November 5, 2015
About the Author: Steven Moniz is the Founder and Conditioning Coach at Monvida Sports Inc. After training and coaching individuals for seven years, Steven has learned that people need goals—something to drive them —to get them to push harder, faster, and remain committed. Monvida pushes athletes to exceed their goals through private training sessions, classes, online programs and sports therapy for all athletes. Steven has fused the things he loves in life: training, helping people, and adventure sports.
You’re pedaling up a mountain, legs screaming during the climb, you reach the summit, but now you have to weave your way through shrubs and trees at the top. Just when you thought it would be a breeze after all that, you’re faced with the steep slope of the downhill. You grip your handlebars and head down, absorbing the impact of any log or rock garden in your way. It takes strength in your upper body, core and legs to keep going. Whether you are going for an afternoon ride or a multi-day trip — it’s best to be physically prepared than super sore on the next day!
Here are four exercises that will build the strength needed to conquer those mountains and make them seem more like molehiles!
Start off by doing 2 sets of 10 repetitions for each exercise, resting for 30 seconds in between. If that’s too easy, do all the exercises in a row and rest between each circuit.
After a week or two, if you can do 2 sets of 15 repetitions, add one more set of exercises to the mix — so you end up doing 3 sets of 15 repetitions per workout. Once you implement these four exercises into your training routine, you will find yourself shredding those trails in no time!
1. single leg deadlifts
Single leg deadlifts emphasize the posterior side of your body by working your glutes, hamstrings and quads. Start off by balancing on one leg, then lean forward, making sure to keep your core tight and spine neutral. Stop once your upper body is parallel to the floor. Squeeze your glutes and hamstrings on the working leg to return to the starting position.
Squats work your glutes, hamstrings and quads. Start with your feet shoulder-width apart, your core tight and spine neutral. As you come down, bend at your hips and knees, making sure your knees don’t pass your toes, and stop when you’re parallel to the floor. On your way up, emphasize pressing through your heels.
3. bent over rows
This is a great exercise to balance the body and prevent it from becoming too chest dominant from riding a bike all day. Bent over rows work your back and arms. Start with your feet in a staggered position and your body bent over and parallel to the ground. You will then row the weighted object up, making sure that you keep your core tight and spine neutral. Slowly lower the weight and repeat.
Push-ups are an upper body exercise that improve upper body strength by working your chest, arms and shoulders. Place your hands shoulder-width apart and bring your chest as close to the floor as you can without touching it. As you return to the starting position don’t lock out your elbows. Also, make sure to look at something a foot in front of you to prevent bobbing your head and straining your neck.