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  1. #1
    Senior Member Seattle Forrest's Avatar
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    Other exercises for Clyde and Athena...?

    My coworkers are very supportive of my bike commuting, and one of them has taken it as an excuse to push everyone in the office to do something healthy. He's started running at lunch to match, and is suggesting that we lobby the nearest gym for a corporate membership. In fact, he told me that "cardio is great, but you need some strength training, too" and then mentioned ( as we all know ) that muscle mass boosts your metabolism, and burns calories even while you sleep.

    I was going to say something about the heart being a pretty big muscle, and the bike working your legs ... but details aside, he's right. What other exercises do you enjoy? What do you think goes well with cycling?

    In particular, I've heard a few people suggest something or other ( "core strengthening?" ) for better comfort on the bike. I'd be especially interested in this.

  2. #2
    Pedals, Paddles and Poles Daspydyr's Avatar
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    Check out YOU TUBE for body weight exercises. Hindu squats and push ups are a good start. Jumping rope, the pilates ball has a ton of exercises that strengthen the core, especially the lower back. Get some 10, 20 and 30 dumbells and do curls, benchs, flys, press, bent over rowing. Its all good.
    I think its disgusting and terrible how people treat Lance Armstrong, especially after winning 7 Tour de France Titles while on drugs!

    I can't even find my bike when I'm on drugs. -Willie N.

  3. #3
    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    I personally like using Kettlebells, lots of variety and some of the exercises will give you a little cardio work too.. There are lots of videos on youtube.. Kettlebell swing, 2 arm and 1 arm work a lot of muscle groups.. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0_XjJjLc7NE


    Another great website is this one:

    http://www.frixo.com/sites/fitness/exercises.html

    They show you many different body weight exercises and stretches you can do..
    Last edited by socalrider; 04-22-10 at 05:43 PM.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Seattle Forrest's Avatar
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    My answer is kayaking, and hiking. Paddling is a great workout, mostly for the upper body, although it's surprising how much involvement there is for your legs, especially in choppy, confused seas. Hiking doesn't really add much in the way of exercise, but is enjoyable.

  5. #5
    VoodooChile zoste's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
    In particular, I've heard a few people suggest something or other ( "core strengthening?" ) for better comfort on the bike. I'd be especially interested in this.
    Best core exercise for cyclists: planks. They don't take long and will strengthen muscles that you didn't know you had. Good for the abs and the back.

    I also do some free weights: military press (especially dropping the bar behind your neck) and curls (overhand and underhand).
    Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand

  6. #6
    Bikesman RedWhiteandRed's Avatar
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    I just do this 3-4 times per week.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uDawlrIeaVM

    Actually - I try and do push ups.

  7. #7
    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    I weight lift, play racketball, and use various cardio machines at the gym in addition to bicycling. So far it's working pretty good for me! If you decide to weight lift: bench pressing, squating, and dead lifting are great exercises to build up bulk muscles. Pick one of those three each day and do another 6-10 exercises that complement them.

  8. #8
    Neil_B
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    I go for walks, hike a bit, and do some upper body lifting at the gym. Also stretching and light exercises for my core.

    Most core "exercises" I've seen are usually simple stretching routines.

  9. #9
    Senior Member breadbin's Avatar
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    Hillwalking is an absolutely amazing workout i find. you have the cardio and the weights i.e. your legs going up!! i think its also brilliant psychologically for building up inner spirit and what not. if you are out in the hills in the middle of nowhere and feel you have done enough you still have o get back to the car brilliant for stamina. but yeah i'd agree with the other posters too the gym is handy for weights but in reality the more different things you do i think the better. look at the outdoor education lads and lasses - fit as fiddles the lot of them and they do everything gym isn't for me i'm afraid.

    just to add: cycling tones up your core too the more you do it so don't worry too much about that to start. i can feel the difference in my own
    Last edited by breadbin; 04-23-10 at 07:48 AM. Reason: added a bit
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    October miles=18/100

  10. #10
    Senior Member canopus's Avatar
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    I do yoga, Power 90 and P90X. I would like to get a kayak also.
    1984 Cannondale ST
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  11. #11
    Senior Member late's Avatar
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    The best exercise is the one you'll actually do.

