John Sarkisian, CEO of SKLZ and 2nd year participant in the Million Dollar Challenge
What was your reasoning behind taking part in the Million Dollar Challenge last year?
The primary reason I chose to take part in it is because I really like the cause, The Challenged Athletes Foundation. Secondly it was a physical challenge that I wanted to take on. While I have been cycling since I was 16, this really pushed me to become an avid cyclist.
What was the experience like last year?
It was a physically challenging process, but the ride and athletes really inspire you. You become close to these athletes on your rides and seeing that they don't let anything stop them, really pushes you.
Why have you chosen to do this challenge again this year?
I enjoyed the experience and challenge of it last year. It was so rewarding and you meet great people. The ride itself is beautiful as well.
What is your training schedule like?
I train 4 days and average about 150 miles during a week. I ride Tuesday mornings, Thursday evenings and then Saturday and Sunday.
Do you participate in any type of cross training?
Yes, I do yoga and weight training.
What has been the most memorable moment of training this season so far?
We had a very unusual day on one of our group rides. Our group of 8 somehow managed to end the day with a total of 5 flat tires and a crash. This is very atypical for a single ride.
What has been the most difficult part of training this season?
This year I have had to work through a couple of injuries, semi related to cycling (primarily due to weight training).
Do you have any tips for cyclists training for their first Million Dollar Challenge?
Biggest piece of advice I can give is performance has everything to do with hydration and nutrition. It's important to eat high-energy power bars, gels, peanut butter sandwiches, bananas and chocolate milk. These foods will help you get through these long rides and not lose all of your needed energy.