Spinning(some say "spinwork") - pedaling high RPM, lower gear at given uphill terrain
Grinding(some say "speedwork") - pedaling in low RPM, high gear at given uphill terrain
I'm a strong advocate of spinning. Recently, I tested out grinding. Grinding gets me faster compare to spinning at a cost... knee pain!
Last Sunday, me and 5 others climbed up Fraser Hill. It was 28km to gap from Kuala Kubu Baru and another 12km up to clock tower. With recently replaced crankset (Shimano 105, 53T & 39T chainring) on my Spesh, the temptation of getting faster was there. Especially "competing" with others riding a road bike with carbon between their legs.
I was grinding my way up to gap before I know, I developed a knee pain. Not a severe kind of pain but more like a pain that I can bear with. Things getting a little uncomfortable until I reached gap. I decided to change the pattern to spinning my way up to clock tower from gap. It came to the point I was using 39/34 gear combo (lowest gear possible for my Spesh) on some steep section.
Alhamdulillah, I made to the clock tower, non-stop in 3 hours despite being the last person to reach there.
To serve as a reminder to myself in the future...
Spin and you save your knee!!
Photo by Shuk CIOCC