About this episode:
In this week’s episode, Adam Pulford interviews Olympic athlete Christopher Blevins who earned Team USA’s one spot in the men’s cross country mountain bike race at the Summer Olympics in Tokyo. They discuss Blevins’ journey from a young BMX racer to the Olympics and how he’s preparing for the likely extreme conditions he’ll face in Tokyo.
- How Blevins is preparing for the extreme heat
- How BMX training has translated to racing MTB and on the road
- What some of Blevins largest volume training blocks look like
- Pre-race hydration strategy he’ll be using in Tokyo
Guest Bio – Christopher Blevins:
Christopher Blevins has won countless national championships in multiple disciplines of this sport: BMX, XCO, & CX. He’s won big races on the road too, like the 2016 Peace Race, one of the biggest accomplishments a junior cyclist could achieve. He also won the silver medal at the 2020 U-23 MTB World Championships, which is a feat that hasn’t been done by a men’s rider since 2001. Currently, he races for the Trinity Racing UCI MTB team and has just been named to the US Olympic team as the sole US men’s mountain bike rider to represent his country at the Tokyo Olympics.
Read More About Christopher Blevins:
Thanks To This Week’s Sponsor:
This episode of the TrainRight Podcast is brought to you by Stages Cycling, the industry leader in accurate, reliable and proven power meters and training devices.
Stages Cycling offers the widest range of power meter makes and models to fit any bike, any drivetrain and any rider, all manufactured in their Boulder, Colorado facility. They’ve expanded their offerings to include the Stages Dash line of innovative and intuitive GPS cycling computers covering a full range of training and workout-specific features to make your workouts go as smooth as possible.
And now, Stages is applying its decade of indoor cycling studio expertise to the new StagesBike smart trainer. Check out their latest at www.stagescycling.com
Please note that this is an automated transcription and may contain errors. Please refer to the episode audio for clarification.
Speaker 1 (00:00:06):
Adam Pulford (00:00:07):
Welcome back or welcome to the train ride podcast. Coach Adam here, your host and on today’s show, we’re talking with the youngest guests we’ve had on yet, and you’ll quickly learn that this rising stars now shine brightly on the world stage for a mountain bike racing. Christopher Blevins has won countless national championships in multiple disciplines across the sport from BMX to cross-country mountain bike racing. And in cyclocross, he’s won some big races on the T on the road to like the 2016 peace race, which is arguably one of the biggest accomplishments a junior cyclist could achieve. You also want a silver medal at the 2020 you 23 mountain bike world championships, which is a feat that I don’t think we’ve done on the men’s side since 2001. And currently he races for the Trinity racing UCI mountain bike team, and has been named as the sole member of the us men’s Olympic team to represent the United States at the Tokyo Olympics. Christopher it’s an honor. And welcome to the show.
Christopher Blevins (00:01:08):
Thanks for having me and for making me feel young. It’s not so often with how many fast juniors there are coming up in the states to I’m starting to, I’m starting to feel like one of the old guys now, so
Adam Pulford (00:01:20):
Yeah, yeah, yeah. You kind of are an end. Um, we have a huge wave come in and what’s kind of cool is, you know, I think you know this, but like you were at the tip of that wave. And I think that a lot of the young writers out there and some of the young writers that I work with, it’s, you know, they look up to you and what you’ve been doing and, and that’s created the wave. So,
Christopher Blevins (00:01:39):
Yeah, that’s exciting.
Adam Pulford (00:01:42):
So we’re where you, uh, where are you coming from today? Where yet
Christopher Blevins (00:01:45):
I am in Arco, Italy, um, on the Northern tip of lake Garda, it is, uh, um, I’ve never been here before, didn’t know what to expect, but I can say honestly, it’s maybe the favorite place I’ve ever been. Um, I’ve been fortunate to go to a lot of cool places with my bike. Um, something about maybe it’s, you know, Italy and the whole world opening back up from COVID a little bit and, and kind of recognizing the vibrancy of this place and the Italian culture, but man, it’s so cool in such good writing. So I’m on a high for sure.
Adam Pulford (00:02:20):
Well, can’t wait to, can’t wait to see some of the videos you’ll be posting from there before you hit Tokyo. Yeah. Yeah. Well, um, so some of the quick overview here, like I said in the intro is we’ll get some of the specifics on how, uh, Christopher and his coach, Jim Miller, who’s been on the show a few times have been preparing for the different environmental conditions, uh, for the Tokyo Olympics. But, uh, I want to learn more about you Christopher and I want our listeners to, to learn more too, cause there’s more than just like bikes and, and bunny hops and stuff going on here. So, uh, could you tell our listeners a bit more about yourself where you’re from and how you got into where you’re at?
Christopher Blevins (00:02:58):
Yeah. Um, of course I’m from Durango, Colorado. Um, yeah, very proud of being from Durango because it’s such a special community and, you know, um, I’m the product of a number of like incredible youth cycling groups and chief among them is during the depo. Um, but I started not on the mountain bike. I started with BMX when I was five. Um, there was an ad in the local paper and my dad took me to the BMX track and BMX tracks were kind of just total playgrounds for kids growing up. And that’s why there’s so many young kids that are, that are BMX racing nationally all over the country. And that was one of them. Um, and that was my introduction to, to the bike and racing at a high level. Um, and, uh, yeah, it was really serious with BMX all through elementary school, years, and somewhere along the way, mountain biking and road were added to the mix. And then those two became the sole focus and, um, went to Cal poly San Luis Obispo for college actually graduated officially just a couple of weeks ago. Um, thank you so weird with, you know, just closing your computer and calling at the end of college, but, uh, such at times. Um, but yeah, uh, now, um, you know, it’s a new chapter, I guess, sole focus right now is the Olympics and, and uh, after that, um, a college grad and we’ll see where to go, but, um, yeah, exactly. Yeah. Chapters after that.
Adam Pulford (00:04:31):
So, yeah. So tell me, tell me a bit more like, uh, like BMX, why, why did that resonate with you? Like when your dad brought you down and you just started playing, like what, what, what hooked you there?
Christopher Blevins (00:04:41):
Yeah, I mean, it’s, you know, it’s simple. It was just how fun it was. And, uh, my dad reminds me pretty often after my first trap race we traveled to, I think it was in salt lake city, um, was a national race there. And, uh, I mean, it’s simple thing, but on the, on the plane home, I was just like, that was fun. Let’s do it again. And he’s like, I always remember that moment. And I was like, yeah, so, and we’re going to do it again. And you know, I mean, my, my dad and I went like my mom and sister, my mom kind of stayed on with my sisters and my dad was traveling me with me the most, but we I’ve never counted, you know, how many holiday ends we stayed in around the country and livestock arenas, we raced BMX in, but it’s in the hundreds for sure.
