Training With The Pros (Part Three)

When I bought my newest bike in December 2014, I effectively started to re-learn cycling. I started with eight miles a ride and expanded from there. Recently, I’ve noticed my average speed is about 15.5 miles per hour which is roughly 3:45 seconds per mile. Not bad, but not great either. Try as I might I haven’t been able to raise my average speed for a few months. This is frustrating. Being dissatisfied with this I’ve started matching speed with poor unsuspecting cyclists on the bike trail. But, I’m not just doing this with any cyclists. I’m doing this with the cyclists that pass me because they are better and stronger than I am. Why? By attempting to match speed with stronger riders, I am able to increase my overall speed.

Last Saturday I rode forty-four miles. For the majority of that ride, my average speed was 15.3 mph. As I looked at my mile by mile breakdown, however, I noticed a six mile segment where my average speed increased to between seventeen and nineteen miles an hour! This was thirty miles into my ride when normally my speed would decrease, so I was confused. It wasn’t until I played back the ride in my head that I realized at mile thirty I was passed by four riders, better than myself and I made it my mission to keep pace with them for as long as I could.  This caused me to push myself more than I would have otherwise and to, at least for a short time, improve. Which leads me to the final characteristic of a good drafting partner. A good drafting partner is further along in life and stronger in faith than you are at the time.

If you are training it is clear that training with someone beyond your skill level is your best option for improvement. So it is in Christian Discipleship. Do you want to grow in your faith? It is best to align yourself with someone who can speak God’s truth into your life, seasoned by their years of life experience. It is amazing to see how God’s Word speaks to so many situations in ways we may have never considered. Do you want to grow in your knowledge and understanding of God? Seek out those who can guide you according to God’s Word.

Hebrews 5:12-14
“13 Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. 14 But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.”

Follow those who follow Christ. Listen to their words. Heed their warnings and stay grounded in God’s truth. Do not be what the Bible describes as one tossed by the waves (James 1:6).

The importance of biblical drafting is time tested and Bible approved. Through our actions, or lack thereof, we often negate its effects though. If you are serious about growing in your relationship with Christ then do it as you were designed to, in community with other believers, following behind those stronger than you and leading those weaker; but I’ll save that for another post…


Bryce Cooley
I've been doing some form of ministry since 2000. For 13 years I was involved in the youth ministry at Cordova Neighborhood Church as everything from youth intern to youth pastor. God has led me and my lovely wife Bethany to Church of the Foothills where I currently reside as the Digital Publishing Coordinator. I'm excited to see where God leads my wife and I.