Stamina is your body’s ability to remain active for an extended period and endure prolonged mental and physical efforts. Riding your bicycle as a kid may seem like a piece of cake, but in reality, cycling can be a tough sport.
Road cycling is explicitly a gruesome test of physical and mental endurance. It can put a strain on your body, but if you are determined, you can do it. If you’ve felt that you can do better at cycling lately, it might be time to work on your stamina. A lot is riding on your stamina in how you perform at a particular sport, and here’s how you can increase it for biking.
Keep your bike in shape
You can’t expect to give exceptional performance with worn-out equipment, can you? Your bike needs to be as fit as your body to help you achieve the endurance you need. Bikes in poor condition can easily stunt your progress and consistency. Therefore, it’s best to keep a follow up on your bike every week with the help of the following tips:
- Check the bike’s wheel by sliding them with your hand
- Keep a lookout for the bike’s brake pads and replace them when damaged
- Maintain and pump your tires; keep them inflated at all times
- Be thorough when cleaning your bike
- Use lube for your bike and have it checked annually
If none of the above options works, it’s obvious that you need a new bike. For particular buyers, especially road or mountain bikers, you can find the widest selection of mountain bikes at JensonUSA for best quality bikes.
Improvise your bike riding technique
Your bike riding technique has a lot to do with how you can build your stamina. If your riding technique doesn’t offer your body type the right workout, biking even for longer periods won’t help your stamina. For instance, your bike needs to fit your size and height correctly because you would be losing energy too quickly without it. When you use the wrong riding technique, all your energy goes into simply moving forward, which does nothing for your stamina. It’s best to get your bike professionally checked and fitted for your body type. You can maintain stamina even through longer and harder routes if you conserve energy by riding your bike correctly,
Fuel your body
One of the best ways to increase endurance and strength is to eat carbs. Many experts recommend fasted rides for weight loss, but if you want to increase your endurance. Many riders may believe that lack of oxygen makes them get off the bike. On the contrary, it lacks muscle glycogen or low blood glucose levels. Therefore, if you want to elongate your stamina and bike rides, you need to increase your carbohydrate intake and fuel yourself every 20 minutes if you don’t want to pass out before the finish line. According to USA researchers, your performance during a 64km ride dramatically improves when you consume 15g of glucose every 10 miles instead of water alone. So, instead of going on an empty stomach and burning your energy too fast, increase your stamina by keeping your body topped.
Take longer rides
One of the most obvious ways of increasing your stamina in biking is to aim for longer rides every time. If you’ve done 10km today, aim for 20 tomorrow, and that’s how the cycle goes. You need to bike A LOT if you want to boost your stamina, and by A LOT, it means at least 250 to 500 miles per week. You need to complete a good bit every day to take your body’s endurance to the next level. Once you push yourself over the limit, it gets easier the next time you aim for a higher length. Your longer rides don’t always need to be intense; you can do slower yet longer rides every day while keeping interval training for only two days a week.
Strengthen your core
A strong core is a winner both on and off the bike. Focusing on increasing your core strength will create a robust support system for your legs, thus giving your lower body enough endurance to keep adding more time on the bike. It’s a simple rule, the stronger your core is, the more stamina you’ll have on longer rides and will experience less fatigue. To incorporate core strength, you should focus on strength training, including using hard gear to add load on your muscle while you make short sprints of ten seconds from a slow speed. You can add any other exercise that helps you focus on exerting power, which you can also do through riding up a hill.
Go for hard tempo rides
While one way to increase stamina is to be longer, you can pump up your endurance is to going shorter and harder. In tempo rides, you go at least 75 to 85% of the threshold heart rate and take tempo intervals of at least two blocks of 20 to 30 minutes. Tempo rides will help you deal with the intensity that will eventually help your aerobic engine and cardiovascular system to adapt and increase stamina. Another way to pump up your stamina through hard rides is to train on hills. Biking on a slope with a decent gradient will let you push your body and increase endurance as you go. Along with tempo rides, keep your basic stamina-building techniques intact, including consistent biking, fasted rides up to two hours, and aerobic riding up to four to six hours a week.
It may not seem like it, but cycling is an enduring sport requiring considerable stamina. Consistency should be your priority to improve your endurance and build stamina. There are several ways you can progress towards increased stamina, and some of them are listed above. Therefore, don’t feel down if you cannot go over your average length or speed. The key is to teach your body to become one with your technique and use energy smartly. Also, remember to focus on your diet and keep yourself motivated.