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Coach Robb

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About Coach Robb

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    TT Health & Fitness Expert

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    Florida
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    Motorcycles have been my passion since 1978. I enjoy helping riders of all ages and abilities no matter what type of riding they enjoy. Please feel free to ask any question about nutrition, hydration, strength, endurance, flexibility or sports psychology relevant to riding! I look forward to answering all of your questions.

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  1. The mindset of “No Pain, No Gain” is frequently found with athletes and racers who train too hard and/or too long and find themselves actually getting slower, frequently injured and experience feeling of burn out (tired, not interested in riding, suppressed appetite, etc.). By breaking down the year into specific training “cycles”, the body is provided the correct combination of work and rest which creates a faster and stronger racer. Once this delicate balance is obtained, and speeds are improving on the track, racers now have to endure something called “Pain or discomfort” to break through to new levels of speed consistently. Humans by nature will take the pass of least resistance when it comes to survival; however, when you look at past champions (at any level of racing), they have learned how to deal with pain and discomfort as they address any physical limitations keeping them from being dominate. For example, many people think that Adam Cianciarulo is fast because of his motors and suspension; however, I can tell you that when I was working with Adam Cianciarulo (Note: I lost working with him due to his professional contract with Pro Circuit) he is one of the most dedicated and hardest working racers I have ever had the privilege of working with. During my time with AC, he had Zack Freeburg living & training with him and AC would literally look at Zack and tell him “you might as well quit, because I won’t” and guess what, he didn’t. Ten years later, AC’s hard work, dedication and acclimation to pain and discomfort is what makes him the future of our sport (not that the bike Mitch has built for him is slowing him down at all!). In addition to developing your strength, endurance & sprint speed, you must be able to handle though times in racing when racing simply hurt, it is the single limiting factor on race day. It is what happens within your mind when you face pain and your body begins to rebel and your mind wanders into the area of self doubt and insecurity that will dictate just how fast and how well you will race. Let’s take a look at a few things you can do to improve your “pain tolerance”. Here are 7 Rules for an improving your pain tolerance: Rule #1: Identify your Goals & Objectives When the training and racing becomes difficult it is easy to become mentally distracted by the pain and ultimately become afraid or intimidated to continue. With all of our riders, we have them establish 3, 6 and 12-month goals, and then outline 3-5 objectives that must be completed to make the overall goal a reality. The most difficult part of this exercise is that many people say that they want to be successful, but fail to identify what work needs to be done to make the goal a reality. For example, a goal like “I want to be fast” is not measureable. Saying that you want to “Increase my consistency to 1 second over a 10-lap race” is measurable and trainable. If you haven’t received my MotoE Goals & Objectives module, please email me directly. Rule #2: Identify your Physical Limiters by testing yourself every 5 to 6 weeks The best athletes & racers test themselves regularly to evaluate what their physical & mental weaknesses are (both on and off of the track). If you are not good at opening lap sprinting (i.e. you come on strong the second half of the moto) you probably don’t complete many interval workouts on the Concept 2 Rower or 2 lap sprints at the track. Why: because you don’t like them! However, the quickest way to improve your sprint speed is to train the energy system specific to sprinting (i.e. lactate tolerance). By testing yourself every 5 – 6 weeks (depending on the time of the season), both on and off the track, you are able to evaluate if what you have been doing over the last four to five weeks is actually moving you closer to your overall goals (see above). Though this sounds obvious, think about when you last tested your sprint speed, muscular endurance, strength levels, flexibility and sweat rate? If you would like a testing assessment (both on and off of the track) for all of these performance variables, please email me directly. Rule #3: Train to remove your Physical Limiters After you identify your physical limiters (see Rule #2), each workout needs to address your physical limiter. As mentioned in Rule #1, as humans, we train what we are good at and avoid what we don’t like (and not good at). Too frequently I see dedicated riders heading to the track, gym, jumping on a Concept 2 rower or the open road on their road bike without any focus; if you don’t begin a workout with a specific mental focus on the physical change associated with the workout (i.e. improved sprint speed, enhanced endurance or consistency); you miss the opportunity to eliminate the gap between your mental goals and your physical ability. Rule #4: Build Pain Tolerance with Difficult Workouts When building workouts for my clients, every 10 days I introduce a workout that is not only difficult, but also, scary! These key workouts are designed to be more difficult than an actual race (both in duration and intensity). By learning how to adapt and overcome pain and discomfort translates into race day confidence knowing that the race is actually “easier” than training during the week. For example, with our riders I will ask them what kind of conditions do they hate riding in: dry and blue groove or wet and sloppy? If they say that they hate dry and blue groove, we go out of our way to find tracks to ride that force the rider to “learn to adapt” to the skills necessary to ride dry, blue groove tracks. Though it isn’t always convenient, it built both the physical skill set along with the mental confidence knowing that there isn’t a condition that the rider can’t ride well in. Rule #5: Create Race Day Simulation Again, this rule is a little difficult to implement, but yields huge dividends on race day. By identifying the specific aspects of the race that are mentally and physically demanding, you will become more familiar of what you need to put in place to address an distressing situations (upset stomach, riding tight, etc.). As you begin to eliminate the negative effects with a specific plan, you have a “blueprint” that you can implement the morning of high priority races to race to your fullest potential. Within our MotoE Mental Blueprint Program, we refer to this as the familiarity principle where your race day strategy has been tried and proven to create the desired results on race day - this eliminates the situation where one race goes well and another goes less than ideal. Rule #6: Train & Race Prepared In addition to starting each workout understanding the purpose of the workout and the physical limiter that is being addressed, maximize your training efforts by being well hydrated, fed, and rested (as indicated by your resting heart rate). When you bring all of these elements into a workout, you are now in a position to elevate your intensity, push your duration and the mental focus to implement the skills and drills to handle higher rates of speed. Think about the first time you were able to clear an intimidating double or blitz the whoops in third gear, completing the challenge the first time was intimidating, but trying it a second time is even more intimidating. If you are tired, hungry and thirsty, your chances of success are minimal. If you are still struggling with what to eat and how much to drink, please email me directly. and I will send you some tools to eliminate the guess work. Rule #7: Learn From Every Race After a high-quality training session or race, sit down with a blank piece of paper and outline the race in three steps. Step 1: What went well and why? Step 2: What didn’t go well and why? Step 3: Of the elements that didn’t go well, what can you control, what can’t you control? Reviewing step three is where you have the opportunity to “learn” from your weekend. For example, you may note that it wasn’t a good race because it rained. You can’t control the rain; however, you can train in wet and muddy conditions to improve both your skills and confidence. If you didn’t like a particular element of the track, say deep ruts, you now realize what you should be working on the next time you head to the track – deep ruts. By improving your skills associated with deep ruts, eliminates the self-inflicted pain and intimidation of deep ruts which results in faster lap times. Though it may sound like a cliché, I preach to my riders all the time – Work Smart, Not Hard! If you have any questions or need anything clarified, please feel free to email me directly at Robb@CoachRobb.com.
  2. The best way to boost your testosterone is to implement strength training and eat real, raw food. I am not a big fan of synthetic forms of anything; however, it is sometimes necessary - hence the suggestions of doctors to help make things better. I prefer food and exercise to keep things healthy. Please let me know if you have any questions or need anything clarified. -Coach Robb
