1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
Results 1 to 15 of 15
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    69

    Conditioning for hill climbs…

    Looking for suggestions on conditioning for hill climb endurance.

    Aside from just get out and ride more (if I could I would), I want to use some of my time in the gym to work on conditioning legs/lower back for hill climbs. I’ve got bad knees, so can’t do the jogging/running thing. Mostly do elliptical trainer or sometimes an exercise bike as warm up. But find that stationary bike so damn boring, there aren’t any roots, rocks, logs, mud, or even a single twist or turn. Also do good mix of stretching, calisthenics and weight lifting, for a total of 60-90 minutes at 2-3 days a week.
    But I still seem to not have the endurance on the grinders up hills… (our groups regular ride 1st hill is 600’ gain in 1 mile = kills me).
    So…
    What could I add to my weekday workouts to help with the weekend hill climbs?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: SundayRiverRider's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    102
    Find a steep road hill in your town. Ride over to it. Ride up the hill, then back down, Repeat until you feel like you might barf.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    252
    Quote Originally Posted by SundayRiverRider View Post
    Find a steep road hill in your town. Ride over to it. Ride up the hill, then back down, Repeat until you feel like you might barf.
    Exactly! ^^^ I posted a similar topic and work out in the gym 5 days a week too. I can't run so I mix stationary bike spin bike power walk on treadmill with 15 on incline, step machine and go in intervals till my heart explodes! My legs are strong enough for any hill but it's my lungs that can't handle steep hill climbs. So find steep hills road or dirt and practice up and down cause that's the only way to get you in shape. Imo

  4. #4
    Fat-tired Roadie
    Reputation: AndrwSwitch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    13,697
    Quote Originally Posted by MuddyWheels View Post
    What could I add to my weekday workouts to help with the weekend hill climbs?
    Squats, single-leg step-ups, leg press, seated row, standing row, lat pulldown, bench row. Start with really high reps. Friel recommends 20-30, and 2-5 sets. If you want to change it up, every few weeks, change around the sets, reps and weight.

    I like single-leg step-ups a lot. The single-leg and unguided aspects mean I really have to use my stabilizers. I have flaky knees too, and my knee health is really all about stability. Another good use of your gym time is to work on the stability of your knees. Talk to your doctor about it first, of course. If you get the go-ahead, get a routine from your physical therapist or one of the trainers at the gym, and start working on that. Cyclists get knee injuries too - it's not a complete sport, as most aren't - so addressing that with your cross-training is wise.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: James.Hamilton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Posts
    429
    I have become a huge fan of TRX style training to compliment training rides. Google trx mountain bike exercises and you will get an idea of what I am talking about. Super simple, super quick and super cheap if you make your own system. You can target specific areas of your body and really dial in your core which I feel is the biggest improvement that can be made. This go anywhere work yourself until you puke with interval style reps tool has helped me tons!

    My little man has his own ideas...
    Swing and spin, 100% Lucas' idea. - YouTube

  6. #6
    stubble88
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    22
    What about protein rebuilder or supplements?

  7. #7
    Cow Clicker
    Reputation: wmac's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    2,349
    Knock it out in 20 mins on the stationary or elliptical: Interval training - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    No, YOU don't understand. You're making an ass of yourself for all of eternity.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    246
    Quote Originally Posted by stubble88@gmail.com View Post
    What about protein rebuilder or supplements?
    stay the fk away from that crap

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    11,280
    Quote Originally Posted by MuddyWheels View Post
    Looking for suggestions on conditioning for hill climb endurance.

    Aside from just get out and ride more (if I could I would), I want to use some of my time in the gym to work on conditioning legs/lower back for hill climbs. I’ve got bad knees, so can’t do the jogging/running thing. Mostly do elliptical trainer or sometimes an exercise bike as warm up. But find that stationary bike so damn boring, there aren’t any roots, rocks, logs, mud, or even a single twist or turn. Also do good mix of stretching, calisthenics and weight lifting, for a total of 60-90 minutes at 2-3 days a week.
    But I still seem to not have the endurance on the grinders up hills… (our groups regular ride 1st hill is 600’ gain in 1 mile = kills me).
    So…
    What could I add to my weekday workouts to help with the weekend hill climbs?
    Power to weight ratio.....lose some pounds.

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation: JoePAz's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    2,129
    Personally I hop on the stationary bikes at the Gym for 45 mintues. 2-3 times a week. I have plenty of leg strength, but I can always work on my endurance. So the gym is what I it is. I train at 90-98 rpm and 160-175 bpm. Basicly flatout. I could do this on flat ground on the bike too, but the gym is easier since I don't have to worry abotu weather.

    BTW.. climbing or flat ground at max pace is really the same when it come to endurance. It is all sustained max effort. The street (road) maybe less boring than the gym.
    Joe
    2003 KHS Alite 4000 26" Hardtail - XC, All mountain, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Trail~Tail's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    19

    Burst Work-outs

    I also have bunkish knees so I don't run anymore. I like to do the Stair-Master in my gym, the real one not the knock offs (it actually looks like a flight of stairs). It never seems to bother my knees because it isn't high impact at all. I first started doing it in high school football as a linebacker to gain more burst speed. It really helps you build substantial quad and calf strength, but more importantly endurance. Also its a full cardiac work out, we used to call them the hell machines. You shouldn't spend more than 20-25 minutes on them or you might hurt yourself. If it becomes to easy just up the difficulty not the amount of time. I think it would really help you see some results in the uphill climb.

  12. #12
    Cow Clicker
    Reputation: wmac's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    2,349
    Here's something that will help:

    Joe Friel's Blog: Interval Training and 40k TT
    No, YOU don't understand. You're making an ass of yourself for all of eternity.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    1
    If you are looking to do weight training, squats and leg presses will give you more explosive power. I suggest doing a pyramid for any workout to maximize strength but minimize size. For example on leg press. Start out with two 45lb plates on each side. Add one plate for each set, until you cant do anymore. Then take off one plate each time and work your way back down. These are refered to as "drop sets". They are used to tear the muscle fiber not just on the surface. Resulting in less size and more strength.

    About supplements, there are without a doubt supplements that could help you with hill climbing. Since your trail ride is a mile it is more endurance, supplements like creatine will be almost useless. If you really push yourself in the gym, your legs should be sore for 2-5 days. I would suggest getting a quality protein to drink after working out on weight training days. A vitamin such as centrum energy will also help you not get as fatigued. There are other supplements such as NO2's and such that would probably help but I would leave those to more advanced weight training.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    69
    Thanks everyone for the input, some great suggestions here. Will be working some of this into my morning work outs... Hopefully leading to better climbing time.

  15. #15
    R.I.P. DogFriend
    Reputation: jeffj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    5,820
    Quote Originally Posted by jbl_91762 View Post
    Exactly! ^^^ I posted a similar topic and work out in the gym 5 days a week too. I can't run so I mix stationary bike spin bike power walk on treadmill with 15 on incline, step machine and go in intervals till my heart explodes! My legs are strong enough for any hill but it's my lungs that can't handle steep hill climbs. So find steep hills road or dirt and practice up and down cause that's the only way to get you in shape. Imo
    If you're gasping for air, and yet your legs can handle more, slow your cadence and/or shift to the next taller gear until you balance out the work load between your legs and your lungs.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •