! Choosing the best kind of socks is going to make a big difference.  Every athlete has a different preference (thicker, lighter, thinner, breathable, warmer) but once you find the one that works for you, make sure to stick with it!

If you take these small details into consideration with your training, you may find big improvements and success with the results!

Felipe Loureiro is a Triathlon Coach. He grew up in Brasil and has lived in San Diego for 16 years. Check his website at www.Breakaway-Training.com