    So what do you like?

    Any aerobic exercise will add some crosstraining to your cycling. In the winter, I use a Concept2 rower, for example.

    Cycling puts a strain on the back, and it's a good idea to make it stronger. It also works the
    front of the leg more than the back, so exercises that work the hams and glutes are good. Straight leg deadlifts do that.

    I like going to the gym. I usually use light weights and ascending pyramids. For example, 1x20, 2x40,3x60,4x80,5x80.
    So if you are sore, you find out BEFORE you slap on a large amount of weight and make it worse.


    I also have some rubber bands and do the same thing at home. I have a massive one that has over 100 pounds of resistance I call The Beast.

    In my hiking days, I used to swim in the winter to start getting back in shape.

    I recently came up with a crazy idea. Some athletes (I think mostly football players)
    drag heavy tires around a parking lot. They don't go far. Instead of using a massive tire,
    I was thinking of getting about 100 pound used tire and dragging that for a few minutes.
    You could get into zone 3 and 4 quickly, get a workout done in minutes (I live on a hill, so I could warmup
    on the street that goes sideways and then head up the hill to get into zone 4). I'm old, and this would put less
    stress on my knees, just another sort of crosstraining.

    Speaking of hiking, until my knees went bad, hiking and backpacking where what I loved most.
    Your friendly, local, minor god of information.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Historian View Post

    Most core "exercises" I've seen are usually simple stretching routines.
    well, things like crunches, planks, and the like use the body's own weight to provide resistance.

  13. #13
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    The Runner's World magazine website has some great core exercises, both in video and diagrams

  14. #14
    I can't Breathe
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
    My coworkers are very supportive of my bike commuting, and one of them has taken it as an excuse to push everyone in the office to do something healthy. He's started running at lunch to match, and is suggesting that we lobby the nearest gym for a corporate membership. In fact, he told me that "cardio is great, but you need some strength training, too" and then mentioned ( as we all know ) that muscle mass boosts your metabolism, and burns calories even while you sleep.

    I was going to say something about the heart being a pretty big muscle, and the bike working your legs ... but details aside, he's right. What other exercises do you enjoy? What do you think goes well with cycling?

    In particular, I've heard a few people suggest something or other ( "core strengthening?" ) for better comfort on the bike. I'd be especially interested in this.
    Hiking, preferrably up and down hills. Remember this, biking does not involve any weight bearing exercise, unless you stand-up on the pedals, getting out of the saddle a lot, like I do now.

    And, that brings up the other exercise I recommend, pushups. You need to develop your arm strength. Bicycling is a terrible exercise for building muscle in the arms, unless you stand-up on the pedals, getting out of the saddle a lot, like I do now.

    Which brings up another exercise I recommend, situps. You need to deveop ab-strength. Bicycling is terrible for building muscle in the abs, unless you stand-up on the pedals, getting out of the saddle a lot, like I do now.

    Oh, and, did I mention getting up and out of the saddle a lot while cycling? That is an awesome way to work out other muscle groups while cycling.

    BTW: I used to weigh about 230#. That was back when I found it hard to get out of the saddle a lot. Now, at about 185#, I actually enjoy getting up on the pedals and off the saddle. Did, I mention, I do it a lot?

  15. #15
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    If I can chime in - I have lost 160 lbs since July 2009 - I am hyper-obese - and I made a decision about 3 months ago to hire a personal trainer. For all the money I used to spend eating out and eating crap - I use to have a personal trainer 2x a week. She set up a great program of exercise and flexibility for me that is sustainable and progressive in nature. And since she is a triathlete - I am picking up my first bike in a LONG time this weekend and incorporating that.

    I really am sold on the knowledge and motivation a personal trainer can give you. IT's well worth the money.

