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Thursday, March 4, 2010

Training Indoors


I have to admit most of my training these days (last season and this season) was done indoors in the gym or at home on a Cyclops Spin bike. I haven't used the rollers or the turbo trainer much, except for warm ups in between track events, you really can't generate force on the unstable rollers or the trainer as you can on a dedicated spin bike such as the Cyclops. The spin bike is also great for doing standing starts without worry about damaging your costly bicycle. The rollers are indeed great for leg speed, agility and balance. I can tolerate two hours of riding the spin bike indoors quite well and one hour of intense work is no problem. Although riding indoors is not the same as riding outside on the road, for one thing there is no wind resistance indoors.

I find it hard to go out in the cold to train these days, after all I am not training for a three hour road race or even an hour road race, my training is for short track events or an occasional road race in nice warm temperatures during the summer. I remember the first book I bought in the 80s on training for bicycle racing - the author recommended going out on the road at night with lights on the bike so you can get road miles in - I was having none of that. I was reckless back then but not that crazy.

Here is a good article in today's New York Times in relation to indoor training. I certainly find training indoors safer, more convenient and tolerable. Lets be realistic, this is just a hobby, it is not my job or career goal. I revisited the sport of cycling for its health benefits while minimizing the risks. There is a lot of traffic on city roads these days.

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