Winter MTB Training

Forums Mountain Bike Forum Winter MTB Training

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    • #75791

      Ok so Im a beginner as of this summer and since we are in November now there isnt much light to ride after work.
      Im not a huge fan of the gym but what do ya all do for cross training to get ya through the winter?
      I would love to buy a light but I cant afford one thats worth it.

    • #75792

      hi cat, welcome to the forums! have you considered an indoor trainer? most are cheaper than hid/led lights and are compatible with mountain bikes (i recommend slick tire though). ive used a couple of the travel trac trainers from performance, they are definitely a great value.

      otherwise, running is always good for keeping up your aerobic capacity. to avoid running in the dark, you can squeeze in a quick run on your lunch break if you have showers at work.

      throw in some sprints and hill intervals to mimic what you’d expect with cross country riding. and if its too cold to go outside some days ill jump rope (2 minutes without stopping, as many reps as you can) and then do a ton of squats and lunges to keep my legs in shape for climbing hills – hold a 5-10 lb dumbell in each hand and you’ll definitely feel sore for a day or more, but come spring you’ll be proud to wear spandex shorts ;)

      hope that helps!
      mudhunny

    • #75793

      Try taking a "Spinning" class at your gym. It is like an aerobic class on a stationary bike. When I lived up in New Hampshire cross country skiing and snoeshoeing kept me in shape.

    • #75794
      "brianW" wrote

      Try taking a "Spinning" class at your gym. It is like an aerobic class on a stationary bike. When I lived up in New Hampshire cross country skiing and snoeshoeing kept me in shape.

      When asked how to become a great rider, the legendary Eddy Mercx answered "Ride Lots"! The best answer is become a snowbird and winter in warmer climates where you can ride through the winter.

      What? The company won’t let you take a paid all winter vacation? 😢

      Barring becoming migratory, I’ll second Brian’s suggestion of the Spinning and Cross Country Skiing for keeping your aerobic capacity up. I like Cross Country Skiing as the muscles used are very similar to biking. I have no opinion on Snowshoeing as I’ve not tried it . . . yet.

    • #75795

      Just thought of something else for some of you riders. Hit the packed down snowmobile trails on your bike. I used to deflate my tires to about 20psi. However they do sell chains, studded tires or you can stud your own tires.

      A lot of fun and it will improve your riding. I would however wear some hunter orange or other very bright color. Some snowmobilers fly and don’t give a rats behind about anyone. Most however are very glad to share the trails.

    • #75796
      "mudhunny" wrote

      hi cat, welcome to the forums! have you considered an indoor trainer? most are cheaper than hid/led lights and are compatible with mountain bikes (i recommend slick tire though). ive used a couple of the travel trac trainers from performance, they are definitely a great value.

      otherwise, running is always good for keeping up your aerobic capacity. to avoid running in the dark, you can squeeze in a quick run on your lunch break if you have showers at work.

      throw in some sprints and hill intervals to mimic what you’d expect with cross country riding. and if its too cold to go outside some days ill jump rope (2 minutes without stopping, as many reps as you can) and then do a ton of squats and lunges to keep my legs in shape for climbing hills – hold a 5-10 lb dumbell in each hand and you’ll definitely feel sore for a day or more, but come spring you’ll be proud to wear spandex shorts ;)

      hope that helps!
      mudhunny

      Thank you for the advice. Jump rope is definitely harder when you get older lol.

    • #75797
      I have no opinion on Snowshoeing as I’ve not tried it . . . yet.

      I LOVE snowshoeing. The trouble with snowshoeing, like mountain biking, is that you usually have to drive to a trailhead to really do it. Nonetheless, I’m convinced it’s a wicked good mountain bike-strengthening workout. If you have to cut the trail, your thighs will burn.

      Now if I could just buy my own set of snowshoes and stop renting them …

    • #75798

      Man, you’d think this would be the most popular thread on the forum right now.

      I’m up in Idaho, and I’m going nuts trying to figure out how to stay in shape this winter. I’ve resorted to (GASP!) jogging.

    • #75799
      "Mongoose" wrote

      Well, you can always move here to FL! Never any snow and never cold enough to stop riding. Well, maybe a few weeks out of the winter it gets pretty damed chilly, but not to cold to ride. 😄

      (Jealousy.) That’s tempting, but we just bought a house a few months back.

      I actually have a brother who just moved to Florida, but I have his mountain bike in my basement.

      Stay warm!

    • #75800

      Image

      Dont laugh, these sell better than hot buttered rum drinks here, made by Surley. No this isnt my bike, I havnt gotten into it just yet. Check out my buds at Speeway Cycles Anchorage.
      http://speedwaycyclesak.com/

      Plenty more pics on our local forums here-
      http://akspokes.com/forum/showthread.php?t=21

    • #75801

      What are those bags on the handlebars? Is that supposed to keep your hands warm?

