The Mountain Bike Life

Last weekend I competed in my very first cyclocross race. For those of you that don’t know, cyclocross is basically a cross between mountain biking and road biking. The typical bike used is a heavy duty road bike made for off road use. There is also parts of the course where you must get off of your bike and run. The races are on courses that are only a couple miles long and the races last for 30-60 minutes. So why am I talking about cyclocross on a mountain biking website? Well, I rode a mountain bike in my first cross race, and it was super fun.

Jumping over the barriers

Cyclocross is one of the hardest and most fun type of races I have done. Since the other racers had light cyclocross bikes, I had some trouble keeping up on the faster sections of the course. I did have an advantage, though, on the descents and rougher parts of the course. Here is a video if my race with some commentary:

As you can see in the video, I ended up getting fifth place. I think that I can do better on a more technical course more suited for a mountain bike. Before the next race I am going to work on two things: start sprints and endurance. I struggle with race starts at most races because it is hard to go from standing around at the start line to full on sprint. I think that starting an interval with high intensity and then finishing at a moderate pace will do the trick. Short term endurance is key in cyclocross because you are going as hard as you can for 40 minutes. I have found that running is great for building endurance since you can’t coast like you can in a bike. I am going to do a little bit of training in the next week, and I can’t wait for the next race!

About to bunny hop over the log obstacle
Fixing the Creaky Crankset
Interbike 2013!

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