The foundations for successful riding
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I ride about 50-100km week (or try)
I decide to jump in and buy a trainer (Elite powerfluid) as i can't always get out due to family commitments.
Anyway ride 1 I lasted 10 minute but only doing 24/25km/h at a cadence of 80ish. Resistance is set by whta gear you are in so i went for my typical road gear 53 / 17 or 15
What should i aim for in speed / time etc. I assume to keep cadence up at 90ish
Any guidance gratefully accepted
Aim for HR, or sweat levels (aka perceived effort)... Drop your gears waaay down. Are you judging your gear by what you do in the bunch, or solo? You're better off saying "I want to ride 2 sets of 20 minutes", riding in the little ring and sneak up the gears if it is too easy after 5 minutes, 10 minutes, 15 minutes. If you find it too easy after 20 minutes of spinning in the top of the gears in the little ring, then start at the bottom of the big ring for your second interval and repeat. If you don't have a 16 cog, or an 18 cog, you MIGHT struggle to get the right cadence for effort. I find for those hard aerobic efforts that having the 16 is invaluable in racing, and I wish I had the 18 when I'm soloing on the road after 3 hours
Your speedo is USELESS here. Your cadence is a much more useful tool. Pick the cadence, then get a gear that will let you last until the interval is over. Allow yourself 5 rides over the next month to get better at figuring it out. I've got a power meter, all the sensors, and I still have trouble maintaining a nice smooth target cadence for my 2x20s, which I know produce the right power output.
Focus on time and effort level, as that's what matters most for gaining fitness. There are zillions of indoor workouts you can do.
Your wheel's speed on a trainer will not always be a good guide to intensity, as there are many variables that can affect the effort required to maintain the same speed, both during a session (e.g. resistance unit and tyre warming up) and from session to session (e.g. tyre pressure, press on force of the roller on tyre etc). It certainly will bear little resemblance to outdoor speeds, if it does, it's just coincidence.
You can use trainer speed as a rough guide to intensity if you try to minimise the variables as much as possible, as realise it might take some time for the trainer to warm up and settle into a consistent resistance for your effort. It might need 10 to 20 minutes continuous effort for that to happen, depends on the trainer.
Else, ride with frequency, and have fun, keep it interesting. Find little motivational aids, such as having a plan for each session rather than be aimless, or using video or music to help pass the time.
Thanks Xplora and Alex
Sorry for the slow responce i was off for three days.
That gives me a starter to work on. I had my cadence up near where i wanted it but barely lasted 10 minutes in such a high gear.
I will knock it down and work at lasting for a greater time (and not worry about speed)
I've juat bought one of the sufferfest videos and used it on the trainer yesterday because of the crappy weather - they sure suck you in.
Managed to get through 1hr 40 worth of intervals. Felt it more in the legs than rhe cardio but there's no way I'd have completed a workout that long without having other riders to chase on a video
Now I just need a real big-ass fan!
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For those that have bought trainers primarily for training over winter in bad weather, do you find you use it enough to justify? do things like trainerroad and sufferfest vids keep you motivated to get back on it time and time again?
I live in canberra and need to get something for over winter, and while I dont think i will lack motivation, it is a concern when thinking of spending $500 on a good trainer with all the bits.
Just wanted peoples experience.
That's a hard core question chops. Are you racing? Or training for an event?
If you need to ride regardless of weather or season, you don't need an answer. You just answered it. If you don't need to ride, then you shouldn't get one. Trainer SUCKS unless you have little kids and need to be home, and you have a training schedule to adhere to. I keep my sessions to one hour max, have been doing 2-3 a fortnight over the past couple months. Works well for me.
Agree Xplora, I am in the same boat as you, i am having to spend more time at home looking after kids etc and as the wife works night shift i can get out early morning before day break either. So Trainer 2-3 times a week and either after the wife has gone to work or before the toddler wakes up in the morning. Im using sufferfest videos for motivation and some more structure to my sessions, they work for me. But the trainer is purely for High intensity interval sessions (they make you faster and fitter don't forget).
However as i just found out now, DO NOT have a big meal a few hours before jumping on the trainer and doing "revolver", dinner just about re-appeared on the floor after 30minutes!!!!!!
