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10 Things to Know about Training Camp

Updated: Dec 14, 2018

Matt Snow and Mike Dunlap gearing up to head out in Tucson 2018

Training with a bunch of like minded athletes can be fun. Follow these 10 Rules to get the most out of your trip. Or, you can scroll to the bottom and find my Personal Packing List.

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10. Like a Boy Scout, be prepared.

No one is going to complain about going to the LBS to get a new tire if you blew one on a ride and had to use a Park Tool TB-2 Emergency Tire Boot to get home. But what? You don’t have a boot? That’s a different story. Now everyone is stuck. These come in a pack of 3, but you'll only need one. I've been riding with one for 10 years and used it for the first time this summer. If you're riding tubeless, you make sure you have a plug kit. I use the Dynaplug system for my gravel bike at home.

Here’s what's in my saddle bag:

1. Park Tool TB-2 – small, thin, and easy to pack. I've finished a ride on this.

2. SRAM PowerLock Chain Connector 11-speed – Someone will break a chain, and it might be you. When you need it, you'll need it.

3. CO2 Cartridges – best to buy locally because they aren’t allowed on checked luggage. We'll stop by FairWheel, and we can get some then.

4. Pedro’s Tire Levers – they’re big, they don’t break, and you only need two. Lots of cool colors.

5. CRANKBROTHERs Crank Multi Tool – When the chain is broken, you’ll need a chain breaker. That’s why I choose this one. I’ve had mine for over 10 years. It’s got some rust on it, but it works great.

6. $50 – Because no one will say no to cash in a bind. Can also come in handy as a tire boot, but the TB-2 is a little cheaper!

7. Here is the exact same saddle bag I’ll bring with me to Tucson. It’s the Lizard Skins Micro Cache Saddle Bag and will hold everything I’ve mentioned above.

9. Ride the right tires for Tucson.

I love my Continental Grand Prix 4000s II. They are soft, supple and responsive. But they are not good for Tucson Goatheads. So every winter I pull out the Continental GatorSkins. They are good for punctures, and the ride isn’t as bad as you think. I don’t get special tubes. I usually ride the tubes I’ve been riding all year.

8. Have a rear light.

I know, we’re riding in a pack, but drivers are distracted. And having a light that’s high under your seatpost makes those who ride behind you distracted, too. That's why Coach Dunlap swears by his Garmin Varia RTL510 Radar Tail Light. It puts our 65 lumens during the day and flashes faster as cars get closer. Better yet, according to Coach Dunlap, because it links to his Garmin 520, he has a visual dot that tells him how fast cars are approaching so he doesn't have to take his eyes off the road.

7. We will ride rain...or shine...or snow.

Winter at Mt Lemmon during our Training Camp 2018
If I'm freezing, why am I sweating? (Mt Lemmon)

The weather in Tucson can be unpredictable this time of year. We will ride rain or shine, or if riding up Mt. Lemmon, then snow. So, be prepared. I’ve never been as cold or as hot at the same time as I’ve been while riding up Mt Lemmon! At a minimum you’ll need arm warmers, leg warmers, a wind vest, a cap and the DEFEET Duragloves. I’d add in a pack-able rain jacket and toe warmers or booties with DEFEET Wooleators, and a balaclava.

6. But you won’t need to pack too much of anything.

Because our house has a washing machine, you can pack a kit in your carry on and 2 in your checked luggage and be just fine all week. As long as you have a clean bib, you're ok. Your helmet, pedals and shoes should also be in your carry on, in case your checked luggage doesn’t make it on time.

5. Do you ship your bike or travel with it?

We usually ship to FairWheel Bikes in Tucson, AZ using Bike Flights. The prices have gone up from 2018, but it’s still cheaper than flying with your bike. You should write on the bike box if you want them to reassemble the bike. Having them reassemble your bike is a good deal, especially if you want to hit the road that afternoon, and don’t want to deal with the hassle of rebuilding your bike. They will have it put together and ready to roll when we pick it up. Fairwheel can break your bike down for you when we drop them off, too. Remember: It’s usually a good idea to give FairWheel at least a week to reassemble your bike, so you might need to ship it 2 weeks out. BikeFlights also sell bike boxes. Sometimes, your LBS will box it for you.

