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By Ned Taylor

October 20, 2017

How to build cycling endurance when you have no time.

Yes, I know you are busy. As a cyclist, the thought of adding anything else to your already jam-packed schedule is definitely asking for too much.

For you, the alarm usually goes off at 5 a.m.

And you have an HOUR.

Max -2

All you’re 'my thingy' has to be packed in this slot until and unless you’re a pro or have some very generous sponsors.

Otherwise, rest of the time is for ‘adulting’ (working, taking care of the kids, family, and other responsibilities).

You somehow manage to fit in 5 to 7 hours of training a week.

That’s it.

Maybe, a couple of long rides over the weekend if you are blessed with not so demanding other halves.

But we all as a cyclist you know that’s not enough especially when you intend to participate in a race, focus on sportives, aim to ride your first-century ride or simply want to get better as a rider.

And endurance is hard to train for.


Because there are no short-cuts.

All it needs is……… time………………………. and longer intervals of time.

Good news is, it is a not dead end for you.

And yoga is the most suited answer for most of your problems.

By the way, it’s not just for you (overly engaged and a well-tamed family man with a ‘CYCLOPATH’ inside.)

Nowadays most pro- cyclists use yoga as part of their training program.

Like Bradley Wiggins, 2012 Tour De France winner. Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski, pro mountain biker and Olympian.

From power to endurance, athletes at all levels are incorporating yoga to gain an edge over the competition, and prevent injury.

Here are best 8 yoga poses these pro use to strengthen the muscles of calves hamstring, back and glutes.

Do them twice a week and you will observe significant improvement in your cycling endurance.
8 yoga poses to build cycling endurance

01. High Plank Pose.

Benefits: Strengthen your wrist shoulders and core muscles. Tone your abdomen. Improve your posture and reduce back pains. Improve your balance which results in better movement and coordination. Along with other enormous benefits, this is a foundational pose for beginners to train them for advance hand balancing poses.

Yoga pose High Plank


  • Start with lying on your chest with hands beneath your shoulders. Leg straight with toes tucked in.
  • Push your hands down and lift your upper body above the floor.
  • Push your toes down and lift your hips and knees up in the air.
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    Balance yourself on hands and toes with shoulders over hands, forming a straight line with your body from heels to head.
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    Engage your arm muscles with a slight bend to the elbows to prevent locking out.
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    Engage your core and avoid your hips to lean forward.
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    Keep your Shoulders away from the head, neck straight and long, and gaze straight down.
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    Hold for 5 deep breaths

Tips: If you start to feel your core failing and your lower back begins to arch, take your knees down. You risk injury to your lower back by continuing plank with an arched back. If holding a plank for a longer period is difficult, rest your both knees and alternate knees time to time.

02. Side Plank Pose.

Benefits: Strengthen the core stability and concentration. Tone your thighs which result in significant decrease in your waistline. Develop core endurance along with balance and coordination which results in enhanced performance in endurance sports such as running cycling etc. want to get rid of your love handles? This single pose is enough.


  • Start with going in a high plank pose.
  • While holding plank pose, put your weight in one hand.
  • Turn your shoulder and balance your body on the outer edge of your foot.
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    Stack your other foot on top of your bottom foot, and roll your right hip and shoulder back to stack up with your left hip and shoulder.
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    Extend opposite hand skyward, forming a straight line from planted hand to extended hand.
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    Pull head away from the shoulders to lengthen the neck, and look up at the extended hand.
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    Hold for 5 deep breaths
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    Repeat on the other side.

Tips: Keep your toes flexed toward your shin, and make sure to prevent your chest from splaying out and arching your back. You should not feel any pain in your shoulders while doing this pose. If you find this pose too hard to attempt, lower your forearm to the floor, and do the side plank on your elbow. Or drop your knee to the floor and do a side plank with your hand and knee to the floor.

03. Downward Dog Pose.

Benefits: Provide a great stretch to the entire backside, open the shoulders to get a better range of motion. Enhance shoulder and forearm strength while lengthening calf and hamstring muscles. Excellent pose for maintaining a proper running posture in long runs. Moreover, increase blood flow towards brain which decreases stress and enhances productivity.

Yoga Pose Down ward dog


  • Lie on your chest with your hands on the mat underneath your shoulders.
  • Exhale as you lift your hips up and back and roll over your toes.
  • Place your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width distant, feet four to six inches apart.
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    Press into your hands to lengthen your arms.
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    Roll your shoulders out away from your ears and relax your neck.
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    Lengthen your spine as you lift your hips and push your chest toward the thighs.
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    Flatten the lower back. Bend knees as much as necessary.
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    Press down through your heels.

Tips: Watch out for any hyper-extension of elbows and knees. If you feel too much pressure on your shoulders, shorten the distance between your hands and feet, or allow your knees to bend until you feel an even stretch throughout your entire back.  If your hamstrings are tight and your spine is rounding, bend both knees slightly and tip your pelvis so that the tailbone reaches upward. Focus on a long spine by pressing into your palms and lifting your hips.

04. Upward Dog Pose.

Benefits: A great pose to challenge you for lifting and opening your chest. Which results in improving our posture and enhancing lung capacity. Also strengthen the spine, arms wrists and shoulder muscles for visible improvisation in athletic performance.


  • Start with Lying on your chest with your hands under your shoulders. With your legs extended behind you, spread a few inches apart.
  • Inhale as you lift your chest and straighten your arms.
  • Roll over your toes to the tops of your feet.
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    Keep your shoulders down and back, away from your ears.
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    Pull your shoulder blades toward each other and open your chest.
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    Press your palms down while keeping hands straight and align your shoulder over your wrist.
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    Gaze forward to lengthen and relax your neck.
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    Hold the pose for 5 deep breaths.

