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wlevey 11-06-02 10:26 AM

Trainer vs Exercise bike and which one
Now that it is starting to get a bit too nippy for my 5 AM ride before going to work I am thinking of ways to keep my cycling up over the winter (and hopefully improve my conditioning and possibly my form).

I have looked into both trainers and exercise bikes and find benefits and drawbacks to both (imagine that). I am looking for something in the $300-$400 range (I think I would rather put the big bucks into my bike).

The two trainers I have found that seem interesting are the Kinetic by Kurt $340 for the Road Machine) which boasts a really heavy flywheel and super construction and the Cateye CS1000 $400 which has both a fan and magnetic resistance and the ability to simulate hills (up to a 10% grade!!). It also has the added advantage of having a built in computer to monitor speed, grade, caleries, cadance etc. which the Kinetic doesn't have.

I am in a quandry as to which way to go. I am also thinking that an exercise bike would be good to have since I would not be adding wear and tear to my bike and I would be able to take it out easier on nice days. The problem I see is that I will not be able to afford one that closely approximates riding my bike. Most of the ones in the price range I can afford have a different riding position than a bike and have BIG comfort seats.

If anyone knows the trainers or knows of an exercise bike with an aero bar/tt bar position PLEASE LET ME KNOW!!


RonH 11-06-02 05:00 PM

I had a CS1000 until last month. Trained on it for 3 winters. :thumbup:
My wife said it was too noisy and too big for the living room (that's where I ride).

Last month I bought a CycleOps Magneto.
I like it almost as much as the CS1000. It just doesn't have the range of resistance and the computer. But I think it does a good job of simulating riding on the road so I'm happy with it so far.

Guest 11-06-02 05:45 PM

I've got a commercial Tetrix Bike Max, Upright at home; It's awsome for riding at night and looks great. I use to keep it in my bedroom until we built this home... Now, it's got a room all to itself, with tv and music... neato :grin:

It's exceptionally quiet, very smooth and technologically advanced. It features 8 preset programs, 15 performance levels and 5 advanced options. This superb biomechanics of the bike also makes it very comfortable to ride for long periods, with racing style handle bars and I've installed campy pro fit pedals. I've had it for 6yrs and not a problem with reliability. One touch programming allows my 10yr old boy to use the bike with ease.

Workout programs : Custom Program, Calorie Goal, Group Racing, Solo Racing, Fitness Test & Manual Consol Readouts : Elapsed Time, Calories Burned, RPM, Time Remaining, Calories/Hour, Distance, Level Speed.

I use my Polar 710 and vola, just like riding outdoors... maybe NOT just like... but outstanding simulation in front of the boob tube or jamming to music ;)

roadbuzz 11-06-02 05:57 PM

I can't help much, since I just finally bit the bullet and bought a trainer. I opted for a fluid resistance unit, because the resistance is supposed to be more like actual road resistance, like a wind trainer, but is quieter. I got one with variable resistance, but it seems like a waste. The gears on the bike provide ample variety. I spent $160 (sale price) on a Performance TravelTrac Millenium w/AF-500 resistance unit, rebranded but manufactured by Elite, an Italian company.

Another benefit of a trainer, as opposed to exercycle, is that it can be used to check out bike fit, pedal/cleat adjustment, shifting adjustments, etc.

aerobat 11-06-02 09:00 PM

I'd go for a trainer, use your own bike and you're all set for the next riding season, buttwise as well as legs!

There are the other reasons, too as Roadbuzz said.

I've got a Minora Ergo Mag trainer and like it.

sistinas 11-07-02 05:23 AM

Trainer! But that's only because exercise bicycles have always done a number on my back for some reason - I'm short and can never get them to "fit" right. The trainer has also helped me pay attention to my pedaling style and position on my own bike.

I have the same setup that Roadbuzz does (the Performance Travel Trac Millenium with an adjustable fluid resistance) and I'd have to agree that the adjustable resistance / "grade" is pretty useless. It's definitely a solid piece of equipment though, and mine came with a computer that provides information about distance, speed, power output, and some other things. It's not super duper loud (I can use it when my roommates are asleep without bothering them) and it's very easy to set up. I got it on sale for about $250 and I think the regular price is around $300.

wlevey 11-11-02 08:01 AM

Thanks for all the information!

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