how does gym work effect cycling

Discussion in 'Training, Fitness and Health' started by stephen.rooke, 29 Jul 2012.

  1. stephen.rooke

    stephen.rooke Senior Member

    i've been going to the gym for the last couple of weeks, part of the workout is on the leg press machine. does this help improve cycling speed etc or is it all about cardiovascular exercise.

    had my last bike stolen so got a cheaper triban 3 and all my average speeds on routes have shot up and im getting up hills lots faster. just how wondering how much is the new bike and how much might be gym related
  2. Berties

    Berties Fast and careful!

    Any exercise on leg muscles can help cycling it is best to have your instructor look over your shoulder,I find that my leg strength is fine but over 100 Kim's certain inner thigh muscles ache so I ,isolate that group and stretch and low intensity train,
    The reason I say get a instructor involved is ,with a lot of strength work you need to isolate the muscle or think about it as a secondary group,look at your technique 10% difference in a foot position can effect what part of the group you train ,
    Also using a smiths machine squatting with no weight correctly maybe better for you than 50 kg on a leg press machine ,or a 5 ft bar with 10 kg with lunges ,improves flexibility strength ,posture and core strength if done correctly ,it's not so easy to say what you need to do with out seeing what kit your gym has ,your ability and what you need to achieve,
    remember legs are a big muscle group ,it will tire you and do not over work it,I would do leg and back in a session once a week.
    But do speak to the gym they get paid to do this for you,all gym work is technique and dedication,not nesecary to load weights always,
    Good luck
  3. amaferanga

    amaferanga Veteran

    The jury is very much out on whether gym work improves ENDURANCE cycling performance at all really, but one thing is for sure - you don't struggle to cycle 100km because of lack of strength.

    Best way to improve cycling performance is, as they say, cycling. Once you reach a high level and start to plateau then maybe its time to look at incorporating something else in addition to the cycling, but for a relative newcomer to cycling the best thing they could do would be.... cycling.

    Doing miscellaneous weights for a couple of weeks won't have made you faster so it must be the new bike.
  4. None of it will be gym-related. Endurance cycling is not a 'strength' sport, so while going to the gym will not do you any harm, it won't be improving your cycling either.
  5. Rob3rt

    Rob3rt Man or Moose!

    Age old question!

    Core strength exercises will be good for cycling, no doubt. But you can do them at home, with your own body weight.

    Other exercises, like the leg press machine well.... MAYBE, but only in certain specialist circumstances, i.e. being very powerful for short bursts, as fostered by heavy leg weights etc will benefit a sprinter, particularly a track sprinter. But if you arent competing against other cyclists and intend to win in a bunch sprint, the none utilised muscular development will be outweighed by the amount you suffer riding up hills due to the added mass that comes with it. You would likely be better off doing jump squats with your own body weight.

    In short, the best exercise for cycling, is cycling. Unless you end up specialising on some sort of event that has particular requirements like the match sprint on the track, the best thing you can do is ride more, ride specific, stretch and do core exercises.
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