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How to take Hills?

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How to take Hills?

Old 08-13-19, 12:36 PM
  #26  
canklecat
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Don't look at your riding partners pulling away and receding into the distance on climbs. It's discouraging. Just keep chugging at your own pace.

And when your partners are far off in the distance and leaving you behind while your legs and lung are on fire, hold up one hand, frame their tiny bodies between your thumb and forefinger and whisper to yourself "I'm crushing your heads. HAHAHAHA."

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Old 08-13-19, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Keeping in mind that he's talking about climbs in the Alps and such, and that climbing while racing is a lot more of keeping you from maxing out effort too early than regular riding might be.
QFT. Almost nobody lives by nor will ever ride even a Cat 2 climb. I'd dare guess 75% of riders. Yes, plenty do live near and ride them, but they're still in the minority.

For the climbs Jens is talking about also, sometimes the shallower grades are earlier in the climb and you can trade wheelsucking with others instead of busting it and giving people a free tow up the easier grades. Then, use the hammer when the grade goes up, which is likely in the second 1/2 to 1/3 of the climb.

Most rec riders doing anything equal or longer than a Cat 3 climb will just be doing it at tempo to SS power anyway. It'll take you long enough that the time duration will be well beyond anything threshold related. I say that because you likely didn't hop out of the car and warmup for 5min and immediately climb it. So you probably won't be able to go 100% up a climb near an hour. A 100% effort is one and done, so you're going to be below.

Around here? Shoot, there are weeks I don't shift out of the big ring. Just hammer up the sucker at what you got for 2 to 5 minutes. It's 6% at most, and that's probably only for 100 yards or so. I'd consider hills here just extended hill sprints. The KOMs from "competent" P/1/2 riders are in the 500w range for 2 minutes.
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Old 08-13-19, 12:38 PM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by bocobiking View Post
Wouldn't you want to keep from “maxing out too early” no matter if you’re a racer or not? I’m not a racer, but Voigt's technique works really well for me. It keeps me from blowing up on long climbs.
My thinking is that in racing, you're generally trying to save enough for a sprint to the finish, on a regular ride, you're just trying to save enough to finish. I find that climbs vary so much depending on all kinds of factors that a general rule of how to do it doesn't work all that well for me. I do think I tend to do better with a steady pace rather than the building one you're describing. I did have a really frustrating one last weekend where what I thought was a short hill turned out to be just the first in a series of a few miles of "staircase" hills. Each one was topped with a plateau just long enough so you didn't see the next hill until you were about to crest the previous one. I completely paced myself wrong on the first three hills, thinking each time I was done climbing.
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Old 08-13-19, 03:28 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
.

Good stuff. On rollers, though, I will pedal the hell out of hill descent 1 to carry the speed onto hill ascent 2 and so on.
While fun, physics does not support that approach for shortest elapsed time completing your ride.

Aerodynamic drag is proportional to the square of velocity, which makes power overcoming it proportional to the cube of speed.

Even the best cyclists are relatively slow up hill, which means little energy is lost fighting the wind, When you pencil it out you find about 90% of your power translates into altitude gained.

Kinetic energy from speed is half mass times the square of velocity. You can convert it into potential energy lifting a weight which is mass multiplied by gravity in height.

In the best case, adding energy before a grade your effort is going up with the cube of speed while the height gained only increases with its square neglecting the significant effects of drag. Any extra time spent at your target speed before reaching the hill is wasted. You're better off spending your anaerobic reserve directly on the hill where 90% of it increases elevation.

The situation is worse down hill because speed increases require increasing total power including gravity with the cube of speed.

Joel Friel (of The Cyclist's Training Bible) quotes Alan Couzens on the appropriate effort for Ironman rides
Coast or Pedal on a Downhill? - Joe Friel
Coast at >50km/h (31 MPH)
Pedal easy at >40km/h (25 MPH)
Pedal steady at >30km/h (19 MPH)
Pedal moderately hard at>20km/h (12 MPH)
Pedal hard at >10km/h (6 MPH)

Last edited by Drew Eckhardt; 08-13-19 at 10:22 PM.
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Old 08-13-19, 04:14 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by burnthesheep View Post
Almost nobody lives by nor will ever ride even a Cat 2 climb. I'd dare guess 75% of riders. Yes, plenty do live near and ride them, but they're still in the minority.
Could somebody please explain how the numbers work out in this?
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Old 08-13-19, 07:08 PM
  #31  
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My technique for dealing with hills is to avoid them .... just kidding.
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Old 08-13-19, 10:28 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
Could somebody please explain how the numbers work out in this?
A Category 2 climb could average 5% over 10km, for 500 meters and 1500 feet in height; or 10% over 5km; or 3% over 20km for 600 meters and 1800 feet.

You need to live near mountains for climbs like that, although I'm not sure why recreational riders living near such climbs wouldn't do them.

You need to go up one to get over the Santa Cruz mountains to enjoy their forested Pacific side, then up another to return home if you don't feel like a 100-140 mile loop around the mountains.
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Old 08-13-19, 10:56 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by Drew Eckhardt View Post
You need to go up [a category 2 climb] to get over the Santa Cruz mountains to enjoy their forested Pacific side, then up another to return home.
Very true. I was riding the hills near Pescadero today, on the Pacific side of the Santa Cruz mountains. Lots of category 4 climbs, plus one category 3 (Tunitas + Lobitos Creek). But no category 2 without riding up to the summit (Tunitas Creek | Highway 84 | Alpine Rd.).
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Old 08-14-19, 06:27 AM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
Could somebody please explain how the numbers work out in this?
I think I get the funny in what you're after given my choice of words, but I'll bite to prove my point.......

