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The Gym

SketchleySketchley Posts: 4,235
edited January 2011 in Commuting chat
Now I've increased my cycling to 100+ miles per week, should I be doing anything to componsate / compliment it at the gym. I've heard comments in the past about balancing leg muscles or something simular. Is there any truth in this and if so what should I be doing and how often?

Also what about upper body, should I just continue cycling and just let this part of me tone up as I lose weight or should I work on this at the gym? All I seem to be doing at the moment is building bigger stronger leg muscles and while friends tell me I'm shrinking the scales tell a different story.....
--
Chris

Genesis Equilibrium - FCN 3/4/5

Posts

  • GussioGussio Posts: 2,452
    edited January 2011
    No upper body work required. Your arms should wither to nothing more than sticks. Their only purpose now is to stop your upper body from collapsing onto your stem and handlebars.
  • notsobluenotsoblue Posts: 5,838
    Unless you're particularly after some kind of body sculpting regime, you could try taking up running? I found it helped my CV stamina and to balance my core.
  • PufftmwPufftmw Posts: 1,941
    I bought this book http://www.amazon.co.uk/Cycling-Anatomy ... d_sim_b_10 as a compliment to my cycling. I've always trained my upper body but reading this sees how core (pun!) this is to your overall ability to cycle and be a better cyclist. I'm now re-focusing to follow the training guides in there.

    :)
  • SketchleySketchley Posts: 4,235
    notsoblue wrote:
    Unless you're particularly after some kind of body sculpting regime, you could try taking up running? I found it helped my CV stamina and to balance my core.

    No particular body sculpting required, I just want to get fit and lose the weight / belly I've had for 30+ years.
    --
    Chris

    Genesis Equilibrium - FCN 3/4/5
  • HeadhuunterHeadhuunter Posts: 6,494
    I go to the gym 3x per week to strengthen my upper body, only really because I don't want to look unbalanced with legs like tree trunks and a stick like torso and arms. I also do core strengthening exercises which are supposed to help balance out the power in your legs as you cycle to keep your upper body stable and prevent you becoming a nodder...
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  • cambscambs Posts: 235
    It probably depneds a bit on your age and general physical condition, but from what i've been advised (in my 40s but cycled for a while) a complimentary sport is good idea: swimming, yoga and pilates are supposed to be good ways to stratch out shortened muscles.

    Cyclists in particular can develop shortening of the leg muscles, hams, quads, hip flexors due to the more limited range of the movement and high repetition. There's also sometimes a need to do exercises the open out the chest to counteract the forward crouch of the cycling posture.

    I'd say start it soon to make it into a habit and lower the chances of injury/pains later.

    You should be stretching out after your ride too.
  • notsobluenotsoblue Posts: 5,838
    +1 to Yoga. Its hard work, but it pays off.
  • GazzaputtGazzaputt Posts: 3,227
    Gussio wrote:
    No upper body work required. Your arms should wither to nothing more than sticks. Their only purpose now is to stop your upper body from collapsing onto your stem and handlebars.

    Have to disagree

    Improving you core strength will improve your ride position and your be less fatigued over distance.

    Also work on the shoulders can benefit control of the bike.
  • GussioGussio Posts: 2,452
    Gazzaputt wrote:
    Gussio wrote:
    No upper body work required. Your arms should wither to nothing more than sticks. Their only purpose now is to stop your upper body from collapsing onto your stem and handlebars.

    Have to disagree

    Improving you core strength will improve your ride position and your be less fatigued over distance.

    Also work on the shoulders can benefit control of the bike.

    It was said tongue in cheek...
  • SketchleySketchley Posts: 4,235
    cambs wrote:
    It probably depends a bit on your age and general physical condition

    39, 18st 1lb, however I was 20stone+ 3 years ago and very unfit even walking up a single flight of stairs I would be out of breath. Started with spin classes, moved on to commuting took about 2 1/2 years but now cycling every day 14 miles each way. Now core fitness is better I want to start taking things a bit more seriously. Also concerned that just working legs, will just build bigger legs and not reduce the belly.
    --
    Chris

    Genesis Equilibrium - FCN 3/4/5
  • SketchleySketchley Posts: 4,235
    notsoblue wrote:
    +1 to Yoga. Its hard work, but it pays off.

