Video: MTB Fitness For Over 40s Riders

Feb 8, 2023 at 3:56
by Ben Plenge  

Words: Ben Plenge

We all know that being a bit fitter and stronger will not only make us quicker riders, but also let us enjoy riding more. After all, it will let you go further, climb higher and descend with more confidence. Regardless of whether, 'performance,' or 'fun,' motivates you to train and ride, you can't deny that fitness will help.

Back in sunny lockdown I self filmed a video called MTB Fitness For Over 40s and it was my first video to appear on the hallowed pages of Pinkbike. Now, 18 months later, I have just put together part 2, building on the points in the first video and taking my years of experience working with riders of all levels. I hope you enjoy it......

In case you missed part one that was on Pinkbike back in 2020, here it is.......

To find out more about The Over 40s MTB Programme, just drop me a line on Instagram @strengthfactory_coach or you can get signed up here:

Author Info:
MTB-Strength-Factory avatar

Member since Mar 25, 2014
24 articles

  • 274 18
 Guy on an e-bike reminds me that I'm old, tells me to be cautious, not to send hard, not to workout hard and not to train hard, while this probably is true, just f*ck you Ben!
  • 22 9
 Comment gold. 100 percent agree.
  • 47 13
 Thanks mate, appreciate the feedback. haha. Have a great Sunday. Ben
  • 9 7
 Stay classy, @Ikubica.
  • 78 0
 Im 43, I had a Carvery at lunchtime today, my family said "your not going biking after eating all that?"......I don't play by the rules and hit the local DH tracks until I needed a dump.
  • 13 0
 @Smokey79: Legendary status
  • 40 0
 Live fast die old.

Best comment I ever got Whistler from a grom on A line, "you're 40!?! Dad! he's older than you!!!"
  • 24 6
 I’46, 3xs a week on the gym doing “light “ scaled CrossFit, riding my Sentinel on the weekends and having sex whenever my wife asks me to!! What the f##k is this guy talking about??
  • 32 0
 I just wanted to note that I'm just being sarcastic here, I'm ok with Ben, especially that he seems to be right (well, maybe except riding an e-bike).
  • 7 3
 @lkubica: No worries bro.
  • 6 3
 @Smokey79: Best comment I have seen on PB...ever
  • 8 0
 @Smokey79: +1, and had a Pint afterwards to 'celebrate' not crashing, and a whiskey as well if ya did Wink
  • 6 2
 Imho it‘s wrong advice anyway.

Train shorter? Yes, absolutely.

Less hard? Not so much. Actually, as you are getting older you will have to train harder to achieve comparable gains. So within healthy parameters (yes, do monitor that pulse) I would recommend going as hard as you can, albeit for a shorter duration.
  • 6 1
 @FuzzyL: [citation needed]
  • 8 0
 Yes, the e-bike is an odd choice for a "fitness" video...
  • 5 0
 @L0rdTom: Yeah, well, the same applies to the original statements in the video, right?

As a good starting point I‘d recommend the works of Joe Friel, Chris Carmichael, or John Hughes. Basically everyone looking closer at training requirements and possibilities for older cyclists (and typically that does address 50+ and 60+, not merely 40+) in recent years found that the major decline in fitness in that age is not caused so much by the aging process itself, but by these cyclists reducing the training effort, and going long distances at a steady pace, while they can achieve much more by doing the opposite.
  • 4 0
 @wilkassm: where is Richard Simmons when you need him
  • 4 0
 @Dogl0rd: smoking ham.
  • 1 0
 @FuzzyL: hi. Translate this one, lots of interesting stuff about the aging body and brain and working out(like a crazy person :⁠-⁠D
  • 3 0
 @Smokey79: I'm hoping you stacked as much as physically possible inside your Yorkshire as well, proper carvery.
  • 2 0
 @FuzzyL: I also follow Peter Attia for fitness and longevity information

But Dr Inigo San Millan convinced me to change my training to include a majority of Zone 2. Only heading to the mountains for training is too much (IE Zones 3-5).
  • 1 0
 @FuzzyL: Yup - Time Crunched Cyclist is awesome. Doing their watt-building program for a couple months in the winter is gold.

Currently doing just one day a week of intervals on the bike trainer and making big gains (as a 220lb guy who is 55 years young and hits the trails 2-3x per week).
  • 3 0
 Ignored right away with that big battery! 45 riding better than 25
  • 1 0
 @adogshred: I know guys in their mid 40s who will crush a climb 2x in a row that my mid 30s friends struggle to do once

Sounds to me like riding when you're older is only going to be hard if you don't put in the work when you're younger
  • 2 0
 lmao ebike
  • 2 0
 I thought this was a parody video, cracked me up real good. Reading his comments, I'm doubting myself but then again maybe he's just milking the parody. Go Ben!
  • 147 8
 Just turned 78 and you could not run fast enough to catch me to give me an ebike. Bought a rowing machine 3 winters ago and that's kept me from pacing the cage when the trails are wet or frozen. Been riding for over 3 decades and my advice is to ride as much as possible and have fun doing it.
  • 6 0
 I love my rower, its nice when you use it to train for cardio on the bikes because you can go ride before or after and your quads aren't going to be on fire. Its also the perfect equipment to warm up for just about any exercise.
  • 3 0
 I read this article a while back which validates rowing as a an excellent cross training method for building power on the mtb. I'm not a numbers guy but it's nice to know that you can make gains on your bike while effectively working 80% of the muscles in your body.
  • 5 3
 Nice one mate. The rowing machine is a great bit of kit and I am glad it's working out for you.
  • 27 10
 Not everyone is blessed with your genetics, mate. Ebikes have allowed many people to carry on riding when they otherwise couldn't have done.
  • 21 7
 I have an ebike, a regular bike, and a road bike. Guess what- no shame here. Maybe I’ll get another one this year just to see heads explode lololol
  • 4 1
 @cuban-b: No shame - just smiles!
  • 13 4
 65 in need of a knee replacement, EBike has kept me riding and off the operating table, still have the non-E Bike bike I occassionally ride
  • 8 5
 You should try a real boat, rowing machines are yet another creation of satan’s shed.
Along with exercise bikes.
Just play outside. (Old git speaking)
  • 1 0
 Yep, rowing is awesome training in general, and great cross training for mtb. A lot more interesting and beneficial than hopping on a spin bike for gym days.
  • 1 0
 Got a rower this winter as well, usually 2k then 20-25 push-ups. Do this for 30-60mins as time allows. Like the change and feeling a lot stronger in the shoulders, hope this will help protect from any unplanned excursions into the scenery this season,
  • 3 0
 @Kebabroll: Perfect is the enemy of good
  • 2 0
 @Kebabroll: try rowing a boat in Alaska in the winter.
  • 89 24
 Hey, it's Ben here from the video. Today was my first ever savaging from the Pinkbike comments section. I guess I have made it in mountain biking now! haha
Seriously though, 90% of the hate and negative stuff is because I rode and E-Bike for the video. I have an enduro bike, and even a gravel bike, and I didn't even mention E-Bikes once, but this is what loads of people focused on and I'm a bit surprised and bewildered. Somehow the fact that a coach rides and E-bike sometimes means that his years of experience are less valid? Go on Insta and you will see Alan Milway riding his Husqvarna E-Bike. I guess that means all those rainbow stripes his athletes have won were just luck and actually he doesn't know anything! Oh wait.... no.... that's ridiculous, it's just a bike. Get over it.
Anyway, I am not losing any sleep over it and am still stoked to get on Pinkbike again. Thanks to anyone who took the time to watch the video and /or comment.
If anyone has any training questions about the video, or in general, then please drop them below or get in touch on social media and I will do my best to get back to you.
P.S. Like and Subscribe! hahaha
  • 63 30
 The optics of a pedal assist bike prop in a old-person biking fitness vid is lost on you?

Know your audience, son.
  • 17 8
 You got savaged by the sofa-on-a-Sunday crowd, I wonder how far the average critic has ridden this week.

I've moved into the 40+ camp and you're right, you can't smash every ride like it's possible to in your 20s. I race XC and lots of the vets are still schooling the younger generation. Nice vid.
  • 14 3
 Hey Ben, thanks for the videos, I found them enjoyable and useful! Great that you’re also talking about the relationship and mental well-being aspects as well as importance of factoring in whole-life stress and most importantly, playing the long game.

Unfortunately there are many negative comments here based on causation by correlation type thinking. It’s quite sad from a societal perspective that these people feel entitled to jump to illogical and binary conclusions, and seem to feel validated by expressing both their incongruous thinking and desire to publicly bathe in their own negativity in a bike website comments section.

I hope you can ignore them and realise you bring quality content to many others and I’m sure you make a great impact doing what you’re doing on a day to day basis with the people you’re training in person too!

