My First Enduro Mountain Bike Race

Enduro Mountain Bike Racing

This past Sunday I did my first enduro mountain bike race at Vail Lake in Temecula, California, and I loved it! Enduro mountain bike racing differs from other types of mountain bike races in that each race has at least 3 legs if not 5, and races start one at a time. Riders are not timed on the way up to the top, but only timed on the decent. You also have time to re-group between races, which means you don’t have to carry everything on your bike. You can head back to your base camp to refuel with some healthy snacks for example.

Downhill mountain bike racing involves a ton of adrenaline, but not much of the cardio element. Cross country mountain bike racing is too much of the cardio element for me, as I’ve never gravitated towards endurance events. But Enduro mountain bike racing is the perfect mix of both, at least for me. It reminds me of the Goldilocks and the Three Bears, the one in the middle is just right.

My concern going into this race was that I wouldn’t get enough time in training cardio since I usually get off work after dark. So I did a lot of training on a stationary bike before sunrise and supplemented that with outdoor training on the weekends. That worked well as I didn’t have any problems on the ascents. However, downhill was a different story. I was literally riding the oldest bike in the race, and a hard-tail at that, meaning no rear suspension.

My Hard-Tail Trek

Hard-tail Trek mountain bike

My ancient Trek

I have been out of mountain biking for a long time, so my Trek mountain bike is probably about 15 years old. I knew it was archaic going into it, but I can’t justify a new bike until I try racing with the old one. My bike has front suspension only, which is all you need for the type of riding we used to do. However, for downhill riding, it’s difficult to keep the back wheel on the ground without a full-suspension bike. So yep, you guessed it, I endoed over the bars on a rocky downhill section.

But no worries, the only thing hurt was my pride, and now I can’t wait to do it again! Now I know what to expect from the race as far as distances, time frames, and format. I also see a full-suspension bike in my near future. But best of all, all the people were really cool! There was a lot of camaraderie among the riders and I had a great experience!

So if you enjoy being on two wheels and rather be outdoors than in, I highly suggest checking out Enduro Mountain Bike racing. You’re competing against other riders in your division, but you’re also competing against yourself! Now get out there and start living your life to the optimum!

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About the Author:

Melissa Allen is a Certified Personal Trainer and Corrective Exercise Specialist residing in El Cajon, California, where she owns and operates Optimum Condition. Her goal is to empower people through fitness, education and coaching.