Rule No. 2: Join a group ride
When Petersen first started out in the sport, she did at least one group ride a week, which not only helped her improve her fitness but also helped her improve her bike handling skills. In fact, group rides are one of the only ways that you can improve your bike handling skills, something that can save you upwards of 90 seconds on a technical 40K course, Petersen estimates. “Just getting the experience and being around people and having those quick movements gets you more comfortable,” Petersen said. Group rides also help you get used to riding at speeds that you could never reach by yourself without the help of a draft.