All the best
  • 12 2
 Im 60 yr old ride normal and e bike love both, e bike allows me to get an extra day or two's riding in every week without wearing myself out. by the way I'm faster on the way down on my ebike!!!!! Just don't get the hate surely its better than using a vehicle assisted uplift which I can see happening every weekend at my local Bike park.
  • 11 11
 Getting burned in the PB comment section is a right of passage! Enjoy it. It's mostly from younger people who haven't a clue. Your advice is spot on. The ebike hate is both funny and sad for me. It's just jealousy, trolling and/or ignorance speaking. The world is becoming riddled with riders who were once haters and now have seen the light. Enjoy the ride people! However is fun for you. And save some more money so you can get an Ebike.
  • 2 10
flag AntN (Feb 12, 2023 at 15:48) (Below Threshold)
 Someone build a DH ebike and it will sell like T-bone steak amoungst the +40 crowd.
  • 21 5
 Sea Otter has a 60+ DH race category. We're all getting older and we still race and ride hard without EEBS or defeatist attitudes. I couldn't get past the condescending ageist "Give Up and accept the inevitable' tone and how we're all changing and there's nothing we can do about it, so I'm not Liking, Subscribing, or wishing to Notified. Had you not began with that, I might have given the video a chance. Sod off.
  • 2 2
 “I, I, I”……
  • 12 1
 @HankHank: Ahhh, that’s kinda BS. I smash harder at 42 than I ever did at 24. Faster, better stamina, more composed. Difference is I’m smarter about my limits and know when to sit a feature out when I’m not feeling it. Plenty of gym time and no more 12oz curls and I’m in better shape than my 20’s and my riding shows it.
  • 4 0
 @h20-50: same shape of my life at 41. Training harder and smarter than ever and it's paying off!
  • 2 0
 @SC3081: Right on brotha!!!
  • 2 0
 @h20-50: maybe I made my point badly but we're saying the same thing. If I compare ride data now versus ten years ago I hit max heart rate much less often, but I train better and almost certainly would beat my younger self in a race.
  • 1 0
 @KK11: LOL you nut
  • 4 0
 @HankHank: All good then dude! I don’t buy into age sets you back as much as people tend to believe. Age comes with years of built skills and experiences to capitalize one. Sure, I’m not have the lungs I did at 24, and 24 yr old me will beat 42 yr old me on the climbs, but 42 will dust 24 me on the downs! Cheers!
  • 2 0
 @h20-50: awesome, keep on sending it!
  • 5 0
 All great advice except for the #dontsend and #dontgohard !

Gotta keep the adrenaline pumping and maintain the risk exposure when over 50 to help prevent cognitive degeneration.

Our crew ranges from 50-61 years old and everyone continues to push limits regularly.

Use it or loose it.
Don't discourage Ben!
  • 2 0
 Hey Ben, thanks for the free advice, but to be fair, a video about over 40 fitness on a motor-assisted bike...well, what would follow was rather obvious. It's all fun really, I don't think anyone was offended and neither should you.

I understand that e-bikes are here to stay and that for many people they make the difference between riding or not, for others they're just a useful training tool (more laps) but for many, including myself it's something that goes against the very essense of riding a mountain bike. Each group has their own reasons for what they enjoy and choose to do.
  • 47 5
 Joined the gym last year when I hit 51 and am enjoying being fitter than at 41. All with out an ebike.
  • 6 2
 Great work dude. Keep it up. Ben
  • 39 2
 I'm 53 and my answer is ride with dudes 20-30 years younger than you. Seems to work for me. I never once think of how old I am when I'm actually riding.
  • 3 68
flag YukonMog (Feb 12, 2023 at 2:53) (Below Threshold)
 You mean your kids?

Which 23 year olds wanna ride with a 53 year old?!
  • 36 0
 @YukonMog: I ride with dudes 20+ years older than me. Age is irrelevant.
  • 20 15
 Haha what a joke, get rid of the e-bike. Not very inspiring at all. Riding with a younger crew helps keep me fit and young. Will be 60 this year, have been riding bikes for 40 years and still love it. New hip and riding around on a real bike, racing multi day Enduros and big alpine days is where it's at for me. Not old enough for en e-bike yet......but see the advantage for my local shuttle area for sure. Maybe when I'm 70.
  • 21 14
 @pedaler Why is everyone so focused on my E-Bike!?!?!? I didn't say to get an E-Bike or even anything about one. I just happened to ride one for the video that day. It doesn't make the points any less valid. Either way, I agree that riding with a younger crew is really beneficial and probably a lot of fun. Sounds like you have found what works for you and that is cool. Keep it up and have a great weekend. Ben
  • 10 1
 I do this everyday. probably a little late for the +40 group but here’s my plan.

Have kids
Teach them how to shred
Try to keep up

My oldest is 18 and it’s everything I’ve got to keep up with him. I can out crazy him on really rough stuff, but I don’t like riding over my head anymore. I’m 44 BTW. We have acoustic and DJ and e bikes. It doesn’t matter what we’re on. They are pushing me. Try riding an e-bike past the speed cut off for hours. It’s more work than my acoustic.

Anyone else on this “plan”?
  • 11 2
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: great video. I agree with everything you said and have no beef with your ebike… but the reflexive ebike trash talk is a bit of a cultural thing in the comment section. No offense to you at all.
  • 9 12
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: you're wasting your energy defending yourself about the e-bike, dude. it's super hip on pinkbike and reddit to talk shit on e-bikes. just like dirtbikes, A: they're not for everyone and B: they're fun as hell. the OG Klunker dudes thought suspension forks were dumb, too. people will most likely get over it eventually. plus, it's not like human powered bikes aren't still available.
  • 1 0
 @txcx166: Love it. My oldest is only 5 though, so a way to go yet.
  • 4 1
 @txcx166: riding past the speed a regular bike? Just heavier?
  • 10 7
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: ebikes make riding easier. You're promoting training and fitness (hard) while on an ebike (easier) so the hidden message seems pretty overt. It's like if I were to promote tutoring for a tough test while having a laptop open for the Googles.
  • 10 8
 @pdxkid: Ebikes CAN make riding easier. They are just a tool. You can work as hard or as little as you like. There are no hidden messages here.......
  • 6 0
 @txcx166: I was with you until you called it an acoustic bike. Seriously though can’t wait for my two kids to take their bikes to the trails. Putting in the work now, hoping it pays off.
  • 3 0
 I do exactly the same as you, mate. In addition, the helmet hides the lack of hair.
  • 4 4
 @pedaler: You say that now until you ride one, I said the same, on an E-Bike now at 65 and never looking back.
  • 10 8
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: Ben, it's because that's how the puritanical fanatic fringe of the MTB religion most demonstrate their virtue. hating is macho and shows the manliness to others in their faith.
  • 2 0
 @pete-moss: it feels like it takes a long time for them to get up to speed, but once it happens it feels like it happened fast. Nothing is better than sharing a passion with your kids. I’ve been really fortunate. I did the same for golf and my 18 year old is a scratch golfer now and I can’t beat my 11 year old anymore. It was a big time commitment, but they can do these sports their whole lives. Unlike a lot of traditional sports- they do some of those too.
  • 6 0
 @jakemcab: agree - this is one sport (and there are many others) where it's more about just being stoked and having the right attitude and getting after it.

At my local trails there will, literally, be an age range of 13 - 60 session jumps and sending stuff. The funny thing is a lot of older people would call the old guys idiots. But that's societal conditioning for you.

Ponce deLeon spent his whole life searching for the Fountain of Youth only to find out it was right there all along.

Once you start thinking and acting like you are old the downfall has begun. Before long you are only the endless stream of prescriptions and doctors visits just like they want you to be - unhealthy and afraid of death.
  • 4 1
 @jamesbrant: It is Sunday, so of course the high priests of 'real mtb' are out displaying their purity above the unwashed masses and erecting gates to keep. If you have differing opinions or ways of enjoying bicycles, watch out!
  • 2 1
 @pedaler: how are these the words of a 60 year old?

