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Abdominal muscles?

Old 10-12-08, 03:33 AM
  #1  
Freakonwheels
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Abdominal muscles?

I didn't think that cycling really targeted the abs, but today I did about a 30-miler and I tried to keep the intensity up. It was probably my most intense training yet, because I'm trying to prepare for a 150km (about 93 miles) in January, my Road Cycling debut. But don't worry, I'm planning to increase my training distance in case you're worried.

Anyway, after my ride I noticed my abs (well, I don't really have abs, just a flat stomach), felt used. You know, that feeling after you've done situps or whatever. Not sore, just used. I didn't think that cycling was meant to target that area...

My technique can't be THAT off can it?
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Old 10-12-08, 08:56 AM
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Sounds to me that if you had a sore core/abs then I'd suggest your technique is good.

Cycling back pain is usually due to a weak core. Also, the more circular your pedal stroke is the less reliant your upper body is on using the pedals as a stabilising platform .

If you get a chance to demo some PowerCranks I think you'd be quite suprised at how much your core muscles and lower back become involved. That is, once you stop resting on the pedals and instead apply driving force for the full pedal cycle.

Long story short, keep doing what you're doing. Extra core strength exercises (swiss ball, plank, etc.) can't hurt too.

edit: climbing hills will enhance the effect as you tend to pull up more especially at lower cadences.
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Last edited by markhr; 10-12-08 at 08:59 AM. Reason: hills
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Old 10-12-08, 10:16 AM
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To bring your abs into the game you need a recumbent bicycle. Then you'll get a good workout!
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Old 10-12-08, 05:41 PM
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Originally Posted by markhr View Post
Sounds to me that if you had a sore core/abs then I'd suggest your technique is good.

Cycling back pain is usually due to a weak core. Also, the more circular your pedal stroke is the less reliant your upper body is on using the pedals as a stabilising platform .

If you get a chance to demo some PowerCranks I think you'd be quite suprised at how much your core muscles and lower back become involved. That is, once you stop resting on the pedals and instead apply driving force for the full pedal cycle.

Long story short, keep doing what you're doing. Extra core strength exercises (swiss ball, plank, etc.) can't hurt too.

edit: climbing hills will enhance the effect as you tend to pull up more especially at lower cadences.
Thanks for the info. At the end of it my lower back was sore, but it stopped quickly after I got off my bike, so I take that to mean it's pain from my exercising rather than bad technique.
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Old 10-12-08, 06:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Freakonwheels View Post
Thanks for the info. At the end of it my lower back was sore, but it stopped quickly after I got off my bike, so I take that to mean it's pain from my exercising rather than bad technique.
No problem.

Possibly - the whole core strength thing is often overlooked, especially in cycling (push harder to go faster ).

If it doesn't go away as you get fitter then check that you're not too stretched out, i.e., need a shorter stem.
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