MTB STage Racing Strategies

Stage Race Strategies Spring Racing and Moab Rocks Prep As the early signs of spring begin to arrive in Colorado, that means that the U.S. race season is about to…...

Stage Race Strategies

Spring Racing and Moab Rocks Prep

As the early signs of spring begin to arrive in Colorado, that means that the U.S. race season is about to get underway. For me, that means heading to Moab, Utah. In mid March, I’ll be teaming up with Syd, Macky, and the experienced crew from Chasing Epic to help riders prep for Moab Rocks. 

While this camp has been sold out for a while, the race still has some openings. Sign up here.

Moab Rocks has become the traditional season opener for riders in the Western U.S. It is a great early season test of both fitness and skill with three stages, covering some of Moab’s most iconic cross country trails.

If you are prepping for Moab Rocks, or another stage race, let’s take a look at some of the special considerations you need to account for with a multi-day race.

Stage Race Strategies

The Recovery Race – Your time off the bike can impact your race just as much as your time on the bike. The three most important things after your race are: hydration, nutrition and sleep.

Duplicate Equipment – You don’t want to be doing laundry every night or scrubbing bottles. As much as possible, plan a complete race-day kit for each stage. Even if you don’t have enough for every day, pack extras of everything. If you have a soggy stage, you’ll appreciate being able to use a fresh pair of shoes while your others dry out. You may also want to pack a clothes line, extra hangers, a boot dryer or newspaper (for stuffing wet shoes) to help you air out your clothes.

Organization = Optimization – With 3x the food, equipment and clothing, the gear pile can quickly get out of control. You don’t want to spike your cortisol pre-race with a frantic search for a specific item that has been lost to the void. I recommend using packing cubes, large ziplocks or grocery bags to separate items by day. Label everything – have a bag for cold weather, a bag for bike maintenance, and a bag for dirty clothes.

Create a Menu – If you’re doing a bigger race like BCBR or Cape Epic and staying in the village you can eat what race provides. However, many races don’t have this option and you need to prepare your own food. Once you have organized your race food into bags for each day, create a menu for all of your off bike meals. Keep the meals fairly simple, high in carbohydrate with a moderate amount of protein and fat, and just a little fiber. Do as much of the preparation as you can ahead of the race. This will provide you with more time to recover while still enjoying tasty meals.

Embrace The Hard – Don’t expect to wake up on day three feeling like a daisy. There is nothing wrong with you when you head to the start of day three feeling tired – even the professionals experience this. What matters most is how you react to this feeling – do you panic, do you question your training, or do you embrace it?

I hope to see many of you at Moab Rocks. Don’t forget to register while there are still a few spots open.

If you are thinking of doing your first stage race, or wanting to step-up your training this year, reach out to me for a free consultation to learn more about becoming a Durner Performance athlete. I provide highly-customized 1:1 coaching for all types of cyclists and levels of athletes world-wide.

If you’re eyeing your first stage race or wanting to step up your training this year, please reach out. Schedule a chat for a free consultation to learn more about Durner Performance. I specialize in personalized one-on-one coaching for cyclists of all types and athletes of every skill level.

Mike Durner