do you have any children?
  • 1 0
 @owl-X: What's the issue? How can a 59 year old not write like that? Also, he used hip to refer to a bone in his body.
  • 1 1
 @mi-bike: sounds like an edgy teen. But yeah, I guess dingdongs can get old without giving up their dingdong ways...bummer.
  • 31 4
 Buy a road bike and an indoor trainer. Don’t think I’ve ever been fitter. Can ride indoors at night for an hour and outdoors when you have more time. Not everyone is close to trails so it lets you ride when you can get off-road. I use wahoo system for indoor stuff.
  • 5 0
 Nice one - I am just on Zwift for the first time and quite enjoying it for now. Cheers. Ben
  • 4 0
 Over the last few years I've done zwift races for a couple months each winter. I've found it so effective that I actually lose a little fitness mountain biking in the summer, even though I'm spending more hours on the bike. Definitely worth a try if you're looking to stay fit and avoid the siren song of the e-bike.
  • 6 0
 @avgas: I bought a smart trainer too and it collects dust. A total faff. I'd rather ride outside in the elements than play video games and stress out about FTP tests and spin down calibrations. As the saying goes, "the worst ride outdoors is better than the best ride indoors."
  • 2 1
 @fentoncrackshell: Fair enough, it's not for everyone. I expect I will stop my subscription in spring to get outside more.
  • 2 1
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: Don't like Zwift. I use Wahoo. Fair few bits are free and you can try the full subscription for two weeks without putting in a CC. The fitness tests are free and give more information than just FTP. I use garmin connect not strava as well. You should check out for more fitness stats and info. Can import from strava, garmin and others.
  • 2 1
 @fentoncrackshell: except it isn't for a lot of people. Using a smart trainer allows me to ride whenever I want. Most of the time I can't ride outside so it helps keep me fit. If you are not interested in fitness then I guess an indoor trainer isn't for you.
  • 36 12
 To get "fit" on a bycycle when old - let an electrical engine do all the work for you. Yepp that makes sense.
By the way I'm 65 think I'm pretty fit and ride one sans engine and don't really feel the need or much less the want for one.
  • 21 14
 motor. "engine" is combustion, "motor" is electric. beyond that, e-bikes actually have some pretty good use for fitness. the benefits of zone 2 training are well known, so i wont get into that here. using an e-bike can let you control your heart rate, so you can do fun steep rides that would put you into zone 5, and stay at zone 2 the entire time, instead of doing boring flat rides on the gravel bike or stationary bike.
  • 12 19
flag MTB-Strength-Factory (Feb 12, 2023 at 7:13) (Below Threshold)
 Did I mention E-Biking? Everyone is totally focused on the E-Bike. My pedal bike was getting a fork service, so I rode the E for this video. Either way, I am genuinely stoked that you are 65 and keeping fit by riding. Keep it up mate.
Vielen Dank für Ihren Kommentar. Ben
  • 5 0
 @blackercanyons: I don't disagree that zone 2 is beneficial. But, one of the big benefits of zone 2 is that you can recover fast enough to ride long days back to back, thereby getting more training stimulus. Most of us probably can't dedicate that many hours to training though, and would probably gain more fitness from their limited time riding at higher intensities.
  • 6 4
 @avgas: the current general recommendations for zone 2 are 3 rides a week spread out evenly with rest days, during your base training period. Science has found, and I personally have experienced, that riding at high intensity all the time does not lead to anywhere near as much increase in fitness. I'm not some huge e-bike advocate, i just think the hate against them is dumb. I'd like one specifically for zone 2 training or to go have fun on days that I dont have time for a long human powered ride or I would otherwise be having a recovery day and not riding at all.
  • 13 25
flag BarryWalstead (Feb 12, 2023 at 8:46) (Below Threshold)
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: f*ck mopeds in the woods.
And a fitness video where you ride one?
What a loser.
  • 9 7
 @BarryWalstead: hahaha, this is hilarious. Have a great Sunday.
  • 11 21
flag BarryWalstead (Feb 12, 2023 at 9:06) (Below Threshold)
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: it is hilarious that you made a video about fitness while using a fitness reducing aid. And then don't get why a lot of us that ride bikes in the woods don't like electric mopeds around.
I'm gonna have a great Sunday and in fact my wife and I are riding out from our house on real bicycles in about 10 minutes.
  • 22 9
 @BarryWalstead: you're a gatekeeping douche. shut the f*ck up. i'm sorry about whatever is going on in your life that you need the pinkbike comment section to find a place to feel superior to someone.
  • 13 5
 @BarryWalstead: I bet your a blast to have along on a ride. Look in the mirror, your loser comment is misdirected.
  • 7 17
flag cuban-b (Feb 12, 2023 at 9:43) (Below Threshold)
 All this machismo “I’ll never buy an ebike” just translates to “I’ll never be able to afford an ebike” lololol
  • 6 2
 @cuban-b: You seem like a lot of fun on the trails. Too bad this is a skill sport and you can't buy your way to being better than your average grom doing cutties and whips on a dirt jumper all day.
  • 2 4
 I bet if you got on one and rode it as hard as the Regular bike you'd change your tune.
  • 11 9
 @blackercanyons: how do you feel about electric motorcycles on your trails?
I'm gonna bet you and all the others giving me shit are gatekeepers for THAT specific kind of 'bike'. Why if you have a motor and pedals is it suddenly okay?
And nope, I can afford one, I choose to ride bicycles in the woods and I'm all about developing real world skills and endurance.
Probably surprisingly to many of you I'm not actually a healthy person, and just over a month ago had to have my second abdominal surgery in less than a year. First one was to remove my colon, this was to get rid of the ostomy bag I've worn every day including riding and racing last year. And that's not even close to all my health issues I deal with. But still I'm an athlete not a pilot.
I'm a legitimate rider, not some keyboard warrior and I fight hard with my own health to be able to even do that.
But some things aren't mountain biking, and mopeds aren't one of them. Are they cool technology? Certainly! But they don't belong on the trails.
In fact I rode today...
  • 4 6
 @fentoncrackshell: so many incorrect assumptions.
  • 10 5
 @OldFatBassTerd: Nope, you're talking to a longtime backcountry telemark skier, longtime sea kayaker, surf kayaker, canoeist and even a certified coach of those skills.
And an avid sailboat racer, all with only human power added and often crazy levels of effort.
See my related comment about my health issues. If anyone here has an excuse for being a little lazy it would be me. But I practice what I preach.
For urban mobility in lieu of a car? Awesome! Super rad.
But no thank you on the mopeds.
  • 5 10
flag blackercanyons (Feb 12, 2023 at 12:37) (Below Threshold)
 @BarryWalstead: nice try. where I live I share about half of my trails with gas dirtbikes and electric dirtbikes. not to mention, e-bikes don't do even a fraction of the trail damage either of those do.

what are you doing to help other people with their fitness, loser? nothing. worthless busy body armchair quarterback, criticizing someone who is making an effort to help other people based on what bike they have behind them in a video. f*ck you. shut the f*ck up.
  • 5 4
 @blackercanyons: ah, so you ride mixed use trails with motorcycles, good for you.
Is that because you don't have bike specific trails or you actually like sharing with motorcycles?
This weird perspective about it being trail damage is strange to me. It isn't about that, it's about places where human powered is the rule.
  • 1 6
flag blackercanyons (Feb 12, 2023 at 12:44) (Below Threshold)
 @BarryWalstead: once again, what are you doing for anyone but yourself, you selfish douche? nothing. you're an armchair quarterback with nothing to offer besides insulting someone who is offering something for free to other people. we have both. shut the f*ck up. go change your colostomy bag.
  • 1 5
flag blackercanyons (Feb 12, 2023 at 12:51) (Below Threshold)
 @BarryWalstead: also LOOOOOOL at your shifting excuses and tone. First it was about any ebikes at all, now mixed use trails are ok but it only bothers you on your human power restricted trails. So you’re just assuming he’s riding an ebike on your home no-ebike trails? Make up your mind. Gtfoh, gatekeeping douchebag.
  • 8 3
 @blackercanyons: yeah your reading comprehension needs some work. I didn't say anything like you just claimed.
My point is that on mountain bike trails (which we all understand are only for bikes) you wouldn't approve of motocross bikes or electric motorcycles. You might go use trails that are intended for motorcycles so good for you.
But bicycle trails are and should be different. It's pretty simple really.
  • 3 3
 @blackercanyons: sorry but reading comprehension again rears it's ugly head!
Because I just said I'm currently recovering from getting rid of the ostomy bag.
I had my colon taken out a year ago so it's impossible to have had a colostomy. Did have an ileostomy though. ;-)
Breath and READ!
  • 1 6
flag blackercanyons (Feb 12, 2023 at 13:07) (Below Threshold)
 @BarryWalstead: according to your douche bag gatekeeping ass. I’m waiting to hear what you’ve done for anyone else to help their fitness or riding, besides armchair quarterbacking and insulting someone who actually made an effort to help other people.
  • 4 5
 @blackercanyons: so no response to my points? Interesting, glad to see you weren't making a coherent argument.
As to how I help people?
Last Thursday after work I helped a niece and nephew fix their bikes. And as their parents don't really ride my wife and I take them, teach them and encourage them to practice at home. I even got the family to all chip in and buy them bikes for birthdays.
I wrench on all my friends bikes for free, and don't ask for anything in return.
And on group rides I usually drive my van so we can fit all the bikes and riders, AND I'm the guy that shows up prepared for any trailside mechanical, even for strangers. And I bring and share snacks...
Plan ride days, plan trips with friends... Provide use of my tools, gear, etc. Give positive feedback (when asked) about technique and share tips I've been taught.
Bring and share after ride beers...

Geeze, I'm such an a*shole. Why would anyone ride with me?
  • 2 5
 @BarryWalstead: you didn’t make any points besides your original whining E-BIKE BAD. E-BIKE = NOT A BIKE. GUY WITH E-BIKE IN VIDEO IS A LOSER.

cool so you’re nice to your own family and a royal douche keyboard warrior on the internet. How surprising.
  • 7 2
 @blackercanyons: so you're personally defending Ben? Seems he's got that covered.
And I didn't say he wasn't a decent guy. I said using a moped for this video was a poor choice.
And again with the reading comprehension! I said friends and strangers in there.
You really got to work on those reading skills dude.

