Meet Ryan Watkins
16 years old, lives in South Wales and started being coached by Rowe & King in January this year.
1. Describe your cycling 12 months ago, before Rowe & King started working with you?
Ryan – My cycling 12 months ago was very leisurely paced doing mainly club runs averaging 16mph and cycling just for fun. Although club rides were structured and well organised they weren’t focused to a personal level. Thinking the best way to improve was to put in as many miles in as I could. Also thinking that 150 miles a week was a lot of mileage. I also had lots of support from club riders who said that I was showing potential but had no real idea of how to really improve. Due to a range of abilities in the groups I didn’t feel as I was working hard enough on some occasions.
2. Describe your cycling now?
Ryan – My cycling now is very focused on my personal goals for the racing season ahead. I now cycle six days a week, every week, doing a variety of sessions, long and short to achieve my goals. Since I joined Rowe & King I’ve seen an unbelievable improvement in my cycling performance, from being able to recover quicker from rides to being one of the last 3 to remain on a chaingang, which has been a result of my dramatic improvement in my endurance and the determination to work hard. I have been and will always be focused on achieving my goals and grateful for the time and effort Rowe & King has put in to create my training plan. Having experienced racing this season I’ve been slowly developing racing knowledge and building my experience for Junior races next year.
3. Best cycling achievement to date?
Ryan – My best cycling achievement to date is coming 5th in the Welsh National Circuit Championship.
4.Toughest sessions prescribed by Rowe & King?
Ryan – Rowe & King provide many tough sessions which is what I want in order for me to improve. One of toughest is the Derny (motor paced) session I do on a Monday where I have one hour and thirty minutes of intense concentration to maintain speed behind the bike which occasional reaches 40mph.
5. Favourite session prescribed by Rowe & King?
Ryan – One of my favourite sessions is a Derny (motor paced) session, again, because I have to push myself to stay behind the bike all the way until the end of the session, which is brutal! I also enjoy doing Courtney’s benchmark session as it shows me where I am at and is really motivating when you improve.
6. Goals for 2017?
Ryan – I have a few goals, as follows;
a) To ride for Wales.
b) To get my 2nd CAT license by May 1st.
c) To make the Welsh Team for the Tour of Wales.
d) To finish in the top half of the Cadence Road Race as a starting point.
e) To progress through the season in the national series and win a race!
7. What is your favourite thing about going out on your bike?
Ryan – The thrill of riding fast and pushing myself to the limit. Also working as part of a group – I love the team element of cycling.