4. Getting too aggressive, too fast. Even if your long ride / big event is just a ride with friends, competitiveness can take over and with that a desire to make your bike as aggressive as possible! This is never a good idea. As with any change to your bike position it can take a while to get used to but even more so when you are trying to make things more aggressive. The more aggressive a position, the more core engagement and flexibility often required. It can take a long time to build this and if you don’t have it then you are unlikely to be able to hold your new position throughout the duration of your long ride. This may lead to you having to take more regular breaks than planned or to sit in a more upright position (i.e., hold the base bar as opposed to the tempo sticks). It is often better for longer events to opt for some middle ground, riding comfortably often means getting to the end faster!
5. Poor bike choice. Poor bike choice links back to the above point we made regarding trying to ride a position that is too aggressive. We all know that aero frames look super cool. Even their name insinuates that they will be faster, but this is not always the case. The saddle to bar drop on aero frames is often much greater than that for endurance frames (again this requires higher levels of core engagement and flexibility). Hence, you may actually complete your long ride faster and in less discomfort on an endurance as opposed to aero road frame.
6. Not fuelling correctly. You may be wondering how nutrition and fuelling links to Bike Fit but we often get asked about where to mount hydration systems and bento boxes in order to optimise aerodynamics. However, aerodynamics is not everything! When riding longer events many cyclists / triathletes mount their drinks behind their saddle or store their gels in their jersey pockets. This is great for aerodynamics but for some, with less flexibility, the drinks / gels may not be accessible – the rider may not be able to reach! If this is something you struggle with you may want to think of mounting your hydration system between your handlebars and bento box on your top tube. Alternatively, you could try out the below exercises to improve shoulder flexibility*.