Earlier this month, 22-year-old Kate Courtney won the cross-country mountain bike world championships in Lenzerheide, Switzerland. Courtney, the youngest competitor in the field, was also the first American women to take home the title in 17 years.
For those who aren’t familiar with professional mountain bike racing, here’s a first-person glimpse via Courtney’s Instagram of the kind of riding it often entails:
A Stanford University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in human biology, Courtney grew up in Marin County, California, the birthplace of mountain biking. For the next year, she’ll have the honor of wearing the world champion rainbow jersey.
Prior to capturing the world title in just her first full season of elite racing, Courtney spent much of 2018 optimizing her training with WHOOP.
“WHOOP was a huge part of helping me manage an insane training load this season and arrive at worlds ready to go,” Courtney told us.
Below is a three-month chart of her daily recovery, culminating with a 96% on the morning of the world championships (Saturday, September 8):
Kate’s WHOOP recovery was looking good heading into the world championships, where she awoke at 96%.
Notice the distinct lack of red from late-July on. Courtney cites meditation as a huge factor in improving her sleep and recovery.
Take a look at the downward trend in her resting heart rate over the month leading up to her victory:
Kate’s resting heart rate, tracked by WHOOP, trended downwards prior to winning a world championship.
Courtney’s HRV also peaked at a personal-best, 188, on the day of the race. Her body was primed for an epic performance, which clearly she delivered.
Feature image photo credit: Bartek Wolinski/Red Bull Content Pool