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Does MTBing improve your road cycling more or

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Does MTBing improve your road cycling more or

Old 10-25-20, 05:18 PM
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burritos
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Does MTBing improve your road cycling more or

does cycling improve your MTBing more? I find that cycling per unit of time is easier. A consequence of that is that find myself cycling double the amount of time that I used to MTB. While intensity for me while cycling isn't as high as MTBing, aerobic respiration is on for longer periods of time. While I'm mountain biking much less, when I do, I've been speeding through segments much faster than I used to years ago. I suppose if I put in equal hours MTBing as I do cycling, I would get a similar result. But after 2 hrs of MTBing I'm done whereas it takes me 4 hrs of cycling to reach the same amount of fatigue. Thoughts please. This board seems very knowledgeable to me.
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Old 10-25-20, 05:28 PM
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Originally Posted by burritos View Post
does cycling improve your MTBing more? I find that cycling per unit of time is easier. A consequence of that is that find myself cycling double the amount of time that I used to MTB. While intensity for me while cycling isn't as high as MTBing, aerobic respiration is on for longer periods of time. While I'm mountain biking much less, when I do, I've been speeding through segments much faster than I used to years ago. I suppose if I put in equal hours MTBing as I do cycling, I would get a similar result. But after 2 hrs of MTBing I'm done whereas it takes me 4 hrs of cycling to reach the same amount of fatigue. Thoughts please. This board seems very knowledgeable to me.
I think you hit the nail on the head with your thoughts 👍
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Old 10-25-20, 05:32 PM
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Road cycling, IMO, works aerobic capacity more, muscles (especially upper body) not as much, relative to mtn biking,

plus you may get injured less.
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Old 10-25-20, 06:44 PM
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Yup I outclimb everyone when I hit the dirt but they descend a lot faster than me
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Old 10-25-20, 08:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Elvo View Post
Yup I outclimb everyone when I hit the dirt but they descend a lot faster than me
Can I ever relate to that!

I find too after two two hours of mtn biking I am done, not so with road biking.

wish I had learned to mtn bike first, because of how long it took me to get over being timid on gravel in a fast curve and loose soil and forcing the bike over and obstacles/small logs/streams. It was tough for me to unlearn the caution which is natural in road biking. But then on the flip side, if I had no fear of gravel on fast curves on a road bike I would have a lot less skin.

i liken mtn biking to downhill skiing compared to road biking which is like cross country skiing. One is all action, constant skill building, quick decision making and bleeding while the other is a lot more relaxed and has a better chance of keeping you out of the ER.
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Old 10-25-20, 08:51 PM
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MTBing improves your bike handling skills which translates over to road biking.

I mtn bike for fun and I road bike to make mtn biking more fun.

I was going to comment about how I'm more afraid road biking because of cars but I'm also sidelined because I dislocated my left index finger 3 weeks ago mtn biking lol. That was my first ER visit from mtn biking though.
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Old 10-25-20, 08:52 PM
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Originally Posted by woodcraft View Post
Road cycling, IMO, works aerobic capacity more, muscles (especially upper body) not as much, relative to mtn biking,

plus you may get injured less.
This ^^^

Road cycling: aerobic capacity/endurance.
Mtb: anaerobic fitness; quick accelerations/braking; reflexes; bike handling.

That is why almost all mtb xc pros train a lot on the road and on their mountainbikes. That is why some road pros (not all by any means) also ride some mtb, or at least cyclocross.
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Old 10-25-20, 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by woodcraft View Post
Road cycling, IMO, works aerobic capacity more, muscles (especially upper body) not as much, relative to mtn biking,

plus you may get injured less.
Originally Posted by badger1 View Post
This ^^^

Road cycling: aerobic capacity/endurance.
Mtb: anaerobic fitness; quick accelerations/braking; reflexes; bike handling.

That is why almost all mtb xc pros train a lot on the road and on their mountainbikes. That is why some road pros (not all by any means) also ride some mtb, or at least cyclocross.
I lost a lot of bike-handling skill when I stopped riding MTB ... and my road-riding definitely helped MTB because i wasn't winded all the time, so I could focus more on technique ... or just make up for poor technique by thrashing the easier sections.

The bike-handling only matters .... when it really matters. Some wrecks I might have avoided, i didn't, because of lost technique. Good bike-handling can get one out of trouble sometimes ... helps with the unexpected.
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Old 10-25-20, 09:22 PM
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Never answered the question. I wouldn’t say mtn biking has improved road biking but vice versa since road biking has given me better endurance and climbing skills. That said, I have far less fear having to go off road on my road bike and probably push myself faster on road descents to get a similar buzz that I get all the time mtn biking.
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Old 10-25-20, 10:58 PM
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Mountain biking is good for all the reasons listed above and it also is good for smoothing out your pedal stroke/building better spinning. This is from spinning in granny gears up steep hills and the smoothness that you develop navigating tricky bits (if your stroke is messy in tricky sandy areas for example you end up on the ground). How much of a difference it really makes though is marginal, but riding both mountain and road makes both better
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Old 10-26-20, 10:28 AM
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Almost every time Im in the trails, I rode ~20 miles of semi-urban streets to get there.

90% of the times that Im in the trails, I rode there on my road bike and typically do some road riding after spending an hour or two weaving and hopping in the trails before going back through the city to get home.

Sometimes I do it with my antique 26 rigid and the only difference is that Im less gentle about my landings (I kinda enjoy punching the Earth, lovingly, of course).

I definitely see my street riding improve the week after a trailday.

The only thing that improves my handling of rocks and roots is caffeine and a clear head.

The only thing that seems to improve my handling of loose turns and loose off-camber climbs & descents is riding with slicks on ice. Its tough getting that training for 3/4 of the year.



now, when I say trails, Im in upstate NY. Some trails are mostly clay-like dirt with a good amount of roots and fist-size rocks. Some are soggy loam that you only hit in late July into August. One used to be mostly soft dirt on one half and the rest was 2-5 gravel, but in the last decade all of the dirt has disappeared. None are flat.
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Old 10-26-20, 11:54 AM
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The good mtb guys on our team very often road ride also. They can just go and go for longer time without interruption to build fitness. Of course, the bread and butter is still the skills on the mtb.

I have tried to do longer "endurance" cyclocross rides. I got to one hour once and I had it! The beat up on the body was just too much versus the fitness work on the legs, heart, and lungs. So now, I usually do a combo cross/road ride. I either ride the cross bike to the track and back, OR take the roadie in the car also and lockup the one I'm not using and do a combo workout.
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