Race Fitness - Masters Cat what does it take to compete?

AllezAllezAllez Posts: 207
edited April 2011 in Health, fitness & training
Hi All,

A bit of an open ended question, but here goes:

Last weekend I took part in th BMBS round one at Sherwood Pines and I was really impressed by the level fitness and riding of the Masters Cat and wondered what level of training these guys are doing each week?

What kind of riding, road vs off road?
Other training?
Special diet?

Any Masters out there prepared to share?

Currently I'm 36 and would like to ride at a higher level than the open cat but guess I would need to park the gym, the "steady" road rides, indoor footy and focus on off road only.


  • I'm no master by any means, but my father in law regularly races in the high level classes.

    He eats literally nothing but the most healthy food, as diet plays a large role in serious racing. He trains alot, and by alot I mean alot. His home trainer at home was around the 1500 pound mark, and he can ride real routes from GPS on it, and when the incline levels change he has to act accordingly. Amazing machine! Think he rode just over 4k in the winter time on it.

    As far as training properly, nothing beats actually getting out on the bike for long rides. 50-60KM with lots of climbing (2-3000 vertical metres).

    No need to stop the gym or the steady road rides, as the road rides will help increase endurance, but the footy can be a bit of a problem. Develops different muscles than cycling, and while it doesn't really do much harm, it doesn't help in the slightest. Gym is also quite good, but not used to get bulky, but slim down and tone up. Core strength, believe it or not, actually plays a large role in cycling.

    But seriously nothing beats just getting out and riding alot, and not just pootling around, but trying to keep a race pace every ride.

    Recovery days are also very very very important!
  • njee20
    njee20 Posts: 9,613
    Forbesy was the national masters champion in 2009, so he's a good person to ask! Many of The fastest guys are former elites, although a number have now one back to elite!

    Scott's job means his training is very sporadic, and it's impossible to put a meaningful number on it, particularly as most have been excellent riders for a very long time. A few years of 10-15 hours a week would probably see you right! Some will do far more, some will do less. Getting fast takes more training than staying at a level if that makes sense!
  • rock_hopper
    rock_hopper Posts: 129
    I'm a 1st year master after racing sport then expert and I reckon most guys in these categories will put in a lot of training time. Like njee said, 10-15 hours a week will probably see you right. Don't be under the illusion that this amount of training will make you win, there are some seriously fast master riders! I think it comes down to time, dedication, commitment and consistency........especially consistency.

    I know what you mean njee, to step up a level you need to up the workload, be that duration, volume or intensity. Keep the steady road rides to build endurance, gym is good for alternative training in winter & core but drop the football. I generally eat a healthy diet with lots of fruit, veg, lean protein, carbs for training and train around 14-18 hours a week (at the moment) riding 6 days out of 7, 1 day rest, 1 day recovery. Might be worth looking into recovery strategies as well, drinks, massage, compression clothing etc. Most of all, make sure it's fun :-) MTB racing rocks!
  • thanks guys, that's useful to know. I think I'll stick to the open for now and see if I can build up my training.