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Riding a long climb requires strength while pedaling with an optimal cadence. If you have a lot of experience riding long climbs, you may know your ideal cadence and gearing for the climbs you ride. If not, it is suggested you find a climb and ride the climb without weight in the Rock Bar. You need to find your most efficient cadence for the gear ratio you will train at. Pedal with a cadence of 80 RPM or more and in a gear that allows you to ride with effort but without blowing up before the top of the climb. As with all training, you should have a good base of miles in your legs before doing hard workouts.
You may need to ride the same climb multiple times to help you determine what gear and cadence you want to train at. Once you determine this, insert half of the weight (one pouch) into the Rock Bar and attach to the bike. Ride up the climb in the gear and at the cadence you want to train at. The goal is to gradually increase the weight until you are able to do the climb repetitively with weight while maintaining the same gear and cadence. It is recommended that you ride with the same weight amount for a couple of weeks, but your schedule and fitness level will determine your progress.
Once you can consistently ride the climb with the weight at your ideal pace and cadence, add another half pouch of weight to the Rock Bar. The total weight of the case will be about 2.27 kg / 5 lb. As the weight amount is completelty adjustable, you can change the weight amount as needed. Repeat the training over the course of a few weeks or until you can do the climb repetitively with similar results and effort. It is preferable to ride with weight all of the time while training regardless of the terrain in order to gradually inccrease your strengh. Adjusting the weight amout gradually is best. Tip: you can insert energy bars, gels, etc. into the Rock Bar while the Rock Bar is partially filled with weight. If you are doing long rides, the extra fuel may come in handy
Eventually, if you are really strong, you may be able to add the all of the weight into the Rock Bar (two full pouches) for a total weight of 3.2 kg / 7 lb and maintain the same cadence, speed and gear ratio. If you can consistently climb with the full weight amount, then the next step is to try to ride at a slightly higher cadence or a harder gear at your ideal cadence. A higher cadence in the same gear equals more speed.
The goal is to gradually build strength, so if you increase the cadence or the gear ratio, you may need to reduce the weight if you can not reach the end of a climb without blowing up or if your muscles can not handle it. If you are really strong you might be able to use two Rock Bars on the bike at the same time with the weight amount adjusted for your strength (if the frame design allows).
Short Climbs, Intervals and Sprint Training
Short climbs, intervals, and sprints require a lot of power in short bursts. The Rock Bar can help increase your power while you train on the bike.
To help increase your power use the Rock Bar with about 2.27 kg / 5 lb or more weight if you are fit and have miles on your legs. Use less than 5 pounds if you are not in good shape yet or if 2.27 kg / 5 lb feels too hard. Always start with a weight amout you can handle. As with any workout, first warm up by riding at an easy pace at for at least 15 minutes. After warming up, train as you normally do when doing intervals, sprints, etc. The extra weight should be noticeable when punching up a short climbs and during the first few 100 meters when sprinting. Experiment with different gear ratios, cadences, and weight amounts. Training with different gears and cadences will train the body to adapt to different efforts. If you can handle it, attach two Rock Bars on the bike for an even greater weight workout.
On The Track
The Rock Bar can be used on all types of bikes, from mountain to road, to track. On the track with fixed gear bikes, the Rock Bar is a particularly useful training tool. For track cyclists, the extra weight will make a workout harder since gears cannot be changed. If you are strong enough, you may be able to ride with two Rock Bars attached to a track bike at the same time. The total weight would be about 6.5 kg / 14 lb if fully weighted. Always adjust the weight amount for your strength and add weight gradually.
Without weight, the Rock Bar is useful for long distance endurance events and rides where extra supplies are needed. Use the Rock Bar to store extra energy bars, gels, tools, and other supplies.