Hit the following link to ask Mountain Bike Action a question: firstname.lastname@example.org
Q: Is there a scientific way of hydrating while on a ride? Do I have to hydrate every ten minutes, even I don’t feel thirsty?
-Frederick, who needs a drink
Mountain Bike Action: We have suggested setting a watch so it beeps every ten minutes and then taking a mouthful of water at each beep. This tip is to get a rider in the habit of drinking, but it is over-simplified. If you force yourself to drink, you might become bloated, which may slow you down or cause discomfort during your ride. Every person is different, and every trail is different. On cold rides when we are just cruising along, we might not drink for over an hour. On a hot ride at a hard pace, we might drink every five minutes. The point is to listen to your body. We highly recommend wearing a hydration pack, as we have found these to encourage riders to drink. After your ride, monitor your urine. If it is a dark yellow, that is a telltale sign that you are not hydrating properly.
Q: When I just
ride with my buddies, all is well. But when I race, my left foot falls
asleep after about 30 minutes. I have used Crankbrothers Candy pedals
and just switched to their Eggbeater pedals. Any ideas?
-Jeff, who trips after a race
Mountain Bike Action: Having feet that fall sleep is usually
caused by lack of blood flow. When we exercise at high intensity, like
during a race, our body's main goal is to get blood to the exercising
muscle tissue. For cross-country racers, that is the legs. This
increased blood flow to your lower extremities will cause your feet to
swell, making your shoes slightly tighter than when you first put them
on. Your increased foot volume may cause arteries and vessels to be
squeezed off, resulting in a lack of sensation in your foot.
Check your shoes’ fit and consider running them slightly looser. Same
goes for your socks. Since you are using Eggbeater pedals, you will need
a shoe that has a stiff sole to provide more support. If you are using a
more comfortable (and flexy) trail shoe, this may exacerbate the
Finally, you really want a profession to fit you to your bike. A rider
who trail rides can get along fine with a fit that is “close.” The same
can’t be said for a racer. You are pushing everything to the limit, and
the slightest miscalculation in fit will be magnified under this abuse.
And yes, racing is abuse. Jeff, you are dealing with a lot of variables,
so if the problem persists, you need to consult a doctor.
Q: You recommended the Xdream by Trixster
indoor trainer for obvious reasons, but assuming I don’t want to spend
that amount on a spinning bike, do you have other recommendations on
good indoor training systems?
-Carl, pedaling in the carport
Mountain Bike Action: We are the wrong guys to ask about indoor trainers, because
we seldom have the need for them here is sunny Southern California. We
like the Xdream by Trixster because it mimics the sensation of riding a
mountain bike. Other spinning bikes don’t have this feature. CycleOps Power
offers a line of stationary trainers that your mountain bike clamps to.
At least this way you are in your proper riding position with the shoes
and pedals you normally ride in. We pass this along as information
only, not as a recommendation. We have not had the chance to rate or
review any of the CycleOps trainers.