Christopher Blevins (00:05:26):
Um, so it was quite an adventure, uh, growing up and really special, um, to have that, that high level of, of focus and, you know, community, even though it’s an individual sport. Um, and then, you know, BMX was the introduction to like the racing and the competitive side of it. And I think that kind of planted, uh, uh, really lit a fire in me and, and kind of built that competitive competitiveness that he Jaffe needs at this level, um, really young for me. Um, and the counter to that was, was during or devote kind of a more adventurous side.
Adam Pulford (00:06:06):
Yeah. So I mean, what’s unique is right in Durango, not only do you have all the trails and all the outside to ride in and stuff, but during a Divo and what, uh, Chad has created there with the culture and also just a bunch of off-road athletes living there and creating careers there. I mean, you just like you’re at the epicenter of, of riding bikes.
Christopher Blevins (00:06:29):
I mean, yeah, yeah. Chad, um, in, in Sarah Tasha, you know, the, the co-founders of Divo, like I often think, uh, especially recently like the impact that one person can have in their community and starting a youth writing program like that, that has alumni, you know, in, um, winning grant horror stages with CEP, COOs and the Olympics now twice with Howard and I, and, and also like in, in the, in the industry or coaching kids and all over the world. And it’s just really special. Uh, yeah. What, what doing Divo is kind of the ethos that it operates on.
Adam Pulford (00:07:07):
Yeah. It’s, it’s, um, you know, right time, right place and, and, uh, you know, your dad and mom, and even your sister putting in the hours of getting around the country. So it’s a really unique community and situation to allow you to do what you do. So that’s, I wanted to like portray that for people. Um, absolutely.
Christopher Blevins (00:07:27):
Yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s, uh, you know, I, I like, I think this, especially reflecting now on making the Olympic team that it’s like, it really is the product of all of these people who have influenced me and given me opportunities that I was truly fortunate to happen, right. Time, right. Place. Obviously there’s a ton of work, but with everything of, you know, achievements of this magnitude, there’s, there’s, there’s a thousand people, uh, and tiny moments that add up to it. And, uh, yeah, I mean, it all started with, with BMX and doing a depo.
Adam Pulford (00:08:01):
Yeah, absolutely. And I just want to, oh, go ahead.
Christopher Blevins (00:08:04):
Sorry. My family, of course. Yeah.
Adam Pulford (00:08:06):
That’s it, that’s the wrong one for sure. And just to kind of portray that, that development, because there’s, there’s some, there’s some young, uh, developmental writers that listen to this podcast and stuff too. So, I mean, you went from Durango Divo to the whole athlete program, right? Yup. And, uh, from there, uh, to the oxen, Hugin and Berman crew where you were racing on the road and tell me a little bit just like, cause I saw you raised it on the whole athlete program when I was directing team, uh, here in the United States, I saw you there for a bit. And then, you know, we didn’t see much of Christopher Blevins cause you were racing on the road so much. So can you tell us a little bit about, uh, w what made you move from whole athlete to Augsburg bourbon?
Christopher Blevins (00:08:50):
Yeah. Um, well, you know, whole athlete was, uh, I think like AFI had a huge impact in, on so many athletes and like me, you know, I mean, my, my college roommate, um, my best friend and his Johnson, I met through whole athlete. Um, one of my best friends and, you know, high school girlfriend, I met there and then Haley Baton knew, um, you know, uh, going to the Olympics with, and, and teammates with on Trinity. Um, as well as Kate Courtney, you know, we all came through all athlete and the level of like, I think excellence and professionalism that whole athlete had, it was, uh, was really unique and a great time for athletes that wanted to be serious about the sport, like learning how to be professional in, in, in train really well. Um, and that was huge, you know, and it was like I said, great timing for our developmental stage.
Christopher Blevins (00:09:46):
Um, and then, you know, I had a good connection with specialized as a junior, since I was racing on the, um, and CCF specialized junior road team based out of the bay area would let me know one another fantastic program and then whole athlete as well. So, um, that specialized connection along with, I guess my piece race result on the road helped me have an have a call with, with Axel Erickson. Um, you know, I wasn’t sure I wanted to race the road, continue racing the road in college, um, in my first couple of years of U 23, but it was a, you know, a dream to race for action that I had had since I was like 13, 14, and, uh, axle allowing me to have the freedom to raise mal bikes along with road was, was too good of an opportunity to pass up. And I’m really grateful. I said yes to, to racing on action because, you know, stellar team. So
Adam Pulford (00:10:42):
Yeah, yeah. In, in, I mean, it’s, it’s the foresight of what axle has. There is just, you know, recognizing how to manage you in, in give you the options because clearly there’s passion for both road and mountain right now you’re on the mountain mission and, uh, there’ll be more chapters to come too. I’m sure.
Christopher Blevins (00:11:01):
Yeah. And I think, you know, I was still like, it was only what three, four years ago when, um, when I was first year you’re 23, you got four years ago. But like, that was, that was still early for kind of the cycling industry to consider these roadies that also raised mountain bikes or mountain bikers that also raised road. And now it’s like, it’s starting to feel like the norm or like a hidden kind of advantage that can, can hopefully, you know, help develop more and Matthew Vander bowls or Tom picked docs. Um, so from a strictly training perspective, the mountain bike mixed with the road mixed with cross, um, can, can develop you incredibly well, um, and be very versatile, both in how you race and how you respond as an athlete. Um, and I think, you know, Axel recognize mountain biking was not going to do harm to my road, even though I missed a few starts, but yeah,
Adam Pulford (00:12:00):
Yeah, no, that’s it. And that, that’s the developmental aspect of the outfit. It’s like, which, which bike all the bikes. And, uh, you definitely do that. And I think, you know, a nod to your current team too. I mean, Trinity racing, um, it, tell us a little bit more about that because they’re, they’re far reaching too. I mean, they’ve got athletes on all disciplines.
Christopher Blevins (00:12:18):
Yeah. Um, you know, this year with Trinity is kind of a new it’s in some ways like the inception of a new team, and it’s really exciting kind of. Yeah. Like you said, the far reaches that this team has already and how, um, it’ll continue to grow, um, a very solid, you know, young road team with a lot of good Brits, but I’m an American with Lou gland, Purdue, you just wouldn’t procreate NATS. And, um, for me personally, uh, I’m not sure if I’m going to race any road this year, but I, I have the opportunity to do so with Trinity, which was really intriguing and then cyclocross, um, I’m 99% sure. I’m going to give it a go at the world cups and cross worlds this year. And, you know, Trinity out offers the experience and know-how and a platform to do that. So it’s, yeah, it’s an exciting team to be a part of. And, uh, I think grow with it.
