A Season Of Podium Performances Leads To The Top Step In The Series: 4-Questions With Jimmy Bourisaw
In the Mid-West one of the premier XC MTB race series is called the United Federation of Dirt. It’s an eleven-race series that draws the best talent in the region, and a series that Jimmy Bourisaw has been wanting to win for some time.
Having moved up in category from last season and competing in the hotly contested Category 1, 30-39 age group, it was no small task to get on the podium, let alone win the overall series.
But after 11-rounds of racing that spanned seven-months, Jimmy accomplished his goal and took home the overall title in his category.
Following the final race of the UFD season we caught up with Jimmy to talk about his year of racing, the training he did, his overall win, and what lies ahead for 2019 in a 4-question Athlete Profile interview. Enjoy!
Primary Sport/Discipline: XC MTB Racing
Average Hours of Training Per Week: 8-12hrs
Upcoming Goals: The BT Epic 50-Mile MTB Race
It was a season of hard-racing at the UFD East Series. One Jimmy Bourisaw knew would demand his best to win. Photo Credit: 1st Phorm Trek Racing
Question #1: Congratulations on winning the Category 1, 30-39 overall points championship at the United Federation of Dirt XC MTB series, Jimmy! It was a long season, what was your highlight from all the racing?
Jimmy Bourisaw:The highlight is more of a takeaway for the season: Do whatever it takes to stay in the front 5-riders for the first-lap and the result will follow!
Outside of the UFD racing, I enjoyed the Wolf Creek 12-hour team MTB race, which was the best race of the season. I had a lot of fun riding with my 1st Phorm Trek teammates.
I also really enjoyed the Breck-100 XC race because it featured long and grueling climbs at high-altitude.
Coaches Perspective/Coach Brian: It has been a busy season for Jimmy, having focused on XC MTB racing, but also adding lots of criterium racing and mid-week group rides to his calendar.
For much of the season it was a “race and recover” type of training protocol for Jimmy, because he had an event nearly every weekend.
This is really tough to manage for all Athletes, but especially for those with a full-time job (like Jimmy)!
What I am most proud of about Jimmy’s season is that he was amazingly consistent. We knew he was fit, but so much of XC MTB racing is luck, course knowledge, and race savvy.
Jimmy made the most of his fitness and was always fighting for the win. Although many of his competitors had much more volatile results, Jimmy’s consistency and tenacity made this overall title possible. Great job Jimmy!
Jimmy was very consistent this season and therefore spent a lot of time on the podium! Photo Credit: Jimmy Bourisaw
Question #2: Every race was a maximum effort and a great performance, especially since you never finished out of the top 5, a difficult challenge in MTB racing. What do you attribute your consistency to?
JB:Preparation, it’s all about preparation!
Throughout the season I emphasized bike preparation to ensure I minimized the risk for mechanicals come race-day, pre-race diet to make sure I was well fueled and didn’t have stomach distress, getting in a solid warm-up so that I could race hard from the start, and one of the most important things I emphasized was getting a good position on the start-line!
Coach Brian: Jimmy has a very methodical way of going about his preparation…as you can tell!
But this paid dividends for him because he was always “in the race”, as I like to put it.
To often an Athlete can miss the opportunity to have their very best performance because of a detail that was missed in preparation.
Luckily, Jimmy did more than just prepare well by training hard. He did everything he could to make sure he would be successful at the races.
And the overall win is his reward for all that diligence!
Despite all the individual success, Jimmy's favorite event of the year was the Wolf-Creek 12hr Team MTB race with his 1st Phorm Trek teammates. Photo Credit: 1st Phorm Trek Racing
Question #3: Looking ahead to 2019, what is one of your biggest cycling objectives and is there anything left on your 2018 race calendar you are working toward?
JB:There is just one race left in the season, the BT Epic 50-mile MTB race, in a few weeks time, which closes-out my racing season.
This is a race that I performed well at least year, but I still want more, much more from!
Looking to 2019, my objective is to start preparing for the XC National Championships as well as the Short-Track National Championships.
My goal is to qualify for each of these championship events as soon as 2019, but definitely by 2020.
Coach Brian: It is exciting to hear that Jimmy is focused on the XC & Short-Track National Championships for next season, these are great goals, especially given his talents and success this season.
For those that don’t know Jimmy, he is one of the hardest working and focused Athletes around. He is constantly pushing the envelope in his training as well as his preparation to ensure he can perform at his best.
As for wrapping up the year at the BT Epic 50-miler, I expect Jimmy to “go out with a bang!”
He is hungry, fit, and motivated to have a great finish to the season, which is exciting to see after a spring and summer filled with events both off-road and on.
The 11-race UFD East XC MTB Series went by in a blur for Jimmy Bourisaw as all the racing took place over seven months.Photo Credit: 1st Phorm Trek Racing
Question #4: What is/are your favorite workout(s) in your training program? Also, please share a ‘knowledge-bomb’ you have learned while training with BWC.
JB:I am simple, my favorite workouts consist of short V02 Max repeats because they are hard, provide the physical adaptation necessary to be my best, and also build my confidence so I know I can do the hard efforts necessary come race-time.
One thing I have learned since getting a coach is to keep the easy-days EASY and make the hard-days HARD!
This one notion helps me get the most out of my training time.
Coach Brian: That is great advice and something that we all need reminding of from time to time.
Too often Athletes can get caught-up in the hard-work of training and not take the appropriate rest on their easy-days.
Over-working on recovery days compromises future training and diminishes the bodies ability to adapt to training stress.
When talking with our Athletes, I emphasize that a proper recovery ride is the MINIMUM output necessary to stimulate blood flow to damaged/tired muscles.
It is, in fact, NOT a workout at all. Rather, it is a way for us to speed the recovery process by helping our bodies heal themselves from within. Hence the term, Active-Recovery.
We hope you have enjoyed reading about Jimmy Bourisaw’s season-long XC MTB success and that it has inspired you to set a seasons-worth of goals for yourself.
For nearly all Endurance Athletes, Fall is a great time to evaluate the year, including what went well as well as what did not, and dream about how this year’s success could lead to “bigger and better” next year.
And regardless of what “bigger and better” looks like in your Athletic Adventures, you are more likely to achieve that success faster and with greater precision by leveraging the expert advice of a Coach.
Until Next Time, Be Safe, Train Hard, & Have Fun!
-Brian & Joy McCulloch
Big Wheel Coaching
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.