Although you are riding for fun or fitness, biking uphill has never been easy. Uphill biking is completely different from road riding as the former involves steep inclines that are not easy to ride. Although it’s quite a challenging task for any cyclist to climb uphill, sufficient strength, proper training, and a bit of determination can help you win the game.
If uphill biking sounds to be an interesting sport to you, below are a few tips to master uphill cycling without feeling tired.
Training right is the only way you can complete your uphill biking journey without running out of energy and quitting in between. There is a popular saying no pain no gain. The same thing applies here too. The harder you will train yourself the more you will gain. Going through tough training will help strengthen your weak muscles.
Indoor training may not be sufficient to help you retain your energy while biking uphill. Hence, once you have mastered indoor training, move on to outdoor training that is full of challenges, bumps, steep inclines, climatic conditions, etc.
Get your gears right
Choosing the right gear is another key to uphill riding. It is one of the most common mistakes made by most cyclists. Many new cyclists think that taking up high gear can help them cycle faster. But the reality is completely different. When cycling uphill you should never take up a high gear because it will drain you out of energy very quickly. Thus, you will end up slowing down. Instead, go for a lower gear for better speed and efficacy.
Besides, if you are on a short climb and think that you can maintain the momentum, then you might go for it. but be careful to overdo or tire yourself out.
Maintain the right bodyweight
Uphill climbing can be extremely difficult with a heavy bodyweight. The more weight you have the less speed you can acquire. If you take a look, all professional climbers are lightweight. This is because a better power-to-weight ratio makes your climbing easier.
Hence if you want to make your uphill biking easy, try to lose a few pounds before embarking on your journey. Besides, losing unwanted body mass can also help you gain additional health benefits.
Pacing the climb
When you start climbing uphill, you may desperately want to complete the journey and reach the peak point as soon as possible. But, on the way to doing so, you will tire yourself a lot quicker. Instead, if you slow down and relax in between your journey might become more enjoyable. Also, you will never feel exhausted or fatigued.
Fuel to gain energy
No matter if you are cycling on flat terrain or hills, fueling yourself is necessary to gain the necessary energy. Consume the required amount of food and hydrate yourself well before starting your journey. As poor fueling can make you feel tired and weak.
Fitness professionals also say that a few nutritional products and supplements can help you with a quick boost of energy. You may also drink it daily, before the exercise to maintain your energy levels.
Ride in a group
Riding in a group can make a lot more difference than riding alone. If you have already done it, you may know the benefits of drafting. When you cycle with other people, you get the scope to sit behind someone else. This act is commonly known as drafting that can help you save a minimum of 10-30 percent of your energy.
Group riding helps to save energy and also maintain speed. But when you are the lead rider, you may need to work harder. Also, you must be more attentive to not get too close to another rider’s back wheel when you are riding in a group.
Right preparation with proper equipment
Getting yourself well prepared both physically and mentally can help you remain energetic and enjoy your biking uphill. Besides, getting yourself proper equipment, clothing, and the perfect bike can make your journey easier.
Here are a few quick ways to prepare yourself for the hills: Try getting lighter wheels than popular to perform better wheels, your bike must have a wide range of gear options making it suitable for climbing; try to avoid the weight of extra bags on your cycle, make sure to wear sweat-wicking clothes to remain cool, your bike must have water bottle cages as staying hydrated is the most important part of biking uphill.
Common mistakes to avoid
Here is a summary of the most common mistakes one must avoid to maintain their energy while biking uphill, information collected from healthcanal.
- Poor nutrition and hydration before biking uphill
- Improper bike with wrong gear options
- Avoiding hills while training
- Excessive body weight
- Over gearing during the climb
The bottom line
As you can see, biking uphill may be very challenging and at the same time thrilling. Therefore, it becomes extremely necessary that you take all the necessary measures as explained above, to ensure a quality biking experience without running out of energy or becoming fatigued.