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The Podcast for the MTB Strength Training System, the world’s original and best strength and conditioning system designed exclusively for mountain bikers.


In this podcast I share my insights in the concept of Riding For A Lifetime. Based on my own journey with getting older along with my 30 years of strength training experience - 20 years of it as a fitness professional and 15+ years focusing on mountain bikers - this concept is based on one simple idea...

There is a difference between training for short term performance gains and training for longevity. 

Performance enhancement and longevity can’t both be most important, you have to choose one. And for too long the info we’ve been getting from the fitness and cycling media places performance enhancement first...and we’re paying the long term physical price for it.

In this podcast I share where the idea came from, why I think there is a critical need for this type of info and the three pillars of the Riding For A Lifetime concept, which are -

1 - Sustainable Fitness Training.

2 - Sustainable Riding Strategies.

3 - Efficient Movement On & Off The Bike.

My goal with the Riding For A Lifetime concept and the camps, workshops, programs and other things I will create based on is to help riders understand the best ways to prioritize sustainable practices that will keep them riding strong tomorrow and for years to come. If you have any questions about the info in this podcast post a comment or send me an email to james@bikejames.com, I’m always happy to help.

Until next time…

Ride Strong,

James Wilson

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First, I hope that this podcast finds you healthy and safe. Mountain biking is an important part of our lives but there are much bigger things that a lot of people are going through and I hope that you're doing as well as you can with the situation.

With that said, I know that a lot of riders find themselves trying to figure out how to modify their normal training and riding schedule - I'm one of them as well. So I wanted to put together a list of my top 3 tips for doing that.

Top 3 Tips for Training During the CV-19 Pandemic

  1. Try to maintain your routine as much as possible and keep your normal training time. 
  2. If you need to outfit a home gym without a lot of money then consider using strength bands and isometric training to help.
  3. Use this time to develop the movement skills behind the technical skills you use on the bike. 

Bonus Tip - Don’t try to make up for lack of trail rides with a lot of Crossfit style/ High Intensity strength training type stuff. The best cardio you can do is on a bike so if you have access to one then use it, otherwise don’t panic and start using strength and power training as cardio training. This type of training has a higher chance of getting you hurt and getting you back on the trail with bad movement habits and overuse injuries waiting to happen.

Unless this is the endgame for the world government/ Illuminati and we end up under a medical dictatorship then we will get through this to ride another day. Doing what you can to keep up a good training routine will help in the short term and the long term so hopefully these tips will help you do that.

Until next time...

Ride Strong,

James Wilson

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November 11, 2019

Sleep Coaching with Nick Lambe

Have you ever heard the saying that “to achieve what others can’t, you must be willing to do what others won’t”?

Of course, you can use this saying to motivate you to work out or watch what you eat...and you should, because those are important things...but I’d argue that you should also use it to motivate you to get more sleep.

Most people reading this are sleep deprived in some way, either from a lack of sleep or poor quality sleep. And while I knew that sleep was important, it wasn’t until recently that I realized how important it was.

Whatever the cause, the results from sleep deprivation are the same…

  • Decreases in aerobic capacity
  • Decreases in strength and power
  • Increases in reaction times 
  • Increases in catabolic “stress” hormones

...and this is just to name a few. As the guest on this podcast put it, sleep is the lever that you can pull that will impact everything else in your body.

In this episode of the BikeJames Podcast, I interview sleep coach Nick Lambe. He helps people improve their sleep habits and the quality of their sleep through his business The Online Sleep Coach and he came on the podcast to share some insights and tips to help you with yours.

You can learn more and contact Nick on IG at @theonlinesleepcoach or online at www.onlinesleepcoach.com. He does both private and small group sleep coaching and I highly recommend checking out the free stuff he posts on Instagram.


Sleep is like a legal performance enhancing drug that far too few of us take advantage of. Hopefully this podcast will help you achieve better results both on and off the bike by daring to do what others won’t...getting enough sleep.