And yeah, my point about mopeds is that they have been sold to the mtb crowd as a way for bike companies to make huge profits and they will come up with all kinds of nonsense to sell them. But let's be clear, they have more in common with motorcycles (which literally none of us want on our mtb trails) than pedal powered bikes.
If you ride one I'm not sending you to hell, but I surely think less of you for being that lazy. And I say that as someone that has huge health issues, as someone that could use excuses but instead goes out and rides and trains my body.
And another point, if you're calling people names online you can't claim any high ground like you keep trying. I'm sure if I met you or the video author in person we would all get along fine and have a great ride.
But don't claim you're not being a keyboard warrior and internet douche with what you've written. ;-)
Oh, did you ride today? Cause I did!
  • 3 3
 @BarryWalstead: actually, you did say he wasn't a decent guy. you literally called him a "loser" because of what bike he has behind him in the video.
  • 4 3
 @blackercanyons: these are good points about athletic training and recovery.
But where the logic breaks down is the idea that for lower effort you can't simply RIDE EASIER!!! Or actually rest on a rest day.
It's like the argument saying 'at 70 I can't keep up with the young kids' and I'm like 'well duh! That's called aging, greet that with grace and more effort in your physical training.
In another part of my life I have spent countless days sea kayaking mostly with folks in their 60's and 70's. And yet you wouldn't believe how tough and strong these people are because that's what it takes to do the sport they love. Sure, the really crazy stuff they back off a little, but they still go out with 8' waves and 30 knots of wind because it's 'fun'.
  • 6 2
 @blackercanyons: I certainly did. It's was a loser choice. And you skipped everything else I said? Come on man.
  • 2 5
 @BarryWalstead: hypocrite, shifting goalposts, contradicting yourself. conversation over. you've made yourself very clear. anyone who doesn't do things the way you do and according to your rules is a loser and lazy. epitome of gatekeeping, and not to mention narcissism.
  • 2 4
 @BarryWalstead: again, you dont have any points. your entire argument is that YOU think e-bikes are "mopeds", and YOU think anyone who rides one for any reason is lazy, and that everyone should do what YOU think, and YOU think it's more virtuous to do nothing than to ride an ebike on your rest day, because YOU believe it's better. not a single thing you said goes beyond "because I think so, so therefore it's true."
  • 4 2
 @blackercanyons: you've been unable to back up those claims here. And yet you still claim them.
You mentioned that I said 'loser' and I replied in a nuanced way that you seem to have missed. I think I'm a cool guy, but occasionally I can be an a*shole, or a loser. These are momentary descriptive terms for me. Not permanent labels. Nuance is important in life.

And you've replied that my issue is they are mopeds, we'll they are. Ever looked up the definition?
From Websters:
"A moped is defined as either a pedal bicycle with a helper motor or a non-pedal bicycle with a motor"
So I'm spot on and you don't like me using a correct term. I understand that's the complaint, and to make a valid and correct point I use that term. Realize why that term bugs you and that it's because it isn't a bicycle.
As for not doing anything on a rest day, that's a crazy jump. Maybe take a nice walk, a mellow ride around town, there are literally a million low effort enjoyable things that can be done on a 'rest day'.

I've used facts, you've used none.
I've replied to each point of your responses, you've barely been able to comprehend what I replied.
You've called me a douche and keyboard warrior and been unable to get the irony of you saying that based on what you've said.
You've not replied to the question of electric motorcycles on mtb trails. Seems that one might prove you wrong huh?

Have a nice day blackercanyons, I'm a big enough person that if you ever meet me in person I'll shake your hand and offer to buy you a beer, even if you do show up on a moped.

And did you ride today? Cause I did!
  • 8 8
 Tell me you don't know how an e-bike works without actually telling me... oh wait, you literally just did tell me. I have both e-bike and acoustic mountain bike. Anyone who says "the engine does all the work for you" has (a) never ridden an e-bike and (b) has no idea how a pedal assist bike actually works. Don't want an e-bike, fine, if you're gonna crap on e-bikes, that's your business too but maybe educate yourself how they work before taking your dump. Rode with a guy last season who had a Rocky Mountain e-bike tethered to his heart rate monitor and the assist motor didn't kick in until his HR rose above a certain value. Most of the ride it never kicked in, it was all him. Even when it did assist he was providing most of the power to get the bike up the steepest sections. One of the fittest dudes I've ever ridden with. His reasoning for getting an e-bike? Same as mine, I have limited time to ride and this allows me to get in more laps. I suppose I could toss it into the back of a combustible engine vehicle and get a ride to the top if that makes you feel better, but I'd rather ride and get in a second lap on my own. I've never understood this mindset that to get fit and have fun mountain biking one must suffer and exert 110% effort? Someone else on PB said it best "kill the boss in your head that's telling you fun must be hard work".
  • 1 3
 @BarryWalstead: the narcissism required for you to believe that literally anything you said is a "fact" is incredible. calling someone a loser is "nuanced"? LOL. peace out dude. you're a joke.
  • 4 3
 @grapeape123: "A moped is defined as either a pedal bicycle with a helper motor"

How did I miss that?

The lack of reading comprehension here is truly astounding today.

And I've tried them in a parking lot, I'm very familiar with how they work. You need to read and respond to what I actually said.
  • 4 4
 @grapeape123: exactly. having ridden dirtbikes and electric dirtbikes and e-bikes (but mostly dirtbikes and non-assisted mtb's), an e-bike is nothing like a motorcycle. absolutely nothing like it. it's not even close. e-bikes share every component with...drum roll...MOUNTAIN BIKES and literally none with dirtbikes or surrons or "mopeds". They have the same geometry and wheelbase and sizing we go again....MOUNTAIN BIKES. they're faster/easier uphill and a little heavier, i.e. more stable, on the downhill.

@BarryWalstead you rode one in a parking lot and you think you're an expert on e-bikes? what a f*cking joke. gtfoh.
  • 2 3
 @BarryWalstead: since you think Webster is the go to for facts: “electric bike
variants or e-bike
or electric bicycle
plural electric bikes or e-bikes or electric bicycles

: a bicycle equipped with an electric motor that may be activated in order to assist with or replace pedaling”

There you have it. Webster said so. An e-bike is a bicycle equipped with a motor. You lose.
  • 4 2
 @blackercanyons: sigh, you're such an idiot.

But here goes:
It is possible that you can define things several ways. Like you found a definition of ebike; cool! Proud of you.
Does that negate the meaning and definition of moped? Not in the slightest. Like how a 'mountain bike' is also easily defined as a 'bicycle'. Does that mean that the definition of 'mountain bike' is wrong? Not in the slightest.
You didn't prove me wrong, you in fact proved yourself wrong, incorrect and stupid on a painful level. As I'll easily explain:
You said:
"There you have it. Webster said so. An e-bike is a bicycle equipped with a motor. You lose."

And what I provided was this definition: "A moped is defined as either a pedal bicycle with a helper motor or a non-pedal bicycle with a motor"

How can you not see the painfully obvious symmetry of these definitions? The moped definition obviously includes the more specific definition of an 'ebike'. Like holy shit dude how can you not get that? I'm trying to be nice here but you're about as smart as a rock today. Geeze.

And I'm not an expert on electric mopeds, but neither are you and that's not actually relevant to this discussion. As are none of your points. Are you 15 or an actual adult that understands logic on any level?

Again I ask, how would you feel with electric motorcycles on mtb specific trails? I know your answer simply because you refuse to provide one. You don't approve of them on mtb specific trails and neither does anyone else. Or if I'm wrong on this, answer that single question! I'm betting you can't because it will invalidate your entire perspective.

And I don't claim motorcycles and electric mopeds are the same, just that you can't handle me (correctly, according to both your and my provided definitions) calling them that because it activates a part of your brain that says 'shit, he has a valid point! Kill it with fire!'

And did you even ride today? Cause I did!
  • 5 5
 @BarryWalstead: a moped is a moped, meant to be licensed and used as transportation on public roads, and requiring a license. an e-bike is an e-bike, meant for electric-power-assisted recreation. an e-bike has the form factor of a mountain bike, and shares all the same components, like literally every single one except the motor and computer. it looks nothing like a moped, and shares nothing with a moped beside the fact that it's assisted. your frothing at the mouth screaming spitting rage about it doesn't change that, no matter how much you space your letters out.

mountain biking is a hobby. hobbies are fun, and people can do them how they want. **the real issue here is that you think it's ok to treat other people like shit and openly judge and insult them because they don't do their hobbies the way you think they should do them.** like, for real, that's a serious problem. You should really think about what that means about yourself. it takes an incredible amount of arrogance, internal anger, and mental rigidity to become so fiercely convinced of your own infallibilty other people should have fun.

if someone wants to have fun with a motor in their bicycle, they can do that. it's not up to you. neither is their value as a human, nor is how manly or tough they are because of it.

do your hobbies your way, and let other people do theirs. it's basic respect for humanity, and human freedom. you don't get to call people losers because they don't do their hobbies the same way as you. i mean, you do, but it makes you a self righteous a*shole.

Frankly, I'm embarrassed that I allowed you to pull me into your inanity, ignorance, and rage about how other people should spend their time having fun. Hope things get better for you, maybe stop taking it out on other people. I won't be responding anymore. I'm off to the gym, gotta start my training program for the year for racing...on my three non assisted bicycles, the one I ride the most being a hardtail...AND my gas powered dirtbike. Which, I hate to tell you, is nothing like an ebike, and is also super exhausting, maybe actually more so than biking.

