peloton

Cooper's Core Training (shoveling not required)

Hi there - it's Cooper again! 

It is hard to believe that it is already February.  In less than 3 months I will be traveling to Moab, UT for the first Enduro race of the season!  This means it is time to start putting in some base miles on the trainer (at home) and Peloton (at the gym) to get my legs ready to pedal!  Riding an indoor bike is not nearly as fun as riding a mountain bike outside, but it will make the beginning of the season more fun.  Not only does the indoor bike improve fitness, but it is also a test of mental toughness.  It is easy to come up with excuses to quit, so for me it is key to set a goal for each ride and stick to it.  Then when I am racing and things get tough I am able to push through and keep going.  I am training my mind as much as I am training my body.  

Along with the added cycling workouts I will be continuing my strength routine.  I am so thankful to have a gym membership!  I have been going to the gym 3-4 times a week and I can tell a huge difference from last winter (when I was not in the gym).  I have been able to maintain and build my upper body strength from last summer, and my core has never been this strong before!  I have been having a blast working out with Kristin and learning new exercises.  Kristin keeps me on my toes,  just when I think things are getting easier she teaches me a new even more difficult exercise! 

Ab rollbacks are one of my new favorite exercises.  They take sit ups to a whole new level of burn.  I love the level of control that you have to maintain on the way down and the power that you use on the way back up.  They are amazing!

 

Give rollbacks a try next time you are at the gym.  Do them slooooowww and you won't regret the burn.  For now I am headed to Arizona to do some mountain biking!  Check out my Instagram @cooperdendelott to follow my adventures!

-Cooper

A Day In The Gym - Cooper Ott, Enduro Mtn Biker

Hello everyone! It’s Cooper Ott again!  For those of you not familiar, or just starting to follow this blog, I am a professional Enduro mountain bike racer and recently started working out at CB South Fitness, as a way to stay in shape year-round.  

Kristin, the owner of the gym, and I met up for a weightlifting session early this month and it was so much fun! Not only was it awesome to have a friend to work out with, Kristin also taught me some new exercises. Here are three of my new favorites!

Warm Up

We started with a 10 minute warm up, Kristin on the Stair Master and myself on the Peloton bike. A 5-10 min warm is crucial for the obvious reason - to get things lose and “warmed up” before lifting weights! It’s also imperative from the standpoint of preventing injury. 

After the warm up we got down to business. The goal for the day was a full body workout, targeting weaknesses I had mentioned to Kristin, and working on overall strength. 

Box Squats

I am new to the world of squats. Squats use your biggest muscle groups and so we started there. They are a full-body fitness staple that work the hips, glutes, quads, and hamstrings, while strengthening the core as well. I say - bring it on! Box squats specifically, are great for beginners because you use the box to guide your form, and keep the depth of each squat consistent.  You have the ability to adjust the box height to whatever height you desire based on comfort, experience, and athleticism.

Unlike the banded jumping jacks (which I talk about later), mountain biking uses the same muscle groups as box squats. I immediately think about having to power up techy climbs, like the final moves on Teo Ridge. Not only is the climbing on Teo aerobically challenging, the final power moves to get over the ledgy rock and roots make it a full body workout.  Box squats will keep my legs strong for blasting through moguls on the mountain and ready to go for those techy mountain bike climbs next spring! 

Seated Rows

I struggle with upper body strength, and I will be the first one to admit it. I came from an XC mountain biking background where I relied mostly on aerobic fitness. I made the switch to Enduro which requires much more upper body strength and I noticed the deficit almost immediately. Over the season I improved my upper body strength slightly but adding exercises like rows into my workouts will help me build these muscles even more!

Banded Jumping Jacks

Cycling does not require much side to side motion of your lower body, and as a result my hips and glutes are really strong forward and back, but not side to side.  The banded jumping jacks really highlight my weakness in this area.  After only 15 jumps my glutes were on FIRE!  I am excited to add these into my workout!

One of my goals is to create a good fitness routine that I am able to keep up with even when the race season starts up again.  It’s important to keep my muscles strong in every season, not only to be a better rider, but also to help prevent injury in competition. I’m really looking forward to staying strong all year long and know that one workout at a time, I am getting there!  

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