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1. Due you think the riders physical and mental conditioning will continue to progress, or are we seeing the limit of what is physically possible?
Chris Hensley, Grass Valley, CA
I still feel that MX/SX are still growing in training. I feel that there has been excellent growth in the sport physically and mentally but MX/SX are different than other sports with the demands and schedule. As we incorporate good training regimens into riders we can learn how to peak and maintain better through the seasons. With more and more riders having personal trainers that spend everyday with them it's going to get better and better. I'm excited about the future.
2. What would a typical day training with Nick Wey or Ryan Villopoto look like with riding, going to the gym or cardio? How do you fit it all in?
Kimberly Honan [firstname.lastname@example.org]
We try to do most of our training together. Normally we have 2 part days. Riding being the most important and most of the time they will ride the same track. Then I try to schedule the gym and road ride to coincide with each other. If they need different types of rides sometimes I'll do two or one of them will go alone. I try to make sure I'm with the one that needs more attention that day if I have to split up time. Example if Ryan is testing the team has everything under control so I may spend that day with Nick. It's been good so far.
3. What similarities do you see between working with Jeremy McGrath and Ryan Villopoto?
Colby Naake, Woodland, CA
One of the similarities is the way they set up the bike. They rely on the team to come up with settings and when they find something they like they stick with it. They could possibly make it a bit better but they would rather ride what they know and not have to think about it when they line up. Also their determination and will to win. They both don't accept not winning; it's not an option. They will do whatever is needed to give them the chance to win.
Marc Ciufolo [Marc.Ciufolo@sagem-interstar.com]
I mostly learned about training and recovery. It's not the training that makes you strong it's the recovery. When racing bikes your body is the motor so being rested and fit are super important. Some riders can fudge it a little if they overtrain or don't do enough. But in the end it all comes out. Also being consistent with your training schedule. Not a roller coaster. On two months off one.
5. Do any of your professional riders, Nick, Ryan or any others take any supplements? If so, which ones?
Joseph Skosky, Elk Grove, CA
Yes, Any rider I work with or give advice to will use cytosport supplements . I've had a close relationship with them since 95' and their products keep improving over the years.
Sometimes, yes they will. But being well trained and learning how to suffer they can push through it to finish. A fit rider with a good lead or good gap between riders can maintain a good heart rate and breathing. If you are put in a battle and push comes to shove it will be the rider who can stay loose and breathe and ride their own race without losing focus.
7. Lately there has been a lot of talk about performance enhancers being used by pro motocrossers. As a trainer, have you noticed anything like that going on in our beloved sport and what do you think should be done about it, if anything?
Nate Lisenbe, Boise, ID
Unfortunately, I have heard about riders using performance enhancing drugs. Two years ago I was accused of giving my riders these drugs and really took offense to it. I don't have any proof of anyone using and wouldn't want to point any fingers. It would be nice if they did some testing for this but I don't see it happening any time soon. I would just hope that the riders that have or do would see the downside and just train hard and race to their capabilities.
8. Here in the "Great White North" (Minnesota), we are quickly approaching another season of excellent off-road racing. My question is in regards to when to switch back from a more weight training oriented winter program (with low intensity aerobics activity added several days per week), to a lesser weight training schedule and more aerobics (including interval training which I have not really been doing at all). The goal is to "peak" around June/July. I'm sure everyone is different but maybe you have seen some consistency?
I would suggest giving yourself about 2 months of lesser weights and start leaning out your muscles and stretching. At the same time start adding in your interval training on the bicycle or running. Make sure you are watching your resting heart rate so you will know if your are doing too much and need to recover or if you can continue to push hard. You hopefully have been building a good base to build on with the low impact aerobics. This will help you to recover day to day and maintain your peak longer.
9. I know you've worked in the past with numerous champions, do you feel RV has the same drive and potential to be one of the greatest ever? If so, is his talent more "natural" or does he have to work really hard to be so good? (basically is he a Jeff Stanton or a JMB)
Chris Sexton, OKC, OK
Yes, I think he is already proving to be one the great riders in our sport. With his determination to win and be successful barring anything unfortunate he will continue to get better and better. I think he has a good balance of natural talent and work ethic. It seems that having only one makes it tough for a rider to find success. With a good balance he understands that it does take hard work and dedication day in and day out to maximize his talent. I always tell him your going to have bad day but we should be the only ones who know it. This helps him stay motivated to work hard.
What I've tried to get RV to understand is that all the work he's doing now will help him be a contender in 2009. Our goal is to get in there prepared and be there in the mix every week. If the opportunity to win is there take it. If it's a little out of reach we'll focus on what needs to be done to get there. So we haven't looked at it either way. Hopefully 2009 Champ but if we use it to learn that's ok too. As long as we learn.
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11. What color is your hair supposed to be?
Shawn Sandback, Voss country, MN.
It's just brown. I've had it brown for a while now but I got some die right here and who know what will happen. I just try to have fun with it.
12. Does/Has it ever bothered you that your brother was the one named "factory?"
Lee Woodward [email@example.com]
No, I always thought it was cool to have a brother who had the success he had as a racer. Not to many riders ever get the chance to contend for titles and podium spots. Those are things he earned and worked hard for that he will always have. We've both had our successes in an industry that we love and we can both look back and be proud of each other and ourselves. It's a great industry and lots of fun but any success in it whether racer or mechanic/trainer what ever being successful is a great feeling. I am super proud of him for his accomplishments in this industry. He deserves to be "FACTORY".