The past few weeks have been stuffed full of work, holiday prep, and parenting stuff, so I've been slowly working my way through Brian Lopes & Lee McCormack's Mastering Mountain Bike Skills, mostly as a way to relax. I haven't had time to get out for a real ride in a while, so reading about it is my little substitute. I get to spend time mentally on the trails even if I can't be there physically.
But the odds finally caught up, and I had a short window on Saturday afternoon for a ride. A real ride, on actual trails.
I picked a smallish loop that took me down Yucca Ridge. At the top, I decided to focus on technique:
- Use the side knobs and commit more to the turns.
- Float over the rough spots, "row" over quick rises.
- Wait to brake in the "heavy spots", sections where I'm naturally focusing more weight downward. (More on that can be had from this video.)
I felt totally in control the whole time, riding well and having fun, but nowhere close to a PR. I wasn't even trying.
Turns out I was just 2 sconds off.
2 seconds isn't nothing, but this run didn't even feel fast. I was consciously not taking any risks in the name of speed.
I do notice that I've been neglecting my climbing. Really need to do better about that.