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Not really when you consider their giving out "cash" AND merchandise for ALL classes, the cash usually always goes just to expert/pros...and most races even lap races run ya approx $25 to get a medal OR merchandise...BUT what you have to consider what you'll really be buying is a day of fun and and new friendships doing what we all love to do (ride our bikes) and do it no matter what the weather, how much fun is that!! They even let ya bring "mans best friend" thats worth at least $5...most race promoters don't allow that (even though there are always those that dont listen to the rules)..TheWood922 you'll love it, if the bug bites it'll drive ya nuts waiting for the season to start, but what a great way to get started on preparation for it...good luck all...wish I could but doctors orders...I'll be cheering my Buddy on...right ExigeS...

Ed
 

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ExigeS said:
I think I will do the beginner. Eujin and Smitty - you in?
Are you really? Or are you mocking me? lol

I only ask because I'm new at this, and the thought crossed my mind that the beginner might be for, like...kids, or seniors.

Make a party out of it?
 

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Beginners are for those that are new to this sport...in all ages...some that have no experience start in the beginners class, some that have never raced but do ride but not sure how they'll do sometimes start as Beginners...and then you have your few sandbaggers that just have to win...you'll spot them, but only at the start, because they'll blow everyone away, dont worry they'll be singled out eventually or their own guilt will get to them...you can always move up when ya feel you need the challenge...OR...how I liked to think of it..."get more bang for your buck" do the sport and ya get to race more miles...theres how you can justify the $35....:)
Either way remember it's FUN...
 

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Let the training begin...:) Smitty ya need to start doing one night a week intervals...head down the purple...up Soapstaone in sprint mode...down soapstone...high cadence down the asphalt trail to Vineyard...sprint vineyard...recover at top 2 min max...back down...then head a little further towards the bridge...turn up Nuns run, SPRINT...2 min recovery on top max....back down....back to vineyard to do it again, up in a sprint...then travel over to Soapstone from Vineyard, go down Soapstone then sprint up the Purple to the park & ride...don't have fun, remember this is TRAINING...you've got to get in shape if ya want to WIN!!!! The other HUGE key is your nutrition and diet, we'll start on that too...

ROFLMAO!!!!!

Believe it or not but this is what can happen...obsession towards racing takes over and wham, thats how you start looking at "riding" you bicycle...:)

SAMPLE:
HOW TO CHECK YOUR MORNING PULSE
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After first waking up stay as calm as possible. Relieve yourself if necessary (this will drop your pulse a few beats) then go back to bed and pretend to fall asleep. With a watch or clock in sight count your pulse for a full minute. Don't think about all you want to do today, just try to get your pulse as low as possible by thinking calming thoughts. The other method is to strap on your heart rate monitor and under the same conditions record the lowest number.
The more fit you are the lower your morning pulse should be relative to what it was when you first started checking it. My morning pulse will increase about 10 beats if I have a cold, injury, or train hard. If it stays high for more than a couple of days I know I had better take it easy until it gets back to normal.
There are certain tools you'll need for your training experiments:
• Training Diary
I record my morning pulse, weight (in the morning), amount of sleep, how long I spend training (actual riding time), average heart rate etc. While writing this section I thought I should check to see what I did a few weeks before I did well at an AMBC event in 1998. I was excited to see that long rides once a week over difficult terrain mixed in with easy days of training seem to work for me. I used a four week training cycle riding 8hrs, 11hrs, 16hrs, and 9hrs respectively prior to the race. If you have a record of what you have done in the past you will then be able to learn what is best for your current goals.
• Heart Rate Monitor
Read the training books on this subject. I find that it is hard to know just by feel how much energy you are expending at times. When you know your maximum heart rate the percentages of that figure are an excellent indicator of your intensity of effort. Some racers consider heart rate monitors an unnecessary distraction and go by feel alone, but I think a heart rate monitor is a great tool to gauge improvement and measure training intensity. I like to see how low I can keep my heart rate while climbing tough hills.

Watch what you eat!
4 If two identical twins (with the same competitive nature) train exactly the same and one eats the proper carbohydrate/protein/fat mix and uses performance drinks while riding and a recovery drink after training -who do you think will be faster? Read the training books about nutrition for endurance athletes and see what works for you.
I notice a big difference in energy level using Endurox R4. I also use GU during longer rides or races. However, some of the fastest racers use no supplements and drink only water. There are all kinds of great products out there. If you find that they help you, add them to your training regiment. Shop around for the best prices as these supplements can be quite expensive.
Warm Up!
Protect yourself from injury. Before any hard efforts make sure to warm up for at least 15 minutes. The older you are the more necessary it is to warm up. When doing intervals try to warm up by gradually building the intensity. Try not to go all out on the first one. Also, be careful when you stand up for the first time or go out of the saddle paying attention to any muscles, tendons etc. that you are stressing.
Cool Down!
After a hard effort it is important to cool down by spinning at a higher cadence with little resistance for 15 to 20 minutes. This should help you recover faster. The harder the effort the more important this is. I don't know what the physiological details are but I know that if I'm susceptible to cramping after a hard effort - cooling down definitely helps alleviate the problem.
Stretching
I used to think that stretching before training was a good idea. I have since read that stretching afterward is more important. You could pull a muscle or tendon etc. by stretching without being warmed up! I warm up by spinning easily for at least 15 minutes prior to any hard efforts. After training I always stretch. This takes me about 15 to 20 minutes. Consider picking up a copy of Stretching by Bob Anderson, it's an excellent book.

Make sure you have the proper bike fit!
Make sure you have the right size bike frame and the proper bike fit. You may have to adjust the seat, handlebars, change the stem, adjust the angle of the brake levers, adjust the cleats in your riding shoes, etc.

