Expressway Hill conquered

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Expressway Hill conquered

Postby europa » Fri May 11, 2007 11:23 am

Yup, made it all the way up one of my local hills without stopping today - first time :D

It's the climb up along the Southern Expressway - using the bike track silly :roll:

The climb itself starts at Seacombe Rd and ends at Majors Rd. This isn't the steepest hill around but it's fairly long and worthy of more than a few huffs and puffs. Here's a link to the bikely map, but of more interest is the profile which is shown below. I don't believe that dip in the middle is really there - though it does flatten off through through there, you are still climbing.

Image

This wasn't a hill beaten by sheer thuggery - I have a loonnnggg way to go before doing that. She needed a bit of finness and cunning. On this ride, it came about 15km into the ride - I ride with my son to school, then turn around and ride home so I'd already fought some pretty fierce (though shorter) climbs. Approaching the climb, I backed right off to allow myself a chance to recover - HR down below 130 and stable, then onto the climb. Right from the go, I put her in the granny, the bottom granny. Yes, I know some of you will raise eyebrows at that, but this is a long run and making it to the top is all about HR, not strength. Keeping the cadence ticking over at around 90 (a good climbing rate for me - higher to muscle a hill, lower is just hard work), I just ground up that hill. There are a number of places where the climb flattens after a steep section - rather than run up through the gears like I normally would, I kept in bottom gear, let the cadence drop a little if appropriate, and recovered. Constant effort just shoves the HR right up - it'll hover around 170 and then go through the roof and once it does that, I have to stop and recover (unless it's only for a short period). Well, today I managed to keep the HR in the 150's with excursions into the 160's and didn't once break 170 (though it hovered there for a bit). The lowest HR seen on the climb was about 138, so you can see that I was able to recover while still climbing, simply because I kept in that lowest gear - lots of observation and experiment has taught me that no matter how you feel or think you feel, go one gear too high on a stiff climb, and the HR gets out of control pretty quickly - the trick is to keep it under control so that when it does have to climb, it climbs slowly and drops back quickly. Up to now, I just haven't had the fitness or strength to do so with the gears available.

My aim now will be to develop my strength and fitness so that I can start using higher gears in the easier bits. Of course, losing some weight would help too, but that's proving as stubborn as dried **** on a blanket. I'm going to wind up the fittest clydesdale on the forum at this rate.

Richard
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by BNA » Fri May 11, 2007 11:49 am

BNA
 

Postby MichaelB » Fri May 11, 2007 11:49 am

Well done Richard. :P

I have been up the hill a few times now, and with my gearing combo 39/26, the cadence is a bit low at about 74, but I can't go much quicker at the moment.

You are right, It's not the steepest, but it is longish and quite a good rise. The times I have tackled it, I'd already done about 20km.

Last time we went up it, we carried on to the end of the Expressway, down to Noarlunga and back again via the veloway for a total ride of 76km.

Going down is fun too !!

Cheers

Michael B
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Postby europa » Fri May 11, 2007 11:52 am

She's a funny ride that one. All ups and downs - done it a few times. The ride north is harder than going south, especially the northern end - you don't see anyone taking that bit easy, lots of red, sweaty faces.

The ride down is fun, but you'll have to try Flagstaff Hill - up and down. That's good for working the old heart - pumping hard to get up, sheer terror coming down :roll:

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Postby mikesbytes » Fri May 11, 2007 9:31 pm

A helmet saved my life
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Postby europa » Fri May 11, 2007 11:46 pm

mikesbytes wrote:What does the colour on the line represent?


I think it's got some horrid disease ... that's how it came off bikely.

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Postby europa » Sun May 13, 2007 7:03 pm

Flagstaff Hill fell today. I rode down to town to watch my son play soccer, then off to Tusmore for a picnic, then home. I reached the Hill at about 55km into the ride, feeling rather weary as I'd kept the HR up near 150 all day, but using similar tactics to the other day, went up it one hit. In fact, I'd conserved myself enough to do the rest of the ride home at my normal rate rather than the 'crawl of agony' that usually follows that climb.

Image

Took me 14 mins 48 secs to do the climb shown (overheard sign to traffic lights, I believe that is the standard for that run) - not fast but all I was going to do. Max HR of 181, average up that climb of 170 :shock: No wonder I'm knackered :oops:

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Postby LuckyPierre » Sun May 13, 2007 7:53 pm

Well done! They're both significant achievements - things that you have to do to go anywhere, but until you can handle them, they're a real pain in the ..... lungs! :D
In answer to Mike's question- the red / green colour code is pretty easy (up and down for those playing at home) and the only other colour I've seen is black, which takes on a 'ski run-like' meaning ie. steep. It often happens when you haven't plotted the track very well (not that I'd have experienced that, of course :wink: )
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