  3. It has been a few years now since Lance Armstrong appeared on TV and admitted to his, and his teams, use of performance enhancing drugs (PEDS). To say that there was an awareness of PEDS influencing the race results of the Tour de France is an understatement; however, to the extent that past racers and champions have admitted to using PEDS (both regarding the type and amounts) is frightening. In this article, I thought I would provide a recap of the most popular PEDS and how you can get the same performance results in a healthy and natural way. Note: Your body produces these substances naturally in the body, the key to optimum health and performance is to maintain a high quality & quantity of healthy blood through clean eating and controlled training efforts (volume, intensity and frequency). Drug: Erythropoietin (pronounced, ah-rith-ro-poy-tin, and abbreviated, EPO) What EPO Does Within the Body Erythropoietin (pronounced, ah-rith-ro-poy-tin, and abbreviated, EPO) is a relatively recent entry into the deceitful pursuit of glory. EPO is a protein hormone produced by the kidney. After being released into the blood stream it binds with receptors in the bone marrow, where it stimulates the production of red blood cells (erythrocytes). Medically, EPO is used to treat certain forms of anemia (e.g., due to chronic kidney failure). Logically, since EPO accelerates erythrocyte production it also increases oxygen carrying capacity. Side Effects of EPO: Death In the 1990s, there was a spate of sudden deaths associated within the cycling world associated with EPO: Marco Ceriani (16 years old), Johan Sermon (21 YO), Fabrice Salanson (23 YO), Marco Rusconi (24 YO), Jose Maria Jimenez (32), Denis Zanette (32 YO), Marco Pantani (34 YO), Michel Zanoli (35 YO). This negative publicity was at least part of the reason for the clamping down on EPO use, which was rampant at the time. The reason that EPO, and transfusion blood doping, is dangerous is because of increased blood viscosity. Basically, whole blood consists of red blood cells and plasma (water, proteins, etc.). The percentage of whole blood that is occupied by the red blood cells is referred to as, the hematocrit. A low hematocrit means dilute (thin) blood, and a high hematocrit mean concentrated (thick) blood. Above a certain hematocrit level whole blood can sludge and clog capillaries. If this happens in the brain it results in a stroke. In the heart, a heart attack. Unfortunately, this has happened to several elite athletes who have used EPO. EPO use is especially dangerous to athletes who exercise over prolonged periods. A well-conditioned endurance athlete is more dehydration resistant than a sedentary individual. The body accomplishes this by several methods, but one key component is to “hold on” to more water at rest. Circulating whole blood is one location in which this occurs and, thus, can function as a water reservoir. During demanding exercise, as fluid losses mount, water is shifted out of the blood stream (hematocrit rises). If one is already starting with an artificially elevated hematocrit then you can begin to see the problem -- it is a short trip to the critical “sludge zone”. Additional dangers of EPO include sudden death during sleep, which has killed approximately 18 pro cyclists in the past fifteen years, and the development of antibodies directed against EPO. In this later circumstance, the individual develops anemia as a result of the body’s reaction against repeated EPO injections. There are some other reasons why cyclists might be predisposed to sudden death - riding at high intensities when carrying viral infections (as pro athletes tend to do) is one of them. And, as Ryan Shay, and a number of other high-profile cases have shown recently, sudden death is a tragic, but not completely uncommon event. There are reports that Nolf’s cardiogram was normal, but even that are not a guarantee of health, because those tests can often miss the quite rare conditions that cause sudden death in athletes. Source: click here How to improve the quality & production of red blood cells naturally With a balanced diet of fresh fruits, vegetables and lean protein sources, your body will produce the blood chemistry necessary to perform at an elite level. Determining the optimal amount of protein, carbohydrates and fats that an individual need for optimal health and performance is beyond the scope of this article; however, I want you to know how to create healthy red blood cells. Natural Eating Solution: eat high quality protein along with high quality brown bread with real butter. The protein will provide your body with iron (helps form hemoglobin which carries oxygen in the bloodstream from the lungs to the muscles & brain) and the brown bread will provide you B vitamins (also referred to as Energy Vitamins). An additional benefit of eating protein and brown bread is that the bread with improve your absorption of the iron. Drug: Human Growth Hormone (hGH) What HGH Does Within the Body hGH is stored in a pea sized ball called the pituitary gland and is the primary stimulus to muscle & muscle strength, bone growth & bone strength, tendon growth & tendon strength, injury repair and mobilization of body fat for use as energy. Warning: this gets technical, but necessary to fully understand this process. The key to overall health and performance is to stimulate your own production of growth hormone and you accomplish this by stimulating the pituitary gland correctly. The pituitary is stimulated to release growth hormone by another hormone circulation in the brain called somatocrinin. Levels of somatocrinin can be increased by increasing levels of brain neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters are the chemicals that carry information from one nerve to another. Their activity constitutes your mind, your consciousness and dreams. To increase neurotransmitters, you have to get the amino acids that influence them past what is called the blood-brain barrier. This concept is beyond the scope of this article, but what needs to be discussed here is an amino acid, Tryptophan, which is a precursor of the neurotransmitter serotonin. Serotonin is a compound that slows down brain activity during rest & sleep. Shortly after you fall asleep, your pituitary gland releases a burst of growth hormone. Source: Optimum Sports Nutrition, Dr. Michael Colgan. Side Effects of Synthetic hGH External side effects of synthetic hGH include: intense wrist nerve pain, diabetes, overgrowth of the facial bones, gaps between the teeth as the jawbone widens, development of a fatter nose, thickened bone above the eyes resembling an ape and excessive hair growth. Internal side effects include stressed liver, thyroid & pancreas symptoms, diabetes and historically die prior to the age of 60. How to improve the production of hGH naturally As mentioned above, the largest growth homone release occurs 30-60 minutes after falling asleep along with high intensity exercise (within moderate volume levels). To take advantage of these normal physiological functions, racers need to increase the duration and quality of sleep and monitor exercise durations and intensity levels. Ideally, racers should train twice daily, mid morning and early afternoon and take a nap immediately after training. Remember, each time you rest, your body receives a burst of growth hormone naturally. Natural Eating Solution: consume a high-quality smoothie that contains a high quality whey protein prior to sleeping and napping. Research has shown that the production of hGH can improve by up to 300% when high quality whey protein is consumed before resting. Drug: Testosterone What Testosterone Does Within the Body Testosterone has two distinct modes of action, androgenic (masculinizing) and anabolic (tissue building). Up to a certain level of testosterone in your body, a level that varies widely with biochemical individuality, the androgenic action produces more maleness, broader features, more hair, deeper voice, and larger sex organs. Along with it, the anabolic action produces larger muscles and greater strength. Side Effects of Synthetic or Excessive Testosterone If you take synthetic or excessive testosterone, the androgenic action turns nasty (aggression, violent anxiety, paranoia, and manic-depressive reactions). Additional negative side effects are irreversible baldness, overgrowth of the prostate, (which chokes the bladder and requires a catheter in order to urinate), acne (the blood fails to contain the excess hormone and overloads the sebaceous glands), impotence, shrinkage of testicles, cardiovascular disease and cancer. How to improve the production of testosterone naturally Sleep 8-10 hours; eat high quality fruits, vegetables and high-quality protein. Control your exercise intensity & volume to avoid over stressing your body. Natural Eating Solution: eat foods that are high in boron, zinc, vitamin C, branched chain amino acids and maximize the release of growth hormone. If you have any questions, comments, or suggestion for a future article, hit me up on the comments section below. I enjoy hearing from you. Oh, and don't forget to tap that "Follow" button so that you're notified when I post new tips on reaching your highest potential. Coach Robb Beams Complete Racing Solutions
  4. Hi coach Rob, I had a crash twisting my knee (over rotating) .Seen a dr as its just not right he says its a torn miniscus ,but does'nt know how bad without me having an MRI scan ! Is that normal ,will it heal itself ? He also says after the MRI he will know if i need an operation or just treatment !!Sound right? I can do most things but if i catch it wrong it hurts but does'nt swell up.Lastly he said NO cycling ,running ,swimming etc .I trained all winter and have missed a race already can i keep riding and live with the pain until the end of my race calender ?Thanks for any light you can shed on this it feels like a little injury but the dr has worried mr a little ..

