Wendy has been a goperformance client for about 10 months. She came to start her strength training to achieve her goal to pedal across America in one week. She finished and made her mark in the RAAM history books as she crossed the finish line this summer. Her team was the third all female team in the 35-year history of the RAAM race. Talk about girl power! We sat down with her to get the scoop on calories burned, her training and her charity.
When did you decide you wanted to pedal across America?
I was approached by a four women team that wanted to participate in RAAM (Race Across America). They wanted to use this event to support my charity Pedal for Pets. I was so excited that I could do something to benefit this charity and challenge me. The four-person team morphed into an eight-person team and I jumped at the chance to participate.
Why are you so passionate about your charity Pedal for Pets?
I can’t stand by and watch the innocent lives of over 3,000,000 pets be needlessly killed just because they exist. I wanted to put my emotion into action. I started the charity a few years ago and this ride gave me the opportunity to raise awareness for it and provide a challenge for me physically and mentally.
What all did your training at goperformance include over the past 10 months?
My emphasis was on general strength training. I needed to rebuild my upper body strength after having spine surgery. I also worked with the MYZONE belt to work on holding an increased heart rate for an extended period of time with short recovery periods in between each sprint.
What were you most concerned about going into the race?
I was most concerned about the dramatic temperature changes through the desert and mountains. The cold greatly effects my circulation and the temperature. It could jump 40-50 degrees from morning to night.
What did you feel the best about (training wise) going into the race?
I felt most confident in my heart-rate training. Using the MYZONE belt at goperformance and going through very tough workouts got me more mental and physically prepared than I ever could have on my own.
What was your favorite moment of the race?
Having these life changing moments with my daughter and friends were amazing. One of the greatest moments was riding up the Rocky Mountains and finally getting to the top. We took amazing photos and I got to share that with supportive family and friends who were with me. I will always be able to look at those pictures and remember what we have all accomplished together.
How many calories did you burn on the race?
I had a few technological malfunctions, but I probably burned more than 3000 calories each day (or 12 hour shift). My guess is that I burned about 21,000 calories in 7 days.
What advice would you give to people who want to accomplish a big goal like this? Maybe not a RAAM race specifically, but something that pushes them out of their comfort zone?
First you need to be realistic with what kind of time you can put into something like this. You don’t want any unnecessary stress associated with you or your training. If it becomes a chore, then it is probably not the right time to do it. Second, you need to have a solid support group or network of people who will help hold you accountable and you know they believe in you and your goals. Third, I would sign up with a place like goperformance for specific strength training for your particular goal. I knew just riding my bike every day was not going to make me a better rider for this race.
Who would you like to thank for helping you on this journey?
My family and the staff at goPerformance for believing in me and helping me gain physical and mental strength for this event.
You made RAAM history didn’t you? Tell me about the RAAM race competitors and the teams?
We were the third all women’s team to complete the race in its 35 year history. This year there were about 13 women who participated and 300 men. That makes me feel pretty proud.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
In the cycling community, strength training is very important and often times is neglected just to put in the miles. I probably did half the amount of miles than my teammates did training, but I was one of the strongest and most consistent riders. I put in the time and energy to do both cycling and strength training. That gave me a huge advantage over people because of how much stronger I have gotten. goperformance prepared me for the physically and mentally toughest cycling race in a healthy, efficient way. Thanks guys!
For those that want to support the cause, Pedal for Pets, where can they find more information?
For more photos of Wendy's Race, check out the photos on our Facebook page.