How to win a mountain bike race: physical and mental preparation

My next challenge: win”la bellicime”

43 kilometers in the mountain
+983 meters of height difference

Right in the Alps, I’ll participate in the race in less than 3 weeks.

I have 3 weeks to train, 3 weeks to give the best of myself to achieve this race without any problems.

Here is my plan, and here is your plan to win a mountain bike race.

If you follow this, you are already ahead of your competitors and even before the race starts!

1/ Physical

Your body is an engine. The stronger it is, the higher your chance of winning.

If you can drive at 20km/hours for your whole race, you are at an advantage compared to the guy who can only drive at 18km/h.

How can you go faster?

By being stronger.

While pure strength in the legs will make you move faster as you’ll have more leverage and will be able to overcome most technical complex path, that’s not all you need.

You must be able to breath continuously for several hours. This is a skill in itself.

If you already drove on your bike for several hours, you know how painful it is to keep breathing in order to make the best performance.

Particularly in the mountain where the air is rarer than at normal altitude.

Train your body to win

The stronger you can push, the further you’ll go on your bike.

Let’s move to the gym and build muscles on your legs and calf.

Squats and deadlifts are must-perform

Doing both will increase your strength in your legs.

Care. Those movements are complex and require your full attention as they it is easy to hurt yourself here.

If you never practiced squats or deadlifts, simply ask a friend at the gym, he will be happy to teach you these cool movements.

You need to lift heavy.

Go for 5 sets of 10 repetitions for each exercise.

Doing this will definitely improve your leg and body strength. Plus, both exercises also straighten your back which is useful to resist jumps in mountain biking.

Leg and calf press

Super standard exercise.

Practice as much as you want, the goal is to overall strengthen your legs.

As soon as you are working out your legs, they will get stronger.

The earlier you start, the stronger your legs will be.

All those muscles will serve you well. They aren’t specific to mountain biking or biking at all.

When you stand, your body fights back gravity, this is why you can stand still.

The stronger you are, the easier it is to overcome gravity which improves your overall posture.

Note: You need strong calf to climb effortlessly!

Become a breathing machine

This is the most important part.

A mountain biking race is about endurance. If you cannot ride for 2-6 hours without getting tired, you have no chance to win.

This is why you need to improve your lungs.

This is why this part exists!

In order to get machine like lungs, you need to perform some other sports.

You can train solely on your bike but that’s far from optimal.

He we want to help you break your limits so we will move to the swimming pool.

Swimming is a sport which requires you to have big and powerful lungs to store oxygen.

It’s a sport in which you cannot breath more than half of the time so you have to be super good at it.

If you suck at breathing or you have an awful endurance, then you should immediately start to train your swimming abilities.

Being good at swimming means being good at breathing.

Simply go to the nearest swimming pool – even better if you have one in your garden – and start swimming.

Your objective is to swim the crawl for the longest time possible.

Swimming the crawl demands a lot of resources. Being able to swim the crawl for extended periods of time will increase your breathing capacity.

This is what we want to do as it will increase your overall endurance.

You need to endure a lot in a mountain biking race!

You’d better train for higher intensity training so mountain biking will become super simple comparing to swimming the crawl for hours.

Eat only the best

Before the race you don’t want to feel sluggish.

This is why for the 2 weeks prior your race you shouldn’t eat anything that contains sugar.

This way your body will get leaner, your fat will evaporate and you’ll have less weight to move.

Believe me, the toughest guy have visible six pack because they are super lean.

It makes them lighter than the average person which is good for 2 reasons.

They are more aerodynamic, they can ride faster

They have no dead weight (fat) on their body so they can drive faster.

The leaner you are, the more at an advantage you are. Don’t forget this!

Try to get as lean as possible for your competition!

All you need is muscle, your fat will slow you down

2/ Mental

You have to believe it.

You have to believe that you’ll win the race easily.

If you trained your body like a champion, you should already be ahead of half the participant who didn’t train for this.

So the game is already rigged in your favor before the race even began!

Next step is to actually win the game.

Which is a bit tougher as the top racers are as motivated as you are and have a similar physique to yours.

That’s not a piece of cake.

That’s why the race is won in your head.

Don’t give them the perception that it is hard for you

Don’t shout, don’t breath heavily.

It must seem painless for you to move.

Even if you are dying inside, you must make sure that your competitors see that it is super easy for you.

Keep the smile, keep the fun.

When your competitors look at you, they’ll see that they have no chance.

When they are suffering, making weird noises and crying from the inside, they’ll look at you in complete harmony with the nature.

What do you think they’ll do? They will get demotivated.

Because it seems so easy for you while they struggle to death.

The reality is that you have it as hard as them, but you don’t show them.

You look confident in a hard situation and it is definitely a way to turn off your competitors.

Practice the race before the race

Know the terrain before the race begin.

it will put you at an advantage as you’ll know when you can rest and when you have to give 110%.

Bonus point: You’ll understand all the tricks and tips of the circuit. Putting you at advantage against those who didn’t check the race.

Also, practicing the race before the race will tell you how hard it will be fore you.

No matter what, give your 100%

We don’t accept losers on our website.

Post a loser comment and you’ll get banned.

If you are here, you are determined.

You aren’t there to play.

You are here to win.

Represent your name. Be the success you want to be.

You cannot win a race if you aren’t motivated to win it.

You must be 110% in it.

You must bet your life on the circuit.

You must take risks.

You must wreck the competition!

It’s up to you now…

Update! I finished #2 in a 120+ people race. Actually #4 if you count the 2 electric bikes in front me.