  5. Tbahr-thanks for reading and commenting! You are exactly correct - managing your energy expenditure is a key ingredient to not overheating. If you have read any of my articles, you know that I am an advocate for the HR monitor to keep an accurate assessment of how hard the body is working to ride and manage heat. I really like the idea of having your hydration pack to tap into. I have my riders freeze the hydration pack - half full and then the morning of the ride, put cold water in. This serves to keep the core body temp down as long as possible and provide you the coldest fluids possible when you hydrate. Thanks again for reading and let me know if I can help your riding fitness, nutrition or hydration in any way. -Coach Robb
  6. Months of training can quickly be erased if an athlete is not properly prepared for the expected weather conditions on race day. Since few of us have the luxury of putting our jobs and lives on hold and traveling to our key event four weeks early to acclimate, here are 10 key things that will help you endure the heat and realize your full potential on race day. 1. Boost Your Fitness The best performances in the heat tend to come from the athletes with the best fitness. The effects of the heat are exponentially multiplied when an athlete's physiology is already struggling with the workload. Even under the best conditions, heat production in the muscles increases with the intensity of activity. Arriving at the starting line in a state of peak fitness will not only set you up for maximum performance, but it will also enable you to manage heat stress better through greater efficiency (hence less heat produced at any given pace) and high blood plasma volume (hence a greater ability to transport heat away from the muscles). These factors lead to a lower core temperature, thus minimizing heat stress and discomfort. 2. Acclimatize One of the best ways to acclimatize is to travel to your race location well in advance of your event. But this involves added expense and time away. Fortunately, you can acclimatize to almost any environment from your home. Start at least three weeks before your race by doing regular 60- to 90-minute indoor sessions of cycling, running, elliptical or Concept 2 rower at a low to moderate effort. Turn up the heat, limit the airflow and, if possible, add a humidifier. This will elevate your core temperature, resulting in an increased sweat and heart rate. Do this for five consecutive days, then, over the course of the next two weeks, be sure to repeat the session for at least 30 minutes, twice per week. The results of heat acclimation seem to be cumulative, so if you have the opportunity to train in the heat earlier in the year at home, at another hot venue or at your race site, it should help you in the long term. 3. Determine Your Sweat Rate Calculating your sweat rate is the most effective method of determining how much fluid you are losing and need to replenish. You may find that your sweat rate is different depending upon the discipline, effort level and environmental conditions. You should try to simulate the environmental conditions of your key race and your race effort. In order to determine your sweat rate, weigh yourself without clothes before and immediately after exercise and account for any fluid consumed. An accurate scale will be required, and you will need to avoid going to the toilet until the measuring is completed. 4. Hydrate Body fluids such as blood are made up of mostly water and electrolytes. Muscle is comprised of 75 percent water; therefore, it should come as no surprise that a loss of two to three percent of bodyweight due to sweating can significantly reduce athletic performance. It has been well demonstrated that athletes, when training or racing, only replace about 50 percent of fluid losses; thus, despite our best efforts, slight dehydration is unavoidable in some circumstances. To ensure you are well hydrated before an event, drink 10 to 25 ounces (250 to 750ml) of Nutritionally Green’s Energy Fuel (which I helped develop) and/or water two to three hours before the event. One hour before exercise, drink 10 to 18 ounces (250 to 500ml) of water, then do not drink again until after you visit the toilet 10 to 15 minutes before start time. Finally, consume another 8 to 10 ounces (250ml) of water, which will be absorbed as you start your effort and will never reach the bladder. During the race, aim to consume eight to 10 ounces (200 to 250ml) of Energy Fuel (which contains electrolytes) every 15 to 20 minutes. 5. Always Include Electrolytes Salt is comprised of sodium and chloride, also known as electrolytes. Electrolytes help in the absorption and retention of water. As the duration of exercise extends beyond one hour, electrolyte replacement becomes increasingly important. If you notice salt on your clothing after workouts you are probably a "salty sweater" and should pay careful attention to electrolyte intake. If you are heading into a hot race, eat saltier foods the week before the race and add additional salt to your meals (after receiving prior approval from your doctor). Salt pills can also be used during the race. 6. Up Your Carbs Hot conditions tend to increase the body's need for fuel. The amount needed will vary with size of the athlete, but generally speaking you should aim for a minimum of 300 calories and 70 grams of carbs per hour. 7. Make a Plan The best way to incorporate your hydration, nutrition and electrolyte consumption into a sensible routine is to make a plan. You may want to have a plan for different scenarios based on different environmental conditions. Practice these plans in training. Below is a sample plan. 8. Wear Cool Clothing Light colors will enable an athlete to remain cooler than if he or she chose dark clothing. In addition, a looser fit and lighter fabric increases air circulation and helps to wick sweat away from the body. Wet clothing actually speeds up evaporation, cooling the athlete more quickly than if he or she were to change into dry clothes. 9. Develop Cooling Strategies Remember that it is better for cooling to put a fluid in you than on you, but ideally you can do both. External cooling can be achieved by using cold water, ice or sponges in critical areas such as the back of the head, neck and chest. In very humid conditions you may want to wipe the sweat off because the air is too saturated to do the job for you. Sunglasses can ease stress on the eyes. 10. Rehydrate and Recover Effective recovery will help you become faster and stronger as your body adapts and super-compensates. Within the first 20 minutes after exercise, rehydrate with at least two to three cups of Energy Fuel for every pound of body weight lost. Lower your body temperature as soon as possible by moving to a cooler area out of the sun with access to water and ice. It is also important to replace your glucose stores with easily digestible foods, such as fruit. Try to get a full meal including complex carbohydrates and proteins within two to three hours following the activity. Following these guidelines will maximize your performance in the heat. Remember to keep cool, get the calories you need and keep hydrating. It will take some effort, but the results are well worth it. If you have any questions or need anything clarified, please don’t hesitate to drop me an email (Robb@CoachRobb.com). Yours in sport and health, Coach Robb Beams http://www.completeracingsolutions.com/ Follow my blog on TT, "Speed Through Fitness"
  7. The key to maximizing your productivity within your workouts is to be hitting the exact duration and intensity levels necessary to address your identified weaknesses. Each workout’s elements (duration and intensity) are created to stress the body in a manner that creates a stimulation at the hormonal (aka human growth hormone), the aerobic (larger oxygen uptake) and muscular level (development of new muscle) resulting in faster speed and enhanced endurance in a shorter period of time. Please keep in mind that if you push beyond the necessary duration and/or intensity levels, you are pushing the body into a zone that can become counterproductive and negatively affect your speed and endurance – this fine line is the difference between being fit & razor sharp or being over trained, fatigued, sick and/or injuried. Also, by keeping a close eye on your resting heart rate and your body weight in the morning (utilize the Body Analysis spreadsheet – email me), you have two of the key indicators to evaluate how your body is adapting to stress of training on a daily basis. By keeping detailed logs of your food & body analysis information, you are able to adjust your training & eating habits to turn the body from a catabolic (tear down mode) to an anabolic mode (growth and improvement). It cannot be emphasized enough the impact your eating and sleeping habits have to your health, wellness and ultimately your performance results. Finally, if logistically possible, please set up an appointment with your physician and have your blood drawn (request a full panel) so that your physician can review the health of your blood chemistry. By reviewing your blood panel every 12 weeks, we can evaluate the effectiveness of your training, eating and sleeping patterns. If any of these three variables become out of balance, you run the risk of becoming over-trained and the associated side effects: fatigue, decreased speed & endurance, irritability, depression, etc. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email me! Remember, Work Smart, Not Hard! Yours in sport & health, -Coach Robb, Coaches and Staff
  8. fitness