It's not a bad idea to consider an extra derailleur hanger when you ship your bike. Although I remove my derailleur before packing, having a bent hanger when you arrive can really dampen the mood. They're usually $10 and are bike specific.

4. What on-bike nutrition do you use?

I will bring Infinit for your water bottles that you’re free to use if you’d like. If you have a particular type of nutrition you like, please bring it. Or you can purchase it at FairWheel or the grocery store. Just remember, you’ll be going through nutrition pretty fast, so bring enough or plan on stocking up locally.

3. What post-workout recovery do you use?

I’m a big fan of Fairflife Core Power because it’s shelf stable and can travel with us on the van. I'll buy one for after each workout when when hit the grocery store the first go around. You’ll want to stay ahead of calories losses, so plan on consuming your post recovery workout option as soon as possible.

2. No rectangles in the morning

Training camp in the morning is about getting ready to go. Get dressed, pack your post-workout clothes bag, and eat. Spend any extra time stretching, doing yoga, and getting your body ready for the day ahead. You will have plenty of time to post on social medal after you've come back, stretched, showered, and that order.

1. Conserve energy

This is the most important concept to remember: You will accumulate fatigue over the week. You will need to minimize distractions and focus on why you're here. The mantra of eat, workout, sleep will be repeated up to 3 times a day. Anything that doesn't need to be done that week should wait. You'll have plenty of recovery time next week!

Seguoria East National Park
Don't bonk your last day because you're tired! (Seguoria East National Park)


You've read this far, and here's the packing list!


Bottle 1 - write your name on it

Bottle 2 - write your name on it

Bottle 3 - write your name on it and carry it on the plane

Did you change your powermeter battery?

Gatorskins (one word, Goatheads)

Pedal Wrench, if needed

Tubes x 2

Arm & Leg Warmers




Cell Phone Baggie (I use the Lezyne Caddy Bag and put it in my back pocket.)

Chamois Butt'r (some like the hot stuff for the cold weather, I like the no-leak packets)

Drawstring short-pack for dry gear to come down from Mt Lemmon -> VOLER BAG


Bibs for Luggage x 2

Jersey for Luggage x 2

Top, undershirt x 2

Shoe, toe covers and/or booties

Lezyne Micro Floor Pump (I'm packing mine so you don't need to.)

Socks, OL x 4

Socks, wooleator x 2

Jacket, Voler for rain/cold

Singlet, Run (can also use as a bike baselayer)

Rags for cleaning bikes

Serras Thunderbolt

Fleece or hoodie


Running shorts x 2

China Gel and/or Biofreeze

Electrical Tape

Etap batteries & charger

Flip Flops

Foam Roller

Yoga mat


Tights, compression

Running shoes, trail

Travel Pillow

Warm Croc Slippers


Lip Sunscreen

Long Sleeve Shirt for Cold

Spare derailleur hanger (?)

Carry on

Reading glasses

iPhone & extra battery (?)

10-ft iPhone charge cord & brick




Cleats -> dry lube them and pack in seperate bag


Camera, charger & UBS cable

Noise canceling headphones & spare battery

Gloves, Defeet DuraGlove

Garmin Edge 520 Bike Computer & charging cord

Forerunner charging cord

Print out of Car Rental/tickets/VRBO


Toiletry Bag

Sanitizer gel and wipes


Shaving Cream/Razor

Nail clipers

Medicines (allergy meds, vitamins, Naproxen, Tylenol)

Saddle Bag

CO2 Inflator

Tire Irons

Multipurpose tool

Spare Link (11 spd)

Tire boot





YMCA Card (on Phone)


Wear on the Plane

Forerunner 935

Bike socks

Down jacket


Running shoes



Bike baselayer



Looking forward to seeing you out there!

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