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Ajay: Balancing School & Training & Life in General


Hi! My name is Ajay. I’m fourteen and a freshman at a kinda big highschool in Indiana. And I like to ride my bike. A lot.

But sometimes, it gets hard to fit all of my life into a day with only twenty four hours. Between school, homework, studying, training, team practices, racing and trying to maintain a social life, my schedule can get super packed. Sometimes it can be a lot to deal with! But here’s a bit about how I manage:


I’m pretty much your average highschool student, I’m only taking one Honors class so the workload is basically what you’d expect. Right now it’s a little bit much because of finals week in just five days, but it’s usually pretty chill. My school works on a block schedule, which means we see half of our teachers on “black” days and the other half on “gold” days. At the end of gold days, we have an hour and a half of study hall or “academic lab/AL”. This is where I get most of my schoolwork done.


After school, I take the bus home and watch an episode or two of the Office or whatever other show I’m into right now while I finish homework or do chores. I’m weird, and happen to be more productive when multitasking. After chores are done, it’s time to kit up and get out to go train.


In the winter months, I’m usually stuck up in my room on a Wahoo Kickr. But during this time of the year, I’m out on the roads and trails. My favorite trail is the Monon, which is a trail that runs basically directly from where I am downtown. All the way down to Indianapolis and back is an easy fifty miles. It’s pretty sweet.


My training is usually about an hour and a half each day, and I have 1 or 2 rest days in a normal week. An average week for me consists of about 130 miles and around 8 hours. And every Thursday night, I have mountain bike practice with my youth development team, Midwest Devo. Some nights we’re all the velodrome, which is the local hub for basically all things cycling, and other nights we’re at one of the state parks, which has a pretty nice loop of trails for riding. These practices will switch the focus from mountain biking to cyclocross in the beginning of August.


In the spring and summer I’m racing roughly once every other weekend, but in the fall it’s every weekend and sometimes two or even three races in one weekend. Sometimes trying to keep up with this can get a bit overwhelming. I try to maintain a “I’ll cross that bridge when I get there” kind of mentality, like one thing at a time. But sometimes all the things I have to do by a certain time build up and it’s stressful. I’m not super great at keeping up with things. When I get really stressed out, I like to come home and then do my training before anything else. I really enjoy training and riding my bike, and I know it’ll help me de-stress enough to get through whatever else I have to do.


Overall, even when life gets busy, you just have to take things one at a time. If you’re reading this I’m going to go ahead and assume you love to ride your bike just as much as I do, if not more. When you get important stuff done, reward yourself with a bike ride! I think the saying goes, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”? Work hard and play hard, too!

Blog Tags: Athlete Stories Ajay Baker

Updated: June 20, 2018