Upper Body Workout for Time Triallists

When you’re bike is out of action, there’s not too much you can do to improve your cycle fitness. But if, like me, you’ve started the new year stranded in a strange country without a working bike, you could try this exercise to improve your upper body strength.


I read about this exercise in Adam Topham’s very good book – ‘Flying through the Pain Barrier’. It’s dedicated to time trial training. This exercise is called the plank and it helps to strengthen muscles used when cycling. But, especially when in the time trial position.

I did it for a minute a week ago, and I could definitely feel my muscles were sore. If it’s difficult to hold for one minute, imagine four hours in this position. Therefore, it is a good exercise to improve core strength.

Generally, I’m not a great believer in off bike training exercises¬† (it’s not really a question of belief, more the discipline of doing it), but doing this exercise really makes you appreciate the role other muscles play in riding a bike.

Even if you do it for a minute a day, it can definitely help a lot. Just hold it for a minute and try and keep still.

If nothing else, it will make you keen to get back on the bike, this  really is not as much fun as cycling.


Next week. Standing on one leg and other exciting yoga postures for cycling.


7 Responses to Upper Body Workout for Time Triallists

  1. anthony roberts January 20, 2013 at 12:44 pm #

    Hi Tejvan O come on tejvan im 75 and when i feel i need to i do 50 press-ups at will i do .are we not as cyclists full of motorvateivity except this month

  2. David January 12, 2013 at 6:57 pm #

    Blimey, surprisingly hard to do this for one minute!

  3. Lee January 6, 2013 at 7:47 am #

    Great blog as always how ever your arse should be alittle lower.

    We used to have to do this when I was in the Army as punishment.

    Keep up the good work

    • tejvan January 6, 2013 at 7:49 am #

      It’s probably a good job I wasn’t in the army. I wouldn’t like doing this for more than a minute a day.

  4. pj January 5, 2013 at 10:17 pm #

    or have greater emphasis on wrists and call it the wa..

    scratch that.

  5. amjb January 5, 2013 at 11:32 am #

    Tejvan – you are a legend, your hill climbing and cycling in general is something I could never aspire to, you write about it so eloquently that you are by far and away my favourite blog, your writing motivates me to try harder.

    You are however rubbish at the plank! Your body is meant to be straight. Like, er… a plank.

    • tejvan January 5, 2013 at 1:04 pm #

      Cheers Alistair, I always thought upper-body strength exercises were not my forte.

      Maybe I should rename it ‘The Plonk’

Leave a Reply

8 + 7 =