Belgium World Cup 2023 Report!Barry Wilcox
I am writing this post a bit late but with excitement! After competing for almost 9 years I brought home my first world cup medal finishing 3rd in the time trial. A huge thanks to PossAbilities and Loma Linda University for helping me in this accomplishment! The weather was perfect at 69-70 degrees, just a bit of wind 7mph or so, and no rain. Racing in Belgium anytime before summer is like gambling with the weather. I think the combination of my newly modified grips, training, nutrition, rest, and mindset were all contributing factors to my performance. I even got 4th in the road race. I typically got beat by minutes to 3rd place, like 3 or 4, in the time trial. In the road race I would get beat by even more time. My top finishing performance previously was 7th place. This is HUGE as my former national team coach, and Tour de France competitor, said in a response to my Facebook post on the matter. I tell my students that accomplishing/reaching goals is empowering. It gives you a taste of what your capable of doing.
I have been training like a time trialist for the past few months. The reason I have been doing this is because the time trial is what carries the most emphasis on being selected to future events, in addition to results and upwards progress. So, maximizing sustained power for 40-50 minutes with training and equipment has been the focus. My grip is very weak as a quadriplegic. I actually have no grip at all. I did have a tendon transfer after my accident giving me about ten pounds of a modified grip, but it is not helpful for grasping hand pedals on a handcycle. The custom carbon grips I have had got modified to help me maximize power, a wider crank set up, little to curve in my upper back, and plenty of intervals 1 – 2 times a week, and training with people that are much stronger than I am helped so much. Now, just to continue these performances into the next 1.5 months. World cup 3 is coming in less than 3 weeks to Huntsville, AL, and the world championship time trial for selection to the world championships. I need to stay humble, keep my training focus, and avoid activities that provide no benefit to my training or goals.
Other than racing I am submitting grades this evening for the spring semester. School is over until August where I will continue teaching again with a new sports medicine class. Sports medicine was one of my bachelor’s degrees and a subject I exceled in. I will report back to you all after the Huntsville world cup event.