Got a very hilly 100k sportive end of August and want to post a descent time than the previous couple of years, improve climbing and power. Loads of hills (6) 1.5 - 2 mile long ave 4% to 8% + hard undulating roads. I am carrying some extra weight 95kg 5'10" (muscular build  but typical belly fat) got plenty of base miles in and going well (feeling good) overall (just done a 100k 4,000ft sportive felt great but steady pace with a slower mate) ave speed is up this year over same lumpy hilly terrain.

Ive a simple route which can include 2 types of climb up a 1km ave 4.6% max 7.4% effort then come back down then about 500mts later up a smaller  steeper affair 200mts long 14% ave max 16%. Back down and start the 1st climb again and so on

Would I be best sticking to the 1 type of climb for hill repeats or would doing both types be ok in a session. 

Any advice on how best to approach both for training repeats, I have a HR monitor


Jimmy Ray Will [1031 posts] 4 months ago

Personally speaking, the hill combination you have outlined sounds like an interesting VO2 max / lactate tolerance type of effort. 

These efforts are useful for building you threshold power, your ability to red line it and your ability to make repeated hard efforts. 

Can you continue to press on teh pedals on teh downhill 500m?

Personally I'd be looking to smash both hills in one effort, which i guess would be about a 4min effort?

If so, do 4 - 6 of these with a good 5 mins between efforts and then go home. Do no more than two of these sessions a week and aim to do them on fresh legs. 

Simon E [3846 posts] 4 months ago

I'd work on the longer one to begin with. Start by doing it, say, 4 times, focussing on pedalling technique and breathing deeply. Don't be tempted to go too hard or chase faster and faster ascents, it's more important that you build up endurance and repeatability (i.e. more reps).

But don't overthink it. Training consistently and getting adequate rest are as important as anything. Fuel up on hard training days, try to cut back on 'empty calories' on the other days - fewer spuds, less bread and so on.

CXR94Di2 [2730 posts] 4 months ago
1 like

Ride the hills in various ways, some with high cadence at Threshold heart rate, then others low cadence 70rpm at threshold. Keep doing them until you begin to lose form and power. Cycle home nice and steady. Im very similar to you in build and height. I found lots of zone 2 riding followed by threshold 20mins x 3 to build strength. I go to Tenerife and ride up Teide for winter spring training, it builds great endurance and strength holding zone 3 for multiple hour climbs

Daveyraveygravey [702 posts] 4 months ago

I think that variety is important.  If you only do one type of training, you'll get very good at that specific thing with enough time, but if you mix it up you'll improve other aspects of your cycling too, won't get as bored or frustrated if progress is slow, and overall get more out of it.

I'd try and get the weight off too, that will make a huge difference, so long as you don't try to get to 80kg in a couple of months.  Try one fasted ride a week, for me this is get up and go straight out on a ride without breakfast.  Do an hour at first, maybe 90-120 minutes with practice, whatever tempo you like.  Take a gel or small snack with you in case you bonk, but I find it made a difference for me.