Have a good week man. Try to take the rage about other people's free time down a notch or three.
  • 3 0
 @blackercanyons: so how would you feel about electric motorcycles on mtb trails?

Why are simple questions so hard?

And thanks, I'm gonna have a great week. I've been laughing at you all along. No rage here, maybe you need to look into a mirror.
  • 1 6
flag cuban-b (Feb 13, 2023 at 8:16) (Below Threshold)
 @BarryWalstead: why do you give a shit what other people do? I want to ride an ebike in front of you just to piss you off, and when you try to assault me I’ll just laugh and laugh and laugh. You’re mad just because you can’t afford one hahahahaha.
  • 1 3
 @blackercanyons: he’s a POS and he knows it. These essays about how he’s right proves he has no job and gf
  • 2 0
 @cuban-b: the wildly incorrect assumptions about my personal success in life, the assumed inability to buy an electric moped and the idea I would assault someone is nuts.
Do you or blackercanyon ever read what anyone else says?

I know there is the idea that 'gatekeeping is so wrong but we all do it and all of society is based on the idea of limits of all kinds.
So I ask again, how would you feel about electric motorcycles on mtb trails?
Because I know both of you would happily and justifiably gatekeeper there.

And I'm sorry logic is so hard. I'll try and not use so much next discussion.
  • 2 0
 @cuban-b: I guarantee you care on so many levels what people do as you can't handle me having a different opinion...

Look in a mirror, it might surprise you.
  • 1 1
 @BarryWalstead: nobody likes you
  • 1 1
 @BarryWalstead: you wouldn’t be so mad if you could just afford one.
  • 1 0
 @cuban-b: dude, you're so gonna hurt my feeler if you keep saying mean things.

Also, this idea you keep pushing that the only reason people don't like electric mopeds is because they can't afford them is . . . Crazy.
What gives you that idea that this is jealousy? Do you only not want motorcycles on mtb trails because you can't afford them? I'm betting not.
  • 1 0
 @BarryWalstead: you talk too much
  • 1 0
 @cuban-b: your mentation is far too infrequent.
  • 1 0
 @cuban-b: so I'm guessing that likely both you and @blackercanyon are decent guys in real life, and that also likely we would all love to bullshit, ride bikes, drink beer together and have a great time. And I get I did happily insult both of you for the reasons I specified. But like I said I'm not condemning you to hell, I'm just trying to have a discourse based on the exchange of logical points.

I also want to put out the idea that when you complain when I have a problem with the normalization of ebikes (I said that just for you @blackercanyon) and complain about how I want to control how others recreate; I respond by saying you also do the exact same thing.
The only difference lies in the division line.

I don't hate most anyone for differing opinions, but I'm sure as hell gonna poke a hole in a logical fallacy.

Anyhow, it's been fun boys, and I've laughed my ass off at all of this. Hope you did also but I think I'm gonna sign off here.
Flame away!
  • 2 0
 @blackercanyons: i just tired to send you this via message but you've got me blocked. Here goes:


If it ever happen to meet me in person I'll buy you a beer. I don't hate you or most anyone and I've had a great time with the debate. It's been a while since I've had a good old internet smack down fight and I couldn't stop laughing.

I hope the training and racing goes well and you keep the rubber side down!


  • 41 16
 Mountain bike fitness for over 40s ? Mmm let me think? Maybe ditch the e bikes folks ?
  • 15 19
flag MTB-Strength-Factory (Feb 12, 2023 at 7:23) (Below Threshold)
 I didn't mention E-Bikes, I just happened to ride one for this video. Besides, if it means you get out and ride more than you would otherwise, then why not? You can work just as hard, you just do more laps.
  • 15 7
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: why would having an e bike mean you can ride more? I get the more laps thing,but most e bike riders don’t do more laps. I get the pros of e-bikes if people use them like you mention , but most don’t and e bike converts fitness drops off dramatically,which is instantly noticeable once they return to a non pedal assist bike.
  • 16 10
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: they might allow more miles but this lie of 'more riding' is insane.
If the claim is not enough riding time a moped has nothing, NOTHING to do with that!
For those that 'don't get enough riding time' it always comes down to choices. We ca' all arrange our lives to have more time for exercise, family time, friends, whatever. What a garbage response 'get out and ride more'.
  • 13 16
 @jase111171: When it is cold, wet, muddy and crap outside and you only have an hour to ride, the E Bike gets me out the house and onto the trails, when I probably wouldn't on the normal bike. It's not just me either, loads of people say the same. With limited time, the E-Bike just gives more bang for your buck. If I am going to get cold and wet and covered in mud, then I may as well get 5-6 drops of my local trails in, rather than 2.
  • 7 10
 @BarryWalstead: See my other reply in this thread for validation of my 'insanity.' Loads of people say that getting out on E-Bikes means that they ride more than they would.
  • 19 11
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: Mate, give it up. You should have been on a non e-bike and then then we could have focussed on your fitness tips.
  • 12 19
flag MTB-Strength-Factory (Feb 12, 2023 at 11:36) (Below Threshold)
 @Hairyteabags: Tea Bag, you should stop telling people what bikes to ride.
  • 20 8
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: maybe if you rode bikes no one would care.
You rode a moped.
In a fitness video no less.
  • 11 7
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: so making the riding easier means you're mentally more willing to ride in the rain?
Go see a sports psychologist! You need motivation not less effort. And I say this living in northwest Washington state. I just go ride in the rain ;-)
You might be a great dude, but you really, really missed the mark with this video. Make it again with a regular bike and we'll all love you.
  • 18 0
 I'm 56 and still doing what I did in my 20s because I want to I think a lot of people get older and just don't want to exercise they use age as a excuse others much older than me are still pushing hard it's drive
  • 7 1
 Yup. I have ridden with guys in their 50s who are machines. They put the work in. No secret. Just takes effort.
  • 3 3
 @WasKavuRider: No doubt, you still need to put in the hours and work hard. I ride with some mid 50s dudes and find it really inspiring.
  • 2 0
 Consider other factors too - work and life stress take away from time and energy required to train, or injuries. In terms of MTB's, most WILL want to ride because it's fun.
  • 16 0
 68 and 1/2 and mostly ride a 2020 sub 20lb Epic hardtail along with a 2019 Intense Sniper and 2022 Stumpjumper. I get confused sometimes with these old age guidelines for people almost 30 years younger than me. I will never, and I mean absolutely never, ride an ebike. I love hill climbing and am still good at it, but processing on the downs is progressively harder. The last thing I want is extra power.
  • 8 0
 There is no age limit on pedaling a bicycle. It can be done without issue right up to the moment you topple over from old age. E-bike marketers however would like you to believe otherwise.
  • 12 0
 I am 54 and committed to riding Leadville last year, my first mtn bike race (but I have ben riding recreationally since the early 1990's). I took a deep dive into training methods, nutrition, pacing, etc and it proved life changing. I targeted a sub 12hr finish just to get my buckle (symbolic) but finished in 10:44. Now I wonder why I waited so long, and am training again this winter for the High Cascades 100 out of Bend. It has made me a much smarter rider and I love the long efforts.
  • 2 0
 Wow, that's amazing mate. Great effort and result. Ben
  • 1 0
 Well done, that's a very long race.
  • 16 0
 Greg Minnaar is over 40. Should we send him a link?
  • 5 0
 I did have a brief listen in wahaha
  • 17 5
 They're are some pretty dumb-ass, over-macho comments here. Fitness as you get older isn't about 'toughing it out'! You simply can't do what you did in your 20's, or even 30's. You need to be more strategic and intelligent with your health and fitness: diet, mobility, state of mind, cardio, strength, requires more care the older you get.

Some people are genetically blessed whereas others aren't so lucky in old age, but universally your body simply isn't as resilient as it was. I bet those who take care of themselves as they get older will be riding longer and harder than the ones making 'tough guy' comments here. Just look at Tom Brady if you need a reference: the GOAT didn't do strength work as he got older, he focused on mobility, lightweight reps, mindfulness and diet.

What Ben says makes sense and I bet he's in better shape than some of the flabby keyboard warriors here!
  • 15 4
 I'm not anti-ebike but you'd be better buying a light weight XC bike to help improve your fitness. I'm nearly 40 and up until 6 months ago my fitness was sh1te. Now after 6 months of riding an XC hardtail my fitness and agility has massively improved.
  • 9 2
 Also hard tail skills are invaluable, you lose such finesse on a full sus
  • 10 0
 The comments section of Pinkbike is becoming a bit of a joke. It seems like it's a place for people to come and vent and talk s#!t. Ben has taken time to make this video to offer advice for people who feel they need it. You don't have to pay for that advice, you don't have to watch the video, if you don't like it, go somewhere else. The world is negative enough at the minute without you all chipping in. If he wasn't on an e-bike, I'm sure you'd all find something else to hate on. And no, I don't own an e-bike.
  • 2 0
 The cynicism came out of thin air
  • 11 2
 As someone who will be turning 40 soon this made me realize with age does not come wisdom. I know plenty of people in their 50s and 60s riding hard without motors. What about that Betty riding the north shore in her 70s? If people remember that video from last year.
  • 4 11
flag MTB-Strength-Factory (Feb 12, 2023 at 7:33) (Below Threshold)
 What do motors have to do with it? And yes..... Betty was rad and a total inspiration. Ben
  • 15 1
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: Imagine a video on rowboat fitness and the instructor had an outboard motor putting away on the back of the boat.