    • #75802
      "trek7k" wrote

      What are those bags on the handlebars? Is that supposed to keep your hands warm?

      Wait, I’ve seen those on Alaska Iditarod bikes before. Isn’t that where you store your tent?

      I think the famous Arctic Jill rides one of those (here’s her blog: http://arcticglass.blogspot.com/ )

    • #75803

      Yea its all about the hands being out there and the hardest thing to keep warm, this is the alternative to wearing very large gloves which makes shifting and braking rather difficult. This pair is a bit overkill I beleive but then again it has been around -3o with a wind chill of -50 for the last few days here. 😮

      The major winter bike races are due to kick off in a week or so, hopefully it will warm up a bit soon.

      **********
      Back to what this post was originally about- I lived in Reno for a few years and also took up snowshoeing in the winter up around Tahoe- loved it. and a great way to stay in shape.

    • #75804

      Sackattack,

      Snowshoeing is best, in my opinion, when you make your own trails throuh the woods. Great way to explore the woods, forests aroung were you live without getting lost. It is supricing how many animal sings are out there. My kids used to love to id and follow the tracks. -brianW

    • #75805
      "brianW" wrote

      Sackattack,

      Snowshoeing is best, in my opinion, when you make your own trails throuh the woods. Great way to explore the woods, forests aroung were you live without getting lost. It is supricing how many animal sings are out there. My kids used to love to id and follow the tracks. -brianW

      No doubt, snowshoeing rocks. But cutting the trail—that’s a killer workout for your legs. Good for you.

    • #75806

      All good advice! I am actually not dreading winter now!

    • #75807

      All suggestions are great, but if you want the best way to stay in shape over the winter months, try Plyometrics. This exercise regime will get your legs in the best shape ever for explosive power needed for the next season.

    • #75808

      I’d also have to agree with snowshoeing. I find it’s the equivalent of hiking, and it tends to be more solitary, at least it seems like that with how quite it can be. It’s also super easy too learn, just about anybody who can walk can do it.

    • #75809

      Here in Colorado we ride our bike for winter bike training 😃

      Sorry, just had to rub that in…

      steve32300, except for today of course… 😕

    • #75810
      "maddslacker" wrote

      Here in Colorado we ride our bike for winter bike training 😃

      Sorry, just had to rub that in…

      steve32300, except for today of course… 😕

      we get to ride our bikes year round here, no matter what the season is…haha 😆

      the winter cold doesn’t take effect here.

    • #75811

      JDH

      Last winter was the first year I rode year round, mind you I didn’t ride half as much in the winter as I do in the summer but it is very feasible to ride in the winter. You just have to get over the cold factor. I can bet that very few people on this site sit indoors all winter long, we all get out and enjoy the winter either snowboarding, skiing, snowshoeing… whatever it might be. So why stop riding just because it is cold outside?

      To ride in the winter you just need to dress like you would for any cold weather activity and remember that you will heat up just like you do during the summer rides so don’t over dress and remember cotton kills in cold weather.

      Last winter I rode with no problem once the ground froze, I just had to dress for the weather. And when the snow fell I bought a pair of snowshoes, in itself snowshoeing is fun but it leaves a nice trail of packed down snow that can be, with a few snowshoe treks over the same trail turned into a good hard packed surface to ride on. A good pair of studded tires, wool socks, gloves and a layer or 2 of good quality moister wicking clothes and I was riding my favorite trails even in the dead of winter. Granted I ended up pushing my bike up some of the more steep climbs and had to watch my speed a little on the down hill curves but it was still fun.

      Believe it or not, here in Anchorage there are “Fatbikeâ€

    • #75812
      Here in Colorado we ride our bike for winter bike training

      Sorry, just had to rub that in…

      steve32300, except for today of course…

      Yeah dude,this stuff is WET,the trails should be muddy this weekend even though it’s supposed to be nice come friday.

    • #75813

      It’s pretty fluffy down here…about 16" so far and still coming down.

    • #75814

      You mean it’s not wet snow where your at slacker??I brushed off the snow off my explorer after work and it was nothin but water at the base.

    • #75815

      well I haven’t been out in it, but I watched the dog go out and it appears pretty non-wet…

      I might be higher elevation than you though as I’m over 6,000 feet.

    • #75816

      Yeah winter can be tough for those of us who don’t do snow sports. I try to change up my training through out the winter so it’s not so mentaly difficult… Running, spin classes, and trainer rides are all great you have to find what works for you. I personaly love rollers because of the skill involved it keeps me focused and interested in the bike, even when im stuck indoors… I a light and cold weather gear are invaluble though so I would try to save for them. hope this helps.

    • #75817

      What I do:
      Bike anyway ( I have a great headlight)
      Snowboard
      Snowshoe
      Indoor trainer (The is just collecting dust really)

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