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  1. #1
    oldfart
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    alternative to squats for stronger quads?

    I dropped 25 lbs in 3 months and prolly sacrificed a lot of muscle along the way. I'm going to try lifting this off season to regain power in the sprints and climbs. I can't do heavy squats because of dizzyness. Unfortunately my gym does not have a leg press machine.

    1) Any suggestions on other favorite alternatives?

    2) can an on-the-bike leg workout substitute for gym work? If so, what types of training (on the bike), builds power in the legs?


    i get in about 15-17 hours (250 miles) a week. should i taper with the onset of leg exercises?

    thanks in advance
    racing strategy: start the race at the rear of the pack and taper off towards the end.

  2. #2
    Triathlon in my future??? flip18436572's Avatar
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    What part of the squat causes dissyness? I don't understand. Do they have a Smith Machine to be able to do the squats in a controlled environment. What about step ups? Using a flat bar with weights or free weights in each hand and step up onto a well built step.
    2007 Jamis Ventura Comp
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  3. #3
    Isaias NoRacer's Avatar
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    You could always do more hills on the bike--repeats on a 10 to 18 percent hill should build good leg strength.
    2009 mileage = 14,738 miles; 2010 mileage = 15,234 miles; 2011 mileage = 17,344 miles; 2012 mileage = 11,414 miles; 2013 = 12,169

  4. #4
    seppomadness
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoRacer View Post
    You could always do more hills on the bike--repeats on a 10 to 18 percent hill should build good leg strength.
    +1

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    plyometrics
    there will come a time when there will not come a time.

  6. #6
    Too Much Crazy
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    Singlespeed Mountain Biking

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    Riding Heaven's Highways on the grand tour ModoVincere's Avatar
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    Lunges are excellent leg builders. Do them with Dumbells rather than barbell.
    1 bronze, 0 silver, 1 gold

  8. #8
    Banned. mazpr's Avatar
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    I recommend buying this book as he goes into details on how to develop as a cyclist by training on the bike.

    He rarely visited the gym contrary to many of his fellow friends and thats more or less what you want to achieve.

    I was going to write it down, but its a lot of stuff that he covers in levels, routines, off-season, on-season, pre racing etc.

    Greg Lemond's Complete Book of Bicycling

  9. #9
    Road Runner PDay's Avatar
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    Lunges, leg press, jumps/bounds (including the aforementioned plyometrics), leg extensions.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by lookndale View Post
    I dropped 25 lbs in 3 months and prolly sacrificed a lot of muscle along the way. I'm going to try lifting this off season to regain power in the sprints and climbs. I can't do heavy squats because of dizzyness.

    thanks in advance
    Though there are benign causes for dizzyness, dizzyness during high exertion is something to get checked out.
    Eric

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  11. #11
    adjunct cyclist kellefson's Avatar
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    single leg smith squats rule...and you only have to use half the weight

  12. #12
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Huh? Remember to breath when you're doing these workouts. Make sure you're not glycogen-depleted from doing another workout too soon before the weights. Due to the intensity, muscles will pretty much burn 100% glycogen during weight-workouts.

    Also squats really work the glutes. To do the guads, go leg-presses. You can also 'toe' the press and work on your calves.

  13. #13
    Splicer of Molecules Nickel's Avatar
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    I think it's a bad idea to use the smith machine to do squats. If you lost a lot of weight, you might want to start lifting a lot lighter than you used to. I'd bet that 8 reps of bodyweight squats 3 times will hurt right now. Move up to dumbbells and go from there.

  14. #14
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    you can do leg extensions sitting down, with machine or with some dumbells on your legs (its kinda tough to balance them though)

  15. #15
    this one's optimistic... feethanddooth's Avatar
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    leg extensions. start at a low weight and do high reps. next do a higher weight with lower reps. then do a max weight and lower reps. do this all winter and you will have tree trunks!

    but dont neglect your hamstrings, glutes, and calves. or you will be a little like me in the beginning of this year. able to climb very well while standing, but being a lame duck sitting.
    2002 cannondale r400, 2006 kona smoke, 2005 scott speedster s30

  16. #16
    oldfart
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    thanks folks. All good stuff.

