Hill Climb

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Hill Climb

Postby mgu91 » Wed Oct 14, 2009 17:13 pm

Hi, I've just entered my first hill climb and was wondering if anyone out here has any tips?



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Postby oldwelshman » Wed Oct 14, 2009 18:14 pm

Go as fast as you can!! :D

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Postby celbianchi » Thu Oct 15, 2009 07:35 am

Good on you for entering one - which one is it?

Old Welshan is right, but that does not involve hammering it from the bottom at a full on sprint.
The hill climb season is my favourite part of the season and sadly we only have this weekend then the nationals next week before it closes.

Anyhow - some tips, I go ok in hill climbs, have won a couple the season here's what I have learned over the last few years:

1) PACING - whether it is a short steep 2 1/2 min climb or a longer 19 minute one (like Cragg Vale) pacing is vital. You will lose a lot of time if you blow 200 yards from the finish. Start at what feels a brisk pace but nowhere near flat out. Try to aim to increase your effort as you progress - finishing flat out. A much better strategy than starting at full gas then hanging on to the line.
2) If you can ride the course before the event do so, on the morning of the event try and ride it a couple of times making a mental note of when you may need to change gear, if you fluff a gear change in a hill climb you lose time. Assuming your not riding fixed, if fixed make sure you have got a suitable gear to compromise the steeper and shallower sections.
3) When you get into the final 25% of the course, your brain will be telling you to stop pushing the pedals. Remember that the pain will stop when you get to the line and focus on that, the temptation to ease off can become overbearing.
4) If you get your minute man (woman) in sight do not over exert yourself to catch them, making them a target to reel in helps focus the mind but don't get the urge to try and close them down over the next 30 seconds.
5) Make sure you get it all out, the final lunge for line over the last 100 yards can feel horrendous, but give the last section absolutely everything.
6) Remember that the pusher off should not push, just release your seatpost, some events do seem to get a bit of a push but you shouldn't - ask the start team as if your expecting a push and don't get one it is surprising.
7) Try not to worry about what anyone else will do (this is still a problem for me, I still have negative thoughts despite doing ok in them). On the Rake last weekend I had 4 national champs Current holders and past from the last 5 years in the last 6 off with me), can be intimidating but try to ignore it. I've got the same at the nationals off no 147 in a 150 man field, plenty of time for the nerves to build.
8) Warm up - probably a personal thing and the length will depend on you, but I take my turbo and having had a recce of the hill then do 30 mins light spinning with 3 45 hard efforts in it.
9) Don't miss your start time, a late start penalty will obviiously see you lose places in the results.
10) If there is a crowd (like at the Rake) whilst the vocal support is very motivating don't get sucked into playing to the crowd and trying to hammer along.
11) Be mentally prepared for the fact that it WILL hurt but encompass the pain and learn to love it.
12) Be prepared for the fact that when you finish you may need to sit/lie in the road for a couple of mins to catch your breath again.

13) Despite all the above ENJOY it, they are great events despite the suffering.

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Johnny G
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Postby Johnny G » Thu Oct 15, 2009 15:46 pm

Great tips - see you at the Nationals!

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Postby disquieting_museeuws » Thu Oct 15, 2009 18:58 pm

If I was asked for one thing about hill climbs it would be: don't waste your best effort before you've even started by overdoing the warm-up. I've shot up hills beforehand then gone slower in the race! I think it's psychological as well as physical - you have to keep that one great effort in reserve for when it's really needed.

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Postby mgu91 » Thu Oct 15, 2009 19:12 pm

Cheers all some good tips there. Its the london dynamo/prologue one on leith hill.

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Postby oldwelshman » Thu Oct 15, 2009 22:32 pm

Warm up on rollers its easier, less stressful but get the legs and HR going.

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Postby peejay78 » Sun Oct 18, 2009 14:50 pm

just did first hill climb, burrington open, bristol south.

read tevjan's blog - very useful, recommended reading. did warm-up, not to hard, rode out fifteen miles softly on 72", switched to 65" (flipped wheel), tried to judge it right. came fifth in the end, very pleased.

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Postby Gesmi » Fri Nov 06, 2009 09:34 am

Hi - can you please direct me to "tevjan's blog "?


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Postby GiantMike » Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:27 am

celbianchi wrote:
11) Be mentally prepared for the fact that it WILL hurt but encompass the pain and learn to love it.

Aint that the truth.

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Postby lfc_westy » Thu Feb 04, 2010 11:57 am

i love the pain
It Never Gets Easier, you just get Faster and luckier.

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