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Fit for Climbing

P123HelpsP123Helps Posts: 13
Hi there!

Having started road cycling about a year ago I've decided its time to become a little bit more focused and so recently I've been paying a lot more attention to my computer. I've noticed that my instant speed really drops on climbs. I'm trying most things; losing some weight, higher cadence etc. but it doesn't seem to be making much difference! Anything else I should be doing?

Also I was wondering how my progress is on the grand scheme of things. I seem to managing an average speed of somewhere between 15-16mph over a 30 mile ride. Is this any good at all? I live in the Forest of Dean which is pretty up and down!

Thanks for any help/advice.


  • explosifpeteexplosifpete Posts: 1,327
    I wouldn't worry about average speed as it so depends on terrain and weather conditions but if you want to see your progress keep a diary of your rides and times so you can see your self improving.
    As for climbing you say "instant speed really drops" on the climbs, well thats kinda normal!
    best advice I could offer for improved climbing is to find a hill then time yourself riding it in different styles (seated, standing,high/low cadence, ect) and find out what works for you.
    I used to sprint out of the saddle in to hills getting myself in to the red then spend then slow right up when over the top, this was bad, now I sit down get in to a good tempo and ride up at a low intensity that ends up being quicker as i am able to push the speed back up when at the top, but you need to find what suit you.
    The other thing is to just ride more hills.
    Good luck :D
  • briantrumpetbriantrumpet Posts: 13,216
    P123Helps wrote:
    I've noticed that my instant speed really drops on climbs.
    I was worried about this prior to my first big ride with others (one of last year's Tour Rides), but as soon as I realised everyone else suddenly slows down as soon as they hit the start of a hill, I stopped worrying. Actually, on a long ride, if you start worrying about trying to motor up the hills, you'll tire yourself out for later in the ride, so just keep spinning in whatever gear feels right. I rather enjoyed yesterday seeing the Tour de France riders suddenly go from 25mph to 15mph on one of the short hills. Made them seem slightly more human.

    Your speed is fine, and would keep you up there in a sportive. The advice is really just ride, ride, ride. Mix up the routes, hilliness, and distances, and keep a log of your regular routes to see how you improve. Most of all, enjoy it.
  • GarzGarz Posts: 1,155
    Just to re-iterate petes advice, experiment with what works best for you then keep practising the hills. As the saying goes - "It never gets easier, you just go faster."
  • P123HelpsP123Helps Posts: 13
    Thanks for all the advice guys :) On a couple of rides over the weekend I've been trying high cadence with a lower gear and although it seems a little slower up the hills it leaves me "more in the tank" for flat/downhill sections. So maybe that's the way forward? But I definitely need more experimentation. I've also started a ride diary and changed my diet!

    Yes I've been riding on my own for a year and its definitely time I joined a club.

    Thanks again :)
  • the RFDCC is a good club, nice bunch of people, and rogabnise some good club events, have some good riders in their midst. There is alos Ross CC, same as above. The legendary Walford 10 beckons on Thursday evenings....
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