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  1. #1
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Long Trainer Rides

    Has anyone here ever done "centuries" or "metric centuries" on their trainers?

    I know that indoor "centuries" aren't real, but sometimes some of us are unfortunately forced into situations where we have to log lots of saddle time on the trainer because the weather is too inclement to ride outside.

    If you have done trainer rides that area 4+ hours ... what did you do for entertainment? How did you break up the ride?

  2. #2
    Senior Member eandmwilson's Avatar
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    I'm going to make a broad assumption here based on anatomy, but I'm guessing ladies don't have the numbness issues guys do for an obvious reason (or lack thereof). That should give you a huge advantage for that much trainer time.

    For me, keeping in contact with all my parts is generally the limiting factor--I can load a DVD, and hop off for 30 seconds to swap discs. I've just been burning through all those movies/TV shows I have on DVD when on the trainer.
    Don't disturb my circles!

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    Eternal Cat3 Rookie branman1986's Avatar
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    I can't last for longer than about 45-60 minutes, but I usually just watch TV or some of the old Star Wars movies. Commercials usually remind me of the pain, so I prefer movies.

    Luckily Georgia's winters are very rideable.

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    Not obese just overweight ratebeer's Avatar
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    Some ideas:

    1. BREAK IT UP
    Roll for 40 minutes in the morning, 30 at lunch, 50 in the evening, another half hour at night. Whenever you have a few minutes, jump back on the trainer.

    2. SWITCH TO HIT
    You realize you've got a month or six weeks of snow and rain ahead of you. It could be a good time to work on your aerobic training with high intensity training (HIT) intervals. The 6-minute Tabata workout will not help you lose weight but it will dramatically improve your VO2max, may increase your lactate threshold and should improve your endurance performance. The trainer is perfect for this.

    3. DARK TRAINING
    Riding the trainer in the dark is an alternative to looking for more distraction. Put on some relaxing music, turn out the lights, breathe and focus. I haven't found this improves my time in the saddle but it does stop any expectations that scenery should be buzzing by and it does seem to improve my ability to feel the "correctness" of my cadence, my sensitivity to lactate threshold, the efficiency of my spin and improve my ability to isolate or recruit work muscles.
    Joe

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  5. #5
    Isaias NoRacer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka
    Has anyone here ever done "centuries" or "metric centuries" on their trainers?

    I know that indoor "centuries" aren't real, but sometimes some of us are unfortunately forced into situations where we have to log lots of saddle time on the trainer because the weather is too inclement to ride outside.

    If you have done trainer rides that area 4+ hours ... what did you do for entertainment? How did you break up the ride?
    On the weekend when I can't ride outside, I've done metrics centuries--1 AM session and 1 PM session of 30 miles divided into 15 minute intervals w/30 seconds to 1 minute breaks while on my rollers. I use a countdown timer for the 15 minute intervals done in Zone 2, but sometimes I'll throw in some high intensity seated work in my biggest chainring/smallest cog for 2-3 minutes implementing your idea about using commercials for the high intensity work and resting during tha main program that I'm watching on the TV.

    By the way, what's not real about it? My bike computer still registers 60 miles.
    2009 mileage = 14,738 miles; 2010 mileage = 15,234 miles; 2011 mileage = 17,344 miles; 2012 mileage = 11,414 miles; 2013 = 12,169

  6. #6
    Pokes On Spokes JPradun's Avatar
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    My longest is 2.25hrs at 85% of LT; I average 2hrs. I usually try to watch some funny shows or the stock market.

    Funny shows keep me loose and not stressing. I usually hit a "WTF am I doing, I'll stop in 15min" moment at 30min and 1hr 15min. I'll usually just tell myself that I've been through a lot more pain (kidney stone at 10yrs old, fractured elbows/wrists and 36 stitches/plastic surgery last year from a bike accident) and I want to prove I'm worthy enough for cat 3 this year.

    My other option is the stock-analyzing shows. Every time they show a stock that is growing, I'll pretend it's a hill and climb it (90%LT) until the next break or stock. The poor-performing stocks get a downhill ride that is easier (75%). I have quite the imagination when I need it...

  7. #7
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ratebeer
    Some ideas:

    1. BREAK IT UP
    Roll for 40 minutes in the morning, 30 at lunch, 50 in the evening, another half hour at night. Whenever you have a few minutes, jump back on the trainer.
    I was thinking about this. A metric century on my trainer would take me 5-6 hours (if I'm honest and realistic about my speed), so I was sort of thinking of riding for 3 hours, then going for a walk, then riding for the remaining 2-3 hours.


    Quote Originally Posted by ratebeer
    2. SWITCH TO HIT
    You realize you've got a month or six weeks of snow and rain ahead of you. It could be a good time to work on your aerobic training with high intensity training (HIT) intervals. The 6-minute Tabata workout will not help you lose weight but it will dramatically improve your VO2max, may increase your lactate threshold and should improve your endurance performance. The trainer is perfect for this.
    I am doing this. Right now, it's once a week (today, as a matter of fact), but starting in March I'll be going to spinning classes twice a week, and the one I've chosen is supposed to be pretty intense.
    However, I also need saddle time ... which I'm doing on the weekends.


    Quote Originally Posted by ratebeer
    3. DARK TRAINING
    Riding the trainer in the dark is an alternative to looking for more distraction. Put on some relaxing music, turn out the lights, breathe and focus. I haven't found this improves my time in the saddle but it does stop any expectations that scenery should be buzzing by and it does seem to improve my ability to feel the "correctness" of my cadence, my sensitivity to lactate threshold, the efficiency of my spin and improve my ability to isolate or recruit work muscles.
    I've tried this, but I get very, very dizzy for some reason ... just like if I try to wear earbuds while cycling or walking. I think I've got some minor inner ear issues.

  8. #8
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    BTW - a few of you have mentioned "pain". It doesn't hurt to ride the trainer for a long time ... it just gets a little boring.

  9. #9
    NorCal Climbing Freak
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    I've done some 4 hour trainer rides recently. You just need to work up to it. Right now, I can put in 2-3 hours daily on the trainer no problem. In the beginning, it was mind numbing, But with a foot of snow outside, there isn't much else to do but suck it up.

    I get up, get food, and go to the bathroom and whatnot. You could split up training rides throughout the day like ratebeer suggests, but you won't be getting the same training stimulus, so keep that in mind.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka
    I know that indoor "centuries" aren't real...
    Machka, I have a great deal of respect for your riding prowess, however, I have to disagree with you here. Read through what others here on BF have to say about riding a trainer and if it counts. A slim majority will say the miles count but all will say the miles are difficult, often physically more difficult than riding outside (no coasting, no downhills, etc) and most definitely more mentally difficult. You're right in the sense that an indoor century isn't an outdoor century, but both are centuries (IMHO) and both are excellent tests of endurance and will.
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  11. #11
    NorCal Climbing Freak
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    Quote Originally Posted by hopperja
    Machka, I have a great deal of respect for your riding prowess, however, I have to disagree with you here. Read through what others here on BF have to say about riding a trainer and if it counts. A slim majority will say the miles count but all will say the miles are difficult, often physically more difficult than riding outside (no coasting, no downhills, etc) and most definitely more mentally difficult. You're right in the sense that an indoor century isn't an outdoor century, but both are centuries (IMHO) and both are excellent tests of endurance and will.
    But it's not a century. You went nowhere. Spinning your back wheel for 5 hours indoors is definitely a test a will power, but it's not a century. That is when you go 100 miles, which of course is impossible indoors, where you go nowhere.

  12. #12
    Isaias NoRacer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grebletie
    But it's not a century. You went nowhere. Spinning your back wheel for 5 hours indoors is definitely a test a will power, but it's not a century. That is when you go 100 miles, which of course is impossible indoors, where you go nowhere.
    It's a matter of perspective. We ALWAYS go somewhere as the earth is ALWAYS rotating on it's own axis and the earth is ALWAYS rotating around the sun and the solar system is ALWAYS... well, we're getting into the sublime.

    Riding the trainer still induces the same amount of wear as the distance registered. Try riding your trainer everyday this year and do zero maintenance.
    2009 mileage = 14,738 miles; 2010 mileage = 15,234 miles; 2011 mileage = 17,344 miles; 2012 mileage = 11,414 miles; 2013 = 12,169

  13. #13
    Zinophile tibikefor2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka
    If you have done trainer rides that area 4+ hours ... what did you do for entertainment? How did you break up the ride?
    Machka:

    I have been doing back to back century rides on my trainer for the last 4 weekends. I use a pro 3d computrainer and I have the Spinervals Hardcore 100 on a 36 inch tv screen.

    The computrainer allows me to monitor my hear rate and power output. I feel that 100 miles indoors on a trainer is hard both metally and physically. The Hardcore 100 has the rider go through increasingly harder intervals for five and half hours.
    Tibikefor2

  14. #14
    Cat WTF
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka
    I know that indoor "centuries" aren't real,


    Tell that to my legs.