If your worried about price, just keep an eye out on gumtree, I just upgraded to a Cascade Fluid Pro that was on special for $189, and sooooooo much better than a mag trainer.
Thanks guys, think I definetly need to invest in one, have a 6 week old baby and Canberra winters are not the easiest to ride in, and just had my first summer of crit racing and quite enjoyed it, plus I race xc rounds on the mountain bike over winter.
Last year I had a gym Membership so would do Spin classes or my own interval sessions in bad weather but have let that lapse and so I guess I did kind of answer my own question. Just wanted to see if many people that bought trainers actually kept using them or lost motivation on them.
Yeah that's not going to work. It really comes down to whether or not you need to use your bike. If you can't be bothered riding, then a trainer won't help that. As long as you focus on the goal, rather than the means of achieving it, it makes a lot of these questions easier to answer. I think the same thing about power meters. Of course you need one. Is that the best investment of cash given your style of riding and training? Totally different.
I would say that it is very much worth considering getting a good one, because my Kurt Kinetic is the only trainer I have used, and it's supposed to be one of the best, but it's only "ok" in the grand scheme of things. I'd hate to think how bad a crappy one would be. It would be worth considering rollers instead of a trainer, but there is considerable more space and safety concerns around rollers.
The guys at the shop talked me out of a Kurt kinetic and jet black (they also sell them) and talked me into the cascade, I couldn't really tell the difference between them and with the cascade being 300 cheaper that money can now go into a PM later this year!
Trainer FTW during the week, but still get out on the weekends. With your mountain biking, you should be staying pretty fit anyway. Last winter was the first time I gave winter riding a red hot go and there weren't many weekends that I didn't get out, and the weather should be slightly better over in Canberra. With trainers you need a focus for your session and a focus for your end goal. Without those it's probably going to end up an oversized paperweight. I used the trainer a lot over winter mainly because through the week it's dark before and after work and with living on rural roads, it was the best option for me.
Trainer SUCKS if you don't use it right. Used properly they can be quite enjoyable and useful.
I have never had an enjoyable trainer ride. EVER .
But after a good session I certainly feel good about the results.
Power meter makes the the time pass faster... I just stare at the numbers and time seems to pass quicker... Also I am on rollers, not a home trainer.
I don't know if obsessively holding a cadence is necessarily enjoyable, but it's certainly useful, very true.
I don't mind the trainer, personally, but I want to let people's expectations be very very very low. They won't be surprised if they don't enjoy it then
I haven't yet got rollers - I'll probably have to in a while.
For now, making use of the trainers in a place down the road from where I work. Enjoying the efforts - and even more enjoying it when I'm noticing the results.
For me, the focus and dedicated work i can perform on the trainer is definitely a big plus. I tend to lalida a bit on the road and end up not doing a proper workout.
Recently i signed up for trainer road, which i think will give me the next level. With trainer road a 1 ½ hour workout flies past. Did a sufferfest video with them as well (without the video) and again very good. Chops, you should give it a try.
I do at least 1-2 workouts (intervals) on the trainer a week, and heaps more when daylight savings finishes. Good when you're into racing and you need dedicated and focussed work on weaknesses.
At the moment I CBF'd getting the bike out for a ride on the road but am enjoying the trainer, in fact another Sufferfest session coming up despite perfect weather conditions outside. Just can't be bothered with traffic, deciding where to go, traffic lights etc.
Hopefully I'll get over it.
Scott CR1, Kuota Kharma
Love that fan. I have a dyson which doesn't put out as much wind.
Currently setting up an iphone on the handlebars in a mount and going through long cycling videos on youtube. You get really step it up a notch when Cappuccio and Indurain are competing for the mountain stage victories.
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I'm in Canberra, with kids. So trainer is useful. I can't force myself to stay on it longer than about an hour. I've found a fan a necessity even out in the shed in the middle of winter. Music or other distraction like a sufferfest video will really help. I'd also recommend a HR monitor/cadence sensor. High intensity intervals seem to make it go quicker, and the HRM keeps you honest. Never as good as an actual ride, but better than nothing
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