We have chosen the best exercises that will make you more efficient and increase your fitness before the season starts.
One to one training
Professional trainers can be expensive, but a good one will tailor your workout to your needs. Track cyclists will need to bulk muscle on their top as well as their legs, a road cyclist will want to lose muscle where it isn’t strictly needed. If you commute 5 miles a day by mountain bike, a personal trainer will make you faster. Sounds good doesn’t it?
Group lessons are good value and can teach you a lot about your body. Yoga is great for stretching and improving your cardio-vascular function. Pilates is great for your core, which is at the very centre of cycling. If you enjoy these classes you’ll reap the benefits when you’re in the saddle.
Look after your core territory
If you have strong abdominal and back muscles, you have a strong core. Core power is about efficiency and supporting your legs. Racecar drivers want a stiff chassis and hard suspension on their vehicles, and you should want that option too. The more controlled your side-to-side movement, the more power you put through your legs to your pedals. You need a strong back, and hardcore abs.
Get planking, it’s free
The simplest way to build your core is the classic plank – it works your abs and your back. Keep a straight line between your shoulders, bum, and your ankles. The first time you do it, time yourself. Stop before it becomes uncomfortable. Aim to maintain or beat that time tomorrow. After a month of planking you’ll fly up those hills.
If you have some muscle in your arms, it means your metabolism is under less strain when you’re working your legs. Strong arms mean putting more power to your legs. Another benefit is when you want to lift your bum out your saddle and accelerate past your friends, your arms don’t wobble and you transfer the power into the pedals with no sideways movement. The best thing about press ups? They’re free too!
Take the lunges
Lunges are one of the most effective lower-body exercises according to The American Council on Exercise, because they work the complex muscle groups around your hips, bum, and thighs. Lunges improve power going forward and back, as well as tightening up sideways movement – so make sure you do them right! If done properly, lunges also improve your core strength and stamina.
What exercises do you recommend that will improve your performance?
Now that you know how to work out, you should learn how to take care of your bike.