Fact, according to NOAA over 50% of US inhabitants live within 50 miles of the coast. 38% live on the coast.

Let's exclude 1/2 of California that does have some climbs near the coast. So half of half of that 50% would cut it by 12.5% to 37.5%. Why'd I do that? How many Cat 2 or larger climbs are that close to east-coast population centers? Not many if any at all. Much less, how many are that close to the majority of riders? Not many. There aren't many of our local clubbies driving out to the mountains to climb, a few, but not many.

Not only that, but the way the conversation about Jens is going you're talking about people who routinely do climbs, repeats, etc.... Not someone who goes out for a trip once every few years.

Even more so, there's an even smaller subset of people who could even use any advice like that on anything longer than a pimple of a hill. How many people you know can "lay the hammer" on a 1/2 hour climb as part of a larger overall ride? Then, do it again for another climb?
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Old 08-14-19, 10:00 AM
  #35  
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Or you could ride your classic steel mtb and sail over hills.
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Old 08-14-19, 10:13 AM
  #36  
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Waiting for the triple-grouches to descend on the thread like a plague of fredly-locusts...
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Old 08-14-19, 11:54 AM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by Drew Eckhardt View Post
While fun, physics does not support that approach for shortest elapsed time completing your ride.

Aerodynamic drag is proportional to the square of velocity, which makes power overcoming it proportional to the cube of speed.

Even the best cyclists are relatively slow up hill, which means little energy is lost fighting the wind, When you pencil it out you find about 90% of your power translates into altitude gained.

Kinetic energy from speed is half mass times the square of velocity. You can convert it into potential energy lifting a weight which is mass multiplied by gravity in height.

In the best case, adding energy before a grade your effort is going up with the cube of speed while the height gained only increases with its square neglecting the significant effects of drag. Any extra time spent at your target speed before reaching the hill is wasted. You're better off spending your anaerobic reserve directly on the hill where 90% of it increases elevation.

The situation is worse down hill because speed increases require increasing total power including gravity with the cube of speed.

Joel Friel (of The Cyclist's Training Bible) quotes Alan Couzens on the appropriate effort for Ironman rides
Coast or Pedal on a Downhill? - Joe Friel
I don't know whether that math is right or not, and I suspect the figures might be different depending on various differences between riders (weight, aerodynamics, etc.), but I'm going with fun over theoretically better approach. Frankly, having done it both ways, the powering down the hill is something I could do all day without feeling like I'm expending much energy, so I really don't think it takes much if anything from the following ascent effort. I suppose I might find differently if I were to actually measure things, but the way I'm doing it, I feel like the pedaling on the downhill just flows seamlessly into the pedaling on the ascent.
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Old 09-04-19, 07:17 AM
  #38  
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Old 09-04-19, 07:36 AM
  #39  
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Last night we took the hills as such:

-roar down one side
-wait for suckers to slide into the little ring
-hammer at 700w till your eyes water then taper off
-coast at the top and wait for your dropped buddies to crest the hill panting/dying
-collect virtual 10 second time bonus and fake kudos
-profit?
-repeat
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Old 09-04-19, 08:00 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by burnthesheep View Post
Last night we took the hills as such:

-roar down one side
-wait for suckers to slide into the little ring
-hammer at 700w till your eyes water then taper off
-coast at the top and wait for your dropped buddies to crest the hill panting/dying
-collect virtual 10 second time bonus and fake kudos
-profit?
-repeat
You skipped "find nearby rocks that can be arranged to create a fake podium".
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Old 09-04-19, 08:38 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
You skipped "find nearby rocks that can be arranged to create a fake podium".
Cinder blocks would look better.
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Old 09-04-19, 08:48 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by 2manybikes View Post
Cinder blocks would look better.
Around here lots of people get scared in hurricane season and chop trees but leave the stumps. Perfect.

No joke though, last week we had a guy wheel suck up a little 1% false flat for a couple minutes then come around. At the top he threw up both hands.
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Old 09-04-19, 08:58 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by burnthesheep View Post
At the top he threw up both hands.
Which begs the question, when did he swallow his hands?
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Old 09-04-19, 10:16 AM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by burnthesheep View Post
Around here lots of people get scared in hurricane season and chop trees but leave the stumps. Perfect.

No joke though, last week we had a guy wheel suck up a little 1% false flat for a couple minutes then come around. At the top he threw up both hands.
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Old 09-04-19, 10:17 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Which begs the question, when did he swallow his hands?
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Old 09-05-19, 02:58 PM
  #46  
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low gear & just work in the saddle

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Old 09-06-19, 07:32 AM
  #47  
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On shorter hills, that I'm familiar with, I like to put in a moderate effort for the first two-thirds, and then hammer to the top.
Then I like to repeat.
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Old 09-06-19, 07:44 AM
  #48  
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try to remember that there will be a downhill too
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Old 09-06-19, 08:40 AM
  #49  
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then there're "rollers". was thinking about this thread on my way home last night. there's a route I like in Carlisle, MA, with at least a nice mile of rolling hills. as much as I would like to stay in the same gear & power over the humps, I just don't have the athleticism to do that. I can do 1 or maybe 2 but not all of them. so for me, it's a matter of changing gears to suit with each roller. brifters changed my life with this regard. those old down tube shifters were annoying in this scenario for me
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Old 09-06-19, 08:40 AM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by Flip Flop Rider View Post
try to remember that there will be a downhill too
I'm the opposite (although I'm not a pessimist overall) - I always view downhills with suspicion because usually that means there will be an uphill right after... not that there are many hills around where I live, most climbing is done to go over bridges and overpasses and are done within minute or less.
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