Best Weight Training Exercises for Cyclists

When selecting the greatest cycling strength and conditioning exercises, you first consider what is required. Cycling is primarily aerobic, with one leg at a time and continual force production required. A strong core is necessary for handling your bike, climbing, and overall endurance.

a cyclist
a cyclist

Numerous workouts can meet these demands, but a few targets the entire body in a cycling-specific manner, particularly when combined. Buying an exercise cycle can be a great substitute but, other exercises are equally important. Bodyweight exercises may be done anywhere, from your house to the gym or workplace. In contrast, weight-bearing activities should be performed in a gym with appropriate shoes and form if necessary.

The emphasis on strength exercises for cyclists is on training in a manner that simulates riding with the lower and upper body, as well as increasing overall core strength and muscular endurance. The major objective of strength training is to build a more robust supporting structure for your primary movers while cycling. The more aerobically powerful your assistance muscles and core are, the less tired you'll be during a race's latter stages and the greater your power potential.

The exercises below are best done with kettlebells and dumbbells. The front squats and single-leg deadlifts may be replaced with an Olympic bar or dumbbells. If you can't finish the required number of reps and sets because of a lack of form, reduce the weight, even if it means using no weights.

When you can easily complete the required number of reps and sets for two workouts in a row, push yourself by adding a little weight if zero is being used or increasing the current weight. A typical guideline for upper-body strength increases is 2 to 10 pounds and 5 to 15 pounds for lower-body strength increases.

weight training
weight training


Planks are one of the most basic exercises in the book and, as a result, one of the most effective at increasing core strength. Planks may be performed almost anywhere and can be done throughout the year.

Planks focus on your shoulders, midsection, and lower back. Each set may be more difficult if you raise one leg. Start with 30-minute to 1-hour hold periods per round and work your way up to 60-90 second hold times as you train throughout the offseason.

Leg Lift

The abdominals, and the hip flexors, are targeted by leg lifts. A simple variation is to raise hands above one's head to target the upper abdominals. With a goal of 3-5 sets, complete 15-25 reps per set.


Lunges are a cycling-specific exercise since they are done one leg at a time, focusing on your quadriceps, hips, and hamstrings. To perfect form, it's vital to start without weight. The two most frequent blunders with lunges are allowing the knee to extend beyond the front foot and compressing the torso forward/recoiling it back during the forward and backward phases. Focus on 15-30 reps sets, aiming for 3-5 repetitions per set.


The burpee is an effective full-body exercise. The movement involves all of the major joints and is meant to be performed with a quick burst. Adding pushups and a standing jump at the end of some versions is possible. Concentrate on fast repetitions in the 10-20 repetition range, doing 3-5 sets of each.

Renegade Rows

Renegade rows are a full-body workout that works similar muscles to the plank, with the addition of the upper back and arms. Rows will help you develop tremendous upper-body endurance. Add a pushup between exercises for an extra degree of difficulty. Do 15-30 reps per set, resting for 30-90 seconds between sets, with

Kettle Bell Swings

Kettlebell swings are the first activity that springs to mind when discussing power endurance. Because good technique is essential, start with lighter weights and work your way up. Keep your core tight, keep your back straight, and swing forward by thrusting from your hips and lower body. Swings with a kettlebell target your quadriceps, hamstrings, and hips.

Swings should be explosively performed, and the kettlebell should be firmly held! Begin at 15-25 reps per set with 1-2 minutes rest between sets and 3-5 sets as a goal. As soon as your form or posture starts to decline, stop the set.

Front Squats

Squats should be a standard component of the off-season training schedule. Front squats work the hips, quadriceps, and hamstrings, making them ideal for building max strength and muscle endurance.

Begin with lightweight squats and work your way up, beginning with higher reps (15-30) before adding heavyweight and always utilizing a spotter to monitor form and assist with safety when lifting larger quantities.

Using these eight exercises will help you develop the strength you'll need when riding a bike. Many of them may be done at home without using any equipment. Taking the effort to cultivate shoulder, core, and leg strength throughout the year can assist you in riding for longer and harder.

Single Leg Deadlifts

The hamstrings, hips, and glutes are all targeted by single-leg deadlifts. Single leg exercises assist in the correction of muscular imbalances since each leg has to bear the weight independently. You should start with low weights (20-40 pounds) and do 8-10 repetitions per set.

Spend a few weeks getting your muscles accustomed to greater loads, then gradually increase the amount of weight you're lifting. Use a straight or slightly flexed back, somewhat bent knee, and a strong core for each rep. Make each repetition with a deliberate pace.