Do not neglect the importance of this!

My first mountain bike was too small. I was over the bars about twice a week. After getting the right size bike I improved my handling ability tenfold. However, there were still adjustments to be made in finding my proper bike fit. After getting comfortable with my bike, I still had a tendency to go over the bars on steep downhills and wasn't quite comfortable around sharp turns.
I read about the benefits of raising the seat for more pedaling power. I raised it a full 3/4" up and 3/4" back which changed my position drastically. It was very hard to handle and it stressed new muscles in my legs that weren't used before. I became extremely fatigued and out of control. Eventually, I figured out that my handlebar stem put me too far forward. I changed it (about an inch shorter), lowered the seat back down and thanks to the shorter stem my center of gravity was further back on the bike. Now I hardly ever fall and feel very much in control. If you do experiment with changing your seat position, do it in small increments. Keep working with minor adjustments until your bike is positioned properly for your individual needs.
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RELAX, RELAX, RELAX!
What's that? You thought mountain bike racing was a full focus high tension activity? It shouldn't be. Think of it as a full focus high energy activity. Forget about the tension.
If your hands are sore and different muscles are cramping up after a tough ride, you may need to focus on relaxing more. It would perhaps benefit you to lose that death grip on the handlebars when confronted by challenging technical sections of trail.

Spend one training session a week paying close attention to relaxing all of the unnecessary muscles during intense activity. Bruce Lee, the king of fast movements understood that muscle contractions slow down movements. To move quicker, you have to relax the opposing muscles. He didn't tense up until a split second before hitting an object. That's not to say that none of his muscles were tense, only the necessary ones. He obviously knew what he was talking about since he could knock a much larger person half way across the room with his famous one inch punch. Don't relax your attention. Relax all of the muscles you don't absolutely need for whatever movement you are making. This should result in faster, smoother movements plus conserve a great deal of precious energy.
6 Technical Skills There are some very strong riders that never master technical skills (going over logs, rocks, roots, drop-offs etc.) Spend some time each week working on technique. Start with your weakest skill and strengthen it. Be careful not to overextend yourself while learning new techniques.
I really enjoyed William Nealy's MOUNTAIN BIKE. He has a great sense of humor and has developed a step by step approach to overcoming your fears and mastering technical skills.

TRAINING PARTNERS
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Choose your training partner(s) carefully. Try not to fall into the group ride/race syndrome where you are constantly riding slower or faster than you should be for effective development.
You want to be as effective as possible with the time you have to train.
With that in mind you should train with someone who is at the next skill level. Not so much faster that you inconvenience them having to wait for you all of the time, but just fast enough to pull you up to the next level of development.
DON'T BE INTIMIDATED!

"The Intimidator"

This rider loves to show how much faster and skilled he/she is especially around beginner riders. Don't be intimidated by these riders.
Know that you will improve one step at a time.
The same amount of fun is achieved whether you are a beginner or an expert. Remain confident that in time you will become proficient in handling your bike.

QUICK START TRAINING SCHEDULE
Four Hours a Week

Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
WORKOUT TIME OFF 1:00 OFF 1:00 OFF OFF 2:00
Easy Spin :15 :20 :30
Short
Intervals :10*
Long
Intervals :20**
Strength
(Big Ring) :30***
80% Hard
Effort :20****
Easy Spin :15 :20 1:00

*Short Intervals - Go hard for 60 seconds - then EASY SPIN at a high cadence until you recover. Repeat the process until your time for intervals is up. Include the recovery periods in the total time allotted. On a level from one to ten - (ten being your hardest effort) - do these at about level 8. As you get in better shape increase the interval to 90 seconds. Try to maintain good form. Be smooth and relax!

**Long Intervals - Go hard for 3 minutes then EASY SPIN at a high cadence until you recover. Repeat the process until your time for intervals is up. Include the recovery periods in the total time allotted. Lighten up the effort just enough to make it through the longer period of time. When you get in better shape increase the interval to 5 minutes or more. Again, maintain good form. Be smooth and relax!

***Strength - There are numerous ways to do strength training. You may choose to stay in the hardest gear possible for an entire ride or climb tough hills (or the same tough hill more than once). Be careful not to over stress your skeletal-muscular structure. Pay close attention to any unusual pains in the knees or elsewhere!

****80% Hard Effort - Try to stay just under a race pace effort while being smooth and consistent. Don't wear yourself out with too much Hard Effort training. Save yourself for race day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
TheWood922 said:
Are you really? Or are you mocking me? lol

I only ask because I'm new at this, and the thought crossed my mind that the beginner might be for, like...kids, or seniors.

Make a party out of it?
I am as serious as a heart attack! I have never raced b4.
 

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Oh I know ya are Jason, and am looking so forward watching you stomp the competition in your age group/class...you'll do well...ya just need to stop riding with my slow ass, and get with some strong fast riders...you'll do great...
 

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Yep watch out...after riding 5 months with him, the guys got speed and strength...he should be up with the experts, but because he's never raced, so he needs to start off in Beg. to determine where he actually should be....(snicker, snicker)...:)
 

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Rob, Mike and Tom are good people and put on a great event. The courses at this venue in the past were relatively flat with a lot of tight twisty singletrack, there is a cool section that goes through the pines and really lets you rail the bike. There is also a couple of small drops and short sections with embedded rock. This is a fast fun loop that will surely bring smiles to the ones that are just getting into racing :D

A great course anytime....even more so in the early season.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Ed – Thanks for the kind words but I hope you don’t jinx me. Apparently, I don’t think I am as strong a rider as you think I am. Watch, I will probably end up last.

Fernando – Thanks for the info. I will probably try to get out and ride the course at least once before the race.
 
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