It isn’t just coincidence that great mountain bikers make awesome roadies.
The top 3 reasons mountain bikers make good roadies:
1. You have to have exceptional handling skills to drink a beer while riding down a trial.
2. It takes serious mental toughness ride 100 miles through mud with no chamois cream!
3. You have to be a good climber (since there are not many flat mountains).
I have no doubt in my mind that my dirt background is actually an advantage for Joe, especially when combined with the personal experience I have had working with Hunter, president of Peaks Coaching group, which has given me the skills to apply a lot of my ideas.
The background I have racing to 10 stage race wins on the mountain bike give me a unique perspective on training and racing for road, and I am no stranger to stage race prep, tactics and recovery.
For sure my training style is unorthodox. Some things are still a work in progress, but to put in the massive amount of training one needs to be competitive in the hardest events in the world, I have learned an important lesson; that a key part of training is simply enjoying the training.
A good example was the Virtual tour of Virginia we did this spring. Joe, Virginia state road champ, Keck Baker and I motorpaced against the winning GPS files of the Tour of Virginia. OUCH! 200 miles of motorpacing through the mountains, chasing the shadow of a virtual peloton! It wasn’t easy, but it was FUN.
It also rendered some great specific skill practice, as well as forced us to work on adaptation to leg speed and fluctuations of power demand that came in handy for a top race like the Tour of California. It was also great to work with Joe on some finer points of racing, like being on your toes. The Moped flatted doing 60 down Panther Gap, and lets just say it was little scary and leave it at that.