Hey thanks all for referencing the podcast in which we discussed this. Sorry I’m late to the game here, but if others have similar situations, here’s my take.
It’s easy to overcomplicate a warm-up; physiologically what constitutes being “warmed up” is vasodilation - that is, that your blood vessels open up as your core temperature and heart rate also increase. This depends on several factors including body temperature. If you’re racing in 80-100F heat, you don’t need to do much on the trainer to be vasodilated and warmed up; in fact, most people do their usual warm up even on hot days, which ends up being way too much in heat. On the other hand, if it’s freezing outside, you might have better luck staying loose and vasodilated by sitting in a warm van, rather than pedaling hard on the rollers trying to stave off the cold.
The other component is doing “openers” that remind you of how it feels to do those crit accelerations. When you’re racing twice in one day, the first race is your openers. Boom. Done.
So for the second race, you want to a) recover as much as possible from the first race, and b) ensure you’re vasodilated as you line up for your second start.
- take in as much carbohydrate as you can (a recovery shake is good for this, but you can focus mostly on CHO, less on protein)
- spin down for 5-10 minutes after the first race
- put on new kit (HUGE for mental rejuvenation)
- rest, legs up, whatever you works for you to feel relaxed
- STAY WARM if it’s cold outside; whether this means layering up or staying in a warm car
- Spin around long enough before the second race to get your heart rate into a low aerobic zone until your legs/muscles feel warm and loose (that’s the feeling of vasodilation)
- If its really cold, you might be better off staying in the car until the last minute and letting the first laps of the second race to get you legs back into the groove (if you did a spin down after the first race, this should be plenty)
- If it’s hot outside, you want to keep your core temp down to recover between races; and then you’ll only need a few minutes spinning around before the second race for your legs to vasodilate.
Hope that helps. For what it’s worth, another layer of this is the power of routine to inspire confidence and to reduce cognitive load on race day. I’d suggest you make a plan ahead of time so you don’t spend mental energy on race day trying decide what to do. After a few double days like this, you’ll have a good routine down that will also boost your confidence. Win win!