The Uphill Hour Challenge – What Can You Do?

published on July 13, 2020

everything is really hard work and a bit slow the our Accord meanwhile is prohibitively expensive and also really unpleasant so is there an alternative ultimate test for cyclists that actually blends the best of both yes yes there is

And it's called at the uphill hour now you might remember Emma Polly had a go at this a couple of years back but her record which still stands I believe relies on having one super humungous epic climb at your disposal however we

Are going to change things up a little bit and so now this challenge is going to be accessible to almost all of this the premise is simple how many metres can you climb in one hour the catch is that you have to finish at the same

Height as you start so theoretically that means you won't get an advantage from riding up one continuous climb because you would still have to turn around and get to the bottom so ultimately it means that there is no

Excuse we can all have a go at the uphill hour okay this is me the world-famous almost nature hill in the southwest of England a climb that I absolutely hate the reason I've chosen it though is

Because Alice Thompson set what at the time was a world best for Everest Inge now she did a lot of reps because it's just one point one six kilometres along an average gradient of ten point one percent meaning mass fans then it climbs

120 metres every time you do it now according to Strava I've only ever been uphill once and that was on March the 26th 2012 did say I didn't like it my time that day it was 4 minutes and 2 seconds so what I'm aiming for is

Six-minute reps up and down however I've got to admit I was a lot fitter back then than I am now and also I think my time might be seriously affected by how quickly I can do u-turns and how much traffic there is

Don't ask me James why he'd started to pick the busiest climb in the world so sorry now as you might imagine the key to this thing is gonna be going superlight so I'm not taking any spares with me no

Pump or tube because I'm only going a maximum 116 kilometres for my car also only got half a bottle in there and I've only got electrolytes in there from elevator I didn't want carbohydrates but I thought it's really important have

Something sweet in my mouth just keep going I'm also got an energy gel I'm gonna dispatch in the first 15 minutes and then that's it basically no more prep just got to do it oh yeah I said I was getting super lightweight but

Of course I've got a GoPro with me as well so anyway here we go ready to roll start the clock 12 minutes past 10:00 on a Tuesday morning oh yeah inauspicious time for a world record attempt

All right back crack on and though it's no get away from it it's gonna hurt okay overthrew Rome 1 as the July 4 m5 that have to go over I try to get my head around pasting them

Over so just arrived at the climb just earned a bit of a warm earth and the climate chosen to do is croove inhale and it's a solid hill and I trying to avoid it at

All costs but today I thought it was going to be perfect for the challenge so the section I've chosen is just under half okay I'm not going to do the whole thing because there's quite a bit of flatten it so I've chosen the steepest

Section and the max gradient on that section is 14% and the total meters of climbing in one rat that will be 52 meters I have no idea how many reps I'm going to be able to do I just hope it's more than sonali so let's get cracking

Just going to write at the bottom and start from there because if I start at the top and then have to try and get back up to the top and won't be able to do it that's not very good so just go out to the bottom of the climb and as

You can see it's quite steep and it's just started raining so the roads are quite slippery so I'm gonna have to be extra careful on the descents and I'm definitely not going to take any risks on the way down I'm just gonna either

Got power on my bike so I'm just gonna go off feel and heart rate I'm gonna try and keep my heart rate 188 190 I reckon hopefully I can keep it around there for the hour three two one

karate top my third rap predictably I went for over thresher which means legs get pretty saw start of each ran

But by this point I'm kind of okay need a quarter way through they are ste bit where you go although this seems like a quirky little challenge how high you can climb in one

Hour it's actually a really important metric in cycling or at least it is among the pros your speed of a scent is called van which stands for velocity tap since you're an early media which is a term that was coined by the now infamous

Italian cycling sport scientist dr Ferrari proteins now use van as a method of calculating a rider's performance or ability and also to analyze racing for example a team would typically ride a van of about 1,500 while climbing mid

Stage and then reckon on about 1,700 for the final climb of the day to be in with a shot at the state victory our our challenge is slightly different to van though as it will include descending time as well of course so it's not

Directly comparable however as a way of calculating your performance the our challenge is potentially just as good absolutely brutal I've only done 460

Meters in half an hour can't imagine doing it never send off about the point now where conquering cluster any slower I'd love to tell you what rap I'm on I don't know I've lost count now I'm not

