Weight training = testosterone = improved cycling?

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by JungleBiker, Mar 16, 2007.

  1. JungleBiker

    JungleBiker New Member

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    I am 48 years old and I train on my bike about 8 hours per week using a PowerTap with guidance from a professional coach. I understand that as we get older we produce less testosterone. I think I have also read somewhere that weight training can increase our testosterone levels? I haven’t done any scientific research but just based on my own feelings during periods when I do and don’t do weight training, I reckon that doing a couple of weight training sessions per week (of about 30 minutes of upper body weight training – no leg work – per session) makes me feel stronger and enables me to ride harder. It may just be psychological but I am wondering if my cycling is benefiting from increased testosterone due to the weight training...? Does anybody have any similar experience or know of any scientific research that may support my theory?

    JB.
     
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  2. Sillyoldtwit

    Sillyoldtwit New Member

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    At coming up to 65 in August, I can say my cycling has improved immeasurably through dropping the weights completely and devoting the time gained to on-the-bike workouts in the gym. My FTP has improved from 130W 15 months ago to almost 280W and this is with a detraining period of several weeks over xmas and the new year. And I feel unbelievably strong, and am getting stronger week by week.

    2 rules for rapid improvement JB:

    1) Forget the weights
    2) Ignore your heartrate which with continuously watching it, is probably the biggest obstacle to your reaching somewhere near your genetic limit.
    Tyson ;)
     
  3. mikesbytes

    mikesbytes New Member

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    Hi Junglebiker, theres a lot of disagreement on whether the weights will improve your cycling and it does depend on the individual. Some cyclists do a bit of upperbody weights to correct the inbalance of doing just legs.

    I'm a multisport person and personally find there is cross over benifits. Check my training log.
     
  4. JungleBiker

    JungleBiker New Member

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    Hi Tyson,

    Just to clarify - I am not training using heart rate; as I said above I am using a PowerTap (i.e. I have a power meter on my road bike) and my training sessions are prescribed in terms of watts.

    Perhaps your FTP gained due to training with power and the personal coaching from RDO not necessarily because you dropped weight training? As for stealing time available for bike training, I am only talking about 1 hour per week (2 x 30 mins) - not very much time.

    Also, I am only talking about upper body training so I am not trying to argue that doing squats/leg presses, etc will make stronger legs and better cyclists. I know that has been argued to death in the sticky thread above and I accept that such weight training is detrimental for endurance cyclists.

    I am just wondering if some upper body weight training can increase testosterone (or other growth hormones) that perhaps in turn can improve an endurance cyclist's performance, especially in older guys. In other words I am talking about the hormonal aspects of weight training, not the muscle building or strength aspects.

    I did try a search on this forum using the word testosterone and the sticky thread about gyming didn't appear on the first page of hits, so I think perhaps that discussion didn't consider the hormonal aspects.

    Anyhow, whatever the scientific facts, I will continue to do a some upper body weight training just to avoid looking like a 13-stone weakling. :D

    JB.
     
  5. AshesGlory

    AshesGlory New Member

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    You sound very similar to me. I use a powertap for bike training and this season I have started doing upper body and core strength training once per week. The goal was not to improve my cycling but for my general health. I have improved by 70% the number of reps I can do until loss of form (with rather modest weight) in bench press for example, without changing my body size.
    My cycling has also improved over the same time perion but its impossible to attribute that to strength training because of all the bike specific training I am doing.
    11.5 stone weakling.
     
  6. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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    A few links for reading material and other links based on the original question

    Link

    Link 2

    Link 3

    Link 4
     
  7. kopride

    kopride Member

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    I have heard that sprinting, in short bursts, also stimulates testosterone development in older males (over 40). Again, I won't weigh in on the whole weight training debate which gets argued ad nauseum on this site, but I do see a huge difference in my physique when I incorporate track work (running) and ride short sprints on my bike. My guess is that the "no lifting" advocates are probably getting similar, and perhaps more beneficial effects, from L6 intervals or sprint work.

    I have experimented with both lifting and non lifting with the lower body in the off season and have not seen a profound difference either way. I personally cannot tolerate the upper body atrophy that results from not lifting to maintain upper body strength, but I don't think anything about my bench press work outs helps my cycling, even if it indirectly produces testosterone.
     
  8. oneradtec

    oneradtec New Member

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    In my opinion, you are going to derive very few(if any) cycling specific benefits from weight training. Weight traing most likely will not stimulate any more testosterone than would intense workouts on the bike.
     
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