open topic, for anything cycling related.
Hi guys and girls
Having reached my 6th week of a regular weekly target I am now looking at not making it because the weather has gone shite! I'm only doing 100k's a week over 3 or 4 rides but have been really enjoying the challenge and obviously feel better for it, plus I was planning to increase the target when I can find a few longer 40/50/60k routes...
So will a trainer be an adequate alternative to rack up a few K's if, and when, the weather goes pare shaped? Probably an obvious question but I've never really used one that much and I hate those bikes in the gym and don't really want something thats effectively like that but I'm hoping that being on your own bike its quite different? I'm not racing or anything, just love riding and keeping fit.
And if its worth it where do you begin with selecting one? So many out there ranging wildly in price...
Thanks for any input
Never underestimate the power of ignorance
I find them really useful for heart-rate training. I use the indoor trainer 3 times a week for "base aerobic endurance" training where you keep your heart rate 65-74% of max http://www.bicyclenetwork.com.au/media/vanilla/file/Cycling-Inform's%20Heart%20Rate%20Training%20Guide.pdf and ( http://www.cycling-inform.com/heart-rat ... ur-cycling ) and for recovery riding (even when the weather is great). I supplement that with two road rides a week where I go all out. Why the trainer? Cause I am too competitive when I'm riding with others and always go over those heart rates cause I'm a idiot . Probably not an issue for most but works for me.
EDIT - In regards to the actual trainer I bought this one off Amazon. Great reviews, made in Japan and best price I could find. http://www.amazon.com/Minoura-400-1910-00-B60R-Tiredrive-Trainer/dp/B0040J7HAS/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1362091734&sr=8-2&keywords=turbo+trainer&tag=amazoniediscount01-20
I purchased a Kurt Kinetic Road Machine this week just for that purpose after being annoyed at not being able to get out last weekend. I got it from Pro-Lite Oz for $419 inc shipping. Honestly I didn't test any others I'd just read on many places that it is the one to buy so I got it. It feels great and sturdy but I've got nothing to compare it to. It comes with a Spinervals DVD and it absolutely crushed me, an hour on that feels like 4 on the road.
Indoor training can be very effective for fitness development, great for recovery from injury, and is a safe alternative when it's less hospitable outside. It can also be uncomfortable and dull, as you have far fewer distractions compared to outside.
There are many considerations.
Don't buy a poor quality trainer, it will just end up being a dust collector.
IMO magnetic resistance units should be avoided if you intend on using a trainer often. For occasional use they are OK but otherwise the nature of resistance provided is quite different to outdoors and it is often very difficult to sustain anything near outdoor power on one. But if it's just turning legs over occasionally, then they can be picked up for not an awful lot of $.
Fluid and wind trainers are a better bet, with the fluid you need to get one that's reliable (won't eventually leak) and the latter expect to put up with a fair bit of noise. One other thing to look for is a reasonable sized flywheel mass, the more rotational inertia the better.
Another factor to consider is set up - a high quality power fan (industrial scale) to cool you is vital if you intend to do any semi-serious training on it. It will be noisy.
Then you'll need to consider how you will stay motivated to train on it for any length of time and with any reasonable frequency. Music, videos and even computer software specially designed for indoor trainers can help. The sky's the limit.
If unsure, see if you can try some trainers your friends might have. The KK is a great unit but might be a bit much $ for your intended budget (have no idea). Because lots of people hate training indoors, I'd be pretty surprised if you couldn't find 2nd hand units in decent condition.
Another alternative is a good set of rollers. e.g Tacx Galaxia rollers are very cool and their fore-aft movement makes them much easier to ride than traditional rollers.
but of course rollers are not for everyone
Oh yeah forgot about the boredom bit. Have mine set up in front of the PC. 28" monitor playing downloaded tv shows gets me through.
Those "programs" alex mentioned above sound very interesting
I ride a Tacx Fortius that is controlled by my computer. The courses are either real life video, virtual reality, or set your own uo. Vr courses even have weather!! When the course goes uphill, a brake is applied in the trainer to simulate the change. Downhill is great fun, especially with wind assistance.
If you like, you can borrow my husband who often throws water at me when I'm riding, telling me it's raining!!
