How I Changed The Way I Ride Inside

Let’s face it, biking inside can be very boring and not very motivating. I could never push myself to ride if I would just be on my bike pedaling endlessly. Now, you’ve got options. And I tried them. I tried a spin class for the first time, and of course, Zwift has changed the way we ride inside. HIIT timers can make your training more structured, and your times will benefit. (Spoiler alert: They are all great options) There are many other choices to look into as well, that better track your progress than riding on a trainer alone. Let’s get into it!

1. Spin Class

You saw this coming. Spin classes have been crazy popular lately, and with good reason. I tried one for the first time a few weeks ago and I really enjoyed it. I liked how structured it was, and the actual ~human interaction~ was a benefit. I quickly noticed though that some teachers are better than others. Try many different ones if possible and then pick the class with your favorite teacher and the best length of time for you. I’ve found my favorite and I love it! It’s a change of pace than that of my pain cave, but a positive one. I enjoy the separated segments of sprints, “running” and normal riding and the connection to the music… It keeps you on your toes! One definite con though, is that you need to leave the house and pack a bag just to do a ride. Though that’s inconvenient, It’s well worth a try if you find yourself bored of riding on a trainer.

2. Zwift

I’ve mentioned zwift a million times before, but I can’t not mention it once more. It changed the way I ride, and now I can’t live without it. I love the competitive aspect and the sprint and KOM segments. The virtual hills and climbs add another dimension that simulates riding outside, and challenges such as the Everest elevation challenge are so much fun and motivate me. It tracks tons of different stats as well. Once you get past the fact that you need a monthly subscription and a solid setup, it is life-changing.

3.  Timers & Segments

Here’s a great hack: download a free HIIT Timer and use it to break up your rides into segments. The setup of a HIIT timer is action time and rest time typically, but I use the action time as either sprint or standing, and the rest time as normal, endurance riding. These intervals help you improve your sprinting and climbing as well as keeping you a ton less bored. I typically use this technique alongside Zwift for an all around GREAT ride.

Bonus: Always Keep up with PRs!

If you find yourself doing the same distances over and over, be sure to take note of your times and keep them somewhere such as a planner or document where you can easily update or have a look at them. This will help you see your improvement and motivate you to go just a bit faster to beat your best time! In the end, you are your own competition.

Thank you for reading, I hope you got some new ideas and enjoyed the post! If you did, please like so I know to post more like this. I plan to post lots more once I can train outside and the tri season begins, so please follow so you don’t miss a post! Thanks again!

My Bike Essentials

I love cycling, it might just be my favorite event in a triathlon. These different items make riding on the road, on a trainer, and during a race so much more enjoyable and help me ride longer, harder, and allow me to look back at my stats. Let’s get right into it.

1. Clip Shoes

The first and most essential product that I use to train are bike shoes, or as I call them, Screen Shot 2018-01-12 at 9.20.42 PMclip shoes. The idea of them is to allow the rider to not only push down on the pedals but push and pull the pedal back up to ride faster and with more power. Another benefit is that if you are pushing hard and doing an intense sprint, you can give it your all without worrying about your feet slipping off the pedals. Here is a picture of my current shoes:

2. Bike Trainer

An incredibly important element to bike training is a trainer. This lets me train in the Screen Shot 2018-01-12 at 9.38.32 PMwinter, as there is no way I’m riding outside in this cold! If I didn’t have one, I would only be able to train for a few months out of the year, so that makes it crucial to my winter training. I use this Cycle ops trainer:

3. Garmin Edge 25

Whenever I’m riding outside, I love having a bike computer that will track my stats and even have a GPS on board. It lets Screen Shot 2018-01-12 at 10.09.41 PM.pngme look back on the stats of my last rides, such as distance, time, and elevation. the software is intuitive, there are many helpful features such as the online community, and the affordable price makes this device an essential.

 

4. Solid Bike ShortsScreen Shot 2018-01-13 at 9.23.59 AM

In order to get a long ride in, a good pair of bike shorts makes it a hundred times more comfortable, and in my opinion, the more padding, the better. Enough Said.

 

5. Double-sided Pedals

This is one is is extremely useful if you not only go for training rides, but for leisurely Screen Shot 2018-01-13 at 9.38.50 AMones too. The idea is that one side has a clip for if you are wearing clip shoes, but the other is a typical, flat pedal which you could ride on with running shoes. Usually, they make these for SPD clips only, so if you use another type you’re probably out of luck. They are very necessary for my day to day riding, and I highly recommend them!

6. Zwift

Here’s the main event. If you have to train indoors and dread it every time, Zwift is for Screen Shot 2018-01-13 at 9.51.17 AMyou. If you love competing against others and enjoy challenges, Zwift is for you. If you want to make training easier and a ton more fun, Zwift is for YOU. Zwift is an online software and community that throws you into a new cycling-oriented world right on your computer, where you can compete with friends, family, and the world. There are great challenges (I’m working on the Mt. Everest challenge right now) and achievements to push you further and harder. If you have a trainer, bike with Ant+, and a device to use as a screen, you’re all set! Zwift has truly transformed my indoor training for the better.

7. Phone Mount

This last essential for me is used with Zwift, and that is a Phone Mount. I never use it Screen Shot 2018-01-13 at 9.53.47 AMwhen riding outside, but I do use it for Zwift mobile link and it’s great if I want to watch a video or something on my phone while riding (Only when on a trainer, obviously). there are so many versions out there, but here’s one example.

 

This was a fun post to write, and I hope you’ve added some of these to your shopping list!  If you want to be notified about more posts like these, follow by entering your email down below! Thank you for reading!

* None of the products mentioned are sponsored. These are all my ideas and opinions.