Off season – Is it really that bad?

Every year I really look forward to the summer mountainbike season and with that follows, that you are not really exited about the off season. All year I dread for the winter season. I hate the thought of not being able to ride and just go to the gym, go on some cold cross country rides and then search Pinkbike and Youtube empty for good mountainbike videos(even though it is pretty great in the start). The thought of all the snow that will fall and cover up all the trails so you can’t ride them to the fullest is just awful.

But then every year when the off season comes, and I actually get out on my cross country bike, I think, “Wow, this isn’t really that bad!?”. No, I don’t travel around in Europe living the crazy life, riding downhill all day long as I do in the summer, but at home it isn’t that bad. I quickly come to realize that my imaginary picture of the off season involves so much snow that you can’t ride. But actually it barely snows here. Just about a week ago it was 10 degrees Celsius here in Denmark, and that was the last day of November. That is quite alright I would say. The weather is always a lot better than I expect it to be. When I think about off season, I think of snow and really cold weather. But when the off season comes it mostly just turns out to be a bit of rain, fun muddy trails and then you put on a rain jacket and you are ready to go.

Here is a video from one of my regular off season cross country rides. Filmed and edited by Jeppe Svendsen:

 

The other thing about the off season is coming home to flat Denmark. As I ride downhill, I love mountains and Denmark kind of have a lack of mountains(a place danes call SkyMountain is freakin’ 147 meters high, you get the picture). Therefore I don’t always look forward to come home to flat Denmark after a month or four in The Alpes. At first I have a hard time getting out on the xc bike, but when I finally do, I realize that it is not that bad, actually, it’s pretty damn fun.

I the off season you maybe don’t get out on the dirtjumps every other day as you do in the summer(well maybe you don’t do that in the summer either, but I do when I am in Denmark). But there is certainly no excuse not to ride. And of you decide not to go in the woods, then you can get out to try other cool things. I started riding BMX some winters ago, and I have really stuck with that. It is another part of biking I picked up on the way, and it turns out to be tons of fun. Suddenly I began to really follow the bmx scene and watch tons of videos. I learned to know new people on the danish scene and that is quite awesome. It is pretty sweet to see how much you can progress. When I go out for a bmx session it is just to have fun, there is no pressure on me, because “I am a mountainbiker”. But all the time I end up learning new tricks and lines, and just progress a lot.

 

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What I have come to conclude over the last two years is, that for me there is no off season. More like a “travel” and a “home in Denmark” season, and they are both pretty great. In the travel season I get out to a lot of cool places, race a lot of races, experience awesome things, ride the mountains and meet a lot of new people. I the home season I get out to ride a lot of cross country and bmx, chill with my good friends and family, train at my local gym and even though I am just home, I experience a lot of awesome thing too. Either way, life is pretty damn awesome.

 

Cheers,

Frederik Leth