Pedal Harder Uphill

My husband Brent has this insane natural tendency to pedal harder uphill — both in life and in cycling. Let me explain.

Back in August of last year, we both got super serious about cycling and invested in road bikes. These bikes are closer to what you’d imagine professionals using versus what the average person uses for commuting. And of course, I also got super serious about my cycling wardrobe too. 😉

With this new love for being on the bike, came a new love for hills! I don’t like going uphill, it’s hard and takes tons of energy. But boy, do I love zooming down a hill. It feels so carefree and fabulous. Like I’m flying.

But going uphill first has always been a nightmare until I learned to pedal harder uphill — a trick Brent has been doing this whole time.

Put the Pedal to the Metal

If you’re anything like me, you’re probably wondering how pedaling harder uphill would make a difference. Seems like it’s a ton of work anyways so why not take your time? That’s the wrong way to think!

First, pedaling harder uphill means putting out just a bit more energy to get up the hill faster. More often than not, that little extra energy put into the pedals causes you to get to the top faster. So overall, you’re putting out more energy but in a shorter time period. In essence, it’s like ripping off the band-aid. It’ kind of hurts either way so might as well get it over with.

Next, if you’re preparing to pedal harder uphill, you naturally prepare for it a bit sooner. You can see the hill coming so you start pedaling harder before you hit the hill. This is where momentum comes in. Pardon my shoddy attempt at understanding physics, but I know that momentum helps you uphill. Google it.

So since you’ve made it up the hill faster, and you’ve got some momentum on your side, the downhill part is even better. Depending on the size of the hill, your uphill momentum can transfer to your downhill momentum.

It’s moments like these where I say a little “weeeeee” to myself as I fly down a hill.

Life Is a Climb But the View Is Great

Let’s take this beautiful analogy of pedaling uphill and apply it to our everyday life.

We know we have tons of hills, both big and small, sprinkled into our lives. A hill could be a difficult co-worker, an unpaid bill, a stack of paperwork, a nosy neighbor, or a lousy friend. Fill in the blank with what any of those everyday challenges we all face.

Our tendency sometimes is to take our sweet time dealing with this “hills” by putting them off until the last minute. Our minds say things to us like “it’s too hard” or “I’ll do that later.”

More often than not, we know we can conquer those hills. But instead of pedaling harder, we gear down too soon and make the entire experience unpleasant. Instead of breaking it off with a lousy friend, we make a million excuses for not having time to see them. Instead of paying a bill when we get it, we wait until the deadline (or later) making it even harder on our pockets. Instead of tackling that stack of paperwork, we check Facebook for a sec.

Can you see the pattern here?

These hills need some harder pedaling! If you tell that friend that you don’t think it’s working out anymore, yeah it hurts. But pull that band-aid off, babe! You’ll both enjoy the downhill descent better.

The same goes for tackling that stack of paperwork, politely telling off a nosy neighbor, working with the difficult co-worker, and even paying the bills. It’s tough and sometimes it freaking sucks! But, it’s so much easier to move on with life after getting over that hill.

Because after pedaling hard up those hills, you deserve to treat yourself by flying down the other side. WEEEeeeeeee!

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Author: Andréa Jones

Hi, I’m Andréa — an inspirational and lifestyle blogger determined to live a life that doesn’t just look good, but one that also *feels* good. As a digital & social media enthusiast determined to create a life that I look forward to every day, SimplyAndrea.com is a digital journal chronicling my advice, adventures, and attempts at living fearlessly.

What do you think?

  • Don’t forget: I also shift into heavier gears when approaching a hill! I want as much power and momentum in my wheels as possible when I start the ascent. I can always gear down, but it’s tough to gear up once we start climbing. Funny enough, I often end up traveling up hills faster than I would have gone on flat ground.

    It’s a great analogy for life in general, as you’ve pointed out. Don’t shy away from challenges. Don’t gear down and suffer through it. Power through it! Get’r’done! (Especially if you live in Southern Ontario where there aren’t many hills in the first place…)

    —Brent

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