Spending countless hours in the saddle is not really enough anymore to cycle in the top third of your pack or take a turn leading the pace lines on long distance rides. Fact is, what you do indoors is just as important as “time in the saddle” outdoors.
To get in the best biking shape this spring, do these five exercises from top pro cyclists in the nation.
First, consider working out your core for a better biking body
5 EXERCISES TO BUILD A BETTER BODY FOR CYCLING
Perform these favorite gym moves from world-class pro cyclists to jump start your season and get in kickass cycling shape.
Cyclists say: “Sprinters generally have more muscles”— just put a sprinter next to a distance cyclist and you’ll immediately see the difference.
Crunches: Forget modern-day abs machines. Try good old crunches right on the floor. Lie on your back and clasp your arms behind your head. Slowly curl your torso toward your knees; bringing your shoulders four to six inches off the ground (don’t sit up). Hold for a few seconds, pressing your lower back into the mat. Return to start. Do 200 to 300 crunches every other day.
Cyclists Say: “Preparing your legs in the gym is so important—it makes the biggest difference on the bike” – When just focusing on legs, do leg curls to strengthen the back of our legs.
Lying leg curls: Lie face down on an angled leg curl machine after you’ve adjusted it to your height and preferred weight resistance (Consider working at 60 to 70% of your maximum). Place your legs (a few inches below the calves) beneath the padded lever. Grab the side handles of the machine, and as you exhale, curl your legs up as far as possible without losing contact with the lever. Hold for one second, and then lower down as you inhale. Repeat for three sets of 20.
Cyclists Say: “My weakest point is my back because of the position I’m in for hours on the bike” –
Dead Lifts: Bend at your hips and knees and grab the bar (A standard barbell in the gym is 45-pounds) using an overhand grip. Slightly arch your lower back while keeping your arms straight. Without allowing your lower back to round, stand up very slowly with the bar. Hold for a second, then lower the bar, again slowly (using a controlled motion), to the floor. Do three sets of 20.
Cyclists Say: “Strength training, especially after the off- season, helps rebuild muscle without bulking up too much” – Rather than move statically or linearly using gym machines, a dynamic workout with free weights is preferred.
Reverse lunges: Grab a set of dumbbells that are about 10 to 15% of your body weight. Standing with your feet hip-width apart, step backward with your left leg into a reverse lunge (creates less stress on the knee than the standard forward lunge). Be sure to keep your back straight and shoulders level the whole time. Come back up and repeat. Perform three sets of 20 with each leg.
Cyclists Say: “The agility ladder is a great combo of cardio and strength training” – Try this speed and coordination drill on your NEXT workout.
Agility ladder moves: Using a resistance band wrapped around your ankles, shuffle from side-to-side through the ladder for 100 back-and-forth moves. Or, if you have access to a Jacobs Ladder (an angled, self-paced, ladder-like piece of equipment) at your gym, climb up and down (that’s one rep) for 100 reps.
– See more at: http://www.mensfitness.com/training/endurance/5-exercises-to-build-a-better-body-for-biking?page=5#sthash.u5yFezfp.dpuf