Gear up to tackle those steep climbs
THANK you to those lovely cyclists who sent in their tips on how to complete a hill-climb without either falling off or crying off.
Hearing from you, dear reader, always makes my day. Regular Bike Shorts reader Tony Gregor kindly sent in some suggestions which he said has helped him succeed up steep inclines.
Gregor noted a mix of physical and psychological advice for conquering those Everest-like rides, including:
Gears - Consider a more suitable gear-set.
Oxygen - Breathe, be deliberate, all the way in and all the way out.
Focus - Be short-sighted and don't look up (but don't not look where you're going and crash.
Training - Warm-up then progressively change to the next highest ratio and roll it over at a low cadence of about 40.
Then work to your (set % ) heart rate while you continue to increase the load while maintaining the cadence.
The high gear simulates the load of the gradient.
Train for either a set time or a set calorie burn. Start with 30 minutes / 500 calories.
Practice - on lesser climbs such as Uralba Rd, Koonorigan Rd, Devil's Elbow, Numulgi, Ballina Cutting. (I'll also add University Dve, Cynthia Wilson Dve, High St / Beardow St and Ballina Rd in Lismore. AP)
Psyche - Always think that you can.
Heart - Be aware of your heart rate and your limitations. As you become fitter your heart rate will drop - it is noticeable in measured training. A heart rate monitor is required to keep track of your real-time condition and overall performance. (Check for current advice/methods.)
Core - Engage your core and lean into the climb and use your arms to pull while you are pumping the pedals and your lungs.
To conquer hills the whole body must contribute.
My advice? Keep at it.
And as always, check with your GP before commencing any strenuous exercise.