As I work in a bike shop day in and day out I have the blessing, sometimes the curse, to play with all the latest and greatest bike parts. This adds a ton of complication to bike shopping for myself. I’m able to help anyone that walks in the door, calls or emails to find their perfect bike but as my goals of cycling or life change, my bike wants do as well.
This morning I was, brutally, reminded that some areas of the country are still in the freezing cold and in the need of bike trainers. There are other reasons to ride a trainer outside of weather. Including dedicated training intervals, warming up at races and even darkness can force us inside on the dreaded trainer.
The New York Times recently published an article on various bike trainers that a woman tested for 90 minutes at a time. The article got me thinking about all the hours I spent on the trainer in Maryland and Massachusetts. I hated every minute of it and even the famed “rollers” that were supposed to be 100% better, stunk.
Technology of Highend Trainers
As anything, technology is increasing and trainers are becoming an experience instead of a chore. Computrainers and the Rock and Roll trainer are really pushing the envelope.
The best indoor trainers on the market, in my opinon. These trainers hook up to you computer, using a profile or set thresholds the trainer changes resistance on your tire to make it feel very real life. They also can be set up to 8 trainers connected to each other, then to the computer. This allows you to ride with others, race, draft and really interact with others.
I’m a bit spoiled as we have a fitness center inside of the shop I manage. We have 8 of these Computrainers and host multiple classes or rides per day. You can really use this as a training tool and optimize your time during the off-season or daylight savings.
The catch on the Computrainer is the cost. Starting at $1649, these trainers are for the diehard users.
Rock & Roll from Kurt by Kinetic
If you want to see a different way of thinking, check out the Rock & Roll. The movie below can say more than I, so I’ll stop now.
The Rock & Roll will create a core strength as well as aid in the hard resistance on your body that you normally may feel on a trainer.
Now, if you want the best of both world – take a Computrainer resistance unit and mount it to a Rock & Roll base unit.
My initial post about Pre-Season planning turned some heads over at Team Estrogen’s forum. Many people were excited to talk about their 2010 goals, but after 4 pages of women’s goals there were a few asking me if I was crazy. They looked at November and December as resting times, or they may still be trying to complete 2009.
All these things are fair, but I find planning out your season prior to the holiday season makes things easier and you may eat one less serving of mash potatoes.
We didn’t get many comments on the blog about 2010 plans, so let me start off mine:
Training for Trans Iowa. The race is the end of April, and it will be roughly a 30 hour race across the “B” + “C” roads of Iowa. Cyclocross and mountain bikes are much needed.
The rest of the year I’ll be doing what I can, when I can. Maybe continue the local weekly mountain bike series, hit a couple longer distance mountain bike races like the 100 miler, or 12/24 hour lap type.
Smaller goals include stretching more, strength training and losing about 15 pounds of fat (hopefully gaining back 8 pounds of muscle.)
Now these are my goals, there are many things behind them like finding a better fit saddle for 300 miles on a cyclocross bike, the proper lighting, nutrition and preparing my mind for all of it. I knew this task was daunting and overwhelming so I have suited myself up with proper testing and coaching.
Next time we will be talking about what type of testing, what coaching does for you and why even someone getting into cycling or trying to lose weight could benefit from all of this.
Our first guest post from another Bike Shop Girl, Sarah Matchett. Sarah is a USA Cycling coach based out of my shop, Cool Breeze Cyclery in North Carolina. Sarah recently competed in the UCI World Duathlon Championships, placing 10th overall in women (non-elite.)
I’m often asked how I keep doing what I do. 5 a.m. mornings, endless miles on the trainer, in the pool. Worn out running shoes… worn out dog. Folks think I have some secret knowledge, or extra gear that keeps me uninjured, motivated, strong and healthy. The truth is, there is no secret gear. No magic pill, no religious practice, no expensive bike part that will bring you the results you want. There is simply, moving your body, more than zero, every day.