by Coach John Hughes
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If you follow the Tour de France and the other pro races, it’s obvious that the pros are light years better than us recreational roadies. But why?
For starters, the pros are almost all in their 20s and 30s. Moreover, they picked better parents than us. Because of their genetics they have a high VO2 max and a higher percentage of fast-twitch muscles. Fast-twitch muscles are the ones that provide high power. The pros may also have small body frames and have deliberately gotten as lean as possible.
They train and recover full-time, putting in thousands more miles than you and I each year. They have full support teams: team director, personal coach, nutritionist, physician, masseuse, etc. They get their equipment for free and have team mechanics to set up and maintain their bikes.
You and I can’t possibly match these attributes and benefits. The pros also have the advantage of decades of experience and tutelage. Almost all of them started racing when they were in their teens. They raced with older teammates who shared the wisdom of the road. The team directors and coaches are all former racers, as well.
You’ll never match their genetics and advantages. But you, too, can learn from the pros’ cumulative expertise. You can’t change your age or body type— but you can
change how you use your riding time! You can do this by implementing some or all of the tips from 35 pros that I’ve gathered on how to become a better rider.