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Beginner training for races

NoizetekNoizetek Posts: 98
edited March 2009 in Health, fitness & training
I have just got back into mountain biking quite recently and quit smoking, two months to be precise...anyway I started out by doing road work to wake up the muscles a little as well as doing wieghts and using a rowing machine. Now we have a cross trainer and I have started to take the bike off-road across local bridlepaths (I live close to the peak district so there is plenty on my doorstep). I am usually out at least 4 times a week, the longest ride I have done so far has been about 18 miles which was two days ago (both road and off-roaad), since then though when I have been out my leg muscles are just screwed, proper stiff and sore, I imagine this will happen once you are restarting, but what I wanted to know is how long would you need to rest in between doing big rides, is there any specific training that I can do to increase fitness for riding generally and what foods are best to take with me on longer rides?? My goal is to get a state of fitness and ability that I could compete in a few XC events and see how things go!

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