Cyclists, like their running brethren, are often guilty of skipping dismounted exercises and gym workouts, figuring they'll get all the muscle they need by riding their bikes long miles and putting in big hill days. But extracurricular exercises are a must for any cyclist looking to ride faster, climb harder and last longer (especially in the off-season). But rather than becoming an iron-pumping gym rat, try these go-anywhere exercises. They'll make you stronger, train your muscles to fire hard on-demand and get your season started right. Your best days of cycling start with these five easy (well, not that easy) steps:
Cyclists benefit greatly from strong core muscles both in terms of injury prevention and performance. A stable core allows riders to maintain a steady upper body, maximizing climbing efficiency.
1. Lay on the floor with your toes and forearms on the ground.
2. Raise your stomach while tightening your glutes and abdominals. Your body should be in a straight line head to heels.
3. Hold for 30-60 seconds. Repeat 3-5 times.
This combination squat-jump-pushup exercise works both the leg and arm muscles while cultivating the explosive power necessary for sprinting. Performing fast repetitions of this do-anywhere exercise is a quick way to get your blood pumping.
1. Begin in a squat position with your hands touching the ground.
2. Hop your feet backward into a push-up position. To increase difficulty, do a push-up.
3. Hop your feet forward, returning to the original squatting position.
4. Jump straight up with your hands high above your head.
5. Return to original squatting position.
6. Perform in two-minute sets.