I’d like to introduce a really fine young man, cyclist and coach, Pav Bryan. Along the way I hope you’ll enjoy meeting Pav and following his Route 66 Challenge next month, September 2018.
Like millions of 21st century relationships it started with a Tweet in June of 2016. By March of 2017 Pav made the connection we were both in the Sacramento California area. He had just recently arrived on an extended visit to see a friend and planned on continuing his cycling and coaching while in the region. With our first phone call I wanted to meet this guy. Soft spoken, great British accent and really knew his “coaching stuff.”
One of the first things I noticed about Pav’s coaching style was his innate curiosity. Pav’s the kind of coach that’s always learning, passionate about the science, art and joy of riding a bike. A quick study and acts on what has “potential”.
When I mentioned our concept and product for sustainable cooling Pav took an immediate interest. Reason? You can see from the image below he was used to riding with summer temps peaking at the upper 60’s to low 70’s. Here he is now in Sacramento with temps averaging mid 90’s to 105 degrees. A mild “shock to the system”.
We first met in person sitting down at a local Peet’s Coffee near downtown Sac. The chat was great and all my first impressions were confirmed. Great guy, coach and very interested in trying something to help deal with the coming hot summer in California.
Enough about our history let’s switch it up to what Pav has in mind for the future.
Spruzza: I know you’ve got some exciting plans coming up in September but before we get there can you give us an overview of what brought you into cycling.
Pav: Absolutely! Cycling was something I was passionate about as a child. But, without the British Cycling network of coaches & clubs the UK enjoys today, I soon fell through those cracks and adulting took over! After many years working high pressure, high stress jobs, I was overweight & very unfit, I gave it all up and got back into cycling.
Spruzza: So you’ve developed a great passion for the sport and it’s been an important outlet for your health and wellness how did this lead you into coaching?
Pav: It was a simple decision to combine the preferred aspects of the previous job I had and the sport that I love. I started with some simple courses and before too long I was fully qualified. I never once thought I’d be where I am now, with DPC in over 20 countries and a network of coaches specializing in different areas to compliment my own strengths.
Spruzza: Coaching is a competitive sport –industry. It’s science, art and a personal relationship business. Can you give us a high level view of Direct Power Coaching philosophy?
Pav: We pioneer Truly Personal Coaching. This is simply a promise that you’ll only get coaching tailored to your exact needs. We are passionate about you enjoying the journey just as much as you enjoy reaching your goals. We succeed when you succeed.
Spruzza: Any special client success stories you’d like to share?
Pav: Fabien Large won the National UK Title in the 15-year-old age group last year. We have several national champions now too and I really love donating my time. I coach Cyclovelo Club, a development team in Cameroon. It gives me great pleasure to see their youngsters compete, and win, throughout all the hardships they have to deal with off-the-bike.
Spruzza: You’re building for a personal epic ride this summer and you’re training - racing has been focused on peaking in late September. I seems that the Haute Route series has been a big part of that plan. How was your experience on the Haute Routes?
Pav: It’s amazing. The pro experience for us mere mortals. The Rockies was unbelievable, even after crashing Stage One and having to finish the week with a multitude of body and bike issues!
Spruzza: Okay I’ve been hinting at your 2018 epic ride. You’re calling it the Route 66 Challenge. Describe the route for us.
Pav: Crap… seriously though, it’ll be some of the most poorly maintained roads the US has to offer interspersed with some riding on some of the busiest Interstates. 2500 miles of varied weather in under 11 days. But I really can’t wait!
Spruzza: Obviously a big ride and big challenge. Not only have you been digging deep down preparing for this but you’ve also got a higher cause that’s motivating you. Tell us about the cause and charity you’re riding to raise awareness for.
Pav: I suffered with behavioral issues throughout my teens. This led to alcohol and substance abuse in my late teens and early twenties, before culminating in a Bipolar Affective Disorder diagnosis in August 2009. My recovery has been a discovery of many factors, including the roles of training, nutrition, relaxation and support. Today, I live a relative stable life, medication free, despite being told by various doctors that I’ll never be a functioning member of society without it. I chose to give back to two charities who support people like me (Mind UK & NAMI US), who haven’t been as lucky to find stability like I have. I also want people to know that it is ok to suffer with mental health challenges and be successful.
Link to Pav’s journey: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6nfLtfYolY&feature=youtu.be
Spruzza: Right now it’s August and Route 66 is just about 3 weeks away. How are you feeling and as it’s coming up what do you see as the biggest challenges you’ll face?
Pav: I’m excited. It’s odd as I remember competing in previous years and feeling more nervous about upcoming events. I know it’ll be hard, but I have a team of people who are coming to help, which will make the adventure all the more enjoyable. The challenges will be the road, all the diversions due to closures, riding the interstates and the weather, mainly the desert heat.
Spruzza: As we wrap it up we gotta’ ask, we first connected over an innovative way to beat the heat,
Spruzza. You’ve had two summers now in California how are you adjusting to real heat?
Pav: I remember my first 107f ride, the one we did together, it was horrible! It’s never easy riding in that heat, but, with the right tools and adjustments to my training & nutrition approach it’s manageable. I’m glad I’ve moved to an area that doesn’t frequently reach that temp, but when I live in Sacramento I was riding 20+ hours per week in that and coping reasonably well, or at least, better than before we met!
Spruzza: Pav thanks a lot for taking the time to share some personal stories, your coaching vision and of course your big ride in a few weeks the Route 66 Challenge. Tell our readers what they can do to follow the ride and support the cause.
Pav: You’re welcome! The best place to follow will be on facebook (facebook.com/pavbryan), there’s also the website (66deathride.com) and Instagram (Instagram.com/pavbryan).