"Stop focusing on the motor!" K. Smile
  • 6 1
 @mobiller: amen!
  • 11 4
 The advice about relationships is spot on, and true for everyone whatever age you are. I felt he missed out one major thing which is to stretch before and if necessary during a ride. A good thing for everyone but definitely gets more important the older you get. Work that hinge!
  • 6 4
 @Ricolaburle: that article is about stretching as an exercise. Stretching and warming up before and after a workout is helpful, stretching AS a workout is a different story.

A dead giveaway they an article is justified and 48pt font and full of phases like "you know xy and z....well maybe you were wrong all along".
  • 6 1
 @RonSauce: As soon as I got to "Stretching’s primary goal — flexibility — does not have any clear value to anyone, not even most elite athletes, let alone the average fitness nut." I lost interest. Clearly BS, no citations, no nothing. If that's one of the founding principles of the rest of the piece I have zero interest in reading it.
  • 1 3
 @CleanZine: Have you even read the article? Lot of sources, you can find them all in the footnotes.
  • 6 6
 @RonSauce: No, it's not. They talk about stretching after and before a workout. Warming up is a whole different story.
But hey, if you like to stretch, good for you. Saying "stretching before a ride is a major thing" is just not backed up by science.
  • 1 0
 Thanks mate.
  • 1 0
 @Ricolaburle: I did mean to say warming up, it's just that I do a few short stretches as part of it
  • 3 0
 @Ricolaburle: I skimmed through it and some things did have references/citations, but as I said, that assumption didn't appear to be backed up by anything (he even undercut it on the very next sentence).

Saying flexibility doesn't have any "clear value" to athletes is just fundamentally wrong, which is presumably why he couldn't cite anything on that statement to back it up.

At an incredibly simple level, just think about riding. If you hypothetically had zero flexibility in your hips and back, you would struggle to even get into a riding stance on your bike. Having the flexibility to get into that stance comfortably means you will ride better.

Having additional flexibility to react to forces while you ride will help you ride better. That flexibility will also reduce the chances of injury should you crash.

I tweaked my lower back (which had the net result of essentially tightening up my lower back, plus a small amount to the immediate areas above and below) a while ago and it had a noticeable impact on how well I could ride, simply because I couldn't move around my bike as well. My strength hadn't changed but my range of motion (partially an expression of your flexibility) had.

There's a reason that every high level coach talks about flexibility/mobility - it's crucial for every sport. That's why I find it hard to muster up much interest to delve deeper into that article when it starts off with such a dumb statement.
  • 3 0
 @CleanZine: Even on a common sense level it's not hard to figure out that mobility is step one. If you don't have a full range of motion everything else you do down the line will be capped.
  • 7 1
 lift heavy weights a few days a week, ride yer bike for fun and joy (bonus it actually warms you up and stretches you every ride), buy a used dj and hit the pump track once a week (so you can actually learn how to move a bike around), drink a little less, slide into your dotage happy and fit.
  • 2 4
 Can you come and make part 3 of the video series for me? Cheers. Ben
  • 6 0
 Awesome video. Especially like the part about communicating and relationships… that doesn’t get talked about enough.

I’m 40 something now (can’t remember how many) and I’ve been watching and reading a lot of articles about training for middle aged folk so I can keep going as long as possible. One good tip I got from a Ned Overend video I’ve been trying to follow… no matter what I have a planned for a day, riding gym etc, if I feel something tweak, or is unusually tight or just not right, bail on the workout, either go super easy or just quit for the day and do some kind of active or passive recovery. Just not worth trying to work through that stuff and or ignoring it anymore.
  • 2 1
 Thanks mate, appreciate it and agree fully with Ned. Total legend too.
  • 11 3
 this has to be Parody.... hahahaaaaa!!! I'm 48 and have never seen a less motivating video.
  • 2 2
 Cheers bro.
  • 5 0
 I’m fast approaching 58 years of age and still riding regularly, and as well as I ever have. Little doubt whatsoever that it gets harder as you get older, recovery times are often longer and injuries can take longer to heal, too.
Working with a strength & fitness coach has definitely helped me over the last 7 or 8 years, both in terms of my riding and my general fitness.

Working with the local trail volunteers has added a different element too, as riding after a hard morning on the tools, can sometimes be a challenge. But, whether riding, digging or both, there’s no denying the benefits to our physical and mental wellbeing.
  • 1 0
 Nice one Marky. Sounds great.
  • 3 0
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: cheers Ben.

Some great tips in the video, the base fitness one particularly. Once you get to a certain level of fitness, missing a weekend or two on the bike, has less of an impact when you get back out on the trails. Definitely worth putting the work in to build that base level.
  • 10 0
 40 ...- are they joking?
  • 5 0
 @MTB-Strength-Factory have listened to your chat on a couple of downtime episodes and really enjoyed your holistic approach. has helped me validate things I'm already doing, and throw away things that don't make sense; hopefully will still be riding when I'm 70 bro, chur.
  • 5 0
 Hooooly, you savages! Haha

I’ve been riding over 25 years and am (just!) the wrong side of 40 now. I’ve trained hard and raced to a pretty high level with my best results coming in my 20’s in DH and my 30’s in enduro whilst under the wise instruction of Ben as my strength/fitness coach. It’s a bit of fun to have a laugh about the fact Ben filmed on an e-bike and I’ve no doubt he’ll have seen the funny side of it. However, spare a moment to think about the fact this dude puts 100% of his energy into helping athletes day in day out. He does it because he’s good at it, he loves the sport and loves helping people. He’s not making a killing doing this so maybe just give that a thought before shooting him down.

Peace and love

Oh and if you didn’t know, Ben is an ex Army captain with a couple of tours under his belt and could probably crush your skull with his toes if he wanted to. Even though he’s 42. I guess he must be doing something right….
  • 2 0
 But he's making a video about getting fit for MTBing. On an E-bike. I wasn't even paying attention to his advice, because I thought this was a parody video. I was too busy LOL, and after a minute or two I wasn't even watching anymore, just going to the comment section to find out he was being serious.
If he doesn't want us looking at what he's riding, then he needs to podcast instead. It's not like he was demonstrating anything in the video (as much of it as I watched). Or if he really wants to stick with vlogging and maybe get the YouTube algorithm to help him get more views, then he needs to make gratuitous use of sexy women, on bikes or not - doesn't really matter.
  • 5 0
 I knew the guy was going to get shredded in the comment section after riding an ebike while giving fitness advice. It is just the optics of it. I'm am totally pro-ebike for those who have injuries or are getting older, but if healthy, young and/or fit, it is better to use an analog bike.
  • 6 1
 If people are smart enough to ignore the ebike part of the vid, most of the tips Ben shares are pretty solid. I think a few could be explained a bit better but the advice stands up. The one exception is point #8 about polarised training. While it's definitely critical to push yourself above your typical intensity level in order to improve, the combo suggested here has the potential to actually regress your riding fitness. If you spend the majority of your time at easier intensities with only occasional efforts at max intensity over time your baseline level of fitness will decrease.

That said, you can use maximal, sub-maximal, and sub-baseline level training to your advantage. Sub-baseline level training can be used as recovery work from maximal level training and sub-maximal level training should be at or slightly above your baseline fitness level. So to put that into some easy to understand numbers:

Level 4 = maximal = 85-100% intensity, very very hard breathing, difficult to talk
Level 3 = sub-maximal = 80-85% intensity, very hard breathing, can say a few words or one sentence
Level 2 = baseline = 70-80% intensity, moderate to hard breathing, can say a sentence or two
Level 1 = sub-baseline - 60-70% intensity, moderate breathing, can carry on a onversation without difficulty

Do 1 level 4 workout per week. Do 1 level 3 workout per week. Do 1-2 level 2 workouts per week. Do 2-3 level 1 workouts per week. A schedule could look something like this:

Sun: Level 4
Mon: Level 1
Tue: Level 2
Wed: Level 3
Thu: Level 1
Fri: Level 2
Sat: Level 1

Your Level 1 workouts could be as simple as an easy 15min pedal around the neighbourhood a brisk walk.

