Top 10 Climbing Tips – Climb Like A Pro

Top 10 Tips For Climbing Pacing Start a climb at a comfortable pace and then
slowly increase it if you can. Riding at an even effort is much faster than if you go
too hard and then blow, not to mention being much less painful. Equipment Most new bikes come with compact gears, where
the chainrings are slightly smaller than traditional ones and the rear cassette is slightly bigger.
This is a huge bonus when it comes to both long climbs and steep climbs as it gives you
a much broader range of gears. If you still have a traditional 39 inner chainring and
a 23 or 25 sprocket at the back but do loads of climbing, consider changing your gear ratios. Stay seated The most efficient way to climb by bike is
to stay in the saddle, and reserve standing on the pedals for short climbs or stretches
where you need to put out a little bit more power, or simply to change position to ease tired
muscles. Cadence The textbook climbing cadence is between 80
to 90rpm, so to be as efficient as possible, aim to pedal at this speed. It lessens the
force you’ll have to push through the pedals compared to a slower cadence and so it can
reduce fatigue on your muscles. Having said that, a lot of research suggests that your
natural cadence will be your most efficient, so unless you are a long way outside of these parameters, don’t worry too much about changing. Training OK, we know you might not want to hear this,
but there really is no substitute for hard work. Climbing has a heck of a lot to do with
fitness, and in particular power to weight ratio. Structured intervals focussing on increasing
your power over 10 minutes to an hour, even if done on flat roads, should lead to a marked improvement when it comes to the climbs. Relax Climbing can be uncomfortable, but you’ll
be able to save a load of effort if you concentrate on relaxing anything that isn’t powering
the bike. That means your arms and torso particularly. It doesn’t come naturally at first, so you’ll have to focus on relaxing. Break the climb down into manageable chunks Long climbs in particular can be really tough
psychologically, so a good tip is to break the climb down into smaller sections. It could
be taking it one kilometre at a time, or split it into sections based on the gradient. Either
way, not thinking about the top is a good idea, especially if it’s more than an hour
away. Lose weight There’s no arguing with physics, power to
weight ratio largely dictates how fast you’ll cycle up hills. Training increases your power,
but you could find that shedding a few kilos will help you climb faster too. Your body
is the cheap way to lose weight, but if you’ve got deep pockets, then you’ll be able to
lose plenty of weight from your bike. Ride efficiently all day How fast you can go up a climb can be governed
as much by the non climbing sections of your ride as by the climbs themselves. Avoid hitting
the bottom of a climb when you’re already out of breath. If you’re in a group, try
and work it so that you’re sheltering before you get to the climb to be as fresh as possible. Nutrition Make sure you eat and drink enough before
you get to the climb. It takes a while for carbohydrate to be absorbed into your body
so take on fuel 20 minutes or so before you hit the bottom of the climb. Likewise, in
order to stay hydrated, you need to drink consistently through your ride, so don’t leave
it all to the last minute. If you’re tackling a particularly long climb, you’ll need to drink on the way up too. Have you got a good climbing story? Tell us about it in the comments section below the video.