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Old 02-03-06, 06:59 PM   #1
Ain't gonna nuke me
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Hill climbing - What's wrong with me?

I'm currently training for my second year of XC racing and am fairly confident in my skills. On flat and rolling areas I can really fly. I usually lead the races in these parts. The problem is I get DROPPED HARD on the uphills. ALL the riders who I was previously leading fly by me within a few moments and I have to wait for the next flat area to catch up. If I could nail these hills I could have some great success (in my own mind ) I am 5' 10.5" 170 lbs and have been riding for about two years. Is the problem...

A: Sheer Power
B: Anaerobic Endurance
C: Bike Setup (crank arms, seat post height)
D: My weight (for racing season I'll be at about 165 lbs)
E: Technique
F: ?????

Thanks for helping.
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Old 02-03-06, 10:25 PM   #2
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Tell us what holds you back on the hills. Do you "blow up" aerobically, or do your legs give out?

How long are these climbs? How big are the riders that pass you on the climbs?

How much climbing do you do in training?
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Old 02-04-06, 09:20 AM   #3
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I am a recreational rider and started at age 54. I too had difficulty with hills but my past experience as a cross country runner helped. During those college days I had trouble with running up those hills. So I had workout specific drills on hills.

On my bike rides, there are some inclines that go for a stretch of about a quarter of a mile. So I started getting off the saddle and riding up using a higher gear and going at a low cadence. That type of workout built up my upper leg muscles and also gave me enough cardiac stress to improve on uphills.

When it came time to ride with a group and on different routes, I noticed that I was able to keep up and even outlast many riders going up and off the saddle.

I think if you watch the Tour de France, on the mountain stages, its not all high cadence and remaining in the saddle. Once in a while they get off the saddle and push hard for a while.
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Old 02-04-06, 03:46 PM   #4
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What is the average age of the people that are "dropping you"?
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Old 02-05-06, 03:09 PM   #5
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How are we supposed to give you valid suggestions?

-- bike and rider weight?
-- gearing of bike?
-- cadence when going up hills?
-- age of younger riders?
-- your uphill speed?
-- rough idea of feet climbed in that 1/4 mile?

Without any more information it sounds like you are trying to power your way up the hills like a HS student. I don't think you can play that game but need to follow Lance's example and work more on slow twitch muscles. Youngsters will always win the fast twitch muscle game, but slow twitch and wise training should enable you to be competitive.
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