Adam Pulford (00:13:14):
That’s great. I like that a lot. And, you know, it’s, it’s interesting to be able to interview you and have our listeners hear this, like, you know, how does a rider develop with all the bikes? Let’s just say that. And, uh, in, in performance, such a high level. So I guess from the training side of things, if we go back to BMX, can you tell our listeners, like, what are the main differences in like how you prepared for BMX racing versus cross-country mountain bike racing?
Christopher Blevins (00:13:42):
Yeah. Um, I think, you know, people who aren’t cyclist at all, or, uh, you know, watch the Olympics maybe, and see cycling as a discipline and there assume that brackish could do both, but that’s like thinking, uh, I mean, essentially Usain bolt could be the best marathon runners and that’s the difference in BMX from a training perspective, it’s like a 30, 35 second race and incredibly chaotic and in dangerous, um, exciting. But, uh, yeah, as a kid, I started lifting weights pretty young, like at 12 and it was all functional stuff. And then I never got that big and that’s kind of why I realized in some ways, like my body type is, is better suited for the endurance side of things. And I want to keep my body, you know, intact and not, not have like 13 surgeries by the time I’m 30. Um, exactly. Um, but I was doing a ton of sprint work, uh, goes without saying, and then a lot of work in the gym and I know that’s the formula for, um, all of the daily BMX. Um, I do think though that they, and this applies to track racing as well. They are starting to realize the benefit of, of training with volume, even though they’re sprinters and, uh, go on some road bikes and suit up in the Shami. Um, and, uh, you know, it’s just, just builds a healthy athlete. Um, I was
Adam Pulford (00:15:13):
Just going to say, which is really exciting because it adds in like so much health component to it. Yeah, yeah, absolutely. Yeah. So, yeah, absolutely.
Christopher Blevins (00:15:22):
Yeah, no, I think that, you know, maybe that was it. That was an advantage to me in my later years of BMX, which I stopped when I was 16, but having a full focus on road a mountain, maybe, you know, it was more, in some ways it was an advantage than a detriment, um, to focus on the endurance side of things. But it’s certainly BMX from a skill standpoint, um, was huge and foundational. And then also from a mental side of things, like when you’re getting ready for a 32nd BMX race, where the first two seconds determines your whole season, really like you gotta be so locked in and have that, um, resilience. And, you know, I, I definitely think that that has helped me when, when it hits the fan for sure. In road racing and stuff. Um, and working my way through the pack. I learned that all through BMX. So, um, it’s a great sport for, for young kids. Um, I definitely, you know, advocate for kids trying it out and, um, it’s yeah, it will lead to, it will, if you, if you escape it, you know, and you, and you had your mountain, like I love the BMX world and the community, but yeah, it’s definitely, yeah, for sure. It’s, it’s
Adam Pulford (00:16:38):
Way different, but that’s, that’s kind of my point for, for listeners who don’t know maybe anything about BMX is just like the, the metabolic demands are drastically different than cross country, mountain bike racing, however, those technical skills in those, those, you know, high-risk situations, that’s translatable. I think that’s what I see in you. And I, when I, when I watch you race, it’s just like that technical proficiency and focus when gets crazy. Like you got that and it’s pretty fun to see, you know? Um, and so I have this question on here in, in it’s, what type of rider would you describe yourself as like to our listeners out there to better portray like the type or style of writing that you do? Well, I mean, I’d say,
Christopher Blevins (00:17:25):
Um, at the risk of sounding like I’m avoiding the question, maybe like I am an all around her. And, uh, even when I was on the road, like I had a couple solid DTS, I was never going to be a, you know, grantor, GC rider, but, uh, I could climb up the longer stuff. Um, I was, I was the out guy for our sprinters on action. And even at a couple of sprint sprints myself, um, in XCO, you know, I mean, XCO is essentially a time trial for an hour and a half. And you can’t really like, you know, it’s, it’s, it’s more you in the terrain than it is you and the competitors, but I am really good at starting in, if I’m starting fifth row, like I can get myself to the first or second row by the end of the start loop.
Christopher Blevins (00:18:10):
And I think that’s a huge skill and that, that does, you know, implore the BMX skills, but the punch, the punchiness and the, in the, um, you know, the tack to, to move through the pack, um, courses, I think that’s a good indication of a typewriter I am, and, and I like steep, shorter climb. So something in the under one minute range, but fast, dry to sense are kind of typical of growing up on the west. So prefer those over the wet Rudy stuff we see so often in Europe, but, um, and then if you throw in a couple of pump tracks and jumps, then, uh, then I’ll really be loving it, but you don’t get that all that often.
Adam Pulford (00:18:50):
Yup, yup. Yeah, for sure. And I, I say that a lot too, in terms of the cross country, mom bike racing is to technical time trial with a hard start. Yeah. You know, and if, you know, if you’re coming up the ranks, like you have been, and you gotta negotiate moving through people, but I think that’s where that, you know, the bike handling skills and the anaerobic training that you had early on. I mean, that’s, that’s showcasing through now. So, um, but yeah, that’s, it’s interesting to hear that background and as it applies to today, but yeah, you’re all around her making chapters as we go here. So, um, you know, you mentioned Durango Divo and how influential it was, you know, to your development, but to the training side of things. Can you describe, like when you move from BMX to that Divo team, like what kind of volume were you dealing? Was it in overrules? Was it racing? Was there structure, like, what did, what did, uh, would they have you doing?
Christopher Blevins (00:19:44):
Yeah. Um, I mean, diva was famous for like intervals being like a bad word and like we were allergic to animals and that’s special, but at the same time we had monthly Telegraph time trials, which is, uh, you know, 15 minutes if you’re really fast, 20 minutes, uh, was really good as a kid. And, uh, yeah, 20 minute climb, uh, in Durango and Howard forever. I had the longest time probably still does. Uh, and everyone was cheering at the top and built little tunnels that you, you know, human tunnels that you’d go through. And it’s like, what a cool way to get kids stoked on peddling hard and seeing what they’re made of, um, without them realizing that they’re training like that. And then of course we’d have little town sprint races on the road, bikes and stuff like that. Um, and then I should mention also weekly short tracks that Chad designs the courses, uh, and they’re always just so fun.
