At the end of every year, the dinner party chatter and social media feeds of clubs are packed with riders’ declarations of targets for the following year. We’ve all had a target that we’d like to achieve, from the first-time century riders to the cyclists keen to see a speed improvement over a given distance, or to move up a race category.
Often, we look at our equipment to see where we can make the gains. And, to a great extent, rightly so. A lighter groupset with sharper shifting and better braking will inevitably have an impact on your overall speed and efficiency, as will a wheelset or whole bike upgrade from your current “bucket of bolts” to a slick and race-ready road-conquering machine.
In one respect or another, humans are target-driven, so having the equipment you think will help you to achieve those targets is likely to be both a tangible physical and mental benefit to the average rider. However, kit upgrades will only get you so far before either your physical ability, or the flexibility of your wallet, reaches their limits.
So what about another investment? Could an investment in yourself and your ability be the most productive way to achieve your goals in 2017, by hiring the services of a coach to help you maximise your riding potential? We got in touch with two coaches to find out their candid answers, and it’s not as clear-cut – or obvious – as you may think.