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  1. #1
    Senior Member cnnrmccloskey's Avatar
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    Rollers are tiring me out

    I just got a set of rollers as its just getting to nasty out to ride regularly, after about 2 days of getting used to them I'm really liking them except I find they tire me out much quicker than actual riding, I regularly ride 10+ miles without having my legs burn like they do after 5-10 minutes on the rollers I've been having to stop and rest very frequently. Is this normal for getting used to them or just a product of my riding decreasing over the past couple months (although I can still judge from my dimished riding that rollers are excesivly tiring to me)
    Sorry if this has been covered I tried to search but I could quite find the right words.
    Thanks

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    Triathlon in my future??? flip18436572's Avatar
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    I think that depends upon the person and how they feel with being inside and riding. Remember that you always have to pedal on the rollers, and depending upon where you ride you may coast a lot more than you think you do. Once you keep at it, you can probably ride your normal distance and times.
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    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    Rollers are more work than outside. It's steady so you don't get the little breaks you're used to - coasting here and there or the occasional stop sign or light. Also, because your only momentum is in the rollers and rims, you have to pedal circles more to keep the speed even, and you may not be used to that.

    I figure 75% on rollers of what I would do outside comes out about right. I also limit myself to 1.5-1.75 hrs. at a time to prevent burnout, though many people ride centuries on them.

    You might also think about easing off on the effort a bit. It's only January.

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    Senior Member late's Avatar
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    +1

    No stop lights, no rolling down a hill and catching your breath. Don't push too hard and you'll
    get used to it.
    We are as gods, we might as well get good at it.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member jmess's Avatar
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    I take regular bio breaks between interval sets. Drink some water, wipe off some sweat, then back on the rollers. Like has been mentioned it is hard to rest and a couple of times I have crashed off the rollers when I pushed it too long.

  6. #6
    a.k.a. QUADZILLA LoRoK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
    Rollers are more work than outside. It's steady so you don't get the little breaks you're used to - coasting here and there or the occasional stop sign or light. Also, because your only momentum is in the rollers and rims, you have to pedal circles more to keep the speed even, and you may not be used to that.

    I figure 75% on rollers of what I would do outside comes out about right. I also limit myself to 1.5-1.75 hrs. at a time to prevent burnout, though many people ride centuries on them.

    You might also think about easing off on the effort a bit. It's only January.
    I've been thinking about this for a while now, and while I don't know what I'm talking about I'm going to disagree with you. Rollers are, IMO, not more work than outside. I read somewhere that if you are riding behind a person outside, like in a paceline, you will expend 30% less energy due to the fact that you are not riding into the relative wind. So without a tailwind, when riding outside you'll be working 30% harder than if you were on rollers inside. That, of course, if one is riding on larger diameter roller drums. They do get harder as they get smaller. But regardless, how often can you ride outside with a tailwind the whole way? It is a little less comfortable to sit in the saddle on rollers, and harder to adjust and whatnot, but it certainly isn't more work. I can spin for an hour+ at 25mph rollers and sure, I'll sweat my butt off, and I'll be fairly uncomfortable after a while (I've only had my rollers for 2 weeks & I hope that gets better), but it isn't really too difficult. Comparing that to doing 20 miles at 24mph in ideal conditions outdoors where I am really pushing myself, I can tell which requires more effort.

  7. #7
    Junior Member johnsocks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LoRoK View Post
    I've been thinking about this for a while now, and while I don't know what I'm talking about I'm going to disagree with you. Rollers are, IMO, not more work than outside. I read somewhere that if you are riding behind a person outside, like in a paceline, you will expend 30% less energy due to the fact that you are not riding into the relative wind. So without a tailwind, when riding outside you'll be working 30% harder than if you were on rollers inside. That, of course, if one is riding on larger diameter roller drums. They do get harder as they get smaller. But regardless, how often can you ride outside with a tailwind the whole way? It is a little less comfortable to sit in the saddle on rollers, and harder to adjust and whatnot, but it certainly isn't more work. I can spin for an hour+ at 25mph rollers and sure, I'll sweat my butt off, and I'll be fairly uncomfortable after a while (I've only had my rollers for 2 weeks & I hope that gets better), but it isn't really too difficult. Comparing that to doing 20 miles at 24mph in ideal conditions outdoors where I am really pushing myself, I can tell which requires more effort.
    You are missing the point. The rollers are "more work" because you don't stop pedaling. The effort is consistent. You are arguing that you expend more energy outdoors, which is true, but the effort is not consistent.

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    You will also sweat your @$$ off ridin your rollers inside. Stationary with no wind circulating.

  9. #9
    umd
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    Quote Originally Posted by LoRoK View Post
    I've been thinking about this for a while now, and while I don't know what I'm talking about I'm going to disagree with you.
    Clearly.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Richard Cranium's Avatar
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    I regularly ride 10+ miles without having my legs burn like they do after 5-10 minutes on the rollers I've been having to stop and rest very frequently.
    Every roller/bicycle setup is different. No one can tell what is going on with your situation over the Internet. I'm very experienced and have ridden many roller setups. They usually are never setup with as much resistance as "real riding."

    It could be that you are "tensing up" or over heating quickly and this is why your legs hurt prematurely. But as far as difficulty, most people can ride rollers much faster, and much more easily than "real riding."

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    I experienced this when I started. I was tensing up as I was worried about riding off the sides. As I got relaxed on the rollers, my time increased.

  12. #12
    Fax Transport Specialist black_box's Avatar
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    I unplugged my bike computer for the rollers because speed did not seem to be a good comparison to outside riding (and thats usually solo, not drafting). Use heart rate or perceived effort, or power if you've got it. And +1 on relaxing... tense, nervous energy is wasted energy. Also, get a big fan to blow air on you, makes a huge difference in comfort.

  13. #13
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    Make sure you do an adequate warm-up. I go for 10 minutes in the lowest gear, I just concentrate on keeping my balance and not bouncing, spinning circles. After 10 minutes I start my misery, uh, intervals. During intervals I never stop, but may shift all the way back down to the lowest gear for recovery. I'm only doing about an hour on the rollers.

    Also, make sure you're keeping cool. I actually ride my rollers in the garage with the garage door and the back door open, and have a fan blowing on me. Overheating will reduce your endurance.

    If you're just starting to get back in the saddle after a few months off, your endurance may be lower and recovery time longer than your previous peak.

    But the weather here in PDX has been really nice the last few days, get out and ride ;-)

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