by: Karl Bengston

Sponsored by: Power Meter City

Power meters allow you to see and record exactly how much power you expend on the bike – and power is simply fundamental to cycling performance. The ability to see and record your power allows for unprecedented insight into your fitness. When used properly, power meters help you become faster and stronger in a number of different ways. They eliminate the guesswork in your training, can be used as a vital tool on race day, can serve as a motivational aid during hard training sessions and can help you know when it’s time to recover, just to name a few reasons to buy a power meter.

I emphasize cyclists of all levels. The notion that “only pros use power meters” is false. Sure, professionals definitely take advantage of the numerous benefits afforded by a power meter. However, power meters are useful for anyone who is looking to take their riding to the next level. Since a power meter enables you to precisely measure your effort through watts, it leads to better training sessions and improved fitness, regardless of who’s using it.

Ok, we promised you 10 reasons to buy a power meter – Click Here to Read Power Meter City’s 10 Reasons! 

2016 Women’s Mountain Bike Clinic

The Iowa Mountain Bike Championship Series (IMBCS) is excited to be joining forces with Zoom Performance and Rasmussen Bike Shop to present the annual Women’s Mountain Bike Clinic! Join us for a fun afternoon learning the basic skills needed to confidently enjoy riding your bike off-road.

Led by local expert-level riders from Rasmussen Bike Shop and coaches from Zoom Performance, this clinic will feature separate groups for varying skill levels, from First-Time-On-A-Mountain-Bike to I-Think-I-Might-Try-Racing. Some of the skills to be covered include cornering, riding over obstacles, climbing and descending, and special avoidance skills (like avoiding running into trees!). It will also cover basic mountain bike maintenance skills. The clinic is beginner-focused, so no experience is necessary.

This clinic promises to be a lot of fun for riders of all abilities. There will be door prizes—and best of all, it’s free! All you need is a mountain bike (no hybrids or cross bikes, please), a helmet, and a willingness to learn something new!

Saturday, August 27, 2016
1:00–4:00 p.m.
Greenwood Park (behind the Des Moines Art Center)
300 45th St, Des Moines, Iowa 50312

Additional details and discussion can be found in the Women’s Mountain Bike Clinic Facebook event. Email Julie Kirkpatrick if you have any questions.

Update 8/26: There has been some rain falling today. Look for a “go/no-go” announcement here Saturday morning, shortly after 9:00 a.m. Or check the Facebook event, linked to above.

Update 8/27: Julie wrote: “We’ve been down to check out the trails, and we’re going have to postpone. We will release a make-up date soon.”


Race Nutrition

Race Nutrition – article by Liz Van Houweling

Mountain bike races can vary greatly in length depending on the category and type. Marathon races typically last 3-5 hours while cross country races are only 1-2 hours. No matter the duration, proper fueling is key for meeting race demands.

For all race distances, a good meal that is a mix of carbohydrates and protein with a little bit of fat about 3 hours prior to the start is usually sufficient. Another 100-300 calorie snack about an hour before the race could also be necessary. Entering races hydrated is also important and this process should be started the night prior to the race.

Continue reading Race Nutrition

Need a training plan for our Endurance Race Series?

Those racers planning to go long this year in our marathon series: We are just 10 weeks away from the first of five IMBCS Marathon races of the season at Beverly Park, and 13 weeks from the second one at Sugar Bottom.

Need a training plan to get you ready for our endurance races?

One of our sponsors, LWCoaching, has got you covered right here.

TJ Fort ramping it up at the Beverly Park Fat Tire Frenzy Marathon in May, 2015…


Photo is courtesy of Eric Roccasecca.

Interview with Lynda Wallenfels of LWCoaching.com

ALWs announced back in November, IMBCS is proud of one of our first official partnerships for the 2015 season with Lynda Wallenfels of LW Coaching. Lynda agreed to partner with IMBCS by participating in an interview for our website to discuss the merits of mountain bike racing for all levels from fist timer, to beginner, to seasoned veteran racers!

Lynda Wallenfels is one of the most respected mountain bike coaches in the world who had a very successful international racing career before and after becoming a naturalized US citizen in 2000. She is a regular contributor to Velo News, Active.com, mtbracenews.com, XXC magazine, Mountain Flyer, TrainingPeaks.com, and Bikepackers Magazine. She has excellent training plans available for our IMBCS participants ranging from 1st time racers all the way to seasoned endurance junkies. I urge everyone interested to take advantage of Lynda’s excellent training plans, and coaching abilities. She is a kindred soul, a joy to speak with, and a welcome addition to the IMBCS family. Join me in personally thanking and welcoming Lynda and LW Coaching!

Continue reading Interview with Lynda Wallenfels of LWCoaching.com