Cyclocross Pre-Season Training

Brandon Dwight - Boulder Cycle Sport

It's the end of August - Do you know where your Cyclocross bike is?

Everyone who has ridden cyclocross knows that training should start in August. Here at 303Cycling we decided to get some tips from a professional coach, Frank Overton, for motivation and the best possible kick off for the training and racing season. Check out what we learned below.

[303Cycling] What should a cyclocross racer be thinking to start the season?

[Frank - FasCat Coaching] Top 5 things you should do for your pre-season Cyclocross training:

1. Make sure you take a break from racing towards the end of road season, like a week or so. It's the 1 step backwards but 2 steps forward analogy. If you take it now you'll be fine in October and November during the meat of the cyclocross season. I see all too often athletes coming into the cyclocross season straight from a road or mountain bike season and while they may be fine for September and October - they are more likely to burn out in November. Breaks are important mentally and physically so you can have the "fire and desire" that cyclocross requires.

2. Ride as much as you can during July and August to build the biggest "base" possible. Not racing doesn't mean not riding. The bigger your aerobic engine is, the more powerful your anaerobic engine can be.

3. Before you incorporate any running into your training, go for 3 or 4 substantial hikes. My preference as a cyclocross coach is to have athletes hike during August and then towards the latter half of the month, perform dismount & remount drills with running. I continue this and more in September. Running is really a very small component of cyclocross. It's more about skills & technique combined with running. I like to have athletes work specifically on technique while running to get a better result.

Given enough time, I also like to work in some plyometrics training to go above and beyond hiking and running.

4. Dial in your equipment and start riding your cross bike. Athletes should be one with their machine and the best way is to spend the majority of their time on the cross bike. Mountain biking is great for technical skills practice and the road bike is super for training, but on the cross bike it all comes together.

5. Race! A great way to get the cyclocross season off to a good start is to hit up a mountain bike or road race. It introduces athletes that haven't been racing to intensities that they may not achieve during interval training. For athlete's who have been active all season, I would do this after that all important break I talked about earlier.

303Cycling will have the cowbells ready! Hup, Hup and see you out there!

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