Until next time…

Ride Strong,

James Wilson

MTB Strength Training Systems

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In this episode of the BikeJames Podcast, I recap the 3 lessons I took away over the course of the two day skills and fitness camp I hosted a few weeks ago. All four riders who made the trip made some big breakthroughs with how they moved on and off the bike and I hope that these lessons can help you too.

They are:

  1. The importance of Isometric Training for developing strength.
  2. The importance of having weight on your hands to drive your movement on the bike.
  3. The importance of mobility training if you want to “ride for a lifetime”.

I also give a review of the Eliptigo M-SUB, which is a stand up bike that I used at the camp to help the riders get a better feel for some of the positions I was talking to them about. I think that it has a lot of potential for us as mountain bikers - definitely a better off season training option than a road bike - and you can check them out at https://www.elliptigo.com/ after you listen to the podcast if you’re interested in learning more.


Until next time…

Ride Strong,

James Wilson

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Last week I posted a review of a new soft tissue tool I’ve been using called the Boomstick. At roughly 2 feet long and weighing 20 pounds, it opens up ways to address tightness and mobility that I didn’t know existed.

Having a long history with the foam roller I thought I knew a lot when it came to improving recovery and mobility through soft tissue work but after experiencing the Boomstick at a seminar I realized I still had a lot to learn. So I decided to go to the man behind the Boomstick, Chris Duffin.

Chris is the founder of Kabuki Strength, a company dedicated to moving the fitness industry forward through innovative training tools and education. He is also the author of the book The Eagle and The Dragon, which tells the story of how he overcame a lot of obstacles to get to where he is today.

I got Chris on for a podcast interview to go over his views on strength and recovery and how they tie into the next level soft tissue work you can do with tools like the Boomstick. We also touch on barefoot training and Mace Swinging (a.k.a. 360’s and 10-2’s). It was a great talk covering a lot of topics but one that anyone interested in maximizing their recovery while decreasing the chance of injury should check out.

If you’re interested in learning more about Chris, the Boomstick and Kabuki Strength you can check them out at www.kabukistrength.com or one of the other links below:

Educational Content - @kabuki_virtualcoaching 

Kabuki Strength - @kabukistrengthlab

Chris Duffin -  @mad_scientist_duffin

I hope you enjoy this interview and get some stuff from it. And be sure to check out the Boomstick Review for some videos on how to use it on common problem areas for riders.

Until next time…

Ride Strong,

James Wilson

MTB Strength Training System

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In the book Sapiens - which I highly recommend BTW - the author talks about the superpowers that separate humans from other animals. We have a couple of them but the one that I like to focus on is the ability to purposefully affect our future-selves.

Unlike other animals that are only focused on the present, humans can see into the future and project themselves into it. This allows us to make sacrifices now that we know will help ourselves in the future.

But, like any superpower, if we choose to ignore it then it doesn’t do us any good. You have to embrace the power and the responsibility that comes with it if you want to put it to use.

This is why I tell people that if you are a mountain biker then you are a mountain biker 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Every decision you make is going to affect your future self, both in the short term and the long term.

Trying to separate yourself from the impact of your decisions on your riding is ignoring your superpower. What you had this morning for breakfast, your sleep habits and your recovery strategies should all looked at as to how they will impact your riding.

Which brings me to this week’s BikeJames Podcast. In this episode I recap the Bioforce Coaches Weekend, where I saw some great presentations and met some really smart coaches. 

I had a lot of takeaways from it and have a couple of the speakers lined up for podcast interviews so we can dive deeper into some of the subjects. 

I hope you get some useful stuff for your own training, sleeping and recovery plan. I’m looking forward to putting some of the things I learned into place and sharing the results with you down the road.

Until next time…

Ride Strong,

James Wilson

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By the time you get this podcast I’ll be on my way back from a seminar in Seattle. It’s hosted by Joel Jamieson for his Bioforce Certified Coaches and I’m looking forward to sharing some of what I learned with you over the next few weeks.

In the meantime, though, here is a new BikeJames Podcast. Here are some notes from what I cover in this episode...


Balance training for mountain biking: Does “balance training” work for improving your balance on your mountain bike?