Christopher Blevins (00:20:42):
Um, and then I was in a unique position because I was racing BMX, like so seriously, like at 12, right. I had already had six national titles and, um, was like a veteran in the sport at that time, like six years of traveling. And how does, how do routine and like, was trading really hard? Like, uh, I don’t know what the hours were, but it doesn’t fall too short of what I’m doing now. Um, so Divo was really like no structure and go ride your bike with your friends. Sometimes it’ll be hard sometimes you’ll show up and play foot down in the parking lot. Um, and that was really healthy. Um, I don’t think I would have, you know, quite gotten to the point I’m at so quickly. Uh, like for instance, one piece race when I was 18, if I didn’t have a coach when I was 15 in start training, a little more structured, but in the case of like Howard grads or CEP COOs, they had the natural talent and just went on these crazy long adventure rides. And then like, by the time they were later in their junior years or in college, they were like, yeah, okay. I’ll, I’ll do this seriously. And, um, very quickly, you know, went to the very top of the sport. So they’re, they’re rare cases and exceptional athletes, but, um, yeah, the, the mix was, was essential for me.
Adam Pulford (00:22:05):
Yeah. And that’s, and that’s kinda the point there is like, because you came at it at such a different angle, a so focused and so intense, like early on, I think, you know, the pendulum was in one direction and, uh, Divo made that pendulum swing a little bit more and kind of gave you that, that balance or that, that, uh, the fun factor you needed to, to balance.
Christopher Blevins (00:22:26):
Absolutely. Yeah. And I think that’s a Testament to the power of community and training and that’s it like you can go out and bang your head against the wall on an interval day all by yourself. And there’s something special to that. And there’s something important about that. Like learning to love that if you’re serious about it and learning to have that kind of intrinsic inner motivation to, to meet that wall and go past it. But at the same time, like find the community in the training partners, whether you call them that, or just riding buddies that you can go out and have fun with. And don’t isolate yourself in your, in your training plan, uh, to where you don’t say yes to a fun group ride and don’t really know how it’s going to go, but it always turns out. Great. So, um, that’s, that’s a piece of advice that I have, especially for young writers is like leverage your, your community or, you know, seek out the people around you that are doing the same thing as you
Adam Pulford (00:23:23):
Let’s see. I couldn’t agree more. Couldn’t agree more. Uh, well, I know you started working with Jim Miller and that’s when, you know, your structure probably changed quite a bit there too. Um, can you talk about what you’re doing a little bit before Jim, and then once you started working with him and maybe even what the experience was going through that transition?
Christopher Blevins (00:23:44):
Yeah. Um, I mean, I would honestly say the structure almost went down in some ways. Um, and I know, you know, you’ve had Jim on and I’m sure he’s talked about like his philosophy of just building the engine and you just go and out and, you know, like, honestly just busting your. So like a structure I wasn’t accounting for every minute of the ride in a specific power zone, but the work went up for sure. And the volume went up, um, which I wasn’t expecting because I was choosing to focus on the mountain bike at that time. And I was, I thought that, uh, you know, I’d be doing hour and a half rides, like two and a half hour rides. And now those are, those are, those are short, short. Um, so when I had a few four hour days in a row with like high endurance, it was like, Ooh, this is, this is grueling.
Christopher Blevins (00:24:35):
And, um, I think that Jim’s philosophy, uh, really centers around that engine building. And, uh, it takes time, you know, I mean, building fitness, uh, year in, year out, like we’ll continue to stack the pyramid higher on your form. And, uh, I think that’s where, where I’m, where I’m at and we’ll hopefully continue to see those gains, but transition was, was mid season. I kind kinda realized, um, you know, I wanted to change and just to see what I was capable of with a higher workload. And I remember before I sort of alluded this just a second ago, but before Australia worlds, my first year under 23, like I had a few four hour days and I was like, like, Tim, why am I, why am I doing this? And he’s like, volume builds fitness. And I was like, all right. And then I had one day I went, if he’s, if Jim listens to that.
Christopher Blevins (00:25:29):
So probably maybe he’ll remember and laugh about it, but I certainly remembered, um, I had a, like four hour ride and I did three hours and 40 minutes. And, you know, I think this was after I had asked him why he had the high volume a month or so away from world champs. And, uh, he says, you know, 20 minutes short is, um, an hour and a half a week, which is, you know, five hours a month, which is, you know, 50 hours, um, of trading block or something. And I was like, man, am I like on this prison sentence of doing it? But like now I’m at a point where a four hour endurance plus ride, which is that high level, uh, of endurance that you can just kind of uncomfortable all day. Like, I really love those days and I’ll go out and pick this epic ride and just bust it out. And, uh, it’s funny how your perspective of that and your perspective of what’s hard changes, the more you really settle into it. So it took some adjusting, but yeah,
Adam Pulford (00:26:32):
Yeah, yeah. That that’s entirely, it takes time. But once you have that fitness, I mean, when you’re fit, everything’s more fun, including those long sticky, temporary hides, like you’re talking about, but you know, a Jim’s coming from, and I shared similar mentality with them, but it’s like, what he’s doing there is, you know, 20 minutes short on one ride, you do that over the course of seven days. It starts to add up, you do that over the course of, you know, 31 days. It really adds up and did a podcast with Steven Siler. And he talked about kind of that long-term approach to developing an athlete. And it’s not only the long rides, but it’s like a bunch of those long rides strong together over time, over time to build that engine and get that pyramid, uh, nice and wide. So we can go nice and high it’s, you know, it in volume does build fitness and then eventually, you know, hone it down to get that performance, which is where we’re at right now.
Christopher Blevins (00:27:26):
Totally. Totally. Yeah. Yeah. So just to speak on that, I think, yeah. And I’m sure Stephen Seiler would say that something along the lines, as far as my limited understanding of his philosophy, like training is a lot more simple than people often make it. And, you know, you still need incredibly smart people like yourself and Jim and Steven, you know, leading the athletes, but, um, yeah, you just kinda gotta put your nose to the grindstone sometimes. And then as you get closer to the event, understand what output you need for that and hone it in a bit closer.
Adam Pulford (00:28:04):
Yeah. And that’s it. And I think not to training is simple in my head, human physiology and human psychology is calm.
Christopher Blevins (00:28:14):
Very true, very well said. Yeah.
Adam Pulford (00:28:17):
Getting the athlete to have buy-in and, and getting them motivated to do the work that that’s, you know, that’s the art of it. And when you can do that, when you have somebody like Jim or Steven, that can motivate the athlete in intelligent ways and sift through the BS that’s out there. Cause there’s a lot of BS. And I think that’s what makes the strategy complicated or deciding on a strategy complicated that most athletes, yeah. They, they, they want the, you know, the secret weapon or the, the magic pill or something like this, and it’s just a bunch of work, good rest. And to get it done and then have, have some good timing.
Christopher Blevins (00:28:56):
So yeah, totally.
