He grew up in Canada’s warmest city, Victoria, BC, where the mild winters, unique terrain, and thriving bike culture helped him get into riding bikes at the age of 12. He quickly discovered mountain biking and it gave him the opportunity to sample all types of riding from downhill racing to slopestyle contests. It wasn’t long after that Mark launched his pro career and became known around the world for his smooth riding style and all-around skill set.
Mark Matthews’ penchant for adventure and desire to experience the most out of life are what makes Mark a perfect fit with the XS family. We got the opportunity to ask him 10 questions to better understand what a day in the life of a pro mountain biker looks like:
- What’s one must-do in your daily routine?Staying active outdoors. I will either start or end my day with a mountain bike ride. If I know it’s going to be a busy day off the bike, I try to get out for a short run right when I wake up.
- Best travel hack:Inflatable travel pillows! I have one that supports my head and the entire side of my body, yet it breaks down really small. It’s awesome on long flights and drives.
- What are your must-have tools or gadgets in your bag?A small multi-tool, power bank, and compact first aid kit
- Favorite country/city you’ve traveled to:My favourite city I’ve been to is Cappadocia, Turkey, and my favourite country outside of Canada is New Zealand.
- Place where you are most productive:I am most productive out in nature when working on my bike trails, or at home in a quiet space after a long day. When I’m the most physically exhausted is when I’m the most mentally productive. I think because my body gets to finally relax and it also gives me time for thoughts and non-physical work.
- What quirky thing do you probably know more about than anyone else?I have knowledge in different types of dirt and soil and how the materials interact with each other. For example, before even digging into the ground in a forest I can often guess what the dirt is like underneath. This came from years of trail building.
- Favorite XS product/snack:Chocolate Peanut Butter protein bars got me hooked!
- Book that’s changed your life:The Millionaire Fastlane has been a life-changing book for me that shifted my perspective and priorities. For anyone who is an entrepreneur, I highly recommend it. Don’t let the cheesy title throw you off, it’s legit! Author MJ DeMarco also has a great second book called Unscripted.
- Most important life lesson:People matter the most. You can always make and lose money, but people and time are irreplaceable. Our families and friends enrich our lives, give them your time.
- Why you mountain bike: I got hooked on the idea of extreme sports at a young age when x-games culture was emerging. Bmx got me into bikes originally and it evolved to mountain biking. Mountain biking gives me the perfect feeling because my passion for the outdoors is mixed with the adrenaline factor.