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  1. #1
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    Performance keeps going down

    When mountain biking I am mostly lacking aerobically, I get out of breath fast. My background mostly comes from resistance training for muscular endurance, and bouldering. Been doing these since age 14. Whenever I begin aerobic activities for a long period of time (month or longer), my performance for that increases but my performance when it comes to being able to lift as much as I used to at the gym decreases slightly mostly in the upper body region. If I do the opposite then my performance for mountain biking decreases even more drastically.

    I understand at elite levels its unrealistic to be great at each activity, but how do I make it so I can excel at both even if the progress would be slower compared to sticking to just one. I am going in circles so far.

  2. #2
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    I don't know the answer to your question, but I will say that I've learned that life is a comprimise. I can either master a few things or be a jack of more. So I make choices and accept consequences. When I was into body building and distance running, I had to choose one to focus on. Same with my various genres of guitar playing, etc. I Can't excel at everything that I'd like to.

  3. #3
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    I dont think you can man. The are at apposing ends of the spectrum. Anaerobic or aerobic. If you do too much endurance that will sap some of your building recovery and if you dont do enough aerobic you will simply loose fitness.
    You need to find a happy medium between the two. Not being a rock star at either, but reasonably good at booth.


    I dont do weights any more. My anaerobic activity is kitesurfing. Its more muscular than aerobic. A similar thing happens to me. Lots of kiting and not much biking means my aerobic sucks but my core is rock solid. More biking and less kiting sees me leading the pack on the ups but my core is piss weak and i suffer kiting.

  4. #4
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    Ex powerlifter, still lift heavy. You need to keep doing what ever strength work to keep the muscle. If you take a break and do endurance work your body will loose muscle to be more aerobic. I can keep most my strength most the year. I loose some when I'm doing a ton of riding. But not as much as if I stopped lifting. Make sure there is enough protien for repair. And calories.

  5. #5
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    That's probably one of the reasons like not having enough protein/carbs and calories. I eat a lot of meals though out the day and during a long ride I do tend to get hungry but I don't really notice it as much until the end of the ride. Not hungry as in starving, more as in I should eventually eat some food soon type.

  6. #6
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    Yeah, eat well or at least a recovery drink after lifting and riding.

  7. #7
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    In the end, you're trying to balance a complex issue - muscle power and aerobics both have to be trained to be maintained. If you're serious about it, you may need to invest in some time with a personal trainer who has experience managing that balance.

  8. #8
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    Not sure what your pedal rate is, but, if you have been doing muscle training, try gearing up a gear or two and slow your pedal rate, thus using the muscle endurance you have been building.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cotharyus View Post
    In the end, you're trying to balance a complex issue - muscle power and aerobics both have to be trained to be maintained. If you're serious about it, you may need to invest in some time with a personal trainer who has experience managing that balance.
    A trainer can definitely help. The balance can definitely be tricky and burn you out. But the balance is what most are trying to achieve in MMA or other marital arts, crossfit ect.
    And with a balanced body you won't be the winner of any supper endurance or strength sports.

  10. #10
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    I do a lot of bouldering and some climbing. I'm on the edge of finally being able to get V7s, as you get older, progress gets a lot slower.

    It doesn't take massive strength to do well at climbing, and you know this. It takes core and conditioning tendons and all the muscle groups. I find this is generally good for mountain biking.

    Lifting weights and building muscle mass is generally bad for mountain biking, it just adds weight and oxygen/blood requirements that aren't doing you any good. At the top expert levels, I know some well-built racers. They don't look like skinny bean-poles and are what I'd generally describe as "fit".

    Once you move to the pro mtb ranks, the racers tend to fit a very similar mold, most of them having the same body shape and similar muscle build/fat content. These guys are far more "specialized" and I don't think most people really want to go here, even if they seem to dream about it. Here, 140lb males dominate and if you are carrying extra weight over that, unless you are over 6" tall, it just slows you down. They are ultra-efficient machines at turning calories into miles.

    Here's a question: If you train for these other sports, how much training are you doing for MTB? It requires training as well. You need to be riding several times a week and include max-efforts, intervals and other techniques if you want to improve. You also need to push yourself with longer-endurance rides and manage things like hydration and food intake.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    I do a lot of bouldering and some climbing. I'm on the edge of finally being able to get V7s, as you get older, progress gets a lot slower.

    It doesn't take massive strength to do well at climbing, and you know this. It takes core and conditioning tendons and all the muscle groups. I find this is generally good for mountain biking.

    Lifting weights and building muscle mass is generally bad for mountain biking, it just adds weight and oxygen/blood requirements that aren't doing you any good. At the top expert levels, I know some well-built racers. They don't look like skinny bean-poles and are what I'd generally describe as "fit".

    Once you move to the pro mtb ranks, the racers tend to fit a very similar mold, most of them having the same body shape and similar muscle build/fat content. These guys are far more "specialized" and I don't think most people really want to go here, even if they seem to dream about it. Here, 140lb males dominate and if you are carrying extra weight over that, unless you are over 6" tall, it just slows you down. They are ultra-efficient machines at turning calories into miles.

    Here's a question: If you train for these other sports, how much training are you doing for MTB? It requires training as well. You need to be riding several times a week and include max-efforts, intervals and other techniques if you want to improve. You also need to push yourself with longer-endurance rides and manage things like hydration and food intake.
    To answer your question, and I'm not the best model to choose from. I use to carry a lot of muscle. Was once 225lbs at 5'6" since I carried this weight for over a decade. I can maintain less than this much easier than most. My gym time is lunch breaks 3 times a week. Bike time is after work and weekends. After work is shorter with intervals or really pushing it on short rides. With the exception of after leg workouts. Weekends are for longer more endurance stuff.

    I have no desire to be a top XC racer but mid season I sit around 180lbs very lean. In the winter I sit around 200lbs with less biking. I'm much stronger which helps since I take well paying bouncing gigs during the holidays. Which helps the bike and biking vacation funds.

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