    Bryan, Thank you for your comment, and I apologize for the delay getting back to your question. CLICK HERE to watch a short video that I put together a few years back about what contrast therapy is as well as how to implement correctly. Please drop me a message if you have any questions or need anything clarified. -Coach Robb
  9. 5 Top Tips for Eating Healthy on a Budget

    Although you know good nutrition is like quality fuel for your car, spending a few extra dollars for high quality fruits and vegetables can be a difficult habit to adopt.  These 5 tips can help meet the needs of both your body & your budget.

    1. Understand & Prioritize Nutrition

    How important is good nutrition to your health & performance? Answering these questions will help you determine how much money you are willing to invest in your food on a weekly basis. As athletes, there are many places to spend money: equipment, massage therapy, etc; however, where you spend your money is based on your priorities. Once you decide that your health & performance are worth investing in, you’re buying and eating habits will change accordingly. 

    2. Purchase, Prep & Store Your Food

    Set your weekly schedule so that you visit the grocery store on specific days: ideally Tuesday and Friday.  Block out time in your personal schedule to wash, dice and package your food into Tupperware or baggies. Write the specific day and whether it is breakfast, lunch or dinner on each package and store in your freezer or refrigerator.  The convenience of grab and go packages will increase your intake of high quality fruits and vegetables by 100%.  It is rarely the lack of desire to eat healthy, but rather convenience that drives you to fast food. 

    3. Eat your Food  

    You have taken the time to purchase & prep your food, now you have to sit down and eat the food!  Just like the time that you carved out of your schedule to purchase and prepare your food, you now need to block out time to sit down and consume your food.  Digestion begins inside your mouth.  By sitting down and avoiding any distractions (TV, iPhone, computer, etc.) you will chew your food more completely making digestion easier inside your stomach which results in higher absorption of nutrients and water in a shorter period of time (because the food pieces are smaller and easier to break down).  

    3. Avoid Fast Food

    You have been lead to believe that the dollar menu at a fast food chain is “cheap” eating.  Well the marketing is both right and wrong.  The food is cheap when you look at the quality – some fast food restaurants use meat quality that is so low, it literally says “Safe for human consumption on the boxes”.  However, it is NOT cheap when you add up all the add on features to a combo meal, on average you spend nearly five ($5.00) dollars per person every time you run through the fast through line and what you purchased is gone in ten minutes or less.  If you headed to your grocery store and purchased $5.00 worth of fruits and/or vegetables, you will be consuming both a high-quality food item along with purchasing a lot more food.  Now when you spend $5.00, you are getting both “good food” and “good quality” for the same $5.00 that can last you through two or more meals. 

    4. Learn to Read Labels

    There’s nothing frustrating than finding out that you’ve been spending your money on high quality fruits and vegetables that you thought were healthy, only to find out that they are not. Many labels use terms like natural, raw, and whole wheat; however, they are not regulated and can be used to sell products at a higher price. By reading labels you can determine which foods live up to their labels and which are just clever marketing.   

    5. Don’t Shop Hungry & Without a List

    When your blood sugar is low (i.e. hungry), your ability to make rational decisions is gone.  When you shop in this mental state, you are more likely to purchase items you normally wouldn’t (or shouldn’t) resulting in a higher food bill with lower quality.  While shopping with a full stomach of high quality fruits, vegetables and low fat protein while purchasing ONLY the items on your shopping list will result in a lower food bill at the checkout register.  When you get home, your refrigerator is stocked with exactly what you need to prepare your high-quality meals and snacks. 

    -Coach Robb

     

     

