In this post are 21 of the very tips I use to score Elite podium finishes in high-ranked UCI races across Europe and that helped me become British MTB Marathon National Champion.
Let’s get straight into the first tip…
1. CREATE A RACE-LIKE LOOP
Want to feel more confident on race day? Here’s a tip…
Design a loop in your local mountain bike spot that has a “concentrated” collection of features that you’d find in a race.
Include a few corners or berms, a steep climb and a rooty or rocky descent.
You can then ride loops at race pace to dial in the sensation of riding fast on this terrain to prepare you for off-road racing.
2. HIGH FORCE ACCELERATIONS
Producing lots of force and overcoming high amounts of torque is critical to going fast off-road, and is quite different to general road riding.
Mountain bikers produce power off-road in a low cadence and high force manner when racing and or riding hard.
On the road though, most of the pedalling time will be at a higher cadence, whether high or low force (climbing compared to coasting in the bunch)
This places unique demands on the muscles of MTBers and therefore this type of muscle fibre recruitment needs to be trained appropriately.
You can work on this within road rides, or schedule specific MTB rides for this purpose, using big gear interval drills to do so.