    Isn't it full of Hippy B**locks though? Not sure I want to get in touch with my inner self. Advanced Stretching I would have no problem with.
    --
    Chris

    Genesis Equilibrium - FCN 3/4/5
  • i'm a fairly lean build but work plus MTBing etc seems to keep my back etc reasonably strong, used to ride a heavy hybrid now a fairly stiff SS not that i've noticed any difference.
  • Sketchley wrote:
    notsoblue wrote:
    +1 to Yoga. Its hard work, but it pays off.

    Isn't it full of Hippy B**locks though? Not sure I want to get in touch with my inner self. Advanced Stretching I would have no problem with.
    The philosophy of it yes. However the stretching part of it is very good for improving flexibility and improving core strength.

    Mike
  • notsobluenotsoblue Posts: 5,838
    Sketchley wrote:
    notsoblue wrote:
    +1 to Yoga. Its hard work, but it pays off.

    Isn't it full of Hippy B**locks though? Not sure I want to get in touch with my inner self. Advanced Stretching I would have no problem with.

    I guess it depends on who you do it with. My instructor doesn't put a hippy/quasi religious spin on things. I'm a pretty devout rationalist so talk about energy flows etc do nothing for me.
    But I can understand the physical effects that are being described when they talk about it. The yoga I do (not been doing it for long) seems to be based around building flexibility and strength in muscle groups I never normally use. I'm finding it quite challenging to be honest, but the effort and focus it requires is a good meditation and does make you more aware of your body. Whether you can relate that to your "inner self" is a personal thing I guess, but I know I feel incredibly relaxed after yoga, its made me stronger and it helps with my cycling.

    Also I get to strain and pant embarrassingly while contorting myself into awkward positions in front of a group of flexible women.
  • dhopedhope Posts: 6,699
    Sketchley wrote:
    notsoblue wrote:
    +1 to Yoga. Its hard work, but it pays off.

    Isn't it full of Hippy B**locks though? Not sure I want to get in touch with my inner self. Advanced Stretching I would have no problem with.

    They do Ashtanga at the gym opposite work. There's a bit of talk about inner strength and channeling your chi and all that gubbins, but there's also some good stretching and core strength work. I don't feel enlightened at the end but I do ache, which is the way round I like it.
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  • Kieran_BurnsKieran_Burns Posts: 9,757
    Gussio wrote:
    No upper body work required. Your arms should wither to nothing more than sticks. Their only purpose now is to stop your upper body from collapsing onto your stem and handlebars.

    T Rex was the first cyclist....
    Chunky Cyclists need your love too! :-)
    2009 Specialized Tricross Sport
    2011 Trek Madone 4.5
    2012 Felt F65X
    Proud CX Pervert and quiet roadie. 12 mile commuter
  • cambscambs Posts: 235
    Gussio wrote:
    No upper body work required. Your arms should wither to nothing more than sticks. Their only purpose now is to stop your upper body from collapsing onto your stem and handlebars.

    T Rex was the first cyclist....

    Nah, it was velociraptor.
  • Gazzaputt wrote:
    Gussio wrote:
    No upper body work required. Your arms should wither to nothing more than sticks. Their only purpose now is to stop your upper body from collapsing onto your stem and handlebars.

    Have to disagree

    Improving you core strength will improve your ride position and your be less fatigued over distance.

    Also work on the shoulders can benefit control of the bike.
    If you upper body has withered to resemble a dead leaf, you won't need much core strength to hold it steady :wink:
    Also, arms are required only because the UCI mandates them.
  • It's always good to work your body in a fully balanced way, but if it's weight loss you are after the best exercise you can do are fork-downs.

