This is a special post that was requested by a young rider who has great blog that reaches out to various riders for unique posts. Read her blog HERE.
The question is what is it about the Omnium that makes in unique in cycling from other events and how do you manage those challenges.
For me the answer is in 2 parts. The event has such I high demand of specific abilities, but requires a long term and dynamic general plan. You need to proficient and comfortable at most distances. The challenge with that is time related. Training just one ability to an internationally competitive level is time consuming training 6 is an uphill battle you are likely to never win. Especially given that some of the disciplines seem to work against each other. Here are 5 tips that can help would be Omnium riders improve in a challenging event.
1. Understand and be honest about your strengths and weaknesses. From there look at what events you stand to make the most gain in if you improve. If you are in the top 3 in the kilo regularly extensive work on that event will lead to a 2 point gain at most. Work on an event where you are in the “softer” part of the ranking will let you spring past more people and lead to a better ranking.
2. Commit to a long term plan. It is really easy to get caught up in poor performances in certain events from race to race. If you are constantly chasing what you where most recently under performing in everything will suffer. If you have long term goals working towards them will likely help all events. If they are goals that address your biggest weaknesses you might be surprised at how that work will help even your strongest events.
3. Look at each event as a stand alone. Getting caught up in the ranking, especially early on, can lead to tactical decisions that cost you points you need later down the road. Don’t waist energy on stupid moves but do your best to race each event as it is regardless of the ranking.
4. When training have specific goals each day. Don’t try to mash it all together. Time is valuable so the work you do needs to be quality.
5. Have fun with it. The best thing about the Omnium is that you get to race a lot. You get chances to redeem yourself and learn. If you don’t get hung up on certain events then you can become a better bike racer faster in the Omnium then just about any other track event.
I hope this helps any younger riders thinking about Omnium.