I can use this trainer every day and get to see lots of Europe with the videos.
It all comes down to $$.
You have it the wrong way around . The easy rides are for outside which is far more entertaining (and easier on the bum I find), and the trainer is for targetted intervals
A quick look on Ebay tells me that's over $2000! I'm not afraid to spend (ask the wife) but you'd need to really like indoor cycling to spend that, wouldn't you?
Never underestimate the power of ignorance
Thanks Alex. That's a very helpful post, although I didn't realise that its almost as confusing as buying the bike! The roller idea looks like an accident waiting to happen for me!
I have no budget as such but had seen them range from $100 to $500 and now I see they can go much higher!
I don't want to watch the TV or simulate a ride through Europe, not that there is anything wrong with that, I just want to clock up some k's when the rain is so bad that I can't/won't go out! I don't normally use an iPod on the bike but I would on the trainer.
I just want it to feel as close to real riding as possible...so given that criteria you tell me what my budget is and I'll tell you what my wife says lol
Never underestimate the power of ignorance
Rollers are closer to real riding than mag trainer... but to be honest, personally I would rather go out in a hurricane than ride inside on either, but sometimes you have no choice if you want to ride. Any reasonable mag trainer will do the job. Mine is a Tacx and it works fine, doesn't touch the tyre wear wise which is good, actually the drum the wheel rolls on is getting worn . The bigger the free wheel weight the better the feel ( so they say ). It is mind numbingly boring so anything that can take your mind off the effort or your eyes away from the time is good.
An hour on a home trainer is equal to a lot more on the road usually. Some crazy people actually enjoy them .
Well since there are cycle trainers for over $10k, like I said, sky's the limit...
here's a fine summary of some options:
http://www.dcrainmaker.com/2012/10/my-2 ... early.html
It's pretty hard to beat the Kurt Kinetic Road machine if prepared to spend a little more than the cheaper units. Ticks just about every box.
next step up from that would be Wahoo Kickr / Lemond Revolution
and then up from there is a Computrainer with computer set up and software like PerfPro Studio. (This is what I use, along with an ANT+ stick and SRM power meter)
After that we're talking Velotron territory and if you have to ask the price, you can't afford it!
If you want some fun you can use something like TrainerRoad on your computer, with an ANT+ device(s) hooked up to give on screen visual feedback on performance data and also to provide specific training sessions to follow. Sky's the limit...
I got the rollers when I had to make this choice, they're ok but not enough resistance. If I want to push hard at reasonable cadence I need to be nearly in my top gear, riding my track bike on there with ~85 gear inches is just spinning with practically no resistance. They're also kinda noisy when you're going that fast on them so you can't really hear the TV and I sweat like crazy so it's nice to do it outside if it's cold or there's a good breeze blowing. I generally play some music, strap a watch to the bars and do interval pyramids for ~45 mins and even then only if the weather has been terrible for days and I'm feeling rusty. I'm thinking of modifying my rollers to add some resistance with a magnet bar and putting them on bearings like the Tacx one so it can slide forwards and backwards but I haven't gotten around to it because I'd much rather ride on the road.
I have a jet black fluid trainer. If you are looking for a hard workout where you will sweat like a pig and have thighs that scream with pain then they are for you. You just don't get a rest. Terribly boring but a fantastic workout!
I have a jet black fluid and it is great to use... Tough; tougher than riding on the road... Much better than the magnetic one i had prior to it. Got mine from 99 bikes. Also, I grabbed the suffer fest videos to break the boredom; highly recommended...
+1 more for the Jet Black fluid trainer.
Riding indoors is a great way to really focus on your training session without any interruptions (and with a trainer you don't get a chance to coast along when you get tired, like you can when out on the road), so you're working hard 100% of the time.
2012 Felt F75 | 105 | ProLite Braccianos | GP4000S
Tour de France trainer. Not as good as a real ride but 30 gears, incline and decline plus five pages of screens can get you sweaty and well-informed. And I can ride wih earbuds in because I don't have to worry about the sound of cars and the like behind me.
I don't know if ther is a comparison but 45 minute on hat sucker feels like 90 on the real deal.
