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  1. #1
    go vegan!
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    not aggressive enough.

    Anyone ever have this problem?

    I will have a great start top 3-6 stay with them and then let them get away instead of just pushing harder or getting out of the saddle.

    Even if I don't have a good start I have the energy but just don't try to catch up.

    Nationals was a great example... started 6 or 7 because I was on the second line and instead of blowing past the slower guys on the first climb I just sat on their wheel climbing up.


    Any solutions or advice to this? It is something I need to work on for the last couple races and next season.

  2. #2
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    You should start racing CX. Lots of shoulder to shoulder racing and sprinting for corners. And it seems to continue through most the race. After a season of CX and coming back to MTB, it seems pretty tame by comparison.

    But as far as agressiveness for power outputs, I think that you need to be smart about it. There are some instances when power outputs are a waste. For example, if your sprinting a straightaway to just slam your breaks into a corner, then it's wasted energy. I'd rather just hold back a bit and rail the corner with little or no braking.

    Short steep hills and hill crests (while overtaking people) are a great place to expend energy that actually makes up time.

    Also, I believe that energy is conserved, and whatever energy isn't expended at the beginning, can be reapplied later in the race. For example, last week at our midweeks, I lined up second row and didn't get a good start. I also hit shoulders with someone which kind of threw me off and I wound up losing contact with the top 4 guys after jeep road climb. But I race with mostly the same guys every week and at the end, results were pretty much the same despite bad start. 2nd place (B group) for 3rd week in a row.
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  3. #3
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    So they start pulling away from you and you have the engine to hang with them but mentally you can't make yourself spin hard enough to stay on their wheel ? Its easy to say just force yourself to spin harder.

    Its running but it may apply.
    Overcoming Mental Blocks | Runner's World

    I went through a period where i could have a strong start and hang with the leaders about 15 minutes into the race but my legs just couldn't keep pace and I'd fall back and recover and usually finish 2nd or 3rd.
    You will be scarred for life if you click my avatar

  4. #4
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    Is it lack of confidence, desire, or cardio/skills that keeps you from pushing to stay with anyone that passes?

    If you're gassed and can't push, that's one thing. If it's just that you get passed and you're worry about blowing up or are just not pushing that extra bit to stay with them, then I'd say it could help to work on mentally preparing to catch back on to the wheel and keep up.

    Mountain biking is pretty different from road riding/racing, where if you're doing a group ride, aside from a few instances if you pull the pace line, you're mostly just sitting in waiting for the final sprint. Mountain biking is basically a time trial, with a bunch of people all riding around you also doing the same time trial. I realize that I raced women, so the fields are smaller, but there's very little sitting in and drafting in women's mountain bike racing.

    Just go out there and drill it Either you'll win or pass out. Hopefully not the latter.

  5. #5
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    I've been experimenting with telling myself to go my absolute hardest for the first 15 or 20min of a race before I settle into a pace for the remainder of the race. This has definately moved me from back 3rd to front 3rd of the pack and improved my overall times. Now I need to learn how to hold on a little longer at the midpoint of a race.

  6. #6
    go vegan!
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    Thanks for the responses, I really appreciate it.

    I'm not out of gas I just don't have the drive mentally.
    I definitely could be doing way better if I had the drive that I used to.

    Like I said, I have great starts, fight for a good spot going into single track, will rubbing shoulders and elbow for my place. I have the drive then I sorta almost loose interest.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by xgjokax View Post
    Thanks for the responses, I really appreciate it.

    I'm not out of gas I just don't have the drive mentally.
    I definitely could be doing way better if I had the drive that I used to.

    Like I said, I have great starts, fight for a good spot going into single track, will rubbing shoulders and elbow for my place. I have the drive then I sorta almost loose interest.
    Are you okay with it being like that? If so then I don't see a problem. If you're finding you're upset with your race finishes and getting frustrated, find a reason to get mad. Maybe the guy just kicked your puppy? It's all about mental imagery

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by miss rides a lot View Post
    Are you okay with it being like that? If so then I don't see a problem. If you're finding you're upset with your race finishes and getting frustrated, find a reason to get mad. Maybe the guy just kicked your puppy? It's all about mental imagery
    haha thanks Alison!

  9. #9
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    Sounds like its likely a form of anxiety /self-sabotage. This is a common mental issue in sports (which is much more mental than we'd like to admit).

    In any competitive event there will be some difficult or even unpleasant points/minutes that decide the outcome. Those times aren't always at the end of the game/race/match. When these times come, its easy to convince yourself of all the reasons why you DON'T HAVE TO win those points or push harder because going for the win will require even more than you already are giving (its going to hurt more). Basically, you intentionally avoid the difficult situation that you see coming.

    Mental problems often require physical solutions. (You fight fire with water.) Practice racing with a friend or two of a similar skill level rather than "just going out to ride/train." The races can be short. Do it a lot. The more of those unpleasant moments you face, the easier they will become. In my experience, if your practice is competitive, competitions become more like practice - there will be better skills transfer and better results.
    My other bike is a /7.

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