Riding is easy for some, until they see the steeps of the ride reigning in front of their eyes. It’s no reason to back down – might as well learn to be a killer mountain conqueror with these tips and hacks with loads of training time around hills! These techniques are not in particular for mountain bikers but all the cyclists out there; road, gravel & pro cyclists who are ready to take down mountainous monster rides on their two-wheeled steeds…
Key to achieving this goal is to ride in the hills – kind of the most obvious way to earn those steeps is to be on those steeps. Consistent training sessions with a goal in mind can get you on track in no time. Map your rides & plan well ahead to know what you are up against. The tiniest detail will make all the difference and surely you will not regret anything at the end of ride. More detail you’ll get into more gains you will have during the ride to know your way around obstacles to keep it cranking until the end of destination.
Lighter you push the legs against the pedals it will be to your advantage till the end of the steep. Another key aspect to a successful climb is a steady but relaxed torso to keep the energy focused on the lower body and strike precise muscles groups on your legs to get the cadence required to keep pushing. Posture yourself straight & steady allowing maximum air flow into your lungs that will help keep your blood oxygenated & fresh. Taking deep breaths & exhaling is another important factor to remember – it’s not unusual for your body to take in short rapid breaths when you see a hilly terrain, but this will only push your body to recognize that it may be a panic response leading to reduced performance, increased cardiac impulses or worse an actual panic attack. Keeping your mind at ease & focused will get you into a rhythm to align all your other physical reactions during any ride. When its time to stand & pedal it’s important to remember to keep your weight centered just over the bottom bracket on top of the saddle, not leaning forward which could lead to potential skidding & to dangerously topple off of the bike. Avoid excessively rocking your body side to side during the ride, if you have to, do so gently to give the precise movement needed to run uphill.
No matter how well you prepare your body sometimes, your mind will play the biggest role when you are struggling to get through a long hilly ride. You are bound to have negative impulses knocking your morale downright, foregrounding your pains ultimately to give up on your commitment. Focusing on the little things you appreciate; favorite song or a happy memory will give you the inner push you need. Keep imagining whatever that will get your mental space to concentrate & stay positive until you see that finish line.
Quick tip on fueling ; always makes sure you fuel at the bottom of the steep if you have a relatively long climb, it’ll be much easier to eat when you are on flat grounds & not when hypoxic feelings start to kick in during the climb. Besides it’ll give the energy boost your body needs to push upward with less sweats.
A great way to stimulate hill climbing is to get in to a well planned training routine. Repetitive rides around & on hills is the ultimate trick to getting your body to learn ways to overcome impulsive struggles during a race day. 10-15 mins of muscle stimulant ride will help you channel into sprinting & breathing on your bike. Proper guidance from a coach or trainer will get you closer to your goals faster & a personalized training plan will optimize your performance in no time.We encourage riding as it is something most of us are looking forward to in this difficult time of crisis, but as responsible citizens we want to emphasize the importance of adhering to COVID safety rules before you make plans to hop on your steeds to go on a ride. Keep yourself informed about the current health situation in the area you are residing, before making plans for everyone’s safety.
Tell us your experience conquering hills and how it improved your cycling game! Write to: [email protected].
(Conquer your climbs – Colombocycles original article by Ridmi Dewage)