It’s been a long wait for Shaun Morelli – but after five years, the two-time Paralympic champion is set to return to the world’s biggest sporting stage.
After a 12-month delay to the Paralympics, the 2016 double champion will look to defend her road time trial and track individual pursuit titles in Japan.
The 12-time world champion has made the most of the extra year of preparation and heads to the games in terrific form. Shawn has been using the Verve InfoCrank throughout her training, to give her the edge ahead of competition in Tokyo. She took some time out before heading to Japan to share her top tips for the time trial.
- Prepare: This is a process that starts a week or more before the race, reviewing maps of the course, eating carbs and other good quality food. Take out as many of the unknowns as possible as early as possible.
- Train the TT: You muse get your body used to the position. It is very different from my road bike and takes a few rides to get used to it. so, my first couple of rides on the TT bike will not be as good, but the more I train for the TT the better each ride gets. The more you do something the better you get at it.
- Have a goal: Training just to train sucks, you must have a goal. Time trialling is hard and it’s even harder to force yourself to train for it if there is no specific goal. So, a race or something that you want to excel at is important. It also helps to have intermediate goals so you can see the improvement. This makes it easier to train.
4. Be confident: Be confident in your training, be confident in your coaching team that they have trained you to reach your goal, be confident in your ability. Confidence is vital.
5. Take care of your equipment: At this level everything you do or don’t do matters. Have good kit, wheels, tires, bike and helmet. Know your gearing for the course. Time trialling is more than just speed and power – your equipment selection is also very important.
6. Have a plan and stick to it: Practice your pacing, I do numerous workouts where we practice my TT pace. If I cannot keep the proper pace, the race becomes that much harder. So have a plan, a pace and stick to it.
7. Pin the number correctly: some may not think this is important and maybe it’s not, but I feel it is a must. I must wiggle into my skin suit then have the number pinned. Otherwise, you risk damaging the suit. Marginal gains!
8. Race day: Depending on if I race in the morning or afternoon, I have a standard morning and afternoon timeline. Morning, I eat three hours before I race, I have coffee, and I will have a snack and relax and then leave for the race. If I race in the afternoon, I will still wake up early, eat, do a spin, eat, nap, eat and then go to the race. I never eat anything new in the lead into a race especially the morning of a race.