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Building leg power

d00md00m Posts: 160
edited April 2012 in Health, fitness & training
I'm a pretty efficient climber, and my weekend ride is usually around 40-45km, I can usually leave my mates on the climbs, just getting my head down and keeping a good spinning cadence. Fitness and endurance is pretty good.
I have a problem though, with bursts of power; situations where the trail throws in a short steep climb, where its bad form to drop a couple of gears. I find my legs just dont give me the explosive power to really attack these, and sometimes if its been a really long day, they feel like they're going to cramp up just behind the knee, especially out of the saddle.

Anyway, the question is; how do I build this raw power to accelerate out of corners, up hills, and pull the big gears?

I do ride a fair bit at trail centers, and the natural hilly stuff, and I've got my singlespeed too, which I get in about 60km on during the week, but thats mostly riding for fun down to the beach.
I do try and get some squats and lunges in during the week too, but suffer a bit with knee problems from motorbike and mtb accidents.

Posts

  • YeehaaMcgeeYeehaaMcgee Posts: 5,740
    The cramping may be down to dehydration, or a lack of salts.
    Building leg power takes time. Try running - it makes one hell of a difference to standing-on-the-pedal mashing endurance.

    Other than that, try riding everywhere standing up. Not necessarily quickly, just keep going, but without sitting down. Keep turning the cranks, and don't force it. If you're pushing hard, then change down.
    After a while you'll build up standing endurance.
  • d00md00m Posts: 160
    Cheers yeehaa, sounds like good advice! I think I'll try this with my single speed on a road ride, as the effort will be sustained, and make this the emphasis of my mid week riding.
    I'll try and make some use of the treadmill thats been left sat in the corner for the last year odd as well :oops:

    As for electrolytes, I'm using the high 5 zero tabs, but may try nuun instead if it carries on

    I'll give it a month and see how it goes, then post the results 8) :mrgreen:
  • DCR00DCR00 Posts: 2,160
    you can try a combo of Max Effort and Dynamic Effort training

    the principles are explained here - http://www.elitefts.com/documents/perio ... part_2.htm

    its worth the read
  • Race cyclocross next winter...
  • 1mancity21mancity2 Posts: 2,355
    The cramping may be down to dehydration, or a lack of salts.
    Building leg power takes time. Try running - it makes one hell of a difference to standing-on-the-pedal mashing endurance.

    Other than that, try riding everywhere standing up. Not necessarily quickly, just keep going, but without sitting down. Keep turning the cranks, and don't force it. If you're pushing hard, then change down.
    After a while you'll build up standing endurance.

    +1 and practice sprint starts from stopped in a big gear, I found this really targets the inner lower thigh (vastus medialis) just sprint for 10secs then rest for 20secs and repeat until you can't go anymore, I usually start to feel a bit of twitching in the muscle then stop.
    Finished, Check out my custom Giant Reign 2010
    Dirt Jumper Dmr Sidekick2
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