  15. #15
    Cat WTF
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    Quote Originally Posted by grebletie
    But it's not a century. You went nowhere.
    You went nowhere if the start of your outdoor century is the same place as the finish. Or if you ride 400 laps around an outdoor running track.

  16. #16
    Cat WTF
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka
    It doesn't hurt to ride the trainer for a long time


    You don't ride hard enough.

  17. #17
    Zinophile tibikefor2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka
    BTW - a few of you have mentioned "pain". It doesn't hurt to ride the trainer for a long time ... it just gets a little boring.
    Machka:

    If you just spin on the trainer, yes it is not that hard of a ride. If you spin a trainer with a structured workout with intervals, the rides can be extremely hard.

    When I do my back to back centuries, my legs are trashed after the second day. This is accomplished by maintaining a specific power output during intervals. That is why I use a computrainer. Soon I will be using a powertap rear hub and the computrainer.
    Tibikefor2

  18. #18
    Senior Member Richard Cranium's Avatar
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    I haven't ridden any "trainer centuries" lately, but back in the day, I used to ride roller-centuries at night after riding 50-70 mile during the day. It's a good way to maintain leg-speed and increase your ability to tolerate saddle-time.

    Now-a-days, with the increasing focus on "science" and "feel-good" training results on as little effort as possible, the practice of mindless "bluntforce" workouts is decreasing. I've never needed 4 hours for a roller century. In the old days, I rode them non-stop.

    Like all exercise, there is a diminishing return in effectiveness as the duration of single specific exercise activity is increased. Most people's training goals don't support nor require hours of a single continuous activity.

  19. #19
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tibikefor2
    Machka:

    If you just spin on the trainer, yes it is not that hard of a ride. If you spin a trainer with a structured workout with intervals, the rides can be extremely hard.

    I do my intervals during my shorter rides during the week.

    On the weekends, however, I want to log saddle time (or build base miles or whatever you want to call it) for both mental and physical reasons. I won't be doing intervals during my long rides because that's not why I'm doing them.


    Nevertheless, when people speak of pain here, my impresson was not that they experience muscle pain ... which I also experience when I do intervals ... but that their butts hurt or something.

  20. #20
    Not obese just overweight ratebeer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tibikefor2
    The Hardcore 100 has the rider go through increasingly harder intervals for five and half hours.
    Does that kit come complete with the alligator clips that connect the electrodes to your scrotum and the cat o' nine tails or are those optional features?
    Joe

    Veho difficilis, ago facilis

  21. #21
    Isaias NoRacer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka
    I do my intervals during my shorter rides during the week.

    On the weekends, however, I want to log saddle time (or build base miles or whatever you want to call it) for both mental and physical reasons. I won't be doing intervals during my long rides because that's not why I'm doing them.


    Nevertheless, when people speak of pain here, my impresson was not that they experience muscle pain ... which I also experience when I do intervals ... but that their butts hurt or something.
    I received an email notice from the DC Randonneurs (as in Washington, D.C.). They're doing 100 miles this Saturday, 100 miles this Sunday, and another 100 miles, Monday, President's Day. You could always fly down and ride with them. <just kidding>

    I don't even want to drive the 45 minutes one way to join them and then have to be worried about ice and the single digit temps that we'd likely encounter at the ride start. And, I don't like doing centuries at 10-15 MPH, either.
    2009 mileage = 14,738 miles; 2010 mileage = 15,234 miles; 2011 mileage = 17,344 miles; 2012 mileage = 11,414 miles; 2013 = 12,169

  22. #22
    Zinophile tibikefor2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ratebeer
    Does that kit come complete with the alligator clips that connect the electrodes to your scrotum and the cat o' nine tails or are those optional features?
    beer:

    the electrodes are the nicest feature, the current increases as your speed goes up. This functionality allows one to be a sadist and a masochist at the same time. I did not order the cat o' nine tails, would you reccomend them?
    Tibikefor2

  23. #23
    Bent Ryder Sandwarrior's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JPradun
    My longest is 2.25hrs at 85% of LT; .
    What does "LT" stand for?
    As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord!
    Joshua 24:15

  24. #24
    NorCal Climbing Freak
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sandwarrior
    What does "LT" stand for?
    lactate threshold. Of course, given the various definitions of LT, and ways to determine it, the term itself is ambiguous.

  25. #25
    Bent Ryder Sandwarrior's Avatar
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    Thank you
    As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord!
    Joshua 24:15

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