    Eating on a Budget.jpg

  10. Between riders riding and racing every weekend, a frequent question is how to recover properly. If you have followed me for any period of time, you know that I am an advocate for one day of rest per week and to pull back the overall volume and intensity every six weeks to allow your body to rejuvenate both mentally and physically (at a blood chemistry level). What does that look like? 1. Rest Means Rest: this is not the day to go to a theme park,run errands that have you outside and in the heat and humidity, etc. Anything that is stressful on your body should be avoided. Note doing a sport specific event “easy” is not the idea of a rest day. Instead schedule a massage, read a book, go to a movie or go to lunch with an old friend. 2. Take a Nap: when your body gets into REM (rapid eye movement) level 3, it releases hGH (human growth hormone) which make you both lean and facilitates recovery. Make the room dark and cold, eat a quality snack and consume 5-8 ounces of cold water prior to lying down. 3. Contrast Therapy: the goal here is to expose the muscle tissue to the largest temperature deviation that you can tolerate; the bigger the temperature spread between hot and cold the better. If you complete in the shower, strive for 2 minutes hot – 30 seconds cold. If you utilize a bath, strive for 4 minutes hot, 1 minute cold). Repeat 2 to 4 times. 4. Loosen your muscles up: go for a therapeutic massage or take a yoga class the night prior to your rest day. Spend 20 minutes both in the morning and the evening foam rolling and working on trigger points. Gotta' slow down sometimes to go fast! If you have any questions, comments, or suggestion for a future article, hit me up on the comments section below. I enjoy hearing from you. Oh, and don't forget to tap that "Follow" button so that you're notified when I post new tips on reaching your highest potential. Coach Robb Beams Complete Racing Solutions About Coach Robb
  11. Before we review the five most common mistake that a rider needs to avoid, let’s take a brief look at the physiological demands put on a rider during riding and racing. First, a rider has to “teach” the body to conserve glycogen and burn fatty acids as a primary fuel source. Note, the higher the riding intensity level, the more glycogen (aka stored carbohydrates) your body burns. The downside to higher intensity and the utilization of stored glycogen, is that your body only stores about 60-80 minutes of glycogen within the muscles – not enough to finish strong, hence the need to prepare and train properly (which will be outlined below). With this in mind, it is imperative that the racer focus on maximizing his or her aerobic capacity, both on and off of the motorcycle. When this is implemented properly, the following physiological adaptations take place (which results in better endurance and overall speed): - Improved delivery of oxygen to the working muscles - Lower overall heart rate due to the increased stroke volume of the heart - Improved elimination of lactic acid (a by product of burning carbohydrates) - Increased number of mitochondria (remember in school: “The power house of the cell” In my opinion, one of the most beneficial by-products of endurance training is that it prepares the rider for the psychological demands of racing – especially late in the race when mental focus can make the difference between 1st and 5th place. When you teach yourself to stay mentally sharp, you the rider will be able to make the necessary decisions that will build upon themselves throughout the race. Here’s how. When you don’t mentally drift off, you will consistently consume the necessary fluids and calories (ideally every 15-20 minutes) which will result in stabilized blood sugar levels. When your blood sugar levels are optimized, your brain has the necessary “fuel” to implement the proper techniques that you have worked hard to incorporate into your riding. These proper techniques lead to faster speeds which your brain has to process efficiently throughout the entire race. If your brain runs out of fuel, you will find yourself missing your important lines, resulting in slower average speeds and ultimately more work and fatigue on your body as it fights the non-optimal lines. You can see how this becomes a problem quite quickly. Here are few things you want to avoid to enjoy your riding and/or improve your race results: Mistake #1: Deviating from your regular routine When it comes to getting the body warmed up sufficiently and properly, it needs to be subjected to the same exercise protocols that are used in training when away from the track. For example, it doesn't make any sense to expect a bicycle to be a sufficient warm-up tool if you're using something like the Concept 2 rower in your every day workouts. You also need to consider intensity levels. We don't want the intensity to be so high during the warm-up that is that it ends up leaving the body tired, but we also don't want the heart rate to not rise to a level that starts to produce and activate the lactic acid shuffle. What we see is either riders are using the wrong tools to warm up or they're warming up at too high of an intensity. Mistake #2: Coming to the starting line dehydrated or under nourished When you sleep at night; your body pulls the necessary glycogen (which is sugar) from your liver to sustain your brain functions during the night. Then when you wake up in the morning and put demands on the muscles, the energy necessary comes from the glycogen that's been stored within the belly of the muscle tissue. The challenge that we have on race day is the duration of time since your last meal - sometimes between 12 to 15 hours. Think about race weekends: you're going to be racing on Sunday morning and practice or racing begins at 7:00 am. Let’s say that you ate dinner at 6:00pm Saturday night and you wake up at 6:00am Sunday morning, that's 12 hours since your last meal. To put it in perspective, imagine that if you ate your morning breakfast at 8:00 in the morning, but then you didn't eat dinner until 8:00 pm and you had no snacks or any meals in between that timeframe, you'd be extremely hungry. But for some reason (whether we chalk it up to a nervous stomach or we're afraid that we're going to get cramps) we don't take the time to eat a good-sized meal early enough so the muscle glycogen is already at a deficit before the gate drops. When you add high intensity racing, which tends to drain the glycogen from the tissue very quickly, and you can see why riders have a tendency to fade quickly or miss simple lines – all because the blood sugar levels within the rider is too low. Frequently this fade or silly mistake syndrome is blamed on a lack of fitness, but rather, should be attributed to low blood sugar levels. Mistake #3: Lack of a post-race recovery routine When you come off the race track, there's an enzyme that helps you replenish glycogen within the muscle and the liver