    I always thought that leg extensions were somewhat risky for the knees? Is that a matter of bad form?

    (As far as my syncope is concerned, I suffer from postural hypotension all my life. It makes it hard for me to change position to vertical without that fuzzy feeling. I have seen a battery of MD's etc. I wish they could do something about it. but it's better than hypertension I guess).

    finally i like the idea of a more functional approach by riding hills. do folks think that on-the-bike workouts are inferior to the weights?

    tia
    racing strategy: start the race at the rear of the pack and taper off towards the end.

  17. #17
    Senior Member
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    I prefer on-bike workouts to lifting weights, but I may be biased since I fell in love with cycling during Greg LeMond's era and learned most of my training workouts from his book 'Greg Lemond's Complete Book of Bicycling'. My theory is that they build strength while teaching you how to apply the power to the pedals. There were times when I hit the weightroom all winter and couldn't pedal in circles for about a month afterwards, nevermind trying to maintain even a 90rpm cadence smoothly. My legs knew how to do slow leg presses, not pedal in smooth circles.

    I also like plyometrics and other ballistic workouts since they build coordination, balance and leg speed as well as strength, plus you can do them indoors when the weather is crappy.

    Just keep in mind that you MUST use good form and posture while doing on-bike workouts. Otherwise you risk blowing out your knees or getting other overuse injuries. My personal favorite is to go up a 6-10% climb in a 53x16 gear at a speed that is slow enough to lightly tax your aerobic system (moderate breathing). Ride this gear for 20 revs, then rest by riding very slowly in an easy gear for 5 minutes. Repeat until you can't maintain proper form.

  18. #18
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    I have hypotension also. Have to hold onto the bar for a while after each set of squats, but I don't pass out. All the stuff people have said is good, except that I also don't like leg extensions, or any single joint exercise for that matter. Work 'em like you use 'em. Try climbing a 10 minute hill at 50 cadence, with your HR just at the bottom end of your LT range. My LT is 158 and I do this at 150, for instance. Do three repeats, with 5 minutes between each rep. That works the legs really well, but your knees have to be good.

    You can also do single leg pedaling on rollers or trainer, not outside - that's too easy. Do 2 minute intervals on each leg, some at 50-55 cadence, some at 80-85 cadence, never faster. Use enough gear so that you should have trouble completing the last 15 seconds of each interval.

  19. #19
    Splicer of Molecules Nickel's Avatar
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    If you're riding a bike and want to improve, the way to get better is to ride a bike.

    I like weightlifting because I have additional goals besides my cycling goals. I also know that cyclists tend (particularly women) toward osteoporosis because cycling offers nothing for resistance training, which helps in retaining calcium deposits in the bone (you sweat out quite a bit). Cycling also tends to favor two of the quad heads which can cause knee problems while squats will hit all four. I also like to do something to ensure that my hamstrings are in balance with my quads.

  20. #20
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    buy a craiglist classic special for cheap, covert it to fixie or ss and find a GOOD hill, use a stupid gear ratio. Ride up that hill til you can't turn the cranks anymore, now mark that spot. Walk your bike to the top of the hill and remember how much that sucked. Go home and repeat the next day, remember that spot you got off you bike and had to WALK up the hill. I'm 100% sure you will get farther up that hill this time around. if you have to get off, walk up the hill again. Repeat til you make it to the top with that gear. You will learn to find form, rythm and strength (both mental and physical). All three are key elements to climbing and building good quads. Before you know it, you'll feel pain in other parts of you body but it's not coming from your legs.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Richard Cranium's Avatar
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    Gee -whiz, another authentic, honest post. Complete with contradictory details, ridiculous stats and mystery short-comings...... Let's see,,,,

    [ I dropped 25 lbs in 3 months and prolly sacrificed a lot of muscle along the way.]
    Here's the part where the fat slob assumes he is physically weak because has finally avoiding stuffing his face for a few weeks... More food please!! Umma-gumma - must have cookies.......

