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Moto: 4 Key Components to Early Season Fitness and Speed

In attempt to make up for lost time associated with winter, riders have a tendency to get a little over zealous during early season workouts which frequently results in an injuries and/or performance frustrations. Implementing these 4 components will make early season training both productive and void of injury.

Establish phisical weakness profile - maximize your training efforts

“Strengthen your weaknesses and race your strengths” is the motto that I say to all of my clients because as humans, we spend the majority of our time doing things that we like & what we are good at. To make the greatest progress within your training program, you must identify what you are NOT good at and start there. Establish where you are physically lacking – muscular strength, endurance or speed and don’t forget the non-sweating disciplines of flexibility, nutrition and realistic goal setting; begin where you are the weakest or have room for the most improvement (relevant to your personal race goals). Early season/baseline testing will help pinpoint your weaknesses as well as capture your current maximum heart rate for that specific discipline (see below).

Establishing heart rate zones - avoid injury and burnout

By not knowing how hard you are actually training (verses perceived exertion), riders run the risk of injury & burnout. Actual intensity levels need to be monitored with a heart rate monitor to ensure that you are training within your aerobic zone for the majority (not all) of your early season efforts. Please note that you must establish your heart rate training zones for each discipline that you train. For example, if you utilize the Concept 2 rower as a cross training tool for motocross, you cannot use your heart rate zones from the bicycle – more muscles are engaged during rowing than cycling which results in a different max heart rate number and associated heart rate zones. Over my last 22 years of coaching, I have seen the use of generic formulas (for example, 220-age) have a margin of error as high as 30%. The assessment of your pre-season max heart rate can be captured with a simple pre-season max heart rate assessment.

Establishing a personalized eating plan - determining what works and what doesn't

The food you eat has both a long & short term effect on your body. An immediate influence of food is reflected in your energy levels and performance – the better the quality & quantity, the better both are! A long term influence of food includes the building & repairing of lean muscle tissue and bones. Research has validated that the muscles, bones, connective tissue and skin that is on you now, is the result of your food intake over the last six months. By keeping a detailed food log & comparing it to your training log, provides you feedback of what is working immediately (i.e. energy levels to complete a high quality workout or early season race) as well as the long term (i.e. body measurements indicating increased muscle and decreased body fat). Don’t be intimidated by this process, humans tend to eat 15-20 of the same products each day – by following a consistent eating plan allows you to determine the positive or negative effects of a new food item added to your eating plan. If your results improved, you know the product is worth keeping and vice versa.

Establishing a soft tissue maintenance plan - maximizing power and indurance

Chiropractic and massage are two modalities that should be a part of every rider’s routine for one simple reason: tight muscles pull bones out of alignment; misaligned bones keep muscles tight. If you visit a massage therapist and the attachments of the muscles are out of line, it is the same as if you pulled the ends of a rubber band far apart, no matter how much you rub the center, the band is still tight. You have to get the attachments of the muscles to the correct position before you will get the tension out of the muscle. The reverse is true as well. If you get an adjustment and the muscles are tight, the muscles will simply pull the bones back out of alignment. Lining up the spine and removing tension within the muscles will result in better strength and improved endurance.

Coach Robb has been working with riders & racers for the last 25 years and is the founder of the Complete Racing Solutions Performance Program & Nutritionally Green Supplements based in Orlando Florida. He has contributed to publications such as Racer X, FLMX and is a regular contributor to RacerX online, RacerXVT, Vurbmoto and various racing websites. Robb can also be heard on the monthly radio show DMXS answering listener’s questions about nutrition & fitness. coachrobb.com is a premium resource center for motocross, supercross and GNCC riders of all abilities and ages. The website outlines the training solutions used with great success by Factory Kawasaki/Pro-Circuit’s Adam Cianciarulo, Broc Tickle, Darryn Durham; Factory, Factory Honda’s Ashley Fiolek, Suzuki’s Jordan Bailey, Factory KTM Off Road Charlie Mullins & Yamaha’s Roman Brown & Morgan Moss. Instructional videos with Coach Robb can be found on the Coach Robb’s Youtube Channel addressing rider’s questions about speed, endurance, strength nutrition, biomechanics, and stretching and soft tissue maintenance. Please visit coachrobb.com to subscribe to his newsletter and learn more about various resources for riders. You can follow him on Twitter: @MotoCoachRobb and on Facebook: Coach Robb.

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