called the Glycogen Synthase Enzyme. You've got about 20 to 30 minutes where that enzyme is at its highest level, so when a riders comes off the track, the first thing they need to be focusing on is the replenishment of depleted glycogen. For example, if you took a bit of oil out of the engine after each lap, you wouldn’t expect the engine to still be running strong at the end of the race. The idea here is that every lap depletes some level of glycogen (the exact amount is based on the duration and intensity level) and it's the athlete's responsibility to get the body replenished to perform at an optimum level. Whether its 20 minutes later, 30 minutes later, whenever your next race is, you have to understand that as soon as you come off the track, priority number one is to get that body replenished and to get it rehydrated. Failure to do so is going to manifest itself out on the track as you start to fade and go backwards. Again, we're right back to an empty gas tank within the muscle. If you want to be able to perform optimally, moto after moto, day after day, it starts after each race or workout – so plan ahead and implement consistently. Mistake #4: Racing at an intensity that is not familiar to your body This mistake is not a misprint – many racers fail to race to their full potential by riding too hard - too early in a race! It is obvious that on race day you're going to be pushing a pace that's difficult to emulate during training, but training at an intensity level that's much less than the demands of race day leads to a culture shock to the body. It produces more lactic acid than the body has been acclimated to and the physiologic process of absorbing and diffusing lactic acid shuts the muscles down. The end result is that the contractions of the muscles are slowed down, you begin to focus on how bad your body is hurting and instead of focusing on racing the course, and you begin to make errors on the course that begins to negatively affect your confidence. To offset this negative effect of lactic acid, you want to try to incorporate a couple of workouts a week that is held at an intensity level on the motorcycle that will accurately emulate race intensity. Additionally, you need to make sure you are testing and training at the same intensity levels off the motorcycle with various forms of cross-training. If you want to race at a higher level on the race weekend, incorporate similar conditions and intensities when you're practicing on the motorcycle along with your cross training off of the motorcycle. Mistake #5: Not racing the track The final and biggest problem that we see on the race day is racers shifting their focus from preparation and implementation of a normal routine to who is on the gate. The rider begins to size themselves up against somebody else and then pulls in a past performance of the other rider, and then immediately dumps that information into the race at hand. Your goal is to make the least number of mistakes, carry as much momentum as possible and charge the course. If somebody else is jumping something, they think they need to jump it. My question is why you don’t just focus on racing your race; race every section as hard and as fast as you can, try to optimize every single section of the course and your goal is that you would do it faster and better than everybody else. It's not that you can't learn something from somebody else, but when the gate drops, the only thing that you can take control of is yourself. So, what I want you to be thinking about is how I can get through this section faster than anybody else. Frequently, this requires thinking outside the box. When another rider is doing something through a section that nobody else has thought about, and probably not even willing to try, the results speak for themselves. Be smart, but creative and you will be surprised at the outcome. If you really want to optimize your fitness and preparation, you want to create the mindset that you are racing the course - minute after minute with your pace falling off as minimal as possible. We don't want you to come around the course on the opening lap with a time of 2:00 and then fall off to a 2:15. Ideally we are looking for less than a 2 second deviation from your first to last lap - you've seen this emulated by the best racers. The only way you can do this, is to race the course, minimize mistakes and make the best of something when it goes wrong. Allowing frustration and anger to sidetrack your focus, doesn’t fix the fact that you've messed up a section. Re-establish your timing; get back to charge mode and carry as much momentum as possible to create the fastest lap times on the course. Remember, practice doesn’t make perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect! If you have any questions or are interested in a customized nutrition and performance program, please feel free to contact me directly at Robb@CoachRobb.com. Also, don't forget to hit that "follow" button! Yours in sport and health, -Coach Robb
  12. Turbo Dan-thanks for posting your situation, though I am bummed you took such a digger! I wouldn't mess around with a consussion - we are talking about the health of your brain. A couple of quick questions: 1. Do you have ringing in your ears? 2. Does it hurt to be in the sun or bright light? 3. Do you have a low level headache? 4. How is your appetite? Please post back here when you get a quick moment. -Coach Robb
  13. @Scott Meshey 141 When it comes to preparing for a new season of training and racing, there are several tricks to performing at your full potential. When it comes to the human body, you must realize that you are only as fast as your weakest link! Let’s take a look at a few tricks that you can implement today: Test Your Fitness Regularly Your season needs to be broken up into four definitive seasons: Pre-Season, Pre-Competitive, Competitive (with several peak performances) and the Off Season. During each of these training cycles, you want to begin each cycle with a series of base line assessments to establish a quantified measurement of your sport specific speed, strength, endurance and lactate tolerance. During each training cycle, the focus of your efforts changes according to your race schedule – you don’t want to be working on your endurance too much when your race schedule requires short, explosive efforts. Know Your Sweat Rate It is imperative that you know how much and when you should be drinking to avoid either dehydration (not enough water) or hyponatremia (too much water). Your goal is to stay within 2-3% loss during each workout. Research has shown that if you lose more than 3% of your body weight in sweat, the strength of your muscle contractions can diminish by 10-12% robbing you of both speed & endurance. To receive a copy of MotoE’s Sweat Rate Calculation Spreadsheet, email me directly. This simple resource will ensure that you are not drinking too much or too little which will help you train and race