    I hope this adds a little to the discussion. There have been a lot of great ideas posted.

  16. #16
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    I do Kettlebells and a Medicine Ball workout called the Medicine Ball 400 ( Google it) Except I do 800 reps. I do this 3 days per week. I was running twice a week but I got overambitious in my Vibram 5 fingers and may have a stress fracture in a metatarsal. So for the time being running is on the shelf and I ride my fixed gear for an hour instead. I ride my road bike on the weekends, 35-50 miles every Sat and Sun.

    Hindu Pushups and Hindu Squats are excellent also.

  17. #17
    Senior Member
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    In the off season I really recommend strength training incompassing all body parts including legs. During the riding season I cut out the legs but still hit gym at least once a week to maintain. I try to do pilates or yoga twice a week during season.
    Best thing about cycling is when I'm at work I'm thinking of cycling, when I'm cycling I'm thinking about cycling.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by baron von trail View Post
    Hiking, preferrably up and down hills. Remember this, biking does not involve any weight bearing exercise, unless you stand-up on the pedals, getting out of the saddle a lot, like I do now.

    And, that brings up the other exercise I recommend, pushups. You need to develop your arm strength. Bicycling is a terrible exercise for building muscle in the arms, unless you stand-up on the pedals, getting out of the saddle a lot, like I do now.

    Which brings up another exercise I recommend, situps. You need to deveop ab-strength. Bicycling is terrible for building muscle in the abs, unless you stand-up on the pedals, getting out of the saddle a lot, like I do now.

    Oh, and, did I mention getting up and out of the saddle a lot while cycling? That is an awesome way to work out other muscle groups while cycling.

    BTW: I used to weigh about 230#. That was back when I found it hard to get out of the saddle a lot. Now, at about 185#, I actually enjoy getting up on the pedals and off the saddle. Did, I mention, I do it a lot?
    I do agree with getting off the saddle for a different workput but only when you are doing it for a cause. If you ride in a group you should learn the proper way to get out of saddle so you don't throw bike back at riding partners.It actually involves even more muscles as you have to pop out of saddle and push forward with forearms at same time. I too enjoy getting off saddle but don't do it alot as on big rides it can wear you out if you stay out of saddle as sitting is more effecient.
    Best thing about cycling is when I'm at work I'm thinking of cycling, when I'm cycling I'm thinking about cycling.

  19. #19
    I can't Breathe
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    I should add....
    Pushups: don't expect to drop to the floor and do twenty Marine Corp-style pushes on day one. Most people just starting out would be lucky to do one or two. You'd be much better off leaning over the kitchen counter, resting upperbody weight on the hands, using the arms to lift and lower as much of your body weight as often as you feel comfortable. It's easy and convenient.

    Sit-ups: Same deal. Don't hit the mat and force yourself to do 100 crunchies on your first day. You'll hate it and never do it again. No. Instead, what you do is lie on your back and do a few upside down bike-pedalling and then try a few crunchies while pumping the legs. Before long, knocking off a hundred crunchies will be not only doable but also fun.

    Getting off the saddle is "playing in the big leagues". The upside is that in cycling, whether it's MTB or Road, playing in the big-leagues is reasonably achievable for most anyone with enough heart. My advice here is start out by getting up on pedals when climbing hills or encountering other high-reistance zones like soft grass. It'll take a while to get comfortable, but once you do, you'll find yourself seeking the rougher terrain and relishing the harsher weather, leading to more challenging rides.

  20. #20
    aka Tom Reingold noglider's Avatar
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    I never set aside time to exercise. I just ride my bike as much as possible. When I'm about to drive, I stop myself and ride instead, when possible.

    I always take steps two at a time, even when I'm carrying heavy stuff. This kept my legs strong for a few years while I wasn't cycling.
    You don't read my signature anyway, do you?

    Tom Reingold, noglider@pobox.com
    Residences: West Village, New York City and High Falls, NY
    Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

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