Last week I went for a club ride of 72 miles (hilly), I'm a runner who has uptaken biking to ease up on my knees, so aerobic capacity is not my problem. Although is my first long ride of this nature, I never had any struggle on the short uphills (1 or 2 blocks long), but on this ride my climbs slowed down to a snail pace on a 4.5 mile uphill (45-50 RPM), I wasn't prepared for an uphill that long! fact is: I finished it w/o stopping but had no choice but to resort to my "granny" gear and let everyone pass me, being 160 lbs this wasn't funny, to see all these bigger guys even with pot bellies go up the long hill faster and more efficiently than me, mind you they had no "granny" gears, just the usual two. There were at least three of this on the route, although I feel proud after finish it, not so with the way I felt afterwards: very tigh Rectus Fermoris muscles (flexors) and sluggish legs/kind of crampy for few days, plus a hurt ego.
It's evident that I need POWER in my legs, how do I accomplish this?
Should I need to do squads./ weight training....?
Any suggestions ?