As in life, you get out what you put in.
“I have to watch my weight,” says Hoy, “but unlike road-racing cyclists, I don’t have to watch every pound I put on, because I rely more on power. It’s far worse if I lose weight than put weight on.”
“A vital meal for me. I’ll have a bowl of cereal with semi-skimmed milk and honey on top, along with a chopped banana.” Although Hoy says his portions aren’t the usual 30g bowls. “I well exceed the recommended amount because I need to burn so much energy throughout the day.” He then has a fruit smoothie, plus fruit juice for the sugar rush and a hit of coffee. Plus a protein shake. Finally, he pops a multi-vitamin tablet to ensure he doesn’t overlook any vital nutrients.
Hoy admits it’s hard to get a proper meal in as he trains three times a day and doesn’t want to feel full and bloated on the bike. Instead he snacks. “It’s not high-tech stuff,” he concedes. “I just get a sandwich on the run. Although BLTs and mayonnaise is pretty much off the menu.” Hoy’s aim is to have a continuous stream of energy, and one that’s perked up with mea-replacement shakes immediately after training.
“I’m ready for a good meal in the evening but again I don’t go big,” says Hoy. “I have fruit and veg, pasta, chicken and other lean meats. But I’ll let you into a secret – I’m a cake fiend. Because I can’t do pubs because of training, cafes are my social hangouts. I’m now a bit of a coffee snob, who loves tucking into muffins and cakes.”
“You have to get each little component of your training regime right,” says Hoy. “But if you overdo one thing then it can effect everything else”
1/ Quads and glutes – squats
“This is probably the most important exercise I do. It builds my leg strength like no other and specifically works the thighs and glutes.” Hoy also concedes that it generates huge amounts of the power required for his sport, working on the core muscles and the stability vital to sprint cycling. “The key is to keep a natural lumber curve to the back, bend the legs at the knee and hip, and come back to the starting position.”
2/ Hamstrings and lower back – stiff dead lift
“This exercise is another simple one, again focusing on generating power because I sometimes competitively cycle for just one minute – so power is key. This works the same muscles as the squat, but specifically helps the hamstrings.” With knees only slightly bent, lift the bar by extending from the hips until standing upright. Then lower the bar to the top of your feet by bending your hips. Repeat until pooped.”
3/ Quads, hamstrings and glutes – lunge
Another one that works the quads and glutes (arse). Start with your feet hip-width apart and take a large step forward. Your trail leg should stretch out and your knee should only graze the floor. Return to the standing position by using the heel of your lead foot. Then stand with your feet hip-width apart and repeat, leading with the other foot.
4/ Full body workout – Swiss ball squat thrusts
“This works everything from my hands to my feet.” Balance yourself by keeping the back straight and bring the ball towards your upper body by bending your knees. “The arms may feel the pressure and will shake, but that will improve as your core strength gets better.
5/ Quads, hips and calves – jump squat
“The jump squat is all about explosion,” says Hoy. “Adopt the starting position for the squat, bend the knees and jump as high as you can, bending your knees on impact to soften the blow.”
6/ Quads and hips – leg press
“This machine complements the squat and isolates the leg muscles whilst giving your core a rest. Make sure you lift the weight as fast as you can. Lower the weight slowly and with control, but lift it again quickly to work on the power and strength.” And then leave the gym with your legs wobbling like Elvis…