HOT TAKES: Racing Strategy, Crit Preparation, and More – Ask a Cycling Coach 403

I’ve usually been pretty good about being consistent with my workouts but once a week I would do an in person class and my coach who ran the studio would do a short 30 minute workout before the computrainer session. Just usually some sort of circuit style strength workout. So it was always a good workout day and the social aspect was enjoyable.

Less enjoyable was when she would occasionally secretly increase your resistance without you noticing mid workout as a bit of a test or if she thought things looked too easy. :rofl:

Hahahaha good lord that sounds like my worst nightmare :joy: we’re all very different it seems!

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Haha I definitely thought it would be awful at first but I definitely grew to love it. One older guy was there often on the trainer next to me and he was one to vocalize his discomfort with lots of loud grunts and groans. I told him he was making my intervals harder even when I wasn’t yet struggling. :rofl:

Hahahah that is ratchet😂

I used to be really into the gym, so I recognise the type of guy lmao

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Just listened to this one. I love the Hot Takes format. Thank you!

Have to say I laughed when Jonathan said “Moab sucks” but then went on to name some great Moab trails (Brand, for example). Maybe he doesn’t consider those “Moab”, but if you buy a Moab shirt or map, it’s going to have all the trails in the area.

Still working though this podcast, but it is a solid start and worth a listen for anyone considering a fit. Stuff about tech and pro related data are key elements of my interest.

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Just in case you haven’t…have you seen Francis Cade’s “Bike Fit Tuesday” videos on YouTube? There are a ton of them with James. He is a fun watch, and definitely isn’t afraid to share his opinions.


Never been to Bentonville either. The riding in CO/Utah is too good. Plus, any town that gives itself the name of ‘mtb capital of the world’; I can’t take it seriously. I do want to check it out sometime. Maybe in the fall.

This quote from a PinkBike article is funny: Bentonville is the “mountain bike capital of the world” as much as Applebee’s is the capital of fine dining.


Yup, I’m a regular follower of that channel. I don’t always agree on all topics, but it is a reliable resource with good thoughts and experience driving the bus. Would definitely recommend it for anyone looking for fit related topics.


Bentonville is a fun trip. The downtown area has good walkability and there are lots of different kinds of mtb and gravel trails. Definitely worth the trip.

They do have a couple of big issues though, not the least of which is that the Slaughterpen area often smells like…a slaughter pen, and I’ve gotten some kind of sludge/crap on me and my bike before that was gag worthy.

I get being “anti-hype”, but honestly, the Walmart grandkids have sunk tens of millions of dollars into making that area a desirable place for mtb’ers to live and visit. I can understand them wanting to hype it up and pay advertisers to get people there.


Having ridden in both, hands down I prefer Benttonville…but I also prefer twisty, flowing singletrack. The riding out west (especially in Moab ) is really the other end of the riding spectrum, IMO.

I actually went out there many years ago with a couple of buddies from Denver and we actually left earlier than planned from the trip because we just weren’t digging the riding all that much…came back to Denver, rode up Bergen Peak and had a blast.

YMMV…just depends on what experience you are looking for, I guess.


Slaughter Pen is like you described, but don’t forget Bentonville also has Back 40, which isn’t that twisty turny experience and is a few hours of riding without sessioning a single trail. And then you have the Coler jump lines. IMO, Bentonville has everything.


Ah…have not ridden the Back 40 yet. Thanks for the info.

The one thing Moab has on Bentonville is stunning landscape views. :sunglasses:

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Yes. Moab wins in scenery. By a LANDSLIDE.

I really like Moab. I’m not trying to knock it at all. The only thing I don’t really enjoy is the actual Slickrock Trail, but TWE, Brand, Porcupine Rim, Klondike, and Deadhorse, just to name a few, are all a blast imho.

This discussion finally got me to make the event topic I’ve been meaning to make for a while:

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Lots of good info on that channel.

I sort of like his opposition to the uber wide bars. My gravel bars are just slightly wider than what I had on my road bike and have a mild flare. I just couldn’t get into the super wide bars.

Bar width sure can be interesting. Width has many factors from rider size, to use case as well as matching stem length appropriately. There is such thing as too wide just as much as too narrow, but what that means will vary widely for reasons mentioned.

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Speaking of Moab, I’ve been watching clips of the Moab Rocks race on Syd and Macky’s channel.

Two points. That race doesn’t actually look fun, those trails definitely look like something you need to spend time on a lot to race confidently. Secondly, I didn’t give Stetina enough credit. For him to win there seems pretty legit in terms of skill (not that I know the field quality).

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Agree. I follow a few bike fitters on YouTube and they’re normally pretty clear that they’re providing general guidance and there’s not many “one size fits all” solutions.

And of course when their videos are 15 minutes long they can’t explain everything.

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Agree. Moab is generally not the place to go for flowy singletrack.

But if you like technical trails that keep you on your toes, it’s fantastic. As you get better, the technical Moab trails become a lot more manageable and it’s easier to ride them with flow.


I’d still like to go ride at Bentonville. I’ve heard a lot of good things.