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  1. #1
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    Fun training routines for indoor trainer?

    Hi all,

    I love cycling. However, I'm more of a commuter than anything else, but I still love it. The winter in Madison has killed the physical benefits of my daily commute to work (I still do it, but I pedal real slow and I don't get much of a workout).

    I just bought a fluid trainer from performance cycles and I have two goals: (1) improving/fortifying my heart/cardio health & (2) getting ready for a real bike ride/race.

    So, I need to figure out how to make riding on my trainer fun & effective. In order to do this I will need to design some kind of routine (i.e. sprint for 3 minutes, climb for 5 minutes etc..)

    If you have an indoor riding routine that is fun & effective let me know. If there are websites that have this info let me know the google keywords I should be using.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Senior Member jdon's Avatar
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    Get a heartrate monitor and do intervals.

  3. #3
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    In my mind "fun" and "indoor trainer" do not go together. "Necessary evil" or "better than nothing" perhaps. Anyway, what jdon said: Do intervals. You can do tabatas (20sec. max, 10 sec. recovery, repeat 8 times or until you vomit, whichever comes first); 1 minute max, 1 min. recovery; lots of variations.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by caloso View Post
    In my mind "fun" and "indoor trainer" do not go together. "Necessary evil" or "better than nothing" perhaps. Anyway, what jdon said: Do intervals. You can do tabatas (20sec. max, 10 sec. recovery, repeat 8 times or until you vomit, whichever comes first); 1 minute max, 1 min. recovery; lots of variations.
    Ha, I literally laughed out loud! Thanks!

    1 new question.

    What do you all think about stealing a spinning workout for trainer use? I know some things are different, but I think it would be easily adapted?

  5. #5
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Try commercial intervals.

    1) Pick a TV show you like on a channel that has commercials.
    2) During the actual show, ride at a decent pace, but one where you can still follow the show.
    3) When the commercial comes on, ride as hard as you can till the end of the commercials.
    4) Resume riding at a decent pace during the show to rest a bit, and repeat.

  6. #6
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    I think that would be fine. The main thing about the indoor trainer is getting the legs spinning and the heart pumping. It's actually better than on-the-road for certain training (intervals and one-leg drills for example).

    Oh, and I just thought of another workout I used to do. Watching tv I'd spin tempo during the show, when the commercial came on I'd drop a cog (same RPM) during each commercial (typically that's 4 x 30 sec.). On the last commercial you'll be pushing a pretty big gear for 30 secs.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  7. #7
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    Hey, Machka beat me to it. Although mine is a slight variation.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  8. #8
    Club MIT Ron_J's Avatar
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    Our local club tries to ease the tedium of indoor training in a couple of ways:

    - we get together for "spinning" nights in a renovated barn of one of our club members. We put on a cycling video, set up our trainers in a semi-circle and then we spin together.
    - we run a "roller challenge" through the winter months which involves tracking our stats on distance, average speed, heart rate, etc., and then we post them to a website and track each others progress. We keep some unusual stats like slowest roller speed for the longest time without falling off the roller, longest distance on the roller pedaling with one leg, etc.

    It all helps to break the boredom but ultimately its a a discipline that requires the resolve to persevere. The best solution I've found yet is to quit the trainer for a couple of months and cross train with nordic skiing and running. But, to each his own!
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  9. #9
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    Thanks for all the good ideas. I think I can put a workout together. Now I just need to wait for my trainer to arrive.

  10. #10
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    I just started using an indoor trainer this winter (this month actually).

    Right now my routine is:
    10 minute warmup (5 minutes lowest gear, 5 minutes second gear)
    9 minutes cadence drills: 30 seconds max cadence (in second gear), 30 seconds cool down
    4 x 10 minute intervals: 5 minutes around LT, 5 minutes cool down

    followed by a half-hour of yoga...

  11. #11
    pedo viejo
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    I've had good luck with training DVDs such as Spinervals. They can be quite challenging. Their "virtual reality" DVDs are about as much fun as you can have on a trainer, IMO.

    Also, if you record bike races such as the Tour (or buy Tour DVDs) you can emulate what you see on screen: steady tempo when they show the peloton, higher tempo in a breakaway group, jumps, sprints, climbing, etc.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Daveyboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    Try commercial intervals.

    1) Pick a TV show you like on a channel that has commercials.
    2) During the actual show, ride at a decent pace, but one where you can still follow the show.
    3) When the commercial comes on, ride as hard as you can till the end of the commercials.
    4) Resume riding at a decent pace during the show to rest a bit, and repeat.
    ++1 I call these my 'stationary, in-door, town sign sprints'.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Dubbayoo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    Try commercial intervals.

    1) Pick a TV show you like on a channel that has commercials.
    2) During the actual show, ride at a decent pace, but one where you can still follow the show.
    3) When the commercial comes on, ride as hard as you can till the end of the commercials.
    4) Resume riding at a decent pace during the show to rest a bit, and repeat.
    I do the opposite. I put on a race DVD, rest during commercials and go hard tempo with the riders. Stand up when they do, sit when they sit, etc.

  14. #14
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    What would be the name of some good training DVD's?

  15. #15
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    I use music as a motivator and pick out a few 3 to 4 minute songs that I really like from my playlist (or even encounter randomly while listening to the radio) for intervals. It helps that my trainer is in my garage, so I can crank the volume up and even (try) to sing if I feel like it.

  16. #16
    Me Likey Bikey neurocycler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unknownracer View Post
    What would be the name of some good training DVD's?
    Spinervals are popular.
    "Suffering you need; literature is baloney."
    - Tim Krabbé

  17. #17
    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    If you're an IPod user, check out a pod-cast called Cadence Revolution. It's free.

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