Monday, March 5, 2012

Pressure on the Pedals

Since starting my training back up, I've been working to improve a weakness of mine, spinning. If you follow me, you know that I like to mash the gears, but it's just not economical, and saying I can't spin ain't gonna cut it no more. My goal is to not become a spinner, but rather just become a better spinner. Here are some observations I've made in my search to spin:

When I think I'm spinning in a gear, I shift up one more gear and that's when I'm really spinning.

I focus on keeping pressure on the pedals throughout my stroke cycle, especially between the six and twelve o'clock positions. When I do this, rather than feeling a circular pedal motion, it feels more like an elliptical motion with the top and bottom of the chain ring flattened down. It feels kinda cool.

When climbing, I tell myself to climb various degrees of strong, but not all out. If I'm successful, I should have some pep at the crest of the climb, and rather than soft pedaling the descent and the ensuing flats, I'm able to pedal with more pressure.

During hilly rides, I've learned that if I spin early on, I naturally start to mash bigger gears in the latter half of the ride, and my overall ride time significantly improves.

I'm sure this newfound focus on spinning will spare my knees and give me an additional 10 years in the sport, crossing my fingers.


Steve said...

interesting. Obviously I just bike in the summer for fun, but I notice when I pass the 50 mile mark, I get soreness in one knee. I kinda wondered where that came from. I don't go all out though, usually I bike to enjoy the day, and get exercise, obviously not in some devious plot to win any race. :)

Have a good one Kiet. :)

Teresa said...

Great idea Kiet. It is amazing with a powermeter how you can see that you are putting out just as much power and it is so much "easier" on the body, hence faster run times...right?!

Glad to see you out riding again:)

Have a great day!


Matt said...

spinning thats like 80 rpms right?

Michelle Simmons said...

I've been watching my cadence since I got my power meter... totally true that spinning = more watts! It becomes more natural over time as you do it more too. :)