Adam Pulford (00:28:58):
Yeah. No, I like that. I like that. So, um, kind of coming back to you, you know, you alluded to it a few times, but like when you started working with Jimmy, you hadn’t decided necessarily to go later to focus on the mountain bike for the Olympics. When did you make that decision?
Christopher Blevins (00:29:16):
It was actually, it was pretty early on talking to Jim and he was an advocate of it kind of from the inception of when we started working together. Um, that is like a long ago. Was this, yeah, this was three years ago. I want to say. Um, yeah, but like, I’ve told this story a few times in the past month, but I had a sticky note on my wall, freshman year of college, which was 2016. Um, that said Tokyo. So like I’ve had this on my mind, you know, dreams since I was a kid, but past four years, I really realized like I could do this. And, uh, it definitely had a lot to do with my decision to leave action in 20, 20, 20, 19, sorry. And, um, and just focus on the mailbag. So it was good timing. Um, and you know, at that time we were chasing points to try to secure two spots and we fell a bit short, but, um, yeah, Jim and I have had this plan to work towards it for three, four years. Now
Adam Pulford (00:30:20):
We’ll get into that here in just a second, but I guess since we brought it up, how did it feel when you heard that you actually made that spot? Yeah,
Christopher Blevins (00:30:29):
It’s, you know, I mean, it goes without saying it’s emotional really special. Um, and I, I knew more or less like certainty that I had it, but still like getting the official call. Like I didn’t expect to actually get the goosebumps and feel it so strongly, even though I knew what I was going to hear on the other end of the phone. Um, but yeah, I mean, it it’s an honor and, uh, it’s, it’s the continuation of the dream and that kind of lives in the process if that makes sense. Yup.
Adam Pulford (00:31:00):
A hundred percent, a hundred percent makes sense. Um, and you mentioned that 20, 19 to 2020, um, year in, in, in the transition, I mean, we had a little pandemic, um, and get in the way and, and still kind of, you know, we’ll definitely hang it in there. Uh, how did COVID change things for you? How did it change your
Christopher Blevins (00:31:20):
Yeah, well, you know, 2019, wasn’t a great season for me. I had high hopes and fell a bit short and, uh, a lot of it, I won’t go too deep in this, but I think throughout that year, I realized like I a bit more why I wanted to be a bike racer and, um, how I wanted to be a bike racer and kind of the inner journey through that and realizing like, yeah, you know, I do want this and I want it my way. And, um, it was important, you know, year of kind of that reflection to realize the purpose and smashing pedals and pursuing his goal. Um, yeah, and I think if I didn’t have that, those challenges in 2019 and come out of it with a bit of a renewed sense of purpose, I would have, uh, not worked as hard as I did in 2020.
Christopher Blevins (00:32:13):
Um, we’re so fortunate to cyclist that throughout the pandemic, it was the best social distance activity you could ask for. Um, having, you know, we’re so fortunate and I was in San Luis Obispo and these beautiful roads and busted my and I planned some, I plan a mock grand tour of sorts, and it wasn’t obviously quite the level of a Grant’s tour, but it was like close to 30 hours for three weeks. Um, and I had, I do some creative things, like bring out five guys, cat ones that are, that had fresh legs on one day and talk some trash and then let them attack me at the end. And I was like the one who had to pull back every move. Um, so I mean, that was, uh, and then also as, as a bunch of pros did, like, I went for a ton of KOMS and I have one of those employee stays and have to steal like two 20 minute KOMS throughout it.
Christopher Blevins (00:33:08):
And it was so cool to realize, like in training, you don’t have to go on the perfect 5% grade hill and meet your threshold and stare at your power number the whole time you can do the same effort, um, when you’re kind of chasing a carrot, whether that’s a Strava segment or, um, whatever, uh, some friends. So that’s from a training perspective, I worked through it. And then later in the year I went to Europe, had about a month before the world cups, um, in one race in there and to get my feet under me and, um, ran into Tom and Pitcock and, you know, he showed us, I think, uh, especially with Tom, for listeners who don’t know, I’m sure, you know, what Tom peacock is at this point, but, uh, yeah, after he’d hoped that if not
Adam Pulford (00:34:00):
Google him in, in, in Watson triple TV.
Christopher Blevins (00:34:03):
Yeah. But after he smashed Nova Mesto, you know, beat all the elites, I was, I’m like, man, can’t you just hand me the, you 23 world championships for, for real humans. But I say that obviously joking, um, you know, uh, Tom was by far the most, you know, the most deserving that you can get, but long way are we saying the world’s was a big goal in my mind? And second place again, I had one in 2018, but a silver medal to Tom peacock was, um, was great. So, uh, that kept me motivated throughout the whole year. Cause I had the feeling worlds was going to happen.
Adam Pulford (00:34:40):
Yeah. Well that’s yeah. I mean, a lot of athletes have had to recalibrate over over that 20, 20 year. And it seems like you recalibrate, uh, pretty well, uh, to, to get that, but to go in a little deeper there, when you said the mock grand tour, what was yours in gyms? What was the rationale? What was the goal of simulating? Something like that to, to the stresses of the body, to the, the mindset? I mean, why go so big on a year where there was no recent round?
Christopher Blevins (00:35:14):
Yeah. Well, I mean, on one hand it’s a goal in and of itself. And if you make training camps, their own achievement to work through it nicely wraps it up in a little bow and you’re like, yeah, that, that camp that we called, you know, uh, whatever you want to call it, put a fancy name to it, make a Google docs and like play in routes and have your take Kate epic. Yeah, exactly. Exactly. I don’t have a
Adam Pulford (00:35:44):
Living zero. I don’t, I don’t know.
Christopher Blevins (00:35:45):
Yeah, I’ll use that one next time. Um, perfect. But yeah, I had a bunch of points, a point days where I had friends pick me up in Santa Barbara, like 120 miles down the coast and, um, really like got creative with it. And when you approach training like that in plan it beforehand, it as a lot more fun and you’re a little more motivated. Um, so that was one rationale. And then he has coached a lot of the world tour guys in saw that any of the guys that were in their early twenties who had a world tour in their legs just got a huge step up the next year. Um, and by no means, did I actually get a world tour or grand tour in my legs? Uh, but I tried to do the best I could. And uh, that level, that load didn’t necessarily pay off like in the short term. But I think in the long-term continuous hits, like that will start to stack up really well.