to your full potential. Maintain a Food Log Your daily food log should have three pieces of information for each day: what time, how much & what you ate. This data will provide you a clear snap shot of the quality and quantity of food you are consuming on a daily basis. Many times, the lack of muscular endurance is a result of inadequate amounts of food (i.e. fuel) coming into the body resulting in low blood sugar. Low blood sugar can lead to a lack of mental concentration, weaker muscle contractions and lack of consistent speed. To receive a copy of MotoE’s Food/Energy Spreadsheet, email me directly. This simple resource will ensure that you are getting the right amount and type of foods to sustain your duration and intensity levels. Reduce Your Body Fat It is not a surprise that lighter racers have a lower overall core body temperature than heavier athletes; this is a result of body fat to lean muscle ratios. The same principle applies to speed & endurance – the stronger and lighter the body, the easier it is to produce and maintain a fast rate of speed. To accurately measure your body fat/lean muscle ratios, utilize a combination of tape & caliper measurements. These two forms of measurement are the cheapest & most accurate (second only to submersion which is difficult to find and cost prohibitive) way of seeing how your body composition is changing specific to your food, hydration and workout/performance logs (relevant to volume & intensity). By evaluating your body measurements and skin fold measurements every six weeks, you will get an accurate snapshot of your program and determine if your training efforts are delivering the incremental progression that you outlined in your goal profile. To receive a copy of our MotoE’s Body Measurements Spreadsheet, please email me directly. Establish a Warm-up Routine Nearly every new athlete we have worked with says the same thing “I always feel better at the end of the race than I do at the beginning of the race”. This is because the rider has used the first half of the race to “warm up” - the scientific term is called the Lactic Acid Shuffle. When the body burns stored carbohydrates (i.e. glycogen) it releases a hydrogen atom that acidic in nature – hence the feeling of burning in the muscles. As the body becomes more acclimated to the presence of this hydrogen, your circulatory system increases its efficiency and rids itself (actually reabsorbs) of this burning sensation. In order to improve both your opening speed along with maintaining that speed throughout the race, a warm up that is specific in duration, intensity and time before your actual race is imperative to performing at an optimal level. Visit a Chiropractor and Massage Therapist When you recognize that muscles stay tight when bones are out of alignment and that bones get pulled out of place when muscles are tight, you recognize that these two modalities are synergistic – you shouldn’t have one without the other. A qualified massage therapist will help you identify what muscle(s) that are chronically tight which will help direct your stretching efforts to eliminate any future muscle strains and/or tears. An in-line spine and flexible muscles will allow for proper biomechanics which will produce faster speeds & improved endurance. Please email me directly for more information about what to look for regarding a qualified massage therapist and chiropractor. Get Some Blood Work When you have your blood drawn, 99% of the time, they draw and evaluate a partial panel; however, a full panel will provide you better insight regarding your overall health – especially the health of your blood cells. For example, when you train and race hard, you break down your red blood cells, which are necessary to carry fresh oxygen to the working muscles. If you’re RBC (red blood count) is down, you will feel sluggish and fatigued for long periods of time and not know why – you have a low red blood count. By having your blood drawn every 12 weeks (once a quarter), you can evaluate the effects of your food, hydration and training schedule as it relates to your overall health. Please note the ranges that are established on your blood panel reports are established based on the absence of disease verses a more important range referred to in the human performance world as functional health. Your optimal health and performance ranges are nowhere near what is outlined on your blood results data sheets, hence the need for a qualified physician who understands the nature of your sport and its demands on your body. At MotoE, we have a staff of physicians that can read and evaluate your full blood panel results and make recommendations to improve your health and ultimately performance. Please email me directly for more information about this service. Listen to Your Body One of the worst things that you can do to your body is to stop listening to the external signs that your body is either hurt or fatigued. By tracking your morning heart rate, you will be provided specific feedback on how your body is responding to stress (virus, training, hungry, dehydrated, etc.) and whether or not you should workout today (in any way) – our rule of thumb is that if your resting heart rate is up by more than 5 beats, you don’t train but rather eat cleanly and go back to bed. The signs of injury are pretty obvious: the injured area is swollen, hot to the touch, tender to the touch, discolored, and has limited range of motion. These self defense mechanisms are designed to provide you feedback so that you can make adjustments that will turn these conditions around. If you take pain medication, this only masks your body’s natural receptors of pain, which increases your risk of further injury or illness. At MotoE, we have numerous cross reference tools to keep our riders from getting burned out, overly fatigued which helps them avoid injury or illness. It is imperative that you pay close attention to your body’s external signs: elevated morning heart rate, a normal workout effort is harder than normal, suppressed appetite, low motivation and excessive muscle soreness are examples that are easy to identify. Establish Goals and Training Objectives to Achieve To maximize your productivity and ensure that you are achieving your personal racing goals you must establish three sets of goals: 3 months out, 6 months out and 12 months out. The reason for the three sets of goals is associated with how long it takes the body to develop the necessary physiological elements (i.e. strength, endurance, lactate tolerance, flexibility, etc.). The objectives that are established for each goal are based on the results of your baseline assessments – nothing will keep you on the straight line of success like honest evaluation of your assessments. Either your endurance is getting better or it isn’t – what you choose to do with this information is the difference between a champion and a good racer. To receive a copy of MotoE’s Goal & Objective Spreadsheet, email me directly. Have Fun! Don’t lose sight of the fact that you took on racing for the fun and the challenge. No matter what happens on race day, be thankful that you had the opportunity to go out and race (at whatever level) and that no one can ever take that experience away from you – ever! ***** Thank you for taking the time to read! If you have any current frustrations that you would like some help breaking down, please don’t hesitate to drop me and my team an email. We would enjoy answering your questions and getting you on the path to success immediately. Yours in health and sport, Robb Beams Owner-Founder of MotoE’s Complete Racing Solutions
