15 Minute Trail Rider Tune Up Workout

Dec 21, 2010 at 0:07
Dec 21, 2010
by James Wilson  
 
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Adding in a 15 Minute Trail Rider Tune Up on days that you can't make it to the gym is a great way to "optimally deal with reality". These workouts can help you improve mobility, increase core strength and develop body awareness in one compact package.

Here is how they work...



If there was one thing that summed up the difference between the programs I write today and the programs I wrote when I first started it is this – There is optimal and then there is reality. We all know what an optimal training program would look like…

- You'd wake up when we were ready and have time to cook and eat a good breakfast.
- You'd work out whenever your meticulously prepared plan told you to.
- You'd have time for a nap in the middle of the day to help your recovery.
- You'd be able to devote 2-4 hours a day, 4-6 days per week to your training program.

Sounds great, and if you can do it you'd get amazing results. However, this is the reality for most of us…

- We wake up when the alarm goes off, ready or not. Breakfast is what we can throw together and eat in less than 15 minutes.
- We schedule a workout when it fits into "life's" plans.
- Nap? What's this strange word you speak of?
- If we collect 4 hours of honest training time a week we're lucky.

Unless you are a pro rider who gets paid to train and ride you are probably looking at that second list and nodding your head – that sounds like you. If that is the case then you need to follow the old motto "you can get a lot out of a little if you are consistent with it". What this means is fitting several shorter workouts in over the course of the week can add up to some big results over time.


Adding in a 15 Minute Trail Rider Tune Up on days you can't make it to the gym is a great way to "optimally deal with reality". These workouts can help you improve mobility, increase core strength and develop body awareness in one compact package.

Here is how they work:

- Get a countdown timer and set it to 5 minutes. You can use an egg timer, a watch or even download an app for your phone.
- Start the timer and begin with the first exercise pairing. You will do one set of the first exercise and then a set of the second exercise, rotating back and forth between them until the timer goes off.
- Reset the timer and start it again, moving to the second exercise pairing. Once the timer goes off reset it and do the last exercise pairing. You are now finished.

Here is a great Trail Rider Tune Up workout that doesn’t require any equipment and can be done just about anywhere.

Exercise Pairing #1: Mobility Exercises

With these two exercises you don't want to worry about how many rounds you get through. The idea is to really work each movement and try to figure out how to get your body to come down deeper into movement. These exercises are great for "crushing" some mobility out of your hips and upper back.

Exercise #1: Wall Squats X 5 reps
Exercise #2: Down Dog/ Cobra "Prying" Drill X 3-5 reps


Exercise Pairing #2: Core Training Exercises

While you want to work hard on these exercises, keep your focus on your core, not your limbs. Learn how to stabilize your lower back and move from your hips. You also need remember that your shoulders are part of the core as well – keep them pulled back and down away from the ears.

Exercise #1: Inch Worm X 5
Exercise #2: Windmill X 5 each side


Exercise Pairing #3: Strength Training Exercises

While they are called "strength" training exercises, a mindset shift will help you get more out of these exercises. Look at it as movement practice, and really look to move as strong and fluid as you possibly can. Don't just be as strong as you need to, be as strong as you can.

Exercise #1: Push Ups X 5
Exercise #2: Bulgarian Split Squats X 5 reps each leg


Count how many rounds of the Core and Strength Training exercise pairings you get through in 5 minutes and then try to beat your record next time you do this routine. Don't try to increase the time, the point of this routine is speed and simplicity. Keep a laser focus for 15 minutes and then move on.

Pretty simple, which is the point. You don't have a lot of time to think when all you have is 15 minutes. Fit this routine in 3-4 times a week for the next few weeks and you'll notice the difference.

Here is a video demo of this routine in action, plus some extra coaching cue to help you get more out of the exercises.

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James Wilson is the owner MTB Strength Training Systems, the word's only company dedicated to developing strength and conditioning programs for the unique demands of mountain biking. James owns a training facility in Grand Junction CO and is the strength coach for the Yeti World Cup Team. Visit his blog www.bikejames.com to sign up for blog updates and get a free workout program and 25 tips to instantly improve your riding..
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14 Comments

  • + 22
 ...or just get out and shred the trails.
  • + 0
 Thats it !
  • + 22
 That's wrong actually. While It is good to practice, there will come a time where riding will not be enough you will hit a wall. Eventually you are going to have to work on your strength and range of motion to truly progress your riding. More specifically core strength and an improved quality of movement. When your body is fit your mind is fit, you will make less mistakes, you will be faster, and things like turning, negotiating tech sections, steeps, jumps become easier or will seem easier be because your body has a superior structure and deeper energy stores and typically a better shape than just riding will allow. Also very important. Strength training is key to injury prevention. you will have a longer healthier cycling lifestle.
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  • + 11
 But don't underestimate the vertues of training into the gym... if you want to improve your results on some amateur race, or just keep riding at 40 or 50 years old, the benefits of good training are just priceless!!!
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  • + 2
 just ride your bike to work/school/whatever and have some fun getting there (as in bunnyhopping over stuff, manualing and everything you can throw in) and you'll be in good shape all year long.
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  • + 1
 For even more exercise options check out crossfit.com. These pairings presented by pinkbike are done in this style of training. Keep in mind that the crossfit stuff does require equipment, but not always. I had taken some time away from serious riding and have been competing in crossfit comps and Olympic style weightlifting meets. Since I began riding again, my bike handling abilities are way better than they were when I was competing in the DH/4x series. For those racers that catch this, definately integrate the Oly lifts into your training as you will see gates like you have never seen before.
  • + 2
 Just wanted to add that top-level training does not require hours a day...especially or gravity oriented riders. A long workout for me anymore is in the 25 minute range, though with warm up and cool down that is likely 45 minutes. Intensity is the name of the game. Make every second count and when it is a strength oriented day hit it hard. Also, constantly vary what you do. No need to train at the same time every day.
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  • + 3
 very helpful, glad there are free video's like this trying to help us all get better at what we love to do
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  • + 4
 great write up and some helpfull info there!
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  • + 1
 agreed t1000. these workouts and what they get you long term is the only real "upgrade" you can take with you season after season on any ride on any bike.
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  • + 1
 eh, im in the army i dont have a choice lol, 5 mile run 3 days a week and A LOT of core and strength training
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  • + 1
 Damn I was dieing after the first 5 minutes of exercise pairing. Those down dogs suck. Can you say outta shape?
  • + 3
 out. of. shape.
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