Power is arguably the best way of measuring cycling ability. The more power you have, the easier you will find it to cover distances quickly.
Increasing power is not always as easy as it sounds, and you want to be able to get the best results for the work you put in.
For some smart ways of ramping up your output, here are six methods you can use to increase cycling power.
Do Hilly Rides
Increasing the number of hills or the total elevation of your rides will force your muscles to adapt over time.
That’s because it forces riders to decrease cadence and increase the force they’re putting on the pedals.
You could also use short hill repetitions to get a similar effect.
Use Bigger Gears
Making yourself spend more time in higher gears while maintaining the same cadence will increase power output.
You can use intervals of a few minutes in a big gear to slowly adjust your legs so they can cope with the higher demands.
Stronger muscles can produce more power, so working on lower body strength pays dividends.
Lots of squats and deadlifts could result in stronger legs to drive you forward at higher speeds.
Learn To Sustain Power
Some athletes can get up to relatively high power output but are not good at sustaining the efforts.
Learning how to pace your rides can make a big difference. The most successful cyclists are able to ride at a steady power output, keeping their watts within about a 2% range of their target.
Cycling into headwinds can be brutal, but it’s a good way of using the elements as a training tool.
Sustaining long efforts into reasonable winds requires a decent power output. You can then use sections of a ride where you get a tailwind as a recovery period.
Do Longer Rides
Aerobic endurance and base fitness always underpin cycling ability, and without these, you will find it hard to ride at high power outputs for long periods of time.
Put simply, you need a big engine. Building overall volume and the length of your rides has been shown to improve an athlete’s ability to produce high watts.