On this edition of The Kona Edge we chat to Jacqui Giuliano and find out what she has done to improve her Ironman bike performance. She reveals what was the one thing that greatly improved her performance and shares her favourite workout with us.
BRAD BROWN: Welcome onto this edition of The Kona Edge, let’s chat some biking now, we head back to the States and we’re joined by Jacqui Giuliano. Jacqui, welcome back onto The Kona Edge. Thanks for taking the time to chat to us today.
JACQUI GIULIANO: Thanks for having me Brad.
BRAD BROWN: Jacqui your bike, you’ve improved it. You’re very good on the bike, but you’ve improved it a lot over the last few years. It also helps if you enjoy the long stuff. What would you say has been your biggest improvement on the bike and what’s brought it about?
Change your mindset and get stronger on your Ironman bike
JACQUI GIULIANO: I think, this sounds really silly, but the more you bike, the stronger you’re going to become. And for me having the run background, it was always really hard for me to want to be on the bike versus out running some sort of miles.
I think changing that mindset, you’re only going to get stronger on the bike if you’re on the bike more often. I think that really helped and then in terms of like performing better at races.
I remember it was Muncie Half Ironman last year that my husband had made some comment to me. Like you know, I wish I could see, you work so hard on the trainer, but then when you get outside, it’s like you don’t push yourself as hard or something. Almost accusing me of sabotaging my bike and I was like ‘Screw you man, I’m gonna work as hard as I can.’
I pushed myself really hard and Muncie, I had a huge PR on the bike, so I don’t know how mentally that, it just clicked for me.
BRAD BROWN: As far as the difference between road and using the indoor trainer, you do spend a bit of time on the indoor? Do you find that helps your road performance or do you find it difficult to take that across from the trainer to the road?
The numbers can help you push yourself
JACQUI GIULIANO: I think for a while I was kind of stuck in, I can’t push myself as hard outside. Like it’s hard for me to find a rhythm and dial things in. But I started to pay attention more to what numbers I was using for my Power and everything on the trainer inside and really trying to focus on those numbers outside. Because I think before, outside I wouldn’t really focus on numbers as much as just kind of go by feel. But I think some people that works for them, but for me, I’m just not one of those people. I need to see the number and that’s what helps me.
BRAD BROWN: How much of a game changer has Power been for you?
JACQUI GIULIANO: Oh my gosh, it’s been huge. I feel like I’m pushing myself hard. But then having something that shows, confirms it, or does not confirm it, tells me, oh, you are pushing harder, oh, maybe I’m having a really bad day and it’s just, maybe I need to coaster back in and reset.
BRAD BROWN: What are you trying to work on improving on the bike right now?
JACQUI GIULIANO: I think just really staying consistent because sometimes I have really good stretches and then I’ll have not as great of a 5 mile split and kind of get down on myself a little bit. I’m usually able to use that to motivate me and get fired up and a little angry. But trying to be more consistent and not have any of those lulls that then gets me angry and fired up again. Trying to just ride the whole thing at a consistent rate.
BRAD BROWN: How do you stay motivated? That’s a big thing that people struggle with too, particularly once you’ve done a few seasons. It’s always easy for your first one to be up for it and be fired up, but after you’ve done 3,4,5 of these things, it becomes more and more difficult. As you said, to get out of bed particularly on a Saturday morning after a long week. What inspires you, what fires you up to keep going?
JACQUI GIULIANO: I think right now, I just haven’t had the final experience that I want to have. I’ve had a lot of good races and I’m very lucky, but I think for me, I haven’t hit my end goal or what I would think is my end goal yet. And that’s why I keep working so hard is because when I decide that it’s time to put a pause on Ironman’s and have a kid or something, I want to be totally satisfied with what I gave for that season.
BRAD BROWN: As far as workouts, what are your favourite workouts? I’m going to split it in two here, on the road and indoor, what do you love doing?
JACQUI GIULIANO: Honestly, on the road, I don’t do as much. I’m really lucky where I live. I have a loop that goes, it’s 46 miles to that loop and then it comes back to my house. And then I have a 54 mile loop going the opposite way and so that, the goal for that is always, when I’m doing my 100 milers, to beat the time before. So it’s not necessarily a workout, I guess, I try to put some faster pace stuff in there, but it’s just whatever I’m feeling on the day. But on the trainer, I really like, kind of like those little ladders almost. Not where it goes too high for the percentages. Maybe tap out at 80%. But I really like the two minute little runs on the ladder for probably a ten to twelve minute segment and do that 3-4 times. Those are my favourite type of workouts.
BRAD BROWN: Fantastic. Jacqui, thanks for joining us here on The Kona Edge today once again. Look forward to touching base and delving into your run, but we’ll save that for next time.
JACQUI GIULIANO: Sounds good.