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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Vienna, Va.
    Posts
    69

    Gradual climb -- any tips?

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    I don't know what my problem is. I can do hills without too much trouble, but there's one two-mile long VERY gradual climb on my regular ride that kills me every time. I think if you were walking you wouldn't even notice that you were walking uphill, but for some reason it always kicks my butt whenever I try to ride it. Doesn't matter if I do it when I'm fresh, when I'm already warmed up or at the end of my ride, it's still practically the hardest two miles I do.

    Any advice? I usually do it using the middle gear in the front and my second or third easiest gear in the back. I supposed I could make the gears even easier, but then I just feel like I'm spinning, spinning, spinning and not getting anywhere -- and, heck, if I wanted that I could just take a spinning class at the gym.

    Am I working too hard? Not hard enough?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Vancouver, BC
    Posts
    3,932
    Spin nonetheless. Even if it feels like you're immobile, you're moving and will eventually get up there. Break the hill in smaller hills: up to that sign, up to that tree, up to that big rock... Next thing you know, you're on top!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    160
    There's a Lance quote out there somewhere that's something to the effect of "What hill? I only see the ground in front of me"

    I find that really helpful-to just repeat it's just the ground in front of me, so what if it's sloping up? I zone in 3 ft ahead of the wheel and spin-or on a group ride I just zone on the wheel in front of me. Hills are all in my head I think-esp since we don't have real hills here!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Nebraska
    Posts
    1,192
    You're letting the INCLINE win the mind game. Don't do that.

    Use that area to work on technique. Focus on pedaling in circles, keeping the cadence high, all that. Tell yourself that you are training and traning is supposed to tire you out. (True.)

    Or you could concentrate on the scenery on the side of the trail.

    Or you could find another route...
    Give big space to the festive dog that make sport in the roadway. Avoid entanglement with your wheel spoke.
    (Sign in Japan)

    1978 Raleigh Gran Prix
    2003 EZ Sport AX

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    NY, NY
    Posts
    397
    i tried something new for hills on the august empire state aids ride: recite something you know by heart. Sounds wacky but before I knew it, I was at the top of the hill. Admittedly, sometimes at a very slow pace, but it didn't seem as agonizing.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Iowa
    Posts
    898
    Its true that its all a mind game......... I've got hills like that around here, too. They LOOK like they should hardly be a hill so your mind decides that it won't FEEL like a hill. Well, lo and behold, it always feels like a hill. No matter how many times you ride the da** thing, it's the same! What do I do? I spin like a maniac on one ride, and then on the next ride, I use a harder gear. One time I'll ride staying seated the entire time, another time I'll alternate seated and standing. And it's not to see what works the best. More to vary the pace to I don't get either bored or frustrated. You have to decide you won't let the hill get to you........ you'll ride it and do your best and get to the top.
    Somedays it might actually seem easier. You can only hope...........

    annie
    Time is a companion that goes with us on a journey. It reminds us to cherish each moment, because it will never come again. What we leave behind is not as important as how we have lived." Captain Jean Luc Picard

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Mrs. KnottedYet
    Posts
    9,081

    exact opposite of me, I love gradual climbs

    maryellen sez "recite something you know by heart. Sounds wacky but before I knew it, I was at the top of the hill."

    singing helps!

    On a recent club ride coach Lorri Lee Lown of the Velo Girls told me she has songs for all occaisions; sprint songs, long hill songs, steep hill songs, downhill songs...I'm not that organised but singing while climbing works for me.

    Just warning if you ride with me, it's usually disco.
    Fancy Schmancy Custom Road bike ~ Mondonico Futura Legero
    Found on side of the road bike ~ Motobecane Mixte
    Gravel bike ~ Salsa Vaya
    Favorite bike ~ Soma Buena Vista mixte
    N+1 bike ~ Brompton
    https://www.instagram.com/pugsley_adventuredog/

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    546
    Quote Originally Posted by Trek420
    Just warning if you ride with me, it's usually disco.
    Okay, anything but "It's Raining Men!"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Mrs. KnottedYet
    Posts
    9,081

    really annoying songs that help you climb but you can't get it out of your head

    BOOGIE SHOES
    i want to put on my my my my my
    boogie shoes
    just to boogie with you, yeah
    i want to put on my my my my my
    boogie shoes just to boogie with you,uh huh
    Fancy Schmancy Custom Road bike ~ Mondonico Futura Legero
    Found on side of the road bike ~ Motobecane Mixte
    Gravel bike ~ Salsa Vaya
    Favorite bike ~ Soma Buena Vista mixte
    N+1 bike ~ Brompton
    https://www.instagram.com/pugsley_adventuredog/

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Sillycon Valley, California
    Posts
    4,870
    Quote Originally Posted by latelatebloomer
    Okay, anything but "It's Raining Men!"
    But I love It's Raining Men - sung by a guy of course......

    I like the gradual inclines too, I just hunker down into some kind of rhythm and motor up the hill.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Sacramento, CA
    Posts
    127
    Quote Originally Posted by Trek420
    Just warning if you ride with me, it's usually disco.
    I'll provide the disco ball and light!!!!
    Ride your ride.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Mrs. KnottedYet
    Posts
    9,081
    Is that your ALC costume? I think we're on to something here, or at least on the tent so you can find it at night.
    Fancy Schmancy Custom Road bike ~ Mondonico Futura Legero
    Found on side of the road bike ~ Motobecane Mixte
    Gravel bike ~ Salsa Vaya
    Favorite bike ~ Soma Buena Vista mixte
    N+1 bike ~ Brompton
    https://www.instagram.com/pugsley_adventuredog/

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Boston
    Posts
    247

    Recitations while climbing

    I use the lord's prayer, even tho I'm not very religious!!
    I guess its nicer than going "f**K!"
    Crediamo in te, bici!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Bridgeport, PA
    Posts
    232
    "Ain't no mountain high enough..."

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Prescott, Arizona
    Posts
    4
    Ahh! Thanks for all of this. I've tried cursing, and that really doesn't work well for the long haul, though 'tis very satisfying in the immediate. I had a runner run past me on a long (not gradual) hill two weeks ago. There wasn't enough soap in the world for my mouth that day. I'll trying singing next time!

 

 

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