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  1. #1
    Zen Cyclist jslopez's Avatar
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    Weight lifting in a cycling program

    So I'm roughly following the weight lifting program as perscribed by joel Friel's cyclist training bible.

    Seems very straight forward, you start light with lots fo reps, lessen the reps and increase the weight as the season goes by but eventually you're lifting heavy weights at low reps once a week. So far (I'm still in the relativily light/hi rep stage) I'm seeing great results. My question now is wouldn't it be better for cyclist to keep the high rep low weights excercise regimen all throughout the year or is there realy merit on going heavier and less reps (and less sessions) as the real riding season comes by?

    Thoughts welcome.
    ZEN CYCLIST once again...

  2. #2
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Depending upon your build, I wouldn't even bother with weight-lifting other than 2-months in the winter.

    The main purpose of the light-weight/high-reps in the beginning is to work on form and build up ligaments and tendons in preparation for the later stuff. It's really the high-weight/low-rep stuff that builds the strength. Cycling-specific workout is also the speedwork to develop explosive power as well.

    Once you get up to that level, as your strength increases, the high-weight becomes low-weight as you get stronger. And you up the weight again to build even more strength.

    I would keep weight-workouts only to create levels of exertion that you cannot ever achieve on the road. Low-weight/high-rep workouts can be done on the bike with sprints and intervals.

  3. #3
    Zen Cyclist jslopez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
    Depending upon your build, I wouldn't even bother with weight-lifting other than 2-months in the winter.

    The main purpose of the light-weight/high-reps in the beginning is to work on form and build up ligaments and tendons in preparation for the later stuff. It's really the high-weight/low-rep stuff that builds the strength. Cycling-specific workout is also the speedwork to develop explosive power as well.

    Once you get up to that level, as your strength increases, the high-weight becomes low-weight as you get stronger. And you up the weight again to build even more strength.

    I would keep weight-workouts only to create levels of exertion that you cannot ever achieve on the road. Low-weight/high-rep workouts can be done on the bike with sprints and intervals.

    Ahh makes a lot of sense, I'm transitioning not to medium weight and less reps and in about a month will go just once a week (instead of the 2 I do now) with high weight low reps. Will probably use that other weights day to do some pilates...

    As far as my build I'm 5'6 and currently at 140 (relatively lean). I would like to get to 135 or 130 and maybe when I up the cycling intensity a bit more as the weeks pass I'll shed a few.

    Thanks.
    Last edited by jslopez; 02-03-06 at 12:13 AM.
    ZEN CYCLIST once again...

  4. #4
    Focus on the future alison_in_oh's Avatar
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    I find that I don't make progress unless I'm lifting 2x/week. Last season I had a heck of a time balancing the recovery from lifting with doing hard training sessions on the bike and recovering from those. In general, on-the-bike training should trump less-specific strength training in the gym. I ended up doing some moderate volume upper body work for vanity a couple of times per week during the season, and otherwise focusing on hard training sessions to build lower body strength.

    Right now I'm still pre-season, and doing moderate volume full-body routines twice per week, trying to figure out a way to bump that to three times.

  5. #5
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    Strength training is an important part of preventing over-use injuries . . . and other injuries. I had a bike accident (with a car) at the beginning of October and the only thing that seemed to explain my non-injury was a little luck and a lot of muscle. My upper body and core took care of me.

    Also, it lowers blood pressure and cholesterol, strengthens the immune system, and helps protect the ligaments and joints.

    I do relatively low weights (12 to 15 lbs) with high repetitions (and slow counts of 3), but I also do lots of things that involve my body for resistance such as plank and push-ups.

    Periodization seems to also be important. I'm still learning about this one.

    Sandy

  6. #6
    Senior Member gapowermike's Avatar
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    If you have a BodyPump class at a gym near you, you should give it a shot. I find that it's a great workout, it only takes an hour and it's something different from the workout you get on a bike. It pays to be well rounded in your fitness. I thought it was silly at first but it's been the best workout I've had since my military days.

    Michael

  7. #7
    Zen Cyclist jslopez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
    Depending upon your build, I wouldn't even bother with weight-lifting other than 2-months in the winter.

    The main purpose of the light-weight/high-reps in the beginning is to work on form and build up ligaments and tendons in preparation for the later stuff. It's really the high-weight/low-rep stuff that builds the strength. Cycling-specific workout is also the speedwork to develop explosive power as well.

    Once you get up to that level, as your strength increases, the high-weight becomes low-weight as you get stronger. And you up the weight again to build even more strength.

    I would keep weight-workouts only to create levels of exertion that you cannot ever achieve on the road. Low-weight/high-rep workouts can be done on the bike with sprints and intervals.

    So would you say that I should stop weightlifting now (or at least after February)? I have the option of doing yoga/pilates which helps my core and recovery.
    ZEN CYCLIST once again...

  8. #8
    Zen Cyclist jslopez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gapowermike
    If you have a BodyPump class at a gym near you, you should give it a shot. I find that it's a great workout, it only takes an hour and it's something different from the workout you get on a bike. It pays to be well rounded in your fitness. I thought it was silly at first but it's been the best workout I've had since my military days.

    Michael

    I really want to get good at cycling. Granted I don't want to be a total beanpole whiel I'm at it but as a small guy I want to really maximize my climbing so I want to avoid bulking up.
    ZEN CYCLIST once again...

  9. #9
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jslopez
    So would you say that I should stop weightlifting now (or at least after February)? I have the option of doing yoga/pilates which helps my core and recovery.
    I guess it would really have to depend upon your improvements in the gym. Did you keep a log of what you were lifting in the beginning compare to now? Also did you do any measurements of your thighs, calves, body-fat%?

    I usually stop when I double my strength on 1-rep max-lift amounts. Takes about 2-months in the winter. I tried 2.5x one year but I started adding too much bulk.

  10. #10
    Zen Cyclist jslopez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
    I guess it would really have to depend upon your improvements in the gym. Did you keep a log of what you were lifting in the beginning compare to now? Also did you do any measurements of your thighs, calves, body-fat%?

    I usually stop when I double my strength on 1-rep max-lift amounts. Takes about 2-months in the winter. I tried 2.5x one year but I started adding too much bulk.
    Hmmm I believe I've increased my weight lifting by around 40% so, body fat according to the tanita scale (I know it's nt extremely accurate) in athlete mode has me going from 8-10% consistently down to 6-8%. Made no other measurements but like I said I'm bulking up a little in the upper body.
    ZEN CYCLIST once again...

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