On the cusp of my Marathon Mountain Bike racing debut, I’m at a total loss – power vs flow – how do I incorporate the two?
It is growing frustrating, I’ve found that any effort to maximise the strength & endurance advantage – owing to my roadie prowess – leads to nothing short of disaster. Using ‘roadie’ power to full effect on the MTB generally results in overcooking corners, relying heavily on brakes, riding more off track than on track and even less time on the optimal race line – and on the odd [most] occasion[s] me trying to prematurely end myself, much to the amusement of my more experienced training partners.
Personally, though I hope others can relate, I am bewildered and passionately annoyed to find that I ride my fastest times when I am near complete exhaustion and so far beyond destroyed that every pedal stroke seems reason enough to never ride a MTB again.
The irony, when you feel physically at your worst, the splits are the best – physically at your best and the splits are nothing short of sub-optimal. I’m perplexed, it seems that mentally ‘riding slower’ lead to a much more rapid physical reality.
I’m not one to make assumptions, however it can be assumed that I have mountains upon mountains (intentional pun) to learn before I will be able to feel ‘at home’ on the MTB. More specifically though, and perhaps more-so a priority, it seems there is much I have to unlearn. I accept that eventually a skill set and fitness level acquired on the road will compliment an off-road skill set and fitness level and vice versa. Currently, I have found the transfer more problematic than productive.
I have discovered the importance of ‘flow’ though am struggling as to find a means with which to effectively incorporate some ‘power’ into the equation.
I’ll keep it simple this weekend – float & flow somewhat like a butterfly in the first hour, then begin dribbling in some power until I finish with blood in the back of my throat, a weeks worth of lactate pooling in my glutes and a sadistic smirk across my face.
Brock Roberts will be making his XCM debut at the Real Insurance XCM series Round 2: Capital Punishment