Some days you are a big, strutting rooster, some days you are a bit chicken and some days you are just a complete cocque. Roger Ramjet: 2009 Giant CRX3 Spockette: 2009 Trek FX 7.3 (WSD, property of Mrs Monsoon) Lady Penelope: 2011 Avanti Cadent 1.0 TdF
Rollers vary considerably in their resistance depending on drum size, material and bearings. Mine are much harder to ride than many others. Some are noisier than others and it can depend on the flooring you have them on, well as the roundness/quality of the drums (don't leave them in a hot car as that can warp the drums).
You might want to consider adding a Kreitler killer head wind unit. It won't solve your noise problems though
Industrial strength fan is almost compulsory for anyone doing any solid trainer work. Inadequate air flow and cooling leads to both reduced performance and reduced training effectiveness.
I use mine without any video aids/asisstance....usually just have the radio/music on in the background.
IMO, not only is the trainer a great physical workout but it is also good for a mental workout as well. As you don't really get a break or chance to coast along it can really test you to keep going and for the most part, the barrier you need to push through is in your head, so having little distraction from your workout means you are forced to focus on your riding and you learn to push through - something you can call on when out on the road battling against a head wind (for example) and you just need to keep your head down, bum up and keep pushing on.
I agree that it can get boring if you're just sitting there spinning for an hour but if you have a training plan and you're concentrating on the plan and your riding then time can pass by quickly. I've never been on my trainer and wished I had a video to watch to kill time. If I've got time to think that then I'm not concentrating hard enough on my training.
2012 Felt F75 | 105 | ProLite Braccianos | GP4000S
Yesterday while doing my indoor session, which is pre-programmed resistance controlled set up, I also had a you-tube running of a Paris-Roubaix race, and there I was, holding onto Cancellara's wheel as he made his break....
Yeah but you probably can sit on 400watts, the rest of us would have been off the back, and on the floor in a puddle of sweat and vomit
I bought one last year at the same time as my next door neighbour. Both Jet Black Trainers. He got the fluid and I got the mag. Well, mine's been sent back after some god-awful grinding sound started up at the beginning of a session. Anyways, I borrowed his fluid and had a go just this evening- as it turns out while pouring outside in this terrible Sydney weather.
Well, what a difference! The fluid trainer's so much harder! I usually use an IPhone app that sets gears, cadence and such. Where I normally can set a good average speed and distance, I could only do a fraction of that tonight. So, over 1 hour or so instead of clearing 35 k's, I staggered over the line at 25ks.
Big difference. Maybe I'm just cheating myself by having the mag at a slightly lower resistance to the fluid (4/5), but on my road rides I can normally average 30kmh over 40 kms and 27 kmh at 80kms. Tonight it was at 22kmh. Much harder all round.
As the old Cadbury guy always asked, 'Why is this so?'
It was imaginary holding on, not for real wattages!
My current threshold W/kg is about half my race fitness levels, and even that still wouldn't be enough to hold on for real when he puts the hammer down.
Sumner-Miller, if he had taken the time, would have explained the different nature of the resistance provided by such units, and he might have also explained the variability in resistance that occurs as heat builds in the fluid (and even in the magnetic unit). Strangely with fluid units, some get harder as they heat up, others get easier.
But here's a tip - wheel speed (and hence distances) on a trainer are meaningless as any indication of what you might do out on the road.
What matters for indoor training is intensity and duration.
Duration is pretty easy to measure, so what's left is finding a good means to measure intensity. This can be your own perceived level of exertion (not bad if you are in tune with it), or use of heart rate as a guide (OK for general aerobic work), or power output (best), or a proxy for power output (depends on how good/bad the proxy is).
Some trainers have a fairly predictable wheel speed-power relationship, and so in that sense wheel speed can be used as a guide to intensity. There are limits on its accuracy/consistency, but with some trainers it's enough to provide reasonable guide to broad levels of intensity. Trainers where the resistance is affected by heat build up are less reliable for this purpose.
Yeah I know, great idea though
Wow, I didn't know it changed that much from fit to relatively unfit
I know nothing about power and training though
Fab and Tony Martin are the best riders in the world IMO and Fab is my favourite rider because of the way he attacks and hurts the field
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