RE: Turbo Trainers - Yea or Nay

Hi forum-dwellers,

So, I'm a London dweller, and I am considering parting with some of my hard earned for an entry level turbo trainer for around £150.  I've been going back and forth about the pros and cons given that I am training for IMUK, particularly given the longer rides that I will need to balance with my wife's marathoning ambitions and all of the other things life throws at you.

What I'm after from those who own trainers, or have owned them is whether or not they are worth the investment, or if I would be better served getting some fresh air about me.

Thanks so much,

AD

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Comments

  • Yes get one - hunt around and get a good deal and you can get better than entry level for £150.

    There are a few on here who quite rightly say get out and cycle outdoors - apart from snow and ice there is no excuse. The answer to that is - will you come round and baby sit because I can't go out out and leave two kids in bed and dinner in the oven whilst I go out and bike.

    If you have the space for a permanent set-up they can be very quick. Tri-shorts, t-shirt, socks bike shoes on, pedal. No soaking wet overshoes at the end: three times a week + wet running kit and swimming kit (slightly damp). Plus no traffic lights, roundabouts, give ways, downhills - they are an efficient way of training.

    So they can be worthwhile if ability to cycle outdoors is restricted, access to good training roads is restricted, and you can make yourself suffer.

    M..eface

  • Worth the investment.

    I dont like cycling in the dark, so all my midweek cycling will be done on turbo for next 5 months. An endurance ride at weekend and 2 one hour turbos will see you right.

    Also when its peeing it down or icy roads its my preferred option.

  • Definitely invest - but save enough money for a HRM to ensure you're using it effectively too.

    If you think you can or you think you can't you're probably right.
  • Little M.iss Happy wrote (see)

    Definitely invest - but save enough money for a HRM to ensure you're using it effectively too.

    Do you mean HGH?

  • TRTR ✭✭✭

    I suggets that you consider a Tacx Sirius, it was the best reviewed turbo for the dosh when I got mine.

    Defo worth it, you get a much more controllable bang for your buck indoors, I dont bother going outside unless I have more than 90mins, I struggle to get my HR up outdoors so turbo works well for me.

  • Heart Rate Monitor

    If you think you can or you think you can't you're probably right.
  • hate the turbo but it does has its uses... i wouldn't have spent the money but my OH bought some after bolrrowing one................rollers i believe can be a bit tricky........didn't think you did much on the rollers KK.thought you only tried them once.........are they ok for a couple of hours use or just for short bursts.....

    but the fact remainsd....unless you are going to use them then they are all a waste of moneyimage

  • Mine is used as a bike stand

    I prefer to get out and about if possible as the turbo is too hard!



    However thet are great for hour long intrrval sessions....
  • im all in for turbo. love it. ( almost - im not a masochist )

    beats cycling in the dark/rain/cold/on open roads with car drivers who cant see shit unless it has breasts or four wheels no matter how many lights/flourescent jackets etc its covered in.

    promised the OH I wont ride a bike anywhere near cars as - im fcuking carelss and cars kill cyclists all the time.....I said yes whilst thinking race day and race recky and race day prep next year....

    heart monitor is essential - even a basic one.  as is a cadence monitor ( cheap n nasty from tesco - £12 )

  • What about a spin class instead of a turbo session? Is this a silly idea? and I mean a proper spin class with the tri club, not 'oh but I don't want to get sweaty' spin classes at the local gym..   

  • spin sessions are fine but tend to be limited in frequency - whereas at home you can jump on the turbo anytime. not have to faff travelling far, and all the comforts of home training.   

  • H0NKH0NK ✭✭✭

    I wouldn't be contemplating training for an Ironman if wasnt for a turbo, there are times when i need to be at home but now I can still get some training in.

     

    SgtLard wrote (see)

    heart monitor is essential - even a basic one.  as is a cadence monitor ( cheap n nasty from tesco - £12 )

    ooh, do Tesco do a cheap and nasty cadence monitor? will have to look out for that to go with my cheap and nasty HRM.
  • theyhave a 17function bike computer wich has wirless speed ( 60cm ) and cadence for about £12. works loveley. zip tags are a bit cheap. speed doesnt work ( for me ) from the backwheel.

    but im focused on spinning at 90 in whatever gear/turbo setting and a hrt around 150+/- 10 for a z2 effort.  speed is not my concern but endurance and 6stone of lard I dont need to drag up hills and along flats ( or through a pool ).

    if your a math whiz you can work out speed from cadence, gearing, wheel circumfrance. but id rather be training.

  • KeirKeir ✭✭✭

    Good news:

    1hr on turbo = 2hrs on the road in training effort / effect

    Bad news:

    1hr on turbo = 4hrs of relative perceived time.

    I often wonder what Einstein would have made of 'turbo time' when formulating his general and special relativity theories. 

     

  • H0NKH0NK ✭✭✭

    Thanks  SgtLard, Just looked up the Tesco Cadence monitor.

