The Workout Of The Day for Wednesday, 11.03.10 – “Double down on the doubles…”

Howdy folks,

As I write this, I’m sitting in the living room watching the election results come in, and in the spirit of the Tea party,  I’m going to offer ya’all a chance to “refudiate” my comments earlier this week.

We’re up to Wednesday, which is, of course, Cyclocross Skills Day.

Today, I want you to go out there and prove that your remount skills don’t suck.

On Sunday I said that they did.

Prove I’m wrong.

Go out there and nail ’em.

First, though… a little bit of commentary and explication, OK?

I saw the majority of people screwing up two things on Sunday; their re-mounts, and their barrier-running. Lots of people clipping barriers out there!

These two things are both usually the result of fatigue and it’s main side effect: to wit, when you are fatigued, you can’t get away with the same crap you can when you’re fresh.


The first thing that goes away when you get tired is your “ups.”

In basketball, this means your jump shot goes to hell. You start throwing up bricks.

In cyclocross, you start clipping barriers with your feet and your saddle with your leg.

The solution to the problem – in all 3 examples – is to double-down on the fundamentals.

If you start screwing up the basics when you get tired, it’s because you aren’t doing them correctly.

You’re relying on athleticism and explosive energy to get the job done for you.

This is especially clear when you start clipping barriers with your feet.

Why does this happen?

Because you’re jumping over the barriers rather than running through them.

Check out this vid –

…and take note of how very little vertical motion there is when these guys go through the barrier section.

Note how the leg flips out to the side, like a hurdler –

…as they swing it over the barrier?


If you do it this way, you don’t need to jump over the barrier.

(yeah- ugly, right? Sorry…)

If you don’t jump over the barrier, when you start to lose your “ups” late in the race, you don’t clip the barrier with your foot.

If you don’t clip the barrier with your foot, you don’t face-plant.

That’s a good thing, right?

…and it all starts with one tiny little detail.

Worth thinking about, right?

So, same deal with your remounts. If you have to jump up onto the saddle you’re doing it wrong, and it’s going to catch up with you when you get tired.


So don’t do it.

Work on getting it right. Lots of babble on the topic in earlier posts.



One last thing to work on before we get going, and that’s High-Speed remounts.

Basically, work on em.

I’ve been harping on ya’all to practice your dismounts and remounts at a low speed, and now – clearly – it’s time to work on them at high speed.

The idea is to get back on a bike that’s going fast. When you’re going slow, that usually means taking a couple of extra steps to accelerate the bike up to speed before you get back on.

When you’re already going fast?

Then, you need to get back on the bike quickly.

Work on it.

Here’s the outline for tonight –

– Warm up, 10-15 minutes.

– Stretch.

Active stretching after you’re warm.

– Barrier skills

go as long as you need to. This is tonight’s focus…

– Starts.

Do as many as it takes to get 5 perfect starts in a row. Focus not only on the initial acceleration off the line, but the second effort after you get up to speed. This is the effort that usually gets you the gap – or closes the gap – on that first lap.

– Practice race.

Ideally, set yourself up with a course that will include some high speed barriers 🙂

Tonight, focus on your speed. Work on coming into and out of technical sections with as much speed as you can. Think acceleration… jump out of the corners and out of the barriers. Think about that last corner in that last race on Sunday, and how a fast barrier exit combined with a guns-a-blazin’ acceleration out of that last corner could have won you the race…


Have fun,



~ by crosssports on November 2, 2010.

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