First Timer Cross Country Mountain Bike Training Plan

I have designed this six week training plan for athletes aiming to confidently participate in their first ever mountain bike race. If you have been riding your bike once or twice a week recently and are comfortable riding on dirt roads, you have everything it takes to follow this plan and have a successful race experience.

You will be riding three times per week. Tuesdays focus on pedaling drills and skills. The first three Thursdays of the plan are devoted to hilly rides to build leg strength, and then weeks four through six are for practicing race starts. The weekend ride is your endurance day where you will build up to your longest ride of 90 minutes in week five. On Mondays and Saturdays you follow a stretching routine and Fridays are for core strength training. Weekly training hours range from 3:30 to 4:14.

Training intensity is monitored using a Perceived Exertion (PE) scale you are given. There is no need for a heart rate monitor or power meter to follow this plan correctly. Read through the Training Intensity Guidelines document to learn how to monitor your riding effort, intensity and pace using PE.

Visit the LW Coaching website to ask training plan questions on our forum, read mountain bike specific training articles, learn new workouts and see what events our coaches and athletes have been racing.

Get the latest news

Join Us