The expected call from Carlos Sastre asking for my assistance to win his second maillot jeune "nunca" came. The Twitter from Lance Armstrong didn't happen either (or I missed it, Sandra!?!?). All I can say is they will have a difficult time even getting to Paris in this year's Tour...
However, a short and exciting email hit my Inbox a week or so ago. It read:
My name's Matt and I'm working on some cool stuff with Skins (makers of sports compression wear). They've asked me to find enthusiastic and dedicated cyclists to trial their new C400 range which, surprise surprise, is for cycling. I've been reading the AMR Cycling blog and see that you are involved in competitive cycling. I would love to offer you some kit to trial."
How could I have answered this email without sounding like like an eleven year old who just learned that his birthday presents would be arriving two months earlier?
A couple of days ago, Sandra brought this package home. - Don't cut yourself, again! was Sandra's instruction as I, scissors in hand and like an eleven year old, tackled the plain looking box containing what I hoped was the "cool stuff". In it, I found three dark, stylishly designed smaller boxes, one for each of the C400 Cycle garments sent by the guys from Skins.
As I removed the gear from the first two boxes, I realised I had in my hands the most high-tech bib shorts and jersey in the market today. Man, this stuff was really cool. The third box revealed a light weight Mesh Tank, those one can wear all year around. That's me!
True, I have been wearing compression gear for three or four years now and I can't emphasize enough how good they really are for post-ride recovery. It is not all I do for my recovery. I try to ice my legs after long and/or hard training rides and races, do my stretches and I pay a lot of attention to my post-ride nutrition.
And at this time of the year, when it gets a little cool around here, I find easy to wear them 24/7, practically.
Now, as we see in almost every sport, this technology has moved to improving perfomance during training and competition as well. How it all works? Well, the guys in the Skins Lab can give us a good explanation, I am just going to put the cool stuff on and ride... longer, faster!