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  • Indoor bike trainers

    I'm guessing a few folks here that cycle use some sort of indoor trainer. For ten years I've used a simple CycleOps trainer, takes up little room in the house, change resistance simply by changing gears (and therefore speed). Kind of boring, I can last about 30' and it's hard to push the effort without some rowdy concert video on the TV. Well, for Xmas, Santa brought me a Wahoo KICKR with the KICKR Climb (front fork up/down accessory), and I've paired it with the online Zwift app, and have it hooked up to my old 40" flat screen TV. I've used it a half-dozen times in the last ten days and it's kind of cool, definitely more interesting and closer to real cycling. I've done virtual rides in New York, Yorkshire, and London. The resistance increases with hills are realistic, the other virtual riders passing you and being passed add some incentive. Eventually, more riding unlocks access to more rides, like the Alpe d'Huez or such.

  • #2
    I'm like you, Jay. Everytime i ride indoors I can make it about 30 minutes and then virtually die of boredom

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    • #3
      Ive often thought about getting one. But for me the biggest reason to get one is the innumerable dangers of cycling on the road today.

      Roads are too narrow, there are too many drivers and too many distractions for those too many drivers.

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      • #4
        I pondered getting an indoor bike but there are few days I cannot just go outdoors for a walk/jog.. Before my knee replacement I rode a bike several miles every day around my low traffic neighborhood but was still shy of cars.. I would not venture onto a main street or highway..
        When a Planet Fitness opened a mile from house, I tried to join. They would not accept cash, check or credit card for years payment in advance, insisted on debiting my bank account monthly... I walked..

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        • #5
          The advent of direct drive units like the Wahoo line was a quantum leap for indoor trainers, though I still prefer using my spin bike for indoor riding. That said any day that's not snowing, and warmer than 25°, I'm going out.
          There are no strings on me

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          • #6
            I don't know how it translates to outdoor biking, but by far the best piece of indoor equipment I ever had access to was an Expresso Interactive bike. We had one at the station I was at, and I've never, ever had more fun doing cardio. I was addicted. You could compete with anyone in the World. There were a bunch of different courses and you would try to set personal course records, bike course records, city, state, age-group, etc...

            I was so much fun to try to climb the "leaderboards" or challenge someone you knew. They are very expensive but I'd love to have one someday.
            You there, on the motorbike! Sell me one of your melons!

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            • #7
              Tried TrainerRoad and experienced a bunch of technical annoyances....like Windows refused to recognize the drivers, and then more. I know some dedicated triathletes who value it highly, but I'd prefer doing outdoor training.

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              • #8
                So far, no technical glitches with my set-up. A very tech-savvy friend has been using the same for at least six months and swears by it, no or minimal problems.

                I prefer the outdoors, but when it's dark or bad weather, it's really good to have.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by bambam1729 View Post
                  I'm like you, Jay. Everytime i ride indoors I can make it about 30 minutes and then virtually die of boredom
                  I feel the exact same way about treadmills.

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                  • #10
                    I have almost never done more than an hour on an indoor trainer, using either the bike at the gym or my bike on a trainer like CycleOps (and never over 80 minutes). But training on a trainer from me was like training on climbs, it was intense, and protracted high-level effort and I cannot do that from much more than an hour).

                    Of course, when I raced I was in southern California. Also, when I raced I always did races with climbs (and a majority of my races - USCF Cat III, with Cat I-IV racing in mountain time trials). Possibly the new trainers are better at this but it is hard to have the right environment for training on climbs because the terrain is always varying a bit and there is camber an assessment of the road ahead (both short and long) brings so hitting the right effort is a big part of what you train. I almost always had to train alone in the mountains because of the effort balance was so key to success; also none of my club teammates could ride with me in the mountains (being 1.80m/62kg has major advantages).

                    I found those of us that came from running generally did better than straight cyclists because they are used to the balance of how hard to go based on staying with people or pushing/jumping away (always a non-steady-state situation).

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by bambam1729 View Post
                      I'm like you, Jay. Everytime i ride indoors I can make it about 30 minutes and then virtually die of boredom
                      I never have that problem. I routinely do 60-90 minutes indoors and have done 3 hours on occasion. The key is riding when I'm watching something on TV that interests me, preferably a sporting event such as a football game or track meet. However, if I'm doing an intense effort at, near or above my anaerobic threshold, it's never more than 60 minutes and usually only 30-45 minutes. during these workouts it doesn't matter what's on the TV because all my concentration is focused on sustaining the effort.
                      jazzcyclist
                      Senior Member
                      Last edited by jazzcyclist; 01-11-2020, 02:58 PM.

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                      • #12
                        This morning did 18.8 miles on the thing, 2240' of climbing with maybe 1800' in one long push (5 miles?), first 3/4 at about 4-7% grade then 12-15% for the final quarter. 1:18 total, averaged 159W. Virtual world on the TV kept my attention and the grade and resistance changes were realistic.

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                        • #13
                          Let's talk heart rates. What was your max and anaerobic threshold in your heyday? What rate do you work out at now? The highest rate I've ever seen (at the finish of a race) was 197 bpm. I was in my early 30's at the time. Back then my AT was 175-180 bpm. Today, with my racing days long behind me, I exercise in the 125-140 bpm, unless I'm doing intervals.

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                          • #14
                            I've never paid much attention to heart rates, didn't have heart rate monitors when I was running in HS. Was given one maybe three years ago and have used it maybe four times while on a ride. I think I hit 167 on a difficult climb. If the HR monitor will sync with the trainer, maybe I'll start playing with it. I had my VO2 max measured in 1982 while working the summer in the exercise physiology lab at UL. I wasn't running much, maybe 10 or 15 miles a week. I know it was at least 58, something tells me maybe 66 or 60, but can't recall for sure.

                            So I went in the bike shop today and Wahoo now has a fan that sits on the floor or maybe a little stand in front of the trainer, and you can sync it with the trainer so when you're going down a virtual hill at 40 mph, it blows a lot harder than when you're climbing at 8 mph. Or you can sync it with your heart rate. Also, hilarious, they or some other company now has a platform that simulates riding on cobblestones, for when you're prepping for those spring classics!

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                            • #15
                              Max HRs I remember is when I did some 3x~3000 on rolling terrain with a 10 min interval. The first one was 200 and the next two were higher. My resting rate at the time was 38-41. Got hurt soon after and eventually switched to the bike, where I was a climber and got a pretty good VO2Max (73ml?/kg, measured by Alan Claremont a year+ after I stopped racing). This was before the day of HR monitors etc other than special circumstances.

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