Make the 10 hour day/night Mountain Bike Race an enjoyable experience by being as best prepared by following these top 10 tips for training for the event:

  1. Riding your bicycle! Use these principles of training (riding your bicycle) to create structure to your training and get F.I.T. for the race:
    1. F.requency: this is the most important for the weekend warrior (in theory) – the more frequent & routinely you exercise/ride your bicycle, the more successful you will be at becoming F.I.T.
    2. I.ntensity: number 1 important point to remember with intensity is to vary it – have days where you train aerobic endurance (steady/moderately hard), really hard days (high intensity) and recovery.
    3. T.ime: the more time on the bike generally the better but always account for recovery time.
      1. To get a better idea of what is appropriate amount of the above you can enquire about the official Timaru 10 hour Mountain Bike training programme supplied by Odlin Cycle Coaching (OCC).
  2. If you’re entered as a team, aim to make time to ride with at least one of your team mates – a commitment to others makes training easier + you can learn the strengths & weaknesses of each other.
      1. Having accountability of a paid training programme from OCC can assist in keeping you on track.
  3. Which type of cycling – Road or Mountain Bike? Both are appropriate, the latter being the most important for skill levels required for the course (see next tip).  If you have a road bicycle, use it as a faster and easier way of building aerobic fitness required for the race.
  4. Train on the course: this is important to build your required technical skills and prior knowledge of the course helps for pacing and confidence on race day.
  5. Train over a similar time as race day: are you physically ready to start racing at 9am and at dinner time (6-7pm)? Train at these times (in the same time) to find out.
  6. Prepare yourself and equipment for varying the four seasons: rain, cold, wind & sunshine. As well as when on the bike, off-the-bike clothing/equipment is vital!
  7. Trial racing nutrition and hydration in training. As above on the bike nutrition and hydration is important, as well as off-the-bike.
  8. Write a plan/list for race day. The more relaxed you are about knowing everything is ready for you are good to go on race day, the better you will go.
  9. Train with heart rate monitor or power meter. Both these tools give an objective measure of your current performance and provide a way of tracking improvements in performance.
      1. The OCC training programme is Training Peaks online-based which keeps track of both heart rate and power data.
  10. Have fun in training – it’s not just about the final destination! While completing this race could be an amazing achievement for some entrants, the process of training for the event, if done appropriately, should be as rewarding as crossing the finish line.