Finding braaap in Ireland

Here’s a nice note from a reader who’s getting stronger and more skilled — and having more fun.

This is great Tony. Rip it up!

Hi Lee,

I moved to Ireland a year ago and took up mountain biking (on some of the most beautiful mountains and forests I’ve seen). After about 10 months my skills had plateaued. I am 31, 9 stone (58 kg) and couldn’t do a push up to save my life. I had started looking a bit like a t-rex too. Last month I decided to start some strength training and buy your book to improve my skills.

The strength training has already made a big difference both on the bike and off. Better posture, not grunting when I pick up my 10kg daughter, visibly better muscle tone (my wife likes that one) and I feel that I can throw my bike around more easily.

Your book has been great for building skills and confidence too. I’ve been concentrating on one thing per ride. Pedalling is some thing I had never thought about, but I’m now >5 km/h faster on the flats and find hills easier for the same amount of effort. Easy win 🙂 I had naturally put my outside for down on corners, but I now push down and am more active about moving my bike and me around and finding extra grip.

I’ve also been doing your pedalling drills which have improved my standing up pedalling (no more wobbles) and moving around the bike (my rear wheel is >6 inches further away than I thought, I can lean my bike to the side further too). I trust my bike more. My hands are lighter, my feet heavier and my weight more centered. I feel like Riding (big r) is becoming easier with more options through the trails opening up.

I do the occasional evening ride too, not pitch black but enough to need lights. I’ve got one light on my handle bars and one on my helmet. While the bike beam is jumping about everywhere, the helmet one is smooth. I was happy when I noticed that.

Thanks for the tips and inspiration,

More (brap) , than BRRAAAAAAaaaaP! but getting there.

Know more. Have more fun!

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