Adam Pulford (00:36:40):
Yeah. That’s why I bring it up because there’s two fold there. One is, there’s a principle of training called variability or variety. And as a coach, you need to be, you need to stay creative to add in variety, to change things up, to look at things in different ways to stress the athlete in a different way. And you know, when I heard you guys doing that, I was like, oh, that’s, that’s awesome. That that’s a brilliant way to do it. Right. And the, you know, chasing, chasing, uh, king of the mountains and getting segments and all this kind of stuff, really motivating way to do this during COVID. And the other thing is, you know, spot on with a developmental, right. Or those who have more of the opportunity to, um, ride and race their bike more in a very, in a functionally overreaching, or I would call it, call it overtraining if you want, but get super tired. Uh, over the course of three weeks, they come out a changed rider and, you know, you read anything, you interview athletes and after their first grand tour, if they survive, but they bounce back and still want to ride the bike. Um, they’re change rider for sure. Yeah.
Christopher Blevins (00:37:47):
Yeah. The one, obviously Astrick to throw in there, which I know, I know, you know, uh, you were maybe going to say this, but is rest after, obviously it’s so huge. I really shut it down for a week and then rebuilt from there. Uh, but you can’t, you can’t do that all the time. Um, so three weeks is sort of the maximum that you can go though, those, you know, 30 hour weeks with intensity, but, uh, yeah. Got it. Got arrest just as how I used to train.
Adam Pulford (00:38:16):
Yeah. And that’s the asterix and, and you, you alluded to that as well as like the, you know, the gains in the short term may have not been, you know, as, as, uh, clear, but in the long-term they will be in, that’s just it, and I’m not advocating really anybody to do this on their own. Like if they listen to this, like, don’t do that on your own. Like, make sure you got somebody overlooking your shoulder and giving you some guidance, but it’s a very, a very effective way if you have all the tools in place to really make an overload.
Speaker 4 (00:38:43):
So, yeah. Yeah. So let’s
Adam Pulford (00:38:46):
Talk about the specificity of Tokyo, which I think is really interesting because, uh, Tokyo is projected to be one of the hottest Olympics on record. And so question to you is what kind of considerations have you and Jim, um, taken in training to prep specifically for, uh, Tokyo?
Christopher Blevins (00:39:08):
So, um, you know, we’ve known for a while, how important the heat, uh, acclimatization will be for Tokyo. And, uh, you know, from now we’ve got almost 30 days backed up to the event in a year in Italy, in 90 degrees and sweating at time every day. So, um, starting that direct process, like right before the event, but I’ve also done the sauna protocol, a bit of a Sonic protocol after training. Um, you know, where after the ride, you hop in the sauna for, for 20 minutes, you build up to that point and, uh, you gotta do it carefully. You can’t, it’s another training stress and, uh, you can’t just, you know, not adjust your training. So we were mindful of that. And then, um, periodically kind of plugged in more sauna, and then now I’ve got, I’ve got two races. Uh, one of them were world cup before Tokyo, and those are great opportunities to, uh, deploy the, the strategies that the whole team has for, uh, staying cool as you can. And then for me, personally, I am as salty of a sweater as it gets. Um, I did a sweat test and I’m just like top of the chart. So I need to drink a lot of sodium beforehand. And, uh, and hyperhydrate, um, so anybody, you know, who’s listening and he goes through a long subway ride and gets a bunch of assault on their bibs. Like you’re probably a salty sweater too, and you probably need to drink more sodium before your eyes, then you, uh, then you think so, so
Adam Pulford (00:40:42):
Yeah, yeah, no, that’s, that’s exactly it. And I think it’s as simple as that too, in terms of like, how do you prepare for a hot environment? Well, you have to stress your body with, with heat stress. And there’s very intelligent ways of doing this as a very unintelligent ways of doing this. Um, so if we can just back up to the, say a post ride, sauna treatment, uh, like what temperatures are you starting at and going up to, and what are your dosages are, or your, um, exposure times in the sauna afterwards? Yeah,
Christopher Blevins (00:41:15):
So, uh, throughout a week, um, probably worked my self from 10 minutes to 20 and, uh, slowly rehydrated, like, not just, didn’t just, you know, down just glasses of water right after, um, in, in replace with electrolytes, but do it following the, the, um, training in, I don’t know, you know, the specifics of the science to it, but, um, regardless of if you signed, uh, you know, routinely like this after a ride, it’s gonna boost your blood plasma volume and, uh, generate a response that, um, is similar to maybe sleeping in an altitude tent, you know, um, in some ways, right. So as far as adaptation, it can, it can start to develop. So, um, it was just, and also mentally, like knowing that I can sit in a sauna when I’m at post ride really hot for 20 minutes and get used to that feeling of, uh, you know, suffocating a little bit from the heat, but
Adam Pulford (00:42:19):
Yeah, there’s some mental toughness training that’s going on in conjunction with, uh, plasma volume expansion, for sure. Um, and then in terms of knowing you’re a salty sweater, so you had, you had a, um, sweat test done. Did you do that at the Olympic Paralympic training center or where’d you have that done it?
Christopher Blevins (00:42:39):
I actually did it up in Santa Cruz, uh, closer to, to me in San Luis Obispo, so. Gotcha.
Adam Pulford (00:42:45):
Gotcha. Do you remember like your sodium concentration rates of the top of your head or, cause I’m just,
Christopher Blevins (00:42:51):
I think it was like, it was over 1500 milligrams per liter, so yeah,
Adam Pulford (00:42:59):
That had to have like three test sites on the body or just, I think
Christopher Blevins (00:43:03):
We were just doing like my finger, uh, her hands, but yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Adam Pulford (00:43:09):
1500 is good, but again, the indicator of, you know, having some sweat or having the salt lines on your, on your kit afterwards, you know, if you taste your sweat shirts salty, but those are good indicators. So if that’s what you’re experiencing yet, put it in cause use it.
Speaker 4 (00:43:24):
Yeah, totally, totally.
Adam Pulford (00:43:26):
How do you, how do you preload your electrolytes for your sodium?
Christopher Blevins (00:43:30):
Um, um, yeah, I’m, I’m, I’m not set in a, in a routine that I’m been locked in for, for years at this point. So I’m still kind of tinkering with stuff, but, um, I have a specific amount, um, you know, something like 2000 milligrams of sodium before a race in the, in the bottle and an hour before and in go in, not peeing every 30 minutes. Um, and certainly not being 30 minutes off of just water. You want that, that high sodium level. Um, and you will store water a bit, maybe blow it up a little bit and you know, your belly will feel a little full if you have that much sodium in your system, but when it’s that hot, I think, uh, it’s important for me. And then during the races, I’ll, I’ll have, um, uh, bottle Mount bike pits at world cups typically have two feeds. So in one of the feeds, I’ll grab a salt bottle, um, electrolyte bottle. And then in the other one, I’ll, uh, grab a more carbo, uh, carb loaded bottle and then, uh, have some jails as well. But that’s the strategy. Um, I’m starting to really lock into
Adam Pulford (00:44:40):
Love it. Yeah. Sounds good. Perfect strategy to me. Um, and just, again, one curiosity, granular thing is if you, are you say training or hard racing about how many milligrams of sodium are you trying to get down per hour?
