Cyclist Kate Courtney in Workout Gear Says "Do the Work, Keep It Fun"
Professional mountain biker Kate Courtney is sharing her strength-training routine on social media, joking that her body is essentially fueled by corn chips. Courtney, 28, posted a video of herself wearing black leggings and a blue tank top, lifting heavy weights at the gym. "Body by nachos. Ft. [Dr. Matt Smith] making fun of me all day for how much I talk about the nachos at [Alpine Inn]… 😂 Do the work. Fuel the work. Keep it fun. Repeat 😘🌮," she captioned the post. Here's how Courtney trains to stay competition-ready.
Courtney's training is intense—and a daily routine. "I ride seven days a week," she told Red Bull.com. "I go to the gym two to three days a week, and then there's yoga, physical therapy, pilates, etc. All those factors. It really depends. It's hard to put a number on it, and it depends on intensity, or the time of year. When you're far away from home, or there are less [daylight] hours in the day or when we're close to racing. The thing about being a full-time athlete is you have to spend more time on recovery, the harder you train."
While Courtney doesn't have Celiac disease, gluten makes her feel uncomfortable so she limited gluten and focuses on good protein. "We couldn't quite figure out what it was, but my doctor finally linked it to gluten my sophomore year," she told Men's Journal. "I can still have bits here and there, but generally it's been out of my diet for years. I definitely eat it sometimes in the offseason, but it's hugely performance inhibiting for me… I started working with a new nutritionist, tracking my macros, and paying attention to what's actually in the food I'm eating. I realized that a lot of the time, I wasn't fueling enough around riding. So now I have a game plan to make sure that doesn't happen."
Courtney's favorite post-ride food is delicious tacos. "The tortillas are good carbs; the meat is easy protein; avocado adds healthy fat, so it's perfect," she told Bicycling.com. "Growing up and riding in California, the post-ride taco has become a cultural experience and a fun way to wind down. I'd come home and go straight to the taco shop. I really like chicken tacos or tacos al pastor on a soft corn tortilla and topped with avocado, but I'm also a big hot salsa fan. I want to start making my own corn tortillas—that's my fall project, so I'll report back. I think it's easy in theory. I always have tortillas at home, and after a long bike ride, anything goes: sweet potatoes, eggs, random leftover stuffed tacos, breakfast tacos. You can't go wrong."
Courtney incorporates naps as part of her recovery routine. "I cannot express how important naps are," she told Men's Journal. "It's the deepest rest you can get during the day and it's something I focused on this year. Between strength training and riding, on a double workout day, I like to nap in between for 45 minutes to an hour. But I try to nap every single day regardless."
Wellness and Balance
Courtney strives for balance in her life. "Wellness is about balance," she told RedBull.com. "It's being physically and mentally rested and challenged. Having that balance in your life and in your training. It's also about balancing these two identities: you got Kate as a human being and Kate as a professional athlete. If it goes too far in one direction—even if you feel healthy physically but you're mentally taxed. Wellness is all about finding the balance."