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Training in Tucson, Ariz. this winter to get ready for her spring races, American professional triathlete Linsey Corbin did a weekly bike workout that entailed uphill repeats in the aerobar position. “It seems counterintuitive—a lot of time we think you should get out of the saddle and hammer up the hill or be upright because you can produce more power, but staying in the aerobars while riding uphill recruits glute muscles that you use for strength riding,” she says. “I’d do [this workout] in a bigger gear, at a lower cadence and stay in my aerobars while riding uphill.”
Corbin says riding uphill in the aero position feels really awkward at first, but tell yourself that you’re not going to get out of the aerobars and just focus on a smooth pedal stroke, making full circles and recruiting and engaging all your muscles. “I’ve seen good results, and it carries over well to the flats when you have a headwind, and it’s good for focusing on full muscle recruitment,” she adds.
Try the workout:
Ride 1 hour to the hill as a warm-up
10 minutes climbing in aerobars, 4 times through
Do first climb at Ironman effort and get faster, building watts as you go. After 10 minutes, descend and repeat.