Fitness for Mountain Biking

Fall is a great time to enjoy the woods (and get more of a view) on your bike! But, just like running on trails, mountain biking on trails requires a little more muscle involvement from the twisting and turning of guiding the bike over uneven ground.  So, getting stronger before you go is a really smart plan.

Mountain biking involves many more muscles than just the legs. Powering through a mountain bike workout forces you to engage your core muscles and also involves lots of upper body strength. So getting a whole-body workout at least twice a week will help strengthen the muscles so you can have more fun on your rides.

Most of the mountain bikers that I know typically have an anti-gym mentality. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t strength train! Body weight workouts are a great way to stay fit with no equipment. Everyone knows how to do pushups, pull-ups and crunches, but there is much more to body weight training than these exercises. You can certainly “Google” or “Bing” body weight exercise to get a whole list of ideas. Make sure to hit all the major muscle groups ; legs, chest, back, shoulders, biceps, triceps, forearms/wrists,  glutes, hips and especially the core. To get more bang for your buck, and save time, combine exercises to involve more muscle groups like, a pushup with a mountain climber or a lunge with a twist. (You can always add whatever you can find around the house for added weight; bags of flour, heavy ski boots, a small dog…) Make sure to start your routine at least a month before you start riding hard, so that you have time to get those muscles strong enough to support your biking habit. Grab a friend to join you and have some fun!

Wendy Hildebrand
Corporate Fitness Manager