The one critical point that is missing in the vid is CONSISTENCY. That above everything else will determine whether you can achieve and maintain your fitness goals. So much so that seven days of Level 1 or 2 will be better than one day of Level 4 over the same seven days.
  • 9 3
 When I turned 40 I just started drinking more heavily. Pretty sure I can get more people signed up for my program... Good luck with your hustle!
  • 4 0
 Also - work on and engage your pelvic floor!! This will help you with your core strength better than those 7 min ab videos or any core inferno group class. Your entire core strength and breathing habits start here. AND it will help you with erectile dysfunction as you age.
  • 6 1
 Pfft, youngin'. Over 40 ain't sheet. Wait till ya get over 50 and stuff starts really hurting. 40's was easy. 50's has taken some mental strength. But, as fit as ever on a bike and been riding 20+ years.
  • 6 1
 Pfft, get out of here with that 50s bs. Everyone knows nothing is difficult until you hit the 60 like me.
  • 5 1
 You kids talking bout the 50s and 60s? Ha, you don't know pain until you're in your 70s like me
  • 3 1
 We all know, until you touch the 80s, like me, you can't gatekeep age.
  • 3 0
 @RonSauce: hahaha. We only know once/if we get there. Wink just know real aging started happening in my 50's.
  • 2 0
 @gmoss: Love this thread. Great work guys. Ben
  • 8 0
 I’ll be over 40 by the time ya’ll post the advent winners.
  • 4 0
 As an old guy I can tell you that the day will come when you cannot hammer like you used to, accept aging with grace, enjoy the fun part of riding even as you ride slower.

Biggest concern is an injury that could put you out for months ( I recently broke my clavicle not while riding ) so yeah heed the advice to be more cautious.
  • 4 0
 I am 57 and ride about 85 miles a week on both mountain bike and road bike. The key is just don't stop riding. I ride road for fitness and mountain for pleasure. The only thing I don't do anymore is big jumps, take too long to heal if I crash.
  • 2 0
 A friend once said to me, “If you rest, you rust.”
  • 5 0
 @cuban-b: Every time someone brings up socioeconomic status as a reason that someone doesn't want to buy a device with a disposable, earth-destroying battery, an angel OD's on Fentanyl.:
  • 4 0
 @MTB-Strength-Factory As someone who has just turned 50, there's lots to commend about the video. Having said that I'm going to wager that the average Pinkbike reader over 40 is not preparing to shuffle off with the fading of the light but is rather railing against it with everything they've got. We're riding MTB's for the thrills and we don't care what our wife or bosses make of it (unless they are reading this). So tonally perhaps starting the piece with a message that said essentially "take it easy, you're not getting any younger" won't play well to those of us with arrested development.

Despite that, you are right, my biceps snapped off the bone last year whilst snowboarding, my eyes are going to shit at an alarming rate, and I'm as grey as a dead badger. And yet despite that I won my first V50 CX race in December, I train hard, eat well, stretch everyday and I'm acutely aware this all becomes MUCH more important as you get older.
  • 6 3
 I am 50 this year. I ride my old XC bike during the week and then take the E-Bike out at weekends. I think the main issue when you get older even if you are fit is your knees ache a lot more and there is not really much you can do about it even with an E-Bike if you ride hard.
  • 6 0
 Stretch your hamstrings and lower back more. Much of (non-arthritic) knee pain is from the patellar tendon being tight, and its actually a pretty easy remedy.
  • 4 0
 I’ve been doing Bens program for over 40s since November. I’m stronger because of it. Seeing improvements in my balance, my posture and my breathing. It’s legit and great value.
  • 1 0
 Thanks very much. Stoked you like it.
  • 6 0
 Step 1 - don’t have kids
Step 2 - don’t have a full-on career
There’s no step 3. You’re good.
  • 3 1
 Step 1 - Too late for me Step 2 - Have vasectomy so I can't have any more. haha
  • 1 0
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: your prior errors make step 3 super critical. Where we at?
  • 1 0
 @shredddr: Yours is definitely more guaranteed for success, but the other option of having kids and putting in the work to get them into being active people works too.

It's actually pretty short window of intensive hand holding/green run/ice cream afterwards stuff, till they are proficient and dragging you out the door for activities...which they are suddenly better than you at, the little f*ckers
  • 3 0
 After listening to Ben on the Downtime podcast I signed up for his over 40 program. For all you Ben bashers I suggest you listen to Ben on a podcast. You might realize the guy is legit. I have an XC bike, a bike park bike and and e-bike. I use them all for training. I often pass you young bucks on the climbs on my non e-bikes. I'm over 60 and still do XC racing. Ben's program has made me a stronger rider. It's too bad the Pinkers are so negative.
  • 3 0
 Rule number one, don’t read the comments.

Rule number two, don’t feed the trolls.

Welcome to the internet, where everyone has an opinion/hottake about everything all the time and endless amounts of time to let everyone in in the World know what they think about everything all the time…don’t waste your valuable time and energy responding to nonsense and you’ll probably live longer, there’s your over 40 fitness tip!
  • 12 6
 Well, that is a load of crapy useless pseudo information with an agenda
  • 5 3
 Whatever you ride, be it an e-bike or a pedal bike, the fitter and stronger you are will mean you enjoy the riding more. You will be able to ride for longer, recover faster, withstand crashing better and beat your mates up the climbs…
If you don’t like e-bikes then that’s up to you, but they do offer a great way to get in more riding when you are time constrained, plus they really do allow you to go for a decent mountain bike ride AND train at low intensity. You just can’t do that on a normal mtb ride. Give the dude a break, he shot the video on an ebike, so what!! All the pros riding ebike as training… are they getting fat and unfit because of it? Nope
  • 2 0
 Yup I belong in this segment now.
Im a Clydesdale and have been riding single speed exclusively for the past 3 years. It has without a doubt made me a stronger rider and dramatically improved my cardio. I’ve had some hellacious rides in Asheville and Sedona riding SS, but I’m better from it now.
And yes my riding buddies think I’m crazy.
  • 5 0
 The trick to being fit in your 40’s is not stopping in your 30’s. It’s that simple.
  • 3 0
 If your riding at 20 keep riding till your 40 then to 60. We are all getting older everyday. One day we will all be old. Just keep shredding and be nice. Some of These comments are cringe.
  • 2 0
 @MTB-Strength-Factory Maybe Pinkbike can sponsor a psychologist to understand why E-bikes are a trigger point for many.

Don't miss the forest for the trees by focusing on the motor. Thanks for the video too - I've briefly skimmed and hope to watch in its entirety. In in the >50 crowd and amazed at the fitness adaptions that can still happen.

And my hero Ned Overend, who turns 68 this summer, also occasionally trains on an E-MTB.
  • 2 0
 Hey, I guess he couldn't keep doing steroids forever...
  • 1 0
 @danger13: I think you're joking, but based on his frame size (140lbs?) he's likely not taking steroids.
  • 2 0
 @njcbps: I wasn't really joking. I grew up in the 4 Corners and raced against all locals, and I think the Durango scene was a hotbed of steroid use. I don't know for sure about Overend, but a whole lot of the people Chris Carmichael coached were definitely into them.
  • 1 0
 @danger13: Thanks for the info. I guess they'd want that info to be pushed onto the back shelf.
  • 2 0
 @njcbps: Yeah, so Chris Carmichael was one of Lance Armstrong's good buddies and his coach while he was dominating the Tour. I believe it was proven in court that he was knowledgeable about Armstrong's doping but he denied any complicity knowing it would hurt his coaching business. As I said, I couldn't prove what I think about a lot of those Durango riders, but compare Armstrong's body type to Overend's, then tell me that they couldn't have been on the same program.

I oversimplify by using the generic "steroids", but a look at Armstrongs drug use can give a lot of insight as to the kinds of chemical help that cheaters were using at that time. My personal experience was that there were more than a few guys who were nowhere performance wise that suddenly became world beaters.

Not denying the athletic potential of some of those guys, but back then I was a top regional off road racer in Northern New Mexico and Southern Colorado and I personally witnessed a lot of PED use. I took a lot of those guys with a grain of salt.
  • 1 0
 @danger13: I wonder if Overend was clean, based on his comments. It would be Armstrong-level chutzpah to say the following when also a user (or former user) that could be outed:

"'My opinion is, it needs to be a crime to cheat in sports, to take drugs in sports. Unless they make it a crime, they're going to have a hard time controlling (doping),' Overend told the Durango Herald on Tuesday"
  • 18 13
 Yup the e-bike was an immediate red flag.
  • 10 12
 I guess the fact I was on an E-Bike that day negates the years of coaching hundreds of riders from Over 40s to World Cup pro's. Because my enduro bike was getting a service that day, it basically means there is nothing of value here. Go and check out any of the top coaches like Alan Milway, Todd Schumliek and so on. They all ride and post videos on E-Bikes. But I guess they should be red flagged too?
  • 11 4
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: You’re trying to portray an image of 40 something riders keeping their fitness - an e-bike doesn’t do it for me I’m afraid.
  • 3 2
 @Hairyteabags: he could've fine the vid on a unicycle, his points are still valid

Fact is he's fast as fk on an enduro bike, he toasted me at at Tweedlove International last year!
  • 8 4
 I’ve been riding MTB since I was 11. I am now 45. This video is not helpful to me and is quite condescending?
  • 12 0
 Its because this isn't an article written for people who have been active in sports their whole lives and are trying to hold on to performance and health. These articles are written for the 40 year old who just bought a mountain bike and realizes it isnt all trail beers and pit vipers, its hard and it looking for some sort of edge.
  • 3 1
 @RonSauce: 100% you nailed it. Haha.
  • 2 0
 Thanks for the feedback, I certainly did not want it to be condescending and have never had that suggested about any of the other videos on my YouTube. Cheers. Ben
  • 8 3
 No need for fitness with e-bike Smile
  • 9 8
 It’s funny that a lot of people will pan e-bikes, when they will happily pile their bikes in a shuttle vehicle for a few laps. E-bikes are here to stay and will only get more popular. Remember how snowboards were shunned and even outlawed at ski hills? Once you try one, you will never go back. Way more smiles per mile.
  • 9 5
 Cheers mate. I can't get my head around some of the attitudes here. Ben
  • 8 2
 Because we don't shuttle on the trails. How is this hard to understand? No one really complains about driving to trails. No one complains you drive a car, but you would happily put a rock through the asshome that drove their jeep down a mtb trail.