    I use the gym to keep my body balanced. Although, I am thinking of binning it and getting a good set of weights and a bench for home.
  • notsobluenotsoblue Posts: 5,838
    It's always good to work your body in a fully balanced way, but if it's weight loss you are after the best exercise you can do are fork-downs.

    Hah!
    Cambs wrote:
    Nah, it was velociraptor.

    Double hah!
  • Clever PunClever Pun Posts: 6,778
    I do 2 upper body weight sessions (inc stomach/core exercises)
    1 circuit training class
    1 MMA training session

    I personally feel have a normal body shape is a good thing
    Purveyor of sonic doom

    Very Hairy Roadie - FCN 4
    Fixed Pista- FCN 5
    Beared Bromptonite - FCN 14
  • Stevo_666Stevo_666 Posts: 49,401
    If you want to do a bit of upper body work to improve the top half then fine but joining a gym isn't always needed or cost effective. I do all the upper body stuff I need at home with some decent dumbells and also doing stuff like sit ups, press ups, push up etc a few times a week.
    "I spent most of my money on birds, booze and fast cars: the rest of it I just squandered." [George Best]
  • dhopedhope Posts: 6,699
    Tend to commute, run once a week, 1 legs, 1 back/biceps, 1 chest/triceps. Random yoga or kettles classes. Think I'm pretty normal shaped, neither big arms nor legs.
    Need to rethink a bit if I'm going to be triathlon training.
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  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
    x3 gym per week on upper body/core & have put on close to 10kg in just over a year but my aim is to get a strong core and start swimming, long term goal to complete an ironman triathlon.

    Its helped massively with my back, which used to ache on the bike and was very weak. Have just started rippetoe's starting strength routine, which is a quick and easy compound exercise routine for bulk and strength, google it.

    Also run once a week but want to up that, although a lunch time run makes the cycle home fun :evil:

    My SCR is really suffering as a result, worth taking into consideration. :lol:

    You will also never want to stop eating, its becoming as hard as the training to keep eating.
  • Clever PunClever Pun Posts: 6,778
    Stevo 666 wrote:
    If you want to do a bit of upper body work to improve the top half then fine but joining a gym isn't always needed or cost effective. I do all the upper body stuff I need at home with some decent dumbells and also doing stuff like sit ups, press ups, push up etc a few times a week.

    this is true, but I tend to play around with 36kg dumbells and dropping something like that at home would be expensive :lol:

    but the main reason is it stops me shopping or boozing at lunch
    Purveyor of sonic doom

    Very Hairy Roadie - FCN 4
    Fixed Pista- FCN 5
    Beared Bromptonite - FCN 14
  • iPete wrote:
    You will also never want to stop eating, its becoming as hard as the training to keep eating.
    This, I'm continuously eating and still struggling to maintain my weight, stopping drinking in Jan doesn't help either, there is valuable calories in Ale.

    I commute to work, run two times a week, big off road ride once a week, gym three times a week. At the gym I have one routine that focuses on my core.

    cyclist-297x300.jpg
    Photo added for lulz
  • bunterbunter Posts: 327
    kettlebell training is good for building core strength and usable dynamic strength, burns lots of calories and you can do it at home with limited space. You can do loads of different exercises with one or two kettlebells, A lot of conventional weight training techniques teach you to isolate muscles, whereas kettlebells force you to use your whole body in ballistic exercise. You have to concentrate too, so I find it less boring.
  • Pufftmw wrote:
    I bought this book http://www.amazon.co.uk/Cycling-Anatomy ... d_sim_b_10 as a compliment to my cycling. I've always trained my upper body but reading this sees how core (pun!) this is to your overall ability to cycle and be a better cyclist. I'm now re-focusing to follow the training guides in there.

    :)

    oh no....another book I want....my collection grows. tis totally unfair to express positive opinions about books when I am around :lol:
    seriously this series are great books
    my re...sissss....tannce....is....failing.....
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