At MX Endurance it feels like ‘new kit day’ has lasted for weeks. Our team kit supplier XCEED have been busy manufacturing and shipping this year’s updated team kit. CEO and chief whip Tim Ford spent hours working on the design for this, and ‘sneak peek’ images have been getting us all excited for months. But images on a screen are never the same as having the kit in hand, and being able to try it on. And then to race in it.
What this now means for our connected social media feeds is a long line of photos which can all be dated to within the last few weeks. No #throwback images exist yet. The photos started with some awkward ‘mirror selfies’ with the ‘wrong underwear’ getting posted. These images are representative of the excitement and anticipation that we all feel. We literally could not wait to try on our new kit, and if that means there is a visible underwear line and we’re in the office bathroom, then so be it! It’s like kids at Christmas.
But it’s what comes next that is more exciting. As advocates of ‘not trying something new on race day’, we naturally have to get training in the new kit. Even without races on the horizon in some parts of the world we all still donned our kit and started to make notes on its performance. These sessions have us looking forwards, thinking, explicitly, about race day and the marginal gains that we can make from having the right kit. Being comfortable with the right chamois can make or break a bike ride. Having sweat wicking fabrics to help keep us cool in the heat can, again, make or break a race. Aero fabrics and compression in all the right places can enhance performance. The list goes on. Knowing how kit performs and what it can do for us is an essential arsenal in our armoury.
Sharing our training journey is also what MX is all about. Some of us have been lucky enough to race in the new kit. This is where the design and functionality come into their own. We always push harder on race day and representing the community that we are a part of is an element of that. We don’t always shout about the races that we are participating in, particularly if they are local to us and aren’t our ‘A-Race’ focus. But that doesn’t mean that there won’t be other MXs around. As a global community that’s growing you’ll be surprised who you bump into. Race day also inevitably creates some interesting photos.
But behind these initial pictures, testing, and even racing, is something more special. New kit day isn’t just about receiving another set of kit in the post. For MX members, it’s about representing a somewhat unique community. Being an ambassador for MX is not the same as being part of the race team for a clothing brand. It’s not all about the kit and a discount code.
MX is a true community of athletes who come together and share a love of triathlon and endurance sport. The community is founded on knowledge. Knowledge of strength training, nutrition, rehab, it provides world-leading training plans and collective race experience, all of which underpins the community. There is a transparency in answers when questions are posed within our closed Facebook groups and to our team of experts. There is banter, support and encouragement.
Flying the flag and representing this community is important for those of us that have benefited from MX membership.
Cat Hine is an MX Endurance Race Team ambassador.