Looking at elevation I kind of don't want to think about it instead I'm pacing now it's like they take like key ratios we make easiest right now 200 meters I can drop into 25 3 GB is back to 28

Chucky's here we stick in the big ring it's bottom section is really starting to hurt now every time I try to get their legs moving again and I made a point of even into the big ring it's

Just up here Gorman on

My god oh oh so in an hour I did 922 and meters of climbing had an average heart rate of a hundred and seventy one and a max heart rate of a hundred and ninety-two I mean not bad for a track Rider I'm definitely not I had a climber

So pretty proud of that time for a full last rep so I do what I can on 58 minutes boy seconds poor Chuck in a year II I don't want to cut it to fly okay end of 59 minutes

Its lucky you here four or five seconds to get back down okay 59 minutes 45 seconds and right yes please stop but you can say I already

Moved yet say what a shell I think the reason I never wrote it was not because it's steep and horrible it's just really really busy fortunately I didn't stand in the way so you might say what that was like was kind of enjoyable but it's

Also so interesting like irrespective of whether you want to get a result will not just going through that kind of level of effort on the same climb it tells you an awful lot about your body even though I'm 37 I've been doing this

For Wow nearly three decades they were ever quiet I've seen myself and felt myself decline like that I can't wait to crunch through some data and also find exactly what I got but if my why who is correct

And it's obviously based on barometric pressure so it's open to error well quiet with that that was exactly why I set out to do but not 1001 during 74 that we weird 1200 but I'll take that on my arms here I'm gonna put this GoPro

Down there all right now if I'm gonna have any chance of beating the other GCM presenters I'm gonna need a cunning plan fortunately I've got a cunning plan well actually technically I can't I can't take the credit for it I happened to

Speak to Alex Dowsett on the phone last night is that rather than just ride up and down on climb I'm gonna ride up and down two climbs in kind of like a giant halfpipe type deal the thinking being that I

Don't have to slow down and break at the bottom of the climb I can just carry my momentum through into the next one turn around at the top come back down so that's the plan that's what I'm gonna do rich never saw this one come in now I've

Looked in the rules and there's nowhere in the rules that says I can't do this cunning plan sir I'm gonna do it also I've spoken to some other experts as well so I spoke to JP Bela he said that deep wheels would be better

For this kind of challenge because rotating weights not going to matter with the way I do it because you only lose inertia in the wheel when you break and I'm never breaking because I hold the momentum as I go down and up and

Then I slow down and then I never have to accelerate from a standing start at the base of a climb where a light wheel would matter long story short I've just got two massive arrow fly wheels on my bike yeah let me give it a go wish me

Luck and to compound it may even where star training I'm doing all right you're right just finished the challenge hard about ten minutes in our thinking so any way

That I can just ride half of this and then somehow like the computer file and double it where you I didn't do that I just carried on but it's worth it because I think I might beat in the other presenters so I've done 12 70

Metres which is pretty high and if I have one then this isn't a victory for me once and for all I hope this is a victory for Aero and science we've got big deep wheels in an also victory for Alex Daschle as well

Thanks Alex very cunning and victory for mullets as well anyway I'm gonna go now I had to get up at 5 am to do this thing go get some breakfast Hey well it seems like Ollie might have won that one I mean his giant halfpipe technique

Which it's not technically against the rules he's right I just think perhaps he's cheated himself on that one but anyway I'm not bitter not that bitter anyway he tops the leaderboard with 1217 meters which

Is a fine effort be fair I am second with one thousand one hundred and seventy four meters a man on it is just behind with 922 meters our team sprinter putting us all to shame quite frankly well the stage is now yours

Give it a go come and obliterate our puny effort I can't recommend it enough I see it's not half as grim as you might think and it's also absolutely fascinating weirdly enjoyable and not only that as I

Was going up and down and up and down up and down up and down up and down I did start to think actually this is kind of like the ultimate fitness tests or FTP tes sod ramp tes if you want to know how fit you are ahead of your sporty for

Your race or whatever come and have a go ahead an uphill our record make sure you let us know in the comment section down below we'll also be following up on this on the GTN show as well so we'll give a few shout outs to the ultimate uphill

Our records

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