Skills Training

Why dropping your heels on descents or dropping your outside foot in corners is a bad idea.

Bro Science

Do clipless pedals increase the risk of hip injuries? Three studies would suggest the answer is “yes”, which means a lot for the discussion about clipless vs. flat pedals.

Links to the studies - Study #1/    Study #2/    Study #3

Rider Q & A

Studies show that sitting is more efficient at sub-max efforts so why do you recommend standing up to pedal so much?

I hope you enjoy this episode and get some stuff you can apply to your own training. And remember that if you have any questions or comments about this episode or if you have any suggestions for topics you want me to cover let me know.

Until next time…

Ride Strong,

James Wilson

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One of the recurring themes in my life lately is the need to identify the right problem before you can come up with the right solution. Sometimes we think the problem is one thing and work like crazy to find answer to it only to be frustrated over and over again because we were seeing the wrong thing.

From life to training to riding your bike, it is all one big series of “problems” to solve with physical and mental tools you have available. But you only know the right tools to develop when you know the problem to solve.

The reason I bring this up is that “find the right problem to solve” became the theme of this episode of the BikeJames Podcast. By shedding some light on a new way to look at some common problems we face on the bike and in the gym I hope I can help you come up with better solutions to them.

In this episode I share some thoughts on...

Training: Horizontal Loading vs. Vertical Loading: What is it and which is better for improving hip movement on the bike.

Skills: Pressure vs. Weight for Standing Climbing: Why you don’t need or want you butt on the seat for traction.

Bro Science: Functional Threshold Power vs. Intermittent Power to predict XC race results: Does improving your FTP improve your MTB?

Equipment: Angles 90: Great training tool for chin ups and deadlifts.

I hope you enjoy this episode and get some new perspective on the problem how to improve your power, endurance and skills on your bike. I’ll be in touch next week with a new video showing how standing climbing makes it easier to navigate technical climbs.

Until next time…

Ride Strong,

James Wilson

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Hope you had a great holiday weekend. I had a good one myself, getting some riding in with Aka the Trail Mutt. 

Aka is getting a little older - just like his master - but he just refuses to slow down. I joke that he gets me out as much as I get him out but it’s true...without his enthusiasm for getting out on the trail as much as possible I probably would have skipped more than a few rides over the last 7+ years.

But I’m always glad when I do get out. The combination of being in nature, getting the “runners high” from a long, grinding climb and the adrenaline rush of some sweet momentum fueled fun is something that never gets old.

Nothing else provides this combination of soul-recharging elements, which is what makes mountain biking so unique. The struggle it provides and the environment it provides it in are the things that keep me coming back to the trail after almost 2 decades of riding.

That’s also why I love sharing my passion for riding and training with everyone. I know that mountain biking isn’t easy but with a little knowledge you can fast-track you progress and avoid unnecessary frustrations. 

Which brings us to this week’s podcast. In this new BikeJames Podcast I cover some topics that I think will help you ride faster, longer and with more confidence on the trail.

This Week’s Podcast Topics

Rider Q & A: Why does my female training partner who can’t deadlift as much as me (load or strength-to-weight ratio) outclimb me? Doesn’t my higher deadlift strength mean I’ll have more power and can outclimb her? 

Bro Science: Three studies that  tell us the characteristics of a good mountain biker.

Training: Why Crossfit or “Mixed Cardio” isn’t as good as “regular cardio” for MTB specific training.

Skills: Cockpit Control workshop overview and insights.

Equipment Review: Neat Ice Bag

You can stream or download this episode below. Until next time…

Ride Strong,

James Wilson

MTB Strength Training Systems

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This week I’ve got a new BikieJames Podcast for you. A lot has happened since the last one and I had a few interesting topics to share, including...

  • The opening of my new Catalyst Training Facility in Fruita CO
  • Rider Q&A: Is speed determined by power?
  • Why your handlebars are too wide
  • Resistance Bands: Why I like them and some experiments with them
  • Bro Science: The role of emotions on Pacing Strategy

Until next time…

Ride Strong,

James Wilson
MTB Strength Training Systems

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