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Winter Cycling Don't let snow and ice discourage you this winter. The key element to year-round cycling is proper attire! Check out this winter cycling forum to chat with other ice bike fanatics.

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Old 01-16-04, 11:39 AM   #1
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Grin and bear it or buy a trainer??

My wife and me are trying to ride in preparation for touring but so far the weather isn't being entirely on our side with the temps lately.

Added to this is the fact that our daughter who is 4 years old and entering a phase in her life that could best be described as, "Vocal and Opinionated", is coming along in her trailer when we ride.

We(wife and me)are getting a tad discouraged with freezing as well as fear of ice and bitting the dust on a patch of it not to mention our daughter isn't always enjoying the temps either-even though we have her bundled up looking something like a cross between a full blown Yeti and a miniature version of the Michelin Man.

My wife keeps saying "Trainers" on every ride, so much so that she sounds like Dustin Hoffman in Rainman, while I keep saying "We'll see".

So the reckoning time is upon me...

Do we bag on the chilly rides and opt for riding in our living room or do I find some new, wise info to tell my wife that keeps us outside?

What are the Pros and Cons of trainers-pricepoint, etc? Are they loud-we live in an Apt.

Thoughts? Opinions?

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Old 01-16-04, 08:41 PM   #2
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re cold

a good way of bikin when it's cold is take it in turns. What I mean is go out alone, that way you always go your own speed and don't have one of you going too fast and the other too slow for the other if you get my meaning. If you don't have baby in trailer you can be that little bit more pushy on yourself, not always thinking of your tail and more thinking about working up that bit more warmth for yourself?
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Old 01-16-04, 08:44 PM   #3
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also balaclava and gritted streets. or get a standstill bike with a comfy seat - check as they can be too hard
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Old 01-17-04, 12:51 PM   #4
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I bought a trainer from Performance several years ago. The advantage of trainers are:

The bike fits me, crankarm, tt length is correct, etc. so I'm comfortable.

I don't schedule my workouts around the weather. Today we have freezing rain. I will ride an hour on my trainer. I'm warm, safe don't have to worry about icy roads and freezing hands and feet and I get my workout in.

I can ride when I want, don't have to rush out of work to beat the darkness. If I know I'm going to have a busy day and get home late I can get up before work and ride.

It's easier to work on technique and do interval training on a trainer and I burn about the same amount of calories

I can still ride while injured.

Trainers can be boring without a plan, music and a heartrate monitor.

I follow the plan in "The Female Cyclist" and use music I bought from a company that sells workout music They have all kinds of music with a variety of bpm. Makes it easy to get your heartrate into your training zone.

I have an mp3 player and its easy to change the music so I don't get bored with it. Its also very small so it fits in my jersey pocket.

I also use the workouts from the book "The heart rate monitor workbook" by Sally Edwards.

When I ride I dress as if I were going outside. I wear cycling jersey and shorts, my shoes, socks and gloves.

I also use two fans, a ceiling fan and a fan on the floor. In the winter I usually don't overheat.

I keep my rides to an hour, sometimes a little longer. That way, I don't get so bored.

My bike is always set up on the trainer, that way I don't spend time preparing it to ride.

Hope this helps you decide.

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Old 01-18-04, 02:46 AM   #5
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Given the situation you describe I would suggest that getting trainers sounds like a great solution. Having a trainer doesn't mean that you can never cycle outside in the cold again and if there are two of you riding at the same time then you will be able to reduce the boredom by encouraging each other. Besides, if your wife is hinting at it so strongly and your daughter is starting to resent being along on the cold days, then you probably owe it to them to at least give the trainer a chance ;-)

Besides, there's nothing wrong with riding a trainer. I really enjoy my Elite Mag Volare. It allows me do do a much more structured workout than I can do on the road. Of course I complement the trainer sessions I do with distance rides on the road, but for intervals, technique and strength sessions the trainer allows me to focus completely on what I am doing as opposed to riding the road where one has to contend with traffic, road conditions, stop signs and junctions etc. I say give the trainer a go. If you hate it, you can always sell them on again.

Good luck!
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Old 01-18-04, 01:50 PM   #6
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Depends on how cold it is. Otherwise "Grin and Bear it"
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Old 01-18-04, 04:12 PM   #7
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To the plus side of the argument. You could argue that riding in the cold will help when you are out touring and the weather takes a turn. You can say "Remember when we rode out in colder conditions? Honey, remember? We can do this!"

Remember if it doesn't kill you it makes you stronger
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