Why your off-road training should include CX training

Why your off-road training should include CX training

Why your off-road training should include CX training

We might be in the depths of summer and engrossed in the fantastic road racing action provided by the Tour de France and Tour de France Femmes, but this time of year is also perfect for honing those off-road skills. A valuable pursuit that can improve your handling of a road bike and fitness on a MTB, there are a multitude of reasons why cyclocross training can make you a better bike rider.

In this article we hope to enlighten you on the benefits of mixing cyclocross into your off-road training and show you why at Specialized, we have the perfect bike for the job.

The perfect bike for the job 

As our previous articles show, everyone can make the leap to gravel with a Crux and not just because of the ride quality but also because it is in a class of its own compared to other off-road bikes on the market. The lightest gravel bike in the world at just 725 grams, the exceptional multi-purpose capability of the bike makes it the ultimate season-straddling two-wheeled machine. With tyre clearances ready to take on the road, gravel trails and those gnarlier cyclocross tracks, the S-Works Crux really can do it all. Equipped with SRAM’s RED eTap AXS hydraulic disc groupset, lightweight and durable Roval Terra CLX Disc wheels and 2Bliss Ready 700x38mm Pathfinder Pro tyres that get over the worst of the terrain, this bike is the real deal. 

Although spec’d differently through the tiers, the full Crux range offers riders unrivalled off-road ride quality. The lightest and stiffest carbon used in its construction results in responsive and quick handling both on and off road, ideal for those twisting single tracks and rooted, bumpy terrain. If the going gets too tough, it’s a cyclocross bike, so naturally it can be carried on your shoulder super easily over longer and/or steeper distances.

When you’re in the saddle on the hills though, there’s nothing quite like it. Launch an attack, bridge a gap, or simply keep the pedals turning until you hit your next horizon, the crux is an eager companion over the climbs. Finally, the accommodating nature of the bike means that you can fit race wheels for full performance and even 650b wheels if you want a bit more of that MTB feel. 

The sweetspot

A good ’cross bike like any of the Crux models strikes the perfect balance between road riding and MTBing, especially in bad weather. Pace, traction, stability and adaptability, the Crux opens up your riding options and straddles both worlds so you never feel like you’re on the wrong bike. 

Improves your skills

As we touched on earlier, riding cyclocross can improve all facets of your cycling skillset from descending downhill on roads, to keeping the power up aboard a MTB on a steep gradient. If you’re out of season for racing on your other bikes, improving your skills through off-road gravel/CX riding will have you fighting fit and fast in time for your next race.  

There’s nothing quite like gravel in summer

It’s true. Long days, a rich riding community, not much of a dress code and plenty of epic riding to be had along the way, once you get the gravel bug there’s no going back. New trails open up to explore all over the place, broadening how you perceive cycling in your area. Summer cyclocross racing is on another level too. 

One bike for everything

Not only is a gravel/CX bike like the Crux perfect for summer training, but they’re a jack of all trades all year round, ready for anything. A bike that you can use for training, racing, bikepacking and even commuting, there are no bounds to the Crux’s endeavours. Plus, thanks to Specialized teaming up with iconic Swedish apparel company Fjällräven, we can kit you out with all the bags for your travels.   

To find out more about the new Crux, come down to one of our stores, get yourself fitted and start carving some off-road routes – you’ll be an all-round pro in no time. Speak to one of our friendly staff members, feel out which model suits you best and learn all about the innovations we are making at Specialized.

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