Over the past 10 years, Karel and I have had the luxury of spending most of our "winter" bike training, riding outside. There were always a few cold days each year when we would bike indoors on our Cycleops Powerbeam Pro but typically we would bundle up to brave the 40-50 degree chilly mornings in Florida (yes, I realize it's all relative!).
But now we live in Greenville, SC. We no longer live close to a beach but by the mountains. We now have two trainers (we added a Computrainer to our bike gear family) and we are learning to embrace the cooler fall days which will turn into cold winter days.
However, we aren't complaining as we just love our bike friendly community which is also filled with great hiking trails and beautiful fall colors.
So I thought I would share the post that I did last year (thanks to Karel) but Karel would like to add one more trainer to this list of Bike Trainer recommendations
The Revolution is ready for Shimano/SRAM 9-11sp cassettes. 9-11sp adaptors and upgrade kits are sold separately for each trainer.
Riding indoors is an effective way to make good use of your riding time because you can do it anytime, rain, cold or snow. Also if you train with power, you can monitor your watts so you are giving similar efforts for each workout (pending the main set) There is no guessing as to how much work you are applying to your pedals. Just keep in mind that your power indoors will differ a bit from riding outdoors so always be consistent with effort inside and consistent with effort outside (the numbers do not need to be the same).
20 Trimarni bike trainer workouts
Every bike-loving athlete needs a good trainer room. You want an environment that you enjoy going into when you are going to sit your butt down on a bike for x-minutes (not to mention suffer a bit too).
-Good entertainment - a big TV placed at eye level or slightly above is essential if you want some visual entertainment. Install a DVR, DVD player or plug in your computer for your pick of inspiration when you are riding. Music is also helpful. If you need to be considerate of your family if you are riding early mornings, you may want to invest in a good pair of headphones.
-Table - Water bottles, food, gels, phone, iPad, workout, magazine....you take your pick as to what you need during your workout but you need something near your bike to place the important things that will help you have a quality workout.
-Space - just like when you ride outside, it's nice to have your space. Make sure you have room around you so you don't feel claustrophobic as it will likely get a bit stuffy in your room (especially if you do not have window's to open). If you have multiple equipment in your trainer room (stability ball, treadmill, trainer, etc.) you will want to make sure that everything is functional.
-Mat and fan - You are going to sweat a lot on the trainer so it is good to have a clean floor mat. Also, a fan is helpful to keep the room cool, especially if you do not have good ventilation in the room. Keep in mind that when you sweat a lot, your sweat can corrode your bike parts. You want to wipe off your bike as soon as your finished riding and also more frequently do a detailed tune-up of your bike so that the small parts are removed and thoroughly cleaned.
A few other important tips:
-It is recommended (and safer) to invest in a trainer wheel and tire and also have an outdoor wheel (with a separate tire). Your training tire (the tire on your wheel that you use on your trainer the most) will get run down and if you ride the trainer a lot, you will notice a soft spot on your wheel which can become very unsafe when riding outside (especially when making turns). Although an occasional ride inside and outside is no big worry, just be mindful if you are riding on your trainer all winter, you will need a new tire for when you take your bike outdoors for your spring/summer training. Many athletes are now investing in trainers where you remove the back wheel and simply connect the wheel's drive-train to the trainer's rear cassette to eliminate the need to use a rear wheel on the trainer.
-On/Off drills are an effective way to warm up quickly. When you only have an hour to ride your trainer before/after workout, you don't want to spend 30 minutes warming up. I recommend to incorporate 3-5 x 30 sec ON (high cadence, 95+ rpm) efforts w/ 30 sec OFF (EZ efforts) to wake up your legs and to get the blood flowing.