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Monday, November 14, 2016

24 Hour Mountain Bike Racing - An Insider Look

It's a sport that isn't for everyone, but for the select few they wouldn't have it any different. Team Infinit athlete Julie Kelly has been competing in 24 Hour Mountain Bike racing for years - since 2012 to be exact, however she has been competing on a mountain bike since 2009. Prior to 24 hour racing she was competing in stage races, 6-8 hour events and on a couple 24 hour teams. After seeing the solo riders at the 24 hour races, she was inspired to give it a shot and has been hooked ever since.

Now you may ask, what keeps you motivated to race for 24 hours straight? For Julie, it's the challenge and opportunity to push beyond her limits. She mentions on her blog, Rolling in the Dirt, that endurance racing is her passion. "Each race brings a new adventure and an opportunity to learn new things. I enjoy travelling to new places and taking it all in with good friends."

However, it's not all sunshine and rainbows while on the bike. "You experience so much during a 24 hr. time frame. Physically your body tells you it wants to shut down but mentally you find the strength to carry on. Generally this happens between 2:00-5:00am.. “the dark hours”."

Julie recounts some of her "fondest" memories while racing. They're good for a laugh! ;)

24 Hours Round the Clock 2015
There is always one lap where you wonder what you are doing and if you are going to be able to continue. For me it was the lap just before the sun came up. It was a team effort to lube the chain, one rotating the crank and one applying lube. In my blurry state I had to ask if the lube was actually coming out ;-)?

24 Hours Round the Clock 2014
I was feeling stronger into the morning and my lap times were getting faster but my butt was really sore. Shaun offered up his bibs for a little extra padding. No thanks,  I was not that desperate! I would just spend the remainder of the race riding mostly out of the saddle. 

Now the biggest question we always here from people trying to understand 24 hour racing is how do the athletes stay energized and fuelled while on the bike? Surely they have to eat something.... right? Wrong. For Julie, her 3 main keys to staying energized are keeping on top of her nutrition, listening to music, and keeping a strong mental focus. For supplements, Julie relies solely on her Infinit Nutrition - no solid food, gels or bars for this girl. She has 2 formulations she uses - one has caffeine the keep her going through those 'dark hours'. Her other trick? Infinit JetFuel about every 6 hours during a 24hr race. "These products have been very reliable and give me what I need to succeed."

Want to fuel like Julie? You don't have to be involved in 24 hour racing, we have something for everyone. Get in touch with us - we will fuel your potential!