Christopher Blevins (00:44:58):
Yeah. Um, you know, per hour tricky one, right? If it’s an hour and a half race, I’ll typically have three Bibles. Yeah. So try to drink like three full bottles, which is, uh, six half bottles. And then you grab them in the feed. Um, that’d be on the upper range, but I’ll drink some water too, because you just have to with the stomach, sometimes water tastes so good and salt mix is like the worst thing on the planet for sure. But, um, it’s an emotional ride. Yeah. So, you know, seven 50 or so, uh, milligrams per bottle. So that would be, um, 2,200 or so. Um, yep,
Speaker 4 (00:45:40):
Yep. Yeah. And
Adam Pulford (00:45:42):
The reason I want to point that out again, it’s like once you’ve confirmed that I always confirm with science and numbers, if you can, uh, when you’re trying to dial in a, um, uh, fueling strategy, it’s like once you know that you’re a high, high user high burner of the sodium, I mean, put it in, cause your body’s going to use it. I wouldn’t do it blindly necessarily. I wouldn’t listen to Christopher Blevins podcasts and then go out and hit four grams of sodium per per hour. Yeah. Particularly if you’re not sweating a ton. Right. And you know, that’s, it don’t want hypertension at the time. Exactly. Cause yeah. I mean, it, it, it can not going to go crazy, but yes, hypertension, lots of, um, uh, kind of inflammation that can, that can go on too. These are like extreme measures for extreme environments, which is why we’re talking about Tokyo hot humid environments
Speaker 4 (00:46:32):
For performance. Totally. Totally. Yeah.
Adam Pulford (00:46:35):
So kind of that specificity for Tokyo and what you do in Italy and all this kind of stuff. Uh, most listeners are not prepping for Tokyo, but they do have some big races coming up, say like a recent QI, epic, for example, or Ironman, Arizona. Uh, what advice would you give them if they’re trying to prepare for a long, hard epic feat in, in a hot environment?
Christopher Blevins (00:46:57):
Yeah. Um, well, one thing that applies in general, regardless of your discipline is when you have hard training rides, um, that mirror the intensity and the length of, uh, what your efforts are going to be like, do your same strategy and training. Um, it seems like such an obvious thing, but so often, you know, you, you forget the bottle you’re pre-loading whether you grab like the leftover cookies as ride food, instead of the chews or the gels that you typically race with. And I, you know, you can’t eat the same gels, every workout and expect to ever want to have them in a race, uh, let alone have a good stomach for it. But, um, it’s important on specific days to like have the same warmup strategy, um, in the same fueling strategy before you go at it. Um, and that’s something I’m really using right now before Tokyo.
Christopher Blevins (00:47:54):
Uh, and then specifically those long, you know, rides in the summer, uh, long races in the summer, like simple, right. But hygiene and, uh, you know, um, I’ve listened to, uh, I don’t know if you have, but a couple of podcasts about, uh, he in cooling strategies and Dr. Lieberman’s from Stanford and he has a couple of interesting, um, interesting notes on, on cooling the palms of your hands and your feet and how to like lower your core temperature. So there’s tons of ways you can, you can try to make it work. Like if you’re fortunate to have someone here, do you ice socks at the, at the feed, like take those, um, it doesn’t seem like a priority to grab a, uh, what are they a panty hose in a feed zone in Tokyo at the Olympics and put that around your neck. It’s like, no, man, like, I’m just going to focus on the rates of course. But like that is going to be crucial to grab that ASAP and put it on your neck. Um, so, you know, don’t, don’t ignore those little things you can do. Um, and then pre hydrate is huge. You know, you can’t just do it on the bike. Yeah.
Adam Pulford (00:49:12):
And you’ve mentioned pre-cooling here a few times. You’re absolutely right. And we’ll, we’ll talk about that before we, before we wrap. But, um, the pre-cooling enduring cooling is interesting. And I remember, um, I was working with this is back on show air working with Keegan and he had a pre cooling device. It was, it was interesting because those are the times where we had some, uh, some gloves that were pre-cooling, but it was very, um, not applicable to mountain biking, but then we came out with, um, cooling sensor for, uh, the wrist. And so it would go on the underside of the wrist and you press a button. And I think we, it was like claim to be about an hour of cooling effect to go right there on the wrist. So you wouldn’t have to grab ice sock or anything like this. And we tried it at, uh, first window, my course, we tried it in a race for the first time. It didn’t work very well, flipped it over to me in the, in the pits. And, um, I, and, uh, that didn’t work out so well. So we’d go back to the ice sock for sure. And, uh, in the ice side, the pantyhose with ice, throw it in the back, grab those at races. Um, are you going to deploy that strategy at Tokyo? Yeah.
Christopher Blevins (00:50:17):
You know, I think there’s, you know, Jim and there’s a whole team of people Dale ended in and, um, I don’t know the exact specifics yet, but I’ve some emails with, with the whole protocol and we’ll, I won’t, uh, you know, spend 10 minutes talking about it, but it includes things like the ice fast pre-cooling strategies, um, socks during the race, um, like slushies before you start,
Speaker 4 (00:50:44):
You know, a bunch of stuff. So, yeah,
Adam Pulford (00:50:46):
And kind of the whole goal there, and yeah, we’re not going to spend a ton of time, but the whole goal is, you know, core temperature will rise obviously. And once it reaches a point, performance goes down and the whole goal is to keep athlete. Cool. So that, that core temperature is then delayed so that you can race at your high performance for longer and hopefully core temperature stays lower than the other person. And so that in, in competition cooling and pre-cooling is
Speaker 4 (00:51:11):
Very important. So, yeah.
Adam Pulford (00:51:15):
Well, before we, before we wrap this up, I know a balance is an interesting one for athletes, uh, and you seem to find it off the bike. Um, tell me more about, I mean, you’re done with school now, but you have a huge music component to what you do and, uh, some rap and some poetry. Tell us more about that.
Christopher Blevins (00:51:35):
Yeah, well, you know, it’s, um, it’s a simple, you know, outweigh in form of expression. That’s so different than being an athlete in such a good balance. Um, I actually recently wrote a little blog for, for a friend, um, in his, his group. He’s got about that kind of poetic heart in the poet poet, Pope poetry process, excuse me, poetic process, um, in how for so long I’ve thought of it as something that’s so different than cycling, that it balances things out. But in a lot of ways, I think that the art of poetry in the process of poetry and, you know, digging into your depth and figuring out what you’re made of applies just the same to being an athlete. And, you know, there’s a lot of room as an athlete to have a poetic art and artistic mind. Uh, so, you know, there’s a lot of athletes with, with, uh, kind of quirks or, or hobbies that they have running parallel to cycling.
