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  1. #1
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    Cool-blue Rhythm Ill just put it out there, I suck at climbing!!!

    Ive been in Colorado for a year, got in 3 months last fall and this summer. I didn't ride or prepare during winter to keep anything I had physically to bring me into summer.

    Climbing,,, we lets just say, Im not a fan, but I know its half the riding here. Im the slowest and last up the hill. Stop numerous times because either my lungs or legs are maxed out. Ive been told, it doesn't get easier, Ill just get stronger and faster..

    OK great!!! can someone tell me how to do this
    I love my bike!

  2. #2
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    Ride more.
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  3. #3
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    Re: Ill just put it out there, I suck at climbing!!!

    I use to be like u I would go with all my buddys and they were all fit and what not and one day I decided to start going by my self 3 times a week. U have to take it slow at ur own pace who cares if ur the last one or the slowest or stop alot u have to start somewhere .just take it from me it gets easier over time just keep doing it and u will get better over time just push ur self everytime a little more

    Sent from my SCH-I605 using Tapatalk 2

  4. #4
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    Lose weight if you're fat(over %10 bodyfat)

  5. #5
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    So having over 10% BF is now being fat?

    novel

  6. #6
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    If you can't get out and ride in the off season take a spinning class a few times a week. Find an instructor who teaches it like a cycling ride as opposed to an aerobics class. I think a good guideline for being over weight is if waist at widest point is more than 2X height.

  7. #7
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    In my opinion- pretty much. For guys, around 10% is when you will start to see abs- and if you can't see abs, you're fat.

  8. #8
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    Power to weight ratio is the determinate for climbing performances. Either drop weight or gain power, or both would be the preference.

    As for body fat levels - most wouldn't know what their body fat actually is. Unless it's a dexascan or immersion style test it's a guess, usually with a high margin of error. Fat is also distributed in different ways - visceral and subcutaneous. This will effect the "look" (Dem abz bro!) but is in no way a sole factor in the health of the subject.

  9. #9
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    To the OP. Do hill repeats about once per week in addition to other rides throughout the week. You can pick a few different local hills and mix up the difficulty, but there is nothing better than practicing climbing to get better at it.

  10. #10
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    ^^^ This. If you want to climb hills better, climb better hills, over and over.

  11. #11
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    Persistence and Consistency, have good habits on the bike and off. Lots of climbing workouts, mixed with rest days. Eat and drink like you want to be a good climber too (cut out 99% of the crappy food and most of the beer/wine etc). The younger you are the less time it should take.

  12. #12
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    I agree with what the others said...hill repeats. I would also consider doing some strength exercises that is similar to the pedaling movements...such as stepups with dumbells, pistol squats, etc........

  13. #13
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    Whilst there is absolutely nothing wrong with hill repeats (and excellent mode of training), here's a question: what is the difference between putting out 250 watts on a hill and 250 watts on the flat?

    Bonus points if you can answer with the correct caveat(s).

  14. #14
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    Cadence (sometimes), muscle fiber recruitment and quadrant analysys are completely different. Forces slowing you down aint the same.

    Thanks for the bonus points

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kawigreen99 View Post
    In my opinion- pretty much. For guys, around 10% is when you will start to see abs- and if you can't see abs, you're fat.
    well, I absolutely CAN'T see my abs and trust me, im pretty freaking skinny

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Devincicx View Post
    well, I absolutely CAN'T see my abs and trust me, im pretty freaking skinny
    Skinny-fat?

  17. #17
    Dirty South Underdog
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    Get a singlespeed.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kawigreen99 View Post
    Skinny-fat?
    lol, nah, I just never saw those abs clearly. Trust me dude, far from skinny fat, or fat at all. Seeing abs or not is not an indicator of body fat. Also, 10% BF is not high.

  19. #19
    Formerly of Kent
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    Quote Originally Posted by TapewormWW View Post
    Whilst there is absolutely nothing wrong with hill repeats (and excellent mode of training), here's a question: what is the difference between putting out 250 watts on a hill and 250 watts on the flat?

    Bonus points if you can answer with the correct caveat(s).
    There is none. You just go faster on the flats.

    It was hard for some of my new teammates to understand how/why I crushed them going uphill when I moved from IL to OR. "Dude, you're from IL. How are you so fast?". "Uh, I'm producing 350 watts, and I weigh 65kg. Do the math."

  20. #20
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    Ill just put it out there, I suck at climbing!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by TapewormWW View Post
    Whilst there is absolutely nothing wrong with hill repeats (and excellent mode of training), here's a question: what is the difference between putting out 250 watts on a hill and 250 watts on the flat?

    Bonus points if you can answer with the correct caveat(s).
    According to this article (also see the comments beneath it from Alex Simmons and Raoul Luescher) the differences are down to kinetic energy:

    "The simplest way to think about this whole situation is that your muscles need to contract quicker in a high kinetic energy situation (i.e. time trial) than in a low kinetic energy situation (i.e. climbing). Time-trialling recruits more fast-twitch muscle fibres even though you may be at the exact same cadence and same power as when you’re climbing. Depending on your physiological make-up, you will likely be better at one than the other.
    ...
    What does this mean? Well the way you pedal in a time trial is different to the way you pedal when you’re climbing. It might not seem obvious when you’re pedaling, but it’s all about motor pattern recruitment.

    When you’re time trialing, once you’re up to speed you’ve got a lot of energy in the system and as the pedals go around they’re merely topping up the energy required to sustain a fast pace. In a TT (high speed, flat road, high kinetic energy), the duration that your muscles have to fire is very small. You’re basically firing the muscle for a very short period of time every pedal stroke, but very quickly.