Logic people, basic, easy, grade school logic. How can it be so hard?
Mopeds, even electric ones aren't the same as real bikes.
  • 4 0
 Nice work coach, too bad the focus is your bike and not your good info. Typical.
  • 10 7
 You ebike haters are boring now. I don’t know anyone who loves riding bikes and has access to an ebike as a second bike that wouldn’t ride one.
  • 4 0
 That's funny, I don't anyone that would ride one. Not trying to be contrarian or anything, different place, different strokes.
  • 1 2
 @DirkMcClerkin: Thats funny, I know tons of long time mountain bikers that have ebikes now and absolutely love them, some of them ex pros.
  • 1 0
 @snippysnoopy79: Then again, different place, different strokes eh

But man, that's long way to fall for any pro
  • 1 1
 @DirkMcClerkin: Schurter trains on an ebike at times and he's still the top XC pro!
  • 3 0
 @devlincc: Nino Schurter is maintaining probably one of best cardio vascular engines on the planet, he's also a very accomplished bike handler and will take on terrain that most people would baulk at on his 120mm XC bike. This isn't particularly about being negative about e-bikes but I'll wager that if he's on an e-bike it's because his bike sponsor is leveraging sticking him on one to boost the fastest growing sector of the bike market now.
  • 3 0
 @DirkMcClerkin: Hahahah, ya most of the guys I am talking about are downhillers and freeride guys, they still have there DH / Freeride bikes along side there ebikes. To myself and the guys I ride with , its more about the downhill aspect of riding jumps, drops , gaps , skinnys then the fitness aspect of mountain biking. Kind of similar to how someone might look at snowboarding or motorcross. Its all about having fun. But I will tell you this, after a 6 hour ebike session with a ton of downhill or 10 hour chair lift access bike parks session I definitely feel like my body has had a work out. Like you said, different strokes for different folks.
  • 3 1
 @jaspersdog: no, he uses it as part of his training. Uses the weight of the bike to dial in his upper body strength and on days he is training skills and not wanting to blast his legs into oblivion.

It's a shame all these macho guys on here are so anti emtb. I'nm sure they feel superior looking down their noses. What they forget is they have no place telling other people how they should be enjoying themselves. It's not their ride. No one is cheating here. It's hack for having a great life. If they don't want to ride an emtb because they want people to think they are cool or they just simply not interested then go for it. Just don't expect everyone else to live their lives. pretty simple really.
  • 5 0
 I feel a lot better now that I dont drink 6 beers a day, heres to fitness!
  • 4 0
 @Leviathandive - Not drinking 4 to 6 IPA’s a night has done more for my fitness and over all well-being than any fitness program. Ha.
  • 3 0
 @ride2day: No doubt.

Not only the reduction in calories, but the reduction in sleep quality is huge too (see Matthew Walker for more info).
  • 2 1
 Ben, great video and 100% agree with all your advice. Especially incorporating weights in mini bite size chunks consistently as opposed to doing hard core max lifting. 59 years old, 32 year unassisted and 4 years exclusively Emtb. Minus the extreme cardio conditioning, I'm as fit and as light as I've ever been. I can see going hard into my 70's. I'm having more fun than ever right now.
  • 2 0
 Nice video and some good tips. In your 40a though it's a mind set to be as fit as the young lads in their 20s. They might be faster but doesn't mean they are fitter. Only 48 but probably the fittest I have ever been.
  • 5 0
 So ebike sale?? How did people ride and survive before them?
  • 2 1
 I'm 54 now and would have benefited greatly from some of the tips. Especially about pushing it too muchband crashing too much. Thanks Ben, very interesting and also nice to know that I'm probably doing some things right now. Oh yeah, i don't like ebikes either, but please stop complaining about it. a few comments are really just embarrassing
  • 2 1
 44 with three children under 10 to take up much of my spare time! My current exercise life seems to be commuting (a mix of trails and tarmac) five days a week on my e full-sus, 3-4 visits per week to the gym for some strength training and one proper MTB ride a week on my singlespeed hardtail. And my job can be quite physical.

I had a couple of weeks recently where I had to commute on the singlespeed and noticed I was a lot grumpier with the kids - there seems to be only a finite amount of physical energy available and the ebike helps manage that better.

Some days I pedal like a lunatic and/or take the long way to work, tire my legs out and get some good trails in, some days I let it tow me there like a motorbike where I have to keep twiddling my legs round. Before I got my current hardtail I rode the ebike on a lot of group rides where all/most of the other riders were on normal bikes - so I’d turn the power off and work harder.
  • 1 0
 @MTB-Strength-Factory As someone who has just turned 50, there's lots to commend about the video. Having said that I'm going to wager that the average Pinkbike reader over 40 is not preparing to shuffle off with the fading of the light but is rather railing against it with everything they've got. We're riding MTB's for the thrills and we don't care what our wife or bosses make of it (unless they are reading this). So tonally perhaps starting the piece with a message that said essentially "take it easy, you're not getting any younger" won't play well to those of us with arrested development.
Despite that, you are right, my biceps snapped off the bone last year whilst snowboarding, my eyes are going to shit at an alarming rate, and I'm as grey as a dead badger. And yet despite that I won my first V50 CX race in December, I train hard, eat well, stretch everyday and I'm acutely aware this all becomes MUCH more important as you get older.
  • 9 7
 Bla bla bla..., at no moment he mentions probably one of if not the most important factor: nutrition and food.
Ho, wait a minute... it's a british video.
Ok, I said nothing.
  • 3 0
 Hey mate, I agree that nutrition is super important for riders of all ages. I just can't cover everything in one video. It is also a huge topic that needs its own video (or 10!) . Ben
  • 3 0
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: Yeah mate, come on, you forgot foie gras !
  • 5 1
 This has to be the most Debbie Downer fitness video I’ve ever watched.
  • 1 1
 Totally depressed
  • 2 0
 -You can bet that you will never see someone on an E-bike that can achieve a healthy erection. Watch them, it’s written on their faces.
  • 4 0
 Ben, fantatic video, thankyou!
  • 3 3
 I am amazed and saddened by the hate and derision towards anyone riding an e-mtb. I’m lucky enough to have access to ride every genre of mtb except slope style and a trials bikes. I love riding them all, but If I only have an hour to ride, you can bet your hiney I’m taking an e-mtb. Those that have ridden a e-mtb (on a trail, in the woods) assuredly understand why. Those that hate on e-MTB’s will continue in their false superiority while missing out on loads of fun. I feel sorry for y’all.
  • 9 6
 Yeh, saw e-bike. Left. Taking fitness tips from a e-bike robot. No thanks.
  • 3 0
 every dude i know who ebikes is also heavily into smoking meat. ??
  • 3 1
 17 seconds is, sees motor, gets back on trainer. What a joke. even if there was good content in the video, total fail.
  • 4 1
 top-tier troll job with the E bike LMAOOOOO. Hilarious.
  • 2 0
 “Unlucky if you live in America because you have to pay”

Don’t i know it
  • 3 1
 9 tips 8 tips...7 minute abs!
  • 6 3
 Ebike pitch only.
  • 3 2
 Lots of recommendations to ride younger riders just like Leonardo DeCaprio.
  • 3 1
 Thx for the vid. Took a few tips ..
  • 1 0
 No worries dude.
  • 2 0
 How bout a 30s with infants and toddlers training advice lol
  • 3 0
 Danny Macaskill did a video for that:
  • 1 0
 @JonDud: That is bloody phenomenal! I love Danny's vids idk why I haven't seen this one.. Sent it to my wife. she hasn't responded to me in a day now
  • 2 0
 40 is the new 75 apparently
  • 2 1
 Pinkbike community so toxic with this Ebike vs regular bike. Reminds me of left vs right
  • 1 0
 As long as I'm fit enough to grapple and throw I'm fit enough to ride (and vice versa).

Ebikes do make you lazy though
  • 2 0
 Got the title wrong: EMTB Fitness
  • 1 0
 9 tips video is definitely the better of the two. Thanks Ben. Intensity and Gym advice are great reminders for most of us
  • 10 9
 Screw having to get fit to have fun. Ebikes with multiple batteries ftw.
  • 8 7
 Hahaha....get out of here with the eeb.
  • 1 0
 Don't be fat, ride a lot.
  • 1 0
 Go riding! It's FUN
  • 13 14
 48 and got 500k ft vert on an Enduro bike last year. F#@k your ebike.
  • 3 0
 Username checks out. Have an upvote

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