Tips: If you are feeling too much pressure in your hand, shift your weight towards legs by elevating your hands on a yoga block or chair. If you are having difficulty in lifting your legs in the air, tuck your toes inside. Engage your abdominal muscles to release excessive pressure in the lower back.

05. Warrior II Pose.

Benefits: This is a deep hip-opening pose that strengthens the muscles in the thighs and buttocks which improve the power in your hips for twisting movements such as swinging in golf and baseball back-flipping in jujitsu and M.M.A or changing direction in football. It tones the abdomen, ankles, and arches of the feet. This pose also opens the chest and shoulders, improving breathing capacity and increasing circulation throughout the body.

Yoga pose Warrior-2


  • Start with the legs about 4 - 5 feet apart.
  • Rotate upper body toward one of the legs.
  • Rotate the front foot to face forward.
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    Engage your core and relax your shoulders. Align your butt with the torso.
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    Bend into the front knee until the knee is over the ankle.
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    Extend the arms laterally, reaching the fingers as far away from one another.
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    Turn your head to look over the extended front hand.
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    Repeat the pose from other side.

Tips: Squeeze your legs toward one another to draw your hips under your torso and tilt your pelvis slightly upward to protect your lower back and engage your core. Keep your arms active by engaging the muscles in your arms. If feeling too much pressure on the front foot, change the knee angle of the front leg.

06. Triangle Pose.

Benefits: A tremendous stretching pose which relieves stress strengthens legs and core muscles. Simulate the function of abdominal organs results in better digestion. Reduce the risk of hamstring injuries, increase the range of motion of your legs to improve kicking power and increase speed.


  • Take a step for the edge of the mat with almost 3 feet distance between both feet.
  • Rotate your back foot about 60 deg away from the front foot.
  • Extend your arms in the alignment of your feet.
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    Keep your legs straight and Lean your upper body forward sideways.
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    Keep your spine long with no rounding. And reach for your front foot with your front hand.
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    Push your right hip back. Once you feel the stretch, relax your r hand down to your shin or the floor.
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    Reach your other arm up to the ceiling right above your shoulder.
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    Hold the pose for 5 deep breaths, and repeat on the other side.

Tips: Squeeze your legs toward one another to prevent your leg muscles from relaxing. Do NOT lock out your front knee. For Modification, Place a block on either side of the front leg, and place your hand on top of the block.

07. Chair Pose.

Benefits: An excellent pose for toning your legs. Build lower body strength by working on your calves ankles hip flexors and back. Develop endurance while opening the shoulders and chest to Stimulates the heart, diaphragm, and abdominal organs. A good exercise to reduce flatness of feet.


  • Start with standing straight with feet shoulder wide.
  • Inhale and raise your arms above your head, perpendicular to the floor.
  • Exhale as you bend your knees, bringing your thighs as parallel to the floor as they can get.
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    Open up your chest and place your shoulders right above your knees.
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    Keep the knees behind the toes, and maintain a flat spine.
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    Gaze directly forward.
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    For a deeper pose, tilt your head slightly and gaze at a point between your hands.
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    Hold the pose for 5 deep breaths.

Tips: Keep your back straight throughout your spine. Avoid rounding it up and opening up your chest. To keep up the balance put the weight of your body on your heels, and you may be able to lift your toes. If feeling too much pressure in legs, change knee angle.

08. Camel Pose.

Benefits: If done properly this pose starches almost all of the muscles in the body. While strengthening the spine, this pose also stimulates the abdominal organs which results in better digestion and metabolism. This pose also detoxifies the body, improve lung capacity and reduce abdominal fat.


  • Start from an upright kneeling position with your hands on your hips.
  • Spread your knees about hip-width apart.
  • Lift your chest up to the ceiling, and start to push your thighs forward.
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    Tuck your chin to your chest.
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    Slowly lean back with your upper back, and place your right hand on your right heel and then your left hand to your left heel.
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    If it doesn’t bother your neck, relax your head back, stretching your throat.
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    Keep lifting your chest up, pushing your thighs forward and lengthening your tailbone downward.
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    Hold the pose for 5 deep breaths (50 Seconds).

Tips: Instead of reaching back with both hands, do the half-camel pose with one hand at a time. The arm that is not reaching back for the foot reaches up to the ceiling. In case of Knee tension, cushion the knees with a blanket.

And if you are looking for some more yoga poses and further guidance do check out our ultimate yoga assessment guide. As it comes with every thing, a yoga practitioner needs when practicing solo.

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    50+ Yoga Poses
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    The detailed set of steps to get into every pose.
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    Tips and modifications for beginners to provide extra help.
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    Assessment scale for every posture which enables the user to do a perfect workout every time.
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    10+ sequences to gains the benefits in every aspect of a daily routine.

You can check out our YOGA ASSESSMENT GUIDE™ by clicking here!

Thanks for staying till here.

Oh by the way for doing yoga you do need a mat as well. Check out our ultimate guide to choosing the best mat for yourself.

And for some heavy dose of yoga inspiration check this out.

Take good care of yourself and


Ned Taylor

About the author

Hey there, my name is Ned and I am on a mission to provide you health and fitness advice that are rational (i.e. back by scientific evidence) and sustainable ( means practical enough to be incorporated in normal people's routines with busy lives).

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