    [I'm going to try lifting this off season to regain power in the sprints and climbs.]
    Yeah, right, like what kind of sprint or what kind of climbing ability does a guy have - when he is 25 pounds overweight? Pullll-leazzzzz - put down that donut - now!

    [I can't do heavy squats because of dizzyness.]Doctor House, Doctor House - come quick, this man has acute, idiopathic "mystery situational-vertigo" - what do you think, what do you think, is it because his head is stuck in a "dark place".....????

    [Unfortunately my gym does not have a leg press machine. Any suggestions on other favorite alternatives?] Obviously, this means you must buy a recumbent trainer and set up a TV and tray of "energy foods" for your next workout. Technology is great.

    [Can an on-the-bike leg workout substitute for gym work? If so, what types of training (on the bike), builds power in the legs?]Anything is possible, - can watching TV and drinking beer build healthy quads?

    [i get in about 15-17 hours (250 miles) a week. should i taper with the onset of leg exercises?]
    Oh yeah, you need a "taper" alright. I'm dizzy just from reading about your incredible work loads.

    [thanks in advance]Thank you, it's refreshing to read authentic, honest posts. Your post is great reminder to beware of what you read on the Internet.......

  22. #22
    Too Much Crazy
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    ^who pee'd in your post toasties?

  23. #23
    Huachuca Rider webist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Cranium View Post
    Gee -whiz, another authentic, honest post. Complete with contradictory details, ridiculous stats and mystery short-comings...... Let's see,,,,
    .......
    That was cordial.
    Just Peddlin' Around

  24. #24
    Road Runner PDay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Cranium View Post
    Gee -whiz, another authentic, honest post. Complete with contradictory details, ridiculous stats and mystery short-comings...... Let's see,,,,

    [ I dropped 25 lbs in 3 months and prolly sacrificed a lot of muscle along the way.]
    Here's the part where the fat slob assumes he is physically weak because has finally avoiding stuffing his face for a few weeks... More food please!! Umma-gumma - must have cookies.......

    [I'm going to try lifting this off season to regain power in the sprints and climbs.]
    Yeah, right, like what kind of sprint or what kind of climbing ability does a guy have - when he is 25 pounds overweight? Pullll-leazzzzz - put down that donut - now!

    [I can't do heavy squats because of dizzyness.]Doctor House, Doctor House - come quick, this man has acute, idiopathic "mystery situational-vertigo" - what do you think, what do you think, is it because his head is stuck in a "dark place".....????

    [Unfortunately my gym does not have a leg press machine. Any suggestions on other favorite alternatives?] Obviously, this means you must buy a recumbent trainer and set up a TV and tray of "energy foods" for your next workout. Technology is great.

    [Can an on-the-bike leg workout substitute for gym work? If so, what types of training (on the bike), builds power in the legs?]Anything is possible, - can watching TV and drinking beer build healthy quads?

    [i get in about 15-17 hours (250 miles) a week. should i taper with the onset of leg exercises?]
    Oh yeah, you need a "taper" alright. I'm dizzy just from reading about your incredible work loads.

    [thanks in advance]Thank you, it's refreshing to read authentic, honest posts. Your post is great reminder to beware of what you read on the Internet.......

    You, sir, are an asswipe.

  25. #25
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    Now, now. Herr Cranium is just having fun with us. It's just his way. He's really a very sensitive, sweet guy.

    I'm a registered Democrat, I expect everyone to work for a living so that no one gets $400M a year for shtupping their mistress instead of tending to business.
    Last edited by Carbonfiberboy; 11-15-07 at 07:59 PM.

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