What contributes to performance? God, where do I start?! So many things contribute to cycling performance that someone brilliant came up with a woo-woo word to encapsulate all the factors into one – biopsychosocial.
A combination of biological, psychological, and social factors determines cycling performance. Some matter more than others, but each plays its part.
Age falls within the biological category, and it’s important. What’s the percentage? Hard to say.
What I can say is that age isn’t everything. What’s important to recognize is that entire categories – psychological and social – tend to improve with age.
So, long after you’re past your biological peak (which you didn’t even reach in the first place. More later), your psychological and social in cycling can still rise, negating and even exceeding the losses you experience through aging (to a point!)
Remember this concept. Sure, when you were 30, maybe your threshold was 330, and now, at 40, it’s 300 – 10% down in 10 years – 1% a year!
But, at 30, your diet was shit, you were hungover three times a week, you had back pain because you only rode your bike, you were trying to date three people at once, your bike barely shifted, and your primary bike racing strategy was hail mary breakaways from the gun.
Now, you’re 10 lbs lighter, never hungover, never have back pain, not chasing biddies, your bike can shift, and you only attack, as a rule, on the last lap.
Who is your money on?