Christopher Blevins (00:52:32):
And it’s, it’s hugely important to keep those other sides of us alive. Um, and that was also everything to do with why I picked to go to Cal poly instead of a cycling school. And I wanted friends that didn’t know the sport and, uh, who I could relate to outside of the bike. And, uh, that was huge. So the balance and perspective is the most important thing. I think the balance in doing everything at once is, is less important. You know, I’ve realized, I think through the past couple of years of, of, uh, occasional scatteredness and running around like a chicken with my head cut off that, um, sometimes you only need to do one thing and only need to focus on Tokyo or your job or whatever, whatever have you. Um, but keeping the balance perspective is more important than, than a balance of action in a lot of ways. So, um, understanding, you know, what else there is out there and where it sits in the world and in your world is crucial. Um, and, and music and poetry is, is the opportunity to reflect on that for me. And, um, yeah, I’ve got my mini guitar here and I’m terrible at it, but I, I brought that in my bike case to Europe and I’m trying to get better. So nice, nice.
Adam Pulford (00:53:45):
Yeah, I think again, balance such an interesting one and I, um, I’m glad you mentioned it cause it’s like we get out of balance a lot and we embellish balanced to me almost like doesn’t exist. Right. We cause life it’s a zoomed out time period when we’re talking about balance, right. And there’s these time periods where you’re just severely out of balance and then you swing back the other way to find this other balance in order to balance it all out to where you want to go in the end. And so it’s interesting like that. And I was listening to a podcast where you mentioned, uh, you know, the rap and the music and the poetry, um, being so separate from the bike. And I was like, man, Christopher, I think it’s, I think it’s real similar, right? It’s like a different mode, right. Because the creativity in the, in the flow states that occur in both, it’s like various
Christopher Blevins (00:54:34):
Totally. And I honestly just recently had that, had that realization. So. Interesting.
Adam Pulford (00:54:40):
Interesting. Yeah. Um, and I understand that you, that you have, or, or do you work with, uh, some kids at a juvenile hall in near Durango, um, kind of working on some of this poetry and yeah.
Christopher Blevins (00:54:53):
And so, and there’s a Bisco actually, um, who had started this. Yeah, I was a sociology minor in college and that’s kind of how I, um, became passionate about, you know, uh, the human side of criminal justice and, and, and, you know, um, had the opportunity to volunteer with this great organization and help run a creative writing program there more, more often than, than not. We just sit and play cards with the kids and avid, I went a couple of times this past year, once it reopened with COVID. Um, but haven’t been able to have that consistency, that’s, that’s really important to, to build those relationships. Um, but you know, this is an example of choosing something that, or widened perspective and choosing something that’s important for, you know, a development that has nothing to do with, on the bike stuff and, um, the development of, of human humanity and what my own humanity and how I want to relate to people.
Christopher Blevins (00:55:51):
So, um, it’s a simple thing and it’s one hour a week, um, when I’m available to go in and, um, talk to kids who, who may not have people believe in them, um, and just, yeah. You know, give them the time of day to play cards with them and, and, uh, and be a resource, you know, if they, if they want to talk to you about stuff. So, um, I’m also helping a, uh, within a couple of employees from specialized, not affiliated with the company, but, um, we’re running a program at an adult prison in, uh, Salinas valley. Um, and this is there’s this group, it’s a maximum security prison and there’s, uh, a group that has organized to reach out to at-risk youth and, uh, try to tell them their stories and have an impact from behind the bars. Um, so they lead seminars on, you know, mistakes they made and, and development and how they can change the paradigms we have. So, um, I write letters with a lot of inmates and have learned so much about, you know, about so much. So that’s been huge and I’d love to continue to, to build those pathways and explore that, which, uh, you know, is obviously the world away from, from the bike stuff. But, uh, hugely important to me.
Adam Pulford (00:57:12):
Yeah, that is, that is so rad. Uh, I didn’t know that about you, uh, just before this, this podcast, so that’s really cool. Uh, keep that going. That kind of inspires me to, uh, get off this microphone or get off the phone and from, uh, from a bike race and go do something, something different. So,
Christopher Blevins (00:57:32):
Well, thanks. I appreciate it. Yeah,
Adam Pulford (00:57:34):
Yeah, yeah, man. Well, we covered, we covered a ton today, Christopher, and this is a wonderful conversation. You’re a fascinating human being. And I want to thank you again for taking your time to be on the show. I know you got big things going on, so, um, we’ll put a pin in it here just at the top of the hour. But my last question to you is, um, because like I said, we do have a lot of juniors listening to this podcast and we also have, uh, people chasing their goals. So if you could give any advice to the young athletes, writers, musicians, or anyone pursuing their big dream, what would you tell?
Christopher Blevins (00:58:10):
Yeah, um, I mean, I, I, I kind of, I feel like I’ve to go back to what I said earlier about two things, two things that are sort of different sort of related, um, one of them is community and, you know, share the, what you’re going through with others and live in that kind of gift that you’re doing together, whether it’s riding your bike or, um, making music or whatever. But I think there’s, there’s a lot of power in connection and there’s a lot of power to opening to other people and involving them in your process. And like, I started the show with, um, I’m the product of so many people who help, you know, provide me opportunities to get here and provide the love along the way. And, uh, you know, lean into those, be a resource for other people around you and, uh, just go shred with your friends, you know, and then other side of it more personal is, is slow down and take the time to, to reflect and to examine your why.
Christopher Blevins (00:59:09):
And it doesn’t have to always be some, some big kind of like foundational, you know, deep, philosophical examination of, of why you’re doing something. Sometimes it’s super simple when you’re, you’re doing this because you want that, but no, no, your own reason, external have other motivations and, um, other achievements you could, you could, you could get help there. Um, and, and, you know, people, people know what I’m talking about here, but so often we, we forget to slow down and we don’t think there’s more to life than, than just increasing in speed. And, you know, we all need that reminder, especially now. So, uh, I know I do, but, um, I do too. Yeah. Yeah. But keep that alive in the sport, you know, keep that, that feeling of why you got into it and, uh, what you want to be as an athlete or, or whatever it is. Um, keep that alive.
Adam Pulford (01:00:05):
Beautiful. Love it. Well, thank you, Christopher. Uh, thanks for the time and good luck and Tokyo. Yeah. Appreciate it. Thanks a lot.