    When you’re pedaling up a climb (low kinetic energy, traveling slowly, gravity holding you back), your legs impart force on the pedals for a much longer duration throughout the stroke, even though your cadence might the same as when TT’ing.

    In short, your motor patterns are significantly different between time trialing and climbing.
    ...
    When doing the research, they found that a rider could ride a TT and a climb with the same power, and same cadence, but there could be a 10bpm variation in heartrate, as well in differences in oxygen consumption and lactates. It comes down to an athlete’s predisposition of muscle fibre make-up.

    There are subtle differences in how a rider moves his or her legs and the speed at which he or she moves them. The pedal stroke is not uniform. There are many accelerations and decelerations throughout the movement which are dictated by the load.

    The simple way to understand it is that in higher kinetic energy situations, you have less time through the pedal stroke to apply the force. Even though you might be riding at the same cadence while TT-ing and climbing, and even though your legs are travelling through the same arc, it doesn’t necessarily mean your legs are applying force and contracting in the same manner and sequence.

    You can’t necessarily feel these subtle differences, but they can be measured using an electromyography (EMG) which detects electrical activity in the muscles."
    Cyclingtips.com.au

    http://cyclingtips.com.au/2013/09/cl...-are-affected/

    .

  21. #21
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    Ill just put it out there, I suck at climbing!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by snaqtime View Post
    Ive been in Colorado for a year, got in 3 months last fall and this summer. I didn't ride or prepare during winter to keep anything I had physically to bring me into summer.

    Climbing,,, we lets just say, Im not a fan, but I know its half the riding here. Im the slowest and last up the hill. Stop numerous times because either my lungs or legs are maxed out. Ive been told, it doesn't get easier, Ill just get stronger and faster..

    OK great!!! can someone tell me how to do this
    There are two ways to ride up a hill - at your own pace or at a pace dictated by someone else. If you're going well enough then you'd generally try to stay with the other riders, even if that means pushing into the red at points on the climb. Start off hard and hope you don't blow before the top.

    If there's a big difference in ability between riders, when you know that you're going to get dropped from the group, regardless of how hard you try, then it makes more sense to drop straight into riding a pace that you can sustain for the duration of the hill. The longer and steeper the hill the gentler you need to ride. I usually try to ride within myself for the first half of a climb and then start to lift the pace towards the top if I'm able to. Parcel out your strength over the entire climb to try and avoid getting to the point where you have to stop for a rest.

    A key requirement for being able to ride within yourself on hills is to have the appropriate gearing on your bike. If you're at the point where you're having to stop then it's worth fitting a lower bottom gear, so that you can ride up the hill at a reasonable cadence in one go. The easiest way to do this is usually by fitting a cassette with a larger rear sprocket or a smaller front chainring. By having lower gearing available it should help with your burning legs also. The gearing allowing you to ride further from your maximum effort.

    For the breathing you could try some of the techniques in this thread:

    Race Breathing

    I consciously concentrate on a strong exhale. By focusing on keeping your breathing smooth and regular it's less likely to turn to ragged gasping. After puncturing my lung a few years ago I started using a powerlung breathing exerciser each day to try and help with my less than ideal breathing. I found it useful so I've stuck with it. When climbing breathing isn't an issue for me nowadays.

    http://www.powerlung.com/region/us/

    A couple of mountain bike changes would be to make sure your rear suspension is locked out or set to climb mode for any hills where traction isn't a priority (eg: fire roads) to maximise pedalling. If you do a lot of long steep climbs perched on the nose of the saddle (to stop the front wheel lifting) then sliding your saddle forwards on its rails can make for a more comfortable position on the hills.

    If you're having problems dealing with altitude in Colorado then you could try viagra before rides. It might help a bit apparently.

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...0624120556.htm

    .
    Last edited by WR304; 11-04-2013 at 09:31 AM.

  22. #22
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    Running can help your climbing fitness too.

    Other suggestions, (as mentioned) hill repeats, crossfit (leg squats, box jumps, etc...)

    Also, ride with a 40 lbs weighted vest. Helps build strength through out the body.

  23. #23
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    Running will definetly help with the climbs. I have been doing it for about 3 months now 3 times a week. I still ride 2 to 3 times a week as well.

    As WR304 mentioned... a couple deep and hard exhales help alot. This is something that I have recently started to do, and make a consciencous effort to do it on every climb. Between this, and the running I have noticed a huge increase in my climbing ability.

    Another thing that I do is to place my thumbs over the top of the handle bars and keep my fingers relaxed. It ki d of tricks you into relaxing your hands, arms and shoulders. You dont have as much wasted energy. Your pedaling will become alot more efficent. It also allows you to focus on smoother more consistent pedaling.

    As everyone one else has said as well youve gotta get out and ride in the hills. You can get/have all the technique in the world. But only getting out and doing it will help you improve, the techniques are just ways to do it more efficently.
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  24. #24
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    Your name here is "snack time". Could that have something to do with it?

    You will find that most guys who are legitimately fast at climbs (those who earn highly contested KOMs, for example) do the two following things:

    1. Ride a ton

    2. Make tons of sacrifices with regards to their diet

    An increase in fitness and loss of weight is what it is about....unless of course you are really truly at/near prize fighting weight.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silentfoe View Post
    Ride more.
    This ^^^ is the best answer.

    Ride more (as much as time and energy permit), which leads to better fitness, which leads to being faster everywhere, including/especially on climbs.

    Nothing fancy needed but a wristwatch, several hours a week to ride, and the willingness to sweat and breath hard for extended periods.

    This is all down to aerobic fitness and reducing the amount of bodyweight that a human's limited power has to push up a hill.

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