    However I will be in right trouble if i keep buying Bike stuff, so will have to put it on christmas list and count my cadence (15 seconds x 4) till then.

  • Great tools, buy one, set up the DVD, stick the Star Wars box set on and veg out, not too much though or you will doze orf and perhaps do a Meldy and fall off the turbo (old ones are always the best) "ducks"

  • Ha! I can just see myself dozing off during a lull in Star Wars and waking up horizontal on the floor.  Classic, Dustboy.

    Thanks for the feedback everyone; because sound reduction is a huge one for me, I'm looking particularly at the Elite Crono Fluid ElastoGel Trainer - £150 at Wiggle at the moment delivering in November. 

    Thanks so much though - appreciate it!

  • I'd also check out Fleabay AD, usually a fair number go on there when people realise how mind numbingly boring being on a turbo is!  image

    I've got the Elite on and I'd reccommend it!  Not that I use it as much as I should!!  Too much like training!  image

  • I got that one too. Surprising how much noise becomes an issue over a long spell. Turbo tyre makes it quieter as well to be able to hear the soundtrack on the DVD.

    Though if you ever get to try an old fan turbo, crank it up to 30mph. Its hilarious.

  • H0NKH0NK ✭✭✭
    ainsleysdad wrote (see)

    Ha! I can just see myself dozing off during a lull in Star Wars and waking up horizontal on the floor.  Classic, Dustboy.

    Thanks for the feedback everyone; because sound reduction is a huge one for me, I'm looking particularly at the Elite Crono Fluid ElastoGel Trainer - £150 at Wiggle at the moment delivering in November. 

    Thanks so much though - appreciate it!

    Thats the one i have and i'd recomend it.

    I believe wiggle are still doing 10% off orders over £100 if you enter the code       10-OFF when purchasing.

  • how does a turbo session equate to a longer road session ?  really 1 hour on the turbo = 2hrs on the road ?

     

  • I think turbo is waaay easier. Lovely surface, flat, no traffic, no potholes, etc etc. Road takes a lot out of you mentally as well. IMO. 

    Turbo rots your mind though

  • H0NKH0NK ✭✭✭
    SgtLard wrote (see)

    how does a turbo session equate to a longer road session ?  really 1 hour on the turbo = 2hrs on the road ?

     

    1hour turbo = 2hours on road is probably a bit of an exageration but the theory I believe is that on the Turbo there is no forward momentum so you need to Pedal constantly rather than taking a breather on the downhills, stopping at junctions, traffic lights etc.

  • Dustboy wrote (see)

     

    Turbo rots your mind though


    That explains alot!!

  • Dustboy wrote (see)

    IMO. 

    Turbo rots your mind though

    all the more reason to do it then image

  • It's one of the reasons I use the HRM on the turbo - too easy to drift off and not be working but if you take 10 minutes to warm up and then spend 45 minutes working in Z2 (for a steady state ride) with 5 minutes cool down you'll do more aerobic exercise than you're likely to on the road due to the lack of downhills, traffic lights etc. Of course add in some intervals or threshold work and it's even more use.

    As for the mental aspect - well, riding for 180km is a bit mad and takes some mental strength doesn't it?

    If you think you can or you think you can't you're probably right.
  • There are hills on mine - but I do have a fancy pants one.

    1 hour= 1.5 hours is fair. Assuming you are pedalling and have the resistance at a sensible level. It is not that it is harder, just no lights, roundabouts, coasting. Just flats and uphills. You can go harder as you don't need to think about traffic etc.

    Efficient and Brutal - Yes

    Inspiring - No

     

  • I do quite fancy one of those things where you race on the TV against others on your turbo. I know they are pointless and a lot of money but I would be interested to know which ones are good/bad/recommended, all the same! You never know. I do find visual  stimulation on the turbo is the best distraction and I reckon it might be fun? EG is there a wireless thing that links to your Garmin via a laptop or whatever?

  • Dustboy wrote (see)

    I do quite fancy one of those things where you race on the TV against others on your turbo. I know they are pointless and a lot of money but I would be interested to know which ones are good/bad/recommended, all the same! You never know. I do find visual  stimulation on the turbo is the best distraction and I reckon it might be fun? EG is there a wireless thing that links to your Garmin via a laptop or whatever?

    I've seen a couple of those as well; but they fit firmly into the 'fancy pants' category of turbos I think.  I can only imagine what KK would think of them.

    Now I'm just going through that impatient stage of saving up a bit of cashola for the buy.  I figure that while I'm still boshing out 3/4 hour rides, staying on the road is not too much of a problem, since waking up at 6am means I still get quality time with Mrs AD and A-herself.  Once I start getting above those length rides though, and want to pair them up with brick runs, its much harder to tell the Mrs that I wont be in until 2pm.  So - big tick for turbos + Star Wars for me.

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