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Not gaining weight - not doing the right sort of training?

ctrlaltdelctrlaltdel Posts: 114
edited March 2011 in Health, fitness & training
My body type is basically that of a bean pole, and I find that I'm not able to put the same amount of power down as my mates when doing high intensity riding (like riding up a hill).
I decided 6 weeks ago I wanted to change this so I stepped up my riding. I'm currently doing 43 miles (combination of roads and tracks) on the weekends, and a couple of spin classes during the week.
It's been very difficult to measure any progress on the solo weekend rides because the conditions have been so different from one week to the next. But I would've expected to have put on a pound or two of muscle in that time?
I've got a ride with my mates again this weekend, and I really don't want to be struggling again, so my question is should I be doing something else/different?


  • robertpbrobertpb Posts: 1,866
    You have to fuel properly to put muscle on, otherwise you could be burning muscle.
    Now where's that "Get Out of Crash Free Card"
  • If you are anything like me, being a bean pole or in my case a pen refil as they call me at work it may just be in your genes. I also have great difficulty putting weight on, but neither do I lose weight.

    I usually beat my heavier ride partner going up hills etc, but he usually beats me in the way down. (Guess wind slows me down more)

    All I do is get into a comfortable gear and turn the pedals at around 60-80 cadance, if it goes too low I change down a gear and too high cadance, i change up but i always try and pedal at the same rate.

    This is basically fitness not power.

    I have recently only started riding again since last October, and I have noticed the lack of power in my legs and the amount of time I can pedal or stand.

    What I am currently doing is basically going up hills and areas that need power, at my own pace, to regain my fitness and stamina.

    Last year I began by doing a lot of road riding and thought I was fairly fit as I was doing 26 miles easy. Then I went to my local trail centre and was basically knackered after 5 miles. Road riding I learnt you dont need as much power as off road biking, so this year I've just started off at my local trail centre a couple of times a week and have noticed the difference considerably in the 2 or 3 weeks I been cycling this year.
  • ollie51ollie51 Posts: 517
    If you have a way of measuring fat content that would be better, also measure yourself at the same time each time, a pint of water adds a little over a pound to your weight for example, so the best time is when you've just woken up.
  • ctrlaltdelctrlaltdel Posts: 114
    Cheers guys, lots of good advice here.

    Robertpb, by fueling properly, do you mean pre or post ride? I try and eat quite healthily (aside from the odd pint or two ;) ) and make sure there's some protein in my diet. I was thinking one of those protein milkshakes might be a good idea.
  • ctrlaltdel wrote:
    Cheers guys, lots of good advice here.

    Robertpb, by fueling properly, do you mean pre or post ride? I try and eat quite healthily (aside from the odd pint or two ;) ) and make sure there's some protein in my diet. I was thinking one of those protein milkshakes might be a good idea.

    Sounds to me like mainly a diet problem, and not with the actual training as a few have said before.

    You should be eating ALOT, and ALOT of protein to start bulking up.
  • .Brucey..Brucey. Posts: 66
    Won't put on muscle without the right kind of training and diet, I would say diet is even more important. You need to increase calorie intake but make sure your eating lots of protein and complex carbs. Cycling is not really the correct type of exercise for gaining weight as it is mainly a cardio workout and good for fat burning (anaerobic). Leg muscles get a good seeing too you need to train the whole body. Get in the gym and do compound lifts on the weights ie benchpress, squats and deadlifts as they work all of the major muscles, eat a high protein diet and you will see results in a month
  • njee20njee20 Posts: 9,613
    Why do you want to bulk up? If you're lacking power compared to your friends it's not purely a weight issue, it's power:weight ratio.

    When going up hill weight is your enemy, the last thing you want to do is bulk up. Doing lets of weights will make you slower up hill, not quicker.
  • Wallace1492Wallace1492 Posts: 3,707
    If you want to get faster going up a hill, then do more hill training. 43 miles on a weekend is not a lot, and spin, while good for stamina will not be anywhere near as good as being on the road.

    I gave up the gym membershit a year ago and am now fitter than I have been in years. Combination of hill work and distance. Just got to put in the effort.

    I do a Circuits class also at a sports centre, and I do think some core work is very beneficial.

    Diet - well, i try and be sensible, but don't really think about it too much.

    Just chase your mates down, put in the effort and it will get better. Honest.

    keep repeating - Hiils Are Your Friend!
    "Encyclopaedia is a fetish for very small bicycles"
  • ctrlaltdelctrlaltdel Posts: 114
    Right then, this is my plan: I've come up with an extension to my usual route that adds an extra 5 miles of off road, which I'll extend again after a few rides. and when the clocks change in 3 weeks time, I'll put in some proper riding during the week with some hill work. I'm going to keep spinning though, and increase my protein intake.

    Thanks guys.
  • njee20njee20 Posts: 9,613
    I wouldn't increase your protein intake unless your legs never feel recovered, you'll just gain weight (muscle, or fat).

    Ride more hills. Simple. Ride them hard too, don't pootle up them.
  • ctrlaltdelctrlaltdel Posts: 114
    a healthy dose of MTFU then? ;)
  • i'd work on your core strength, a weight gainer before bed, is your best bet as your metabolism slows down, so any unused carbs goes on your love handles
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