Friday, May 29, 2015

Velodreaming: Track Cycling Weekend at the Cleveland Velodrome

Beth (Newell) Hernandez - photo copyright Laura Webb 2015
The Cleveland Velodrome held a Women's Track Cycling Clinic last weekend. The two-day event was hosted Beth (Newell) Hernandez,  U.S. National Track Team star heading toward the 2016 Olympics, and her husband/coach, Michael Hernandez.

17 attendees, representing local teams as well as out-of-town/state cyclists, participated in track training drills, speedy pace lines, and practice races. There were also plenty of off-the-bike activities: yoga for cyclists, nutrition discussions, Q&A with Beth and Michael about how to incorporate track cycling into training plans.

For me, this was the perfect way to jumpstart my enthusiasm for velodrome cycling. Lots of my cycling friends haven't tried it yet. Some have tried it and found that it was not for them. My take-away from this weekend is that track cycling can be one of the most efficient ways to build speed and power on the bike - for road racing, TTs, crits - even if I may never race on the track. But maybe I will.

I'm hoping to get more of my cycling friends and teammates to come out to the Cleveland Velodrome this year. See what it's all about, maybe give it another chance. I've learned some things from Michael about how to reduce the risk - and the fear - around track cycling. I've even set up a few dates for WOMEN ONLY to come to the track for some testosterone-free training and no-pressure riding*.

Because how cool would it be to see this many women at the track on a regular basis? Pretty freakin' cool...

*June 10July 15, Aug 19, and Sept 9. Check the Velodrome website for details and to sign up (it's free!)
This was about as close as I got to hanging with Beth at the track

All of us lined up along the turns

Hanging around the infield, waiting to ride

Michael Hernandez - photo copyright Laura Webb, 2015

4-person paceline drills

All attendees lining up along Turns 1 & 2. That's a 50 degree banked turn!

Kristen, Kelly, Beth, and me
Let's do this again!

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