How many steps will you take on the Quad itself? Millions it might feel like! At Mercy Corps our belief in empowering people to take their own steps towards a brighter future underpins all of our work worldwide. In particular, we see youth as key change-makers in their lives and the lives of those around them – especially in times of crisis. Rather than viewing youth as troublemakers or as a demographic challenge, we believe in the positive power of youth – in their ability to enable their countries to stride forward, socially, politically and economically. Watch this video to inspire you to make some great strides yourself!
Louise Henderson and Mairead MacRae (accompanied by loyal mascot Louie the dog!) from the Mary’s Meals Quad Team, ‘May the Quads be ever in our favour’ have stepped up their training to prepare for the gruelling 34-mile cycle.
Louise tells us, “Cycling is the sport I am really looking forward to in the Quad. I’ve been taking advantage of the sunny weather at the weekends and have done a few rides to Edinburgh along the Clyde and Union canal. I also cycle to work every day which is a good way of squeezing extra training into my schedule.”
Mairead, on the other hand, has been concentrating on the other disciplines because she is waiting for her shiny new road bike to arrive. Mairead said: “I can’t wait for my new bike to arrive, my old one fell apart, thankfully before I got to the Quad and not during!”
The two have planned some joint training after Mairead’s bike arrives. Mairead told us, “Hopefully, we can get up to practice on the cycle route at Loch Tay. It is a beautiful part of Scotland but I’m not sure how much I’ll take in after 34 miles of cycling! It will all be worth it in the end, especially because I know that my fundraising will make a huge difference to Mary’s Meals.”
“It’s amazing that Mary’s Meals is helping 1,101,206 of the world’s poorest children with a daily meal in school, where they will gain an education that can be their route out of poverty.”
Make sure you focus on these few things and the last 34 miles of the Quad will be a breeze….
1. Train the distance - Obvious one, but make sure you can cycle 34 miles. Training the distance and maybe longer will give you the mental strength of knowing you can do it and keep going to the end of the event.
2. Brick training - In the Quad you transition from kayaking to cycling. If you are in the fortunate position to be able to practice this then do it once a week. If not then try going from a rowing machine to cycling at the gym or from a hill walk into a cycle. You will be cycling on tired legs in the race so practice with 2 activities combined together to replicate this as best you can.
3. Hit the hills - Build that all important leg strength by riding hill repeats. These are tough to do by yourself so team up with your partner for this session. As part of a long cycle ride, find a hill that takes 3-5min to cycle up. Cycle hard uphill and slowly roll back down to recover, repeat 4 times the first time and add on an extra climb each session.
4. Bike fit - Make sure your bike is the right size for you, the saddle and handlebars are adjusted correctly and the seat is comfortable. Bikes are not one-size-fits-all! Take yours along to an expert to get fitted to your body shape and you’ll find training and racing much more enjoyable.
5. Nutrition - Being the last of the 4 Quad disciplines everyone will be running out of steam! Don’t forget to stay hydrated and keep eating your snacks or energy bars and gels. In training, be sure to practice what and how often you will eat on the bike and throughout the race. This will make the difference between enjoying the last few miles or hating every minute!