There are fundamentals elements that rule your workout, Time, Intensity, Agility and Frequency. If you are running a marathon you train heavily in the Time ring and low in the Agility ring. As mountain bikers we need to be well versed in all of these fundamental elements, in order to stay balanced. You put in you "long rides", hill repeats, city line sprints, tempo rides and recovery days. You have the Time, Intensity and Frequency covered. When was the last time you went out with the purpose of practicing your Agility? Recovery days are great days to do skills work. Practice cornering, Practice trials riding, Practice pumping whoops. How far forward can you get in the cockpit and not have your back wheel washout, while climbing? Don't go mindlessly on a recovery ride. Ride and train with a purpose. You will become more energy resourceful as a rider, Check out this video of, one of many skill progressions while cornering.
Another great podcast from Bike James. This time he gives his perspective on what it takes to build endurance as a mountain biker. Check out the Ear Candy in the link below during your next ride.
What is the best position for Mountain Biking? Having spent my childhood BMX racing in Florida I find my default is always standing and sprinting, but is this the best position to be in for mountain bike racing? The cool thing about MTB racing is how dynamic the body is during competition. The fact is seated and standing both have their place on the race course. This is a great podcast hashing out proper body alignment, power transfer and technique for effective standing pedaling.
You should have been here yesterday, the powder was better, the waves were glassier or the trail was perfect. When I hear this I feel like saying thanks for the call. Well here is the call on a little piece of gear I didn't know existed until, after the fact.
The forrest is lush, the sun is out and you are roosting corners an hour into your ride. Just out of sight, a mossy stump ambushes your flawless line and clips your pedal. Instinctually you pivot your foot to unclip. Knowing that you will take a style deduction for the dab you are about to perpetrate, but it is your only choice. However, you are stuck, no release. You are sent crossed up to the forrest floor. Bruised and battered you realize that your foot can rotate 90 degrees and you are still clipped in. After further inspection you realize the bolts that keep your spd clips fixed have loosened, never allowing your shoe to release from the pedal. It is mistake you may make once, but I bet you will not make it twice. Always check your spd bolts, especially on race day. Unfortunately, the damage is done. The cleat has been loose for longer that you thought and your plastic or even worse carbon sole has a huge divot. Consequently, you can no longer tighten your cleat, let alone make it level and straight. All is not lost. Cover your divots with Crankbrothers Shoe Shields or better yet install them prior to any damage happening, in the event that your bolts should loosen unexpectedly. Shoe shields are machined out of Stainless Steel and will work with any clipless cleat. At $9.99 the are extremely affordable.
There Black Diamond Sprinter Headlamp is one of those purchases that make you think you got a good deal. While designed for urban running, I find it also great for cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and general adventuring. I bought this headlamp recently after researching many of the lights on the market. While not cheap at $80, I find it to be a good value.
The Sprinter met the requirements that I was looking for; rechargeable, long lasting, bright and light weight The rechargeable battery takes up to 5 hours to fully charge, but lasts nearly that long with little dimming. It puts out 130 lumens at it's highest setting, which isn't the brightest out there, but bright enough to see the next corner (39 meters) while skiing the VASA. The Sprinter's lightweight design (approximately 100 grams) includes a center strap to keep the lamp from sliding down your head while running..
In addition to the standard features of a normal headlamp the Sprinter comes with extras that one might need in urban environment. It comes standard with a rear facing red blinking light. It also has a toggle feature that allow it to strobe in the direction of on coming traffic.
If your going to be active at night, in the city or the forrest the Sprinter headlamp is a great tool for lighting your way.