Author Topic: Exercise for Endurance?  (Read 2400 times)

Exercise for Endurance?
« on: January 25, 2018, 06:13:52 pm »
Hi everyone. I'm 57 and have been a regular cyclist for three years now. I did 5,000 miles last year and a bit more than that the year before.

I'm planning to do a 200 mile ride this year. I did a 179 mile ride last year and this one should involve marginally less climbing, so it's a fairly realistic ambition, I believe.  I've done a few 100+ mile rides in my time without any trouble.

I was fairly exhausted when I made it back after 179 miles in August last year. This time I'd like to see if I can extend my endurance by getting a bit fitter, but how? I'm cycling just as regularly and have a trainer set up in the garage now as well. But although I must be fairly fit from the waist down I don't do any other form of exercise so I wonder if there's another set of exercises, perhaps involving the upper body as well that might help build my stamina and endurance? Or am I better off just planning a few 100+ mile rides and sticking to cycling?

Would running help? A rowing machine, weights?

Grateful for any comments or advice.


simonp

  • Omnomnomnipotent.
Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2018, 07:27:36 pm »
Rowing machine and weights are great for general fitness, IMO, but I don't think they will help your long distance cycling very much.

I'd suggest making good use of your training time by making sure you follow a structured plan, and also work on improving your ability to burn fat at moderate intensities, by e.g. training early in the morning before breakfast (i.e. fasted training).

For a 200-mile day, if you can go from e.g. 50% peak fat burning to 70% you will be able to go longer before you run out of glycogen and won't have to eat so much on the bike.

Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2018, 10:42:18 am »
Basically riding your bike more makes you a better long distance bike rider.   Follow Fausto Coppi's advice.    Throw in some higher intensity stuff if you have a turbo or even hard hill intervals on the road.   These will improve your cruising speed and allow you to take longer breaks or finish quicker.

The training world is full of differing opinions on whether weight/strength training helps, but Chris Boardman only ever trained on the bike - or so he says.   I think it's 20 years since I lifted a weight.

Personally I have found core strength work and pilates helpful.   Not because it makes you a better cyclist but it means you can sit on the bike for longer with less discomfort around back/arms/neck.   Others recommend yoga for the same, but I've never tried it.

Samuel D

Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2018, 11:09:05 am »
Personally I have found core strength work and pilates helpful.   Not because it makes you a better cyclist but it means you can sit on the bike for longer with less discomfort around back/arms/neck.

More helpful than spending the same time riding your bicycle instead? I have my doubts!

Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2018, 12:48:51 pm »
Personally I have found core strength work and pilates helpful.   Not because it makes you a better cyclist but it means you can sit on the bike for longer with less discomfort around back/arms/neck.

More helpful than spending the same time riding your bicycle instead? I have my doubts!

On the first 24hr TT I did my neck gave out towards the end making the remaining 2 hrs pretty hard/dangerous.   I did core work all Winter and the next time I raced I had no neck trouble at all.    I'd say that was a good investment of time as my stabilising muscles are much stronger.

I spend roughly 20hrs a week on the bike/turbo and 1hr a week at a pilates class.   Probably 3 or 4 20 minute sessions of core work and stretching when watching TV.   it's not really a chore.

simonp

  • Omnomnomnipotent.
Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2018, 12:53:31 pm »
I really doubt time on the bike is particularly good for core strength. It probably ingraines bad habits.

Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2018, 01:08:18 pm »
I really doubt time on the bike is particularly good for core strength. It probably ingraines bad habits.

Yeah, it's terrible.   Ask my osteopath and physio.

Zed43

  • prefers UK hills over Dutch mountains
Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2018, 01:59:27 pm »
Personally I have found core strength work and pilates helpful.   Not because it makes you a better cyclist but it means you can sit on the bike for longer with less discomfort around back/arms/neck.

More helpful than spending the same time riding your bicycle instead? I have my doubts!
I would, tentatively, say yes, at least when the aim is to reduce discomfort. Not sure if it is worth doing more than 3 hours/workouts a week though, if that means less riding. Pilates and yoga classes tend to have a fair amount of stretching included, which may also help.

There's many different forms of yoga, coming to an Ashtanga class when you're used to doing yin-yoga will be a bit of a shock I think  :) (the reverse may also hold).

Power yoga may be a good place to start, tends to be more strength-oriented and less philosophical than most other forms; though the teacher also has a big effect on this. I have found the teacher makes more of a difference with yoga than with Pilates. If you do a Pilates class and don't like it then find something else; if you do a yoga class and you're rolling your eyes, it may still be worthwhile to try a different class and/or style with a different teacher.

Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #8 on: March 12, 2018, 10:00:05 pm »
Personally I have found core strength work and pilates helpful.   Not because it makes you a better cyclist but it means you can sit on the bike for longer with less discomfort around back/arms/neck.   Others recommend yoga for the same, but I've never tried it.
I think this is really good advice and as a 56 year old sedentary worker and general lazy bones I keep promising myself to introduce some form of exercise for the waist up.  I recall praying during the last 150k of a 600k audax that my damaged front tyre didn't blow, although I had the means to repair it there was no way I had the strength in my arms to carry out the task.  For sure I've adjusted my riding position since to reduce the weight on my arms but I'm still aware that Mrs Bolt (a gardener) would probably beat me in an arm wrestle :-[
Most of the stuff I say is true because I saw it in a dream and I don't have the presence of mind to make up lies when I'm asleep.   Bryan Andreas

LEE

  • "Shut Up Jens" - Legs.
Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #9 on: March 12, 2018, 10:13:58 pm »
Core strength for endurance cycling?

Train on a Single-Speed.  Commute on one plus do a few 100k and 200k rides on a single-speed on hilly/rolling terrain and you'll work your "core" whilst gaining useful cycling endurance.

I get back from long rides feeling thoroughly beaten up.
Some people say I'm self-obsessed but that's enough about them.

Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2018, 02:59:14 pm »
Core strength for endurance cycling?

Train on a Single-Speed.  Commute on one plus do a few 100k and 200k rides on a single-speed on hilly/rolling terrain and you'll work your "core" whilst gaining useful cycling endurance.

I get back from long rides feeling thoroughly beaten up.

Yeah, you see, the reason you feel beaten up is that your core isn't strong enough or you're not flexible enough.   So doing off-bike core work prevents the aches and pains and makes you a better all-round rider or, at least, a more comfortable one.

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2018, 03:04:04 pm »
Core strength for endurance cycling?

Train on a Single-Speed.  Commute on one plus do a few 100k and 200k rides on a single-speed on hilly/rolling terrain and you'll work your "core" whilst gaining useful cycling endurance.

I get back from long rides feeling thoroughly beaten up.

Yeah, you see, the reason you feel beaten up is that your core isn't strong enough or you're not flexible enough.   So doing off-bike core work prevents the aches and pains and makes you a better all-round rider or, at least, a more comfortable one.
But Lee's way, he gets to go for a bike ride  :thumbsup:
Has never ridden RAAM
---------
No.11  Because of the great host of those who dislike the least appearance of "swank " when they travel the roads and lanes. - From Kuklos' 39 Articles

simonp

  • Omnomnomnipotent.
Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2018, 03:11:52 pm »
I’d love to be able to just go rowing and be good at it from doing it lots. Sadly it’s an unproductive way to train. So I am meant to be doing stretches every day and regular core work.


LEE

  • "Shut Up Jens" - Legs.
Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2018, 03:13:11 pm »
Core strength for endurance cycling?

Train on a Single-Speed.  Commute on one plus do a few 100k and 200k rides on a single-speed on hilly/rolling terrain and you'll work your "core" whilst gaining useful cycling endurance.

I get back from long rides feeling thoroughly beaten up.

Yeah, you see, the reason you feel beaten up is that your core isn't strong enough or you're not flexible enough.   So doing off-bike core work prevents the aches and pains and makes you a better all-round rider or, at least, a more comfortable one.
But Lee's way, he gets to go for a bike ride  :thumbsup:

Exactly..and the reason I feel beaten up is because I'm exercising my core (by honking out of the saddle on the hills).

If I didn't feel beaten up then I wouldn't be exercising my core.  At least that's my theory*


* I have a CSE Grade 1 in Biology (Though I don't use it after my name).
Some people say I'm self-obsessed but that's enough about them.

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2018, 06:59:59 pm »
You should also consider training your digestive system.

Find out which foods suit your stomach, travel well and can be consumed on the move or during a short break.

Different people ride well on different foods. Some people don't ride well on empty.

Know what suits you and how often you need to eat. People have abandoned long rides because they have reached a stage when their muscles need food but their stomach won't accept it.

Re: Exercise for Endurance?
« Reply #15 on: March 14, 2018, 09:42:30 pm »
You should also consider training your digestive system.
Find out which foods suit your stomach, travel well and can be consumed on the move or during a short break.

Different people ride well on different foods. Some people don't ride well on empty.

Know what suits you and how often you need to eat. People have abandoned long rides because they have reached a stage when their muscles need food but their stomach won't accept it.

More really good advice here along with "honking out of the saddle" which if you haven't given due consideration to your digestive system could be come a literal reality :sick:
Most of the stuff I say is true because I saw it in a dream and I don't have the presence of mind to make up lies when I'm asleep.   Bryan Andreas