  14. Kenpo1-thank you for reading and the kind words. I have utilized the HRV monitoring system and have found it to be very helpful. The key is getting the athlete to "listen" to the biofeedback that they are receiving. Over the last decade there have been numerous devices to evaluate biofeedback (i.e. Basis sleep watch) that provides incredible feedback; however, the information is only beneficial if the athlete adjusts accordingly. In my opinion, any evaluation device is valuable for athletes if three things are implemented: 1. The device has to be used consistently. 2. The device has to be understood. Do you really understand the fancy reports that the device produces? 3. The athlete adjusts training volume and intensity based on the biofeedback. If you have a specific report that you need interpreting, please don't hesitate to drop me an email and I would be happy to review for you and provide you my feedback. -Coach Robb
  15. TIME TO REST - Pay attention to these 10 body indicators to gauge when to work out and when to back off! If you don’t take time to rest and recovery, your body wont adapt to the stress of training and racing – and as a result you won’t get stronger or faster. If you neglect recovery for too long, you will start to lose strength and speed. Here are some symptoms to look for: First your sleep patterns will be off (tired and you can’t sleep, restless sleep, etc.). Second your energy levels will be negatively affected. Third, you will begin to get sick more frequently (and take longer to heal from the virus). Fourth, your appetite will become suppressed. Remember, over training is not applicable only to elite athletes and professionals, recreational athletes have to balance, personal, professional, bills, children, inadequate sleep, etc. which is what makes recovering from your workouts and racing even more difficult. Symptom Evaluation See if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms: Symptom #1-Body Mass A 2% drop in weight from day to day indicates a body-fluid fluctuation. More than likely, you didn’t hydrate enough to offset heat, humidity, intensity and duration. Dehydration negatively impacts both physical and mental performance and could compromise the quality of your next workout or race. Symptom 2-Elevated Resting Heart An elevated resting heart rate is a significant indicator of stress within the body. An elevated HR indicates that your nervous system is in that “fight or flight” mode which results in elevated hormone levels to provide more oxygen to the muscles and brain. Your body doesn’t know the difference between and physical and psychological stress. A hard day at work and/or a hard workout or race both require additional recovery protocols. Symptom 3-Sleep Quality: you wake up and don’t feel fresh. Quality sleep: falling asleep quickly, deeply and staying there for a long period of time will allow your body to release the much needed growth hormone (hGH) necessary for rebuilding muscle and burning body fat. Several low quality nights of sleep will decrease your reaction time, immune system, can cognitive functions – not a good scenario when it comes to quality workout or high end performance on race day. Symptom 4-Hydration: your urine is dark yellow Unless you are taking B vitamins, a dark colored urine can be an indicator of dehydration. Your urine is an easy indicator of your water levels throughout your body. Symptom5-Energy Levels are Low Honesty is the key here. You know the difference between being tired and having low energy. Being tired is about recovering from yesterday’s workload. Being low on energy is a at a completely different level. Athletes think they can block out signs of fatigue and push to the next level of fitness, performance just doesn’t develop in this environment. Symptom 6-Mood State: your moody (and even cranky). When your body is overwhelmed by stress (training, racing, work, family, etc.), it produces the stress hormone cortisol that can cause irritability and/or anxiety. Stress also halts chemicals like dopamine, a neurotransmitter in the brain that has a big bummer effect on mood when depleted. Crankiness means not enough recovery. Symptom7-Sick Frequently Any illness or even a woman’s menstrual cycle, will increase your need for energy to refuel your immune system, which is having to work overtime. This translates into fewer resources available for recovery from training. Symptom 8-Pain: your excessively sore or have a nabbing injury. Whether you are sore from over worked muscles or have an injury that continues to linger is an indicator that your body needs more energy to put towards the repair, which extends your total recovery time. Symptom 9-Performance is sub-par. This is a subjective measure of workout quality, not quantity nor intensity. If you perform well on a particular workout, you would rate that workout as “good”. If you have a sub-par performance or feel like you are struggling to complete that same workout, you would rate that workout as “poor”. Trending workout quality – multiple poor workouts in a row – is one of the easiest ways to identify the need for more recovery. Symptom 10-Oxygen Saturation: low oxygen levels. The amount of oxygen in the hemoglobin of the red blood cells can be measured and is thought to be an accurate assessment of recovery because of the association of high oxygen saturation levels and higher energy levels. Evaluation Time: count how many of the above symptoms you have experienced over the last week and then compare this against the following: 0-1: Green Light: you are recovering adequately and can maintain your normal volume and intensity 2-4: Caution: You can complete your hard workouts; however, cut the workout short if you are struggling to complete the first couple of intervals after a long warm up 5-6: Warning: This is the zone where you are close to tipping the scales and becoming over-worked, sick and injury prone. You need to add a second rest day to your week 7-10: Danger: You are IN the danger zone and need to take one week completely off (no sport specific training); increase your high quality food intake and take 2 hour naps each day. If you want me an my staff to review if you should take a break from training and racing, please feel free to contact us at Contact@CoachRobb.com.