In 2015 I probably would have tried most of these, then I did something that had nothing to do with my bike in 2016...
I used to ride Hawk Hill in SF a ton. Among my friend group the golden time to get to the top was under 9 minutes. I've done the ride with probably 50+ friends, I only have 4 that have done it in sub 9 minutes. These are generally fit dudes. I lost 30 pounds riding my bike starting in 2014 - 2016.
On my 282nd ride up Hawk I beat my best time by over 30 seconds.
I ate a burger the night before and didn't sleep well (due to the salty burger).
what changed for me? I stopped riding 6 times a week. I started doing high intensity interval training boot camps running sprints and adding muscle. I started those classes in April 2016, by September 2016 I broke my hawk hill record, with almost no planned training to beat that time, it just happened.
This is me on the morning it happened.