Got a turbo... now what?

Had my first sesh this evening on my shiny new turbo.  Just did 30 minutes.  Seems great, etc.  Question is- where do I go from here?  How do I go about making up sessions, etc?  I'm looking to ride a couple of times each week and hope to be fit enough in the spring to start building to a half ironman later in the year.



    M...eldy wrote (see)

    Fill yer boots  image

    yuck - peeing on the bike is OK in competition. There is no need to do it on long turbos sessions in the living room - it is allowable to go to the toilet. Meldy you really are gross.image

  • Thanks Meldy.  That should hold me image 

  • You contacted the Pirate support helpline today. would you mind completing the following satisfaction survey.

    Was the answer.

    1. Helpful and Informative
    2. Banal and randomn comments
    3. Not that funny
    4. Very Funny and pissed myself a bit

    If the answer isn't 2 or 3 you have been very lucky. One last question.

    Would you recommend this forum to a friend?


  • Meldy- 1

    Meface- 3

    Soz mate, when you're a joker, sometimes you kill, other times you just bomb.

    I kind of would recommend it, but all the technical issues are really offputting.  My posts were invisible and it took me weeks to realise.  I just thought nobody was commenting on my posts and that everyone was ignoring my new threads.

  • Waiting to get myself sorted with an ANT+ cadence sensor etc so I can do some proper sessions using (holding out for Santa bringing me a Forerunner 910XT bundle first, doubt it'll happen though), but tonight I did my first real attempt at doing something structured on my turbo.

    Trying to work on climbing at the moment, so did a 10 minute easy warm up spinning away on low resistance, followed by 10 minutes high resistance low cadence to simulate me wheezing my way up a hill. Finished with another 10 minutes of easy spinning.

  • Single leg pyramid drills, suffer baby!

  • DurhamBiker,

    Why that session. Do you think you are weak at climbing. If heavy you may have strong legs. Climbing will always be tough as gravity hates heavy people. Generally cadence or smooth pedalling would be first target. Or CV to avoid the wheezing. Focussing on grinding away seems like a good strategy but spinning up is better. Focus on your weakness grasshopper.
  • Faiths daddy

    Yes I joke a lot. Give me something to go on more than I have a turbo and I'll be more constructive. What are your weaknesses endurance, speed, power.

    Then we may be able to advise on how to build sessions. First things first can you manage 30-minutes at a steady pace? 60-minutes? What pace is steady. Do you have either power or HR to support training.

  • Goodness me Meface, I hope you got out of the other side of the bed this morning   image

  • FaithsD - you are training twice a week and your goal is to race 50 plus miles slightly less than flat out then.

    I would say 2 sessions of 2*20 minute intervals done at the hardest pace you can sustain with a 5-10 minute recovery in between.  

    So warm up for at least 10 minutes progressive effort (do not skimp on the warm up).    Then go into 20 minutes effort - ideally on the tri bars if you intend to race on them - probably a big ask at first but build up from 5 minutes on the tri bars to a full 20 minutes.     Then recover easy spinning.   Then a second 20 minute interval.   Then cool down.   Whole thing is about an hour if you skip the cool down like everyone does.    

    Do them hard enough to feel unpleasant (maybe not in the early weeks) - you may have to tell yourself just get to 10 minutes then when you are there you say well it's half way from here - whatever motivational tricks work for you the point is if you don't feel like quitting then go harder.  If you can watch a video you aren't trying imo.    Stick the turbo in the coldest place possible and if you have a fan use it - put a towel over the bars as you should be sweating buckets and it wrecks your headset and other components.

    I wouldn't bother with anything shorter than this - you aren't road racing so you don't need explosive power or a massive top end.   If you want to do longer sessions on the turbo fine (I wouldn't) but do the 2*20s first so you can learn what intensity you can sustain - then back it off a little bit for a longer session.   If you go straight into say doing a 2 hour constant state session the fact turbos feel hard and you overheat means you'll probably end up just putting in too little effort.   

    Ideally you need something to measure what power you are putting out - a power meter is ideal, a turbo with power measurement OK but a perfectly good proxy would be a rear wheel computer to measure speed - then keep the tyre pressure and clamp pressure constant and you can measure improvement from session to session and gradually up the target speed for your 20 minute intervals.   Start off doing them at a rate you know you can complete and go on from there.   

    I know there are a million and  one different sessions involving different length intervals, cadences, gearing, standing, sitting, one leg, two leg etc but for me that's just faffing about to avoid learning how to focus on getting the effort out.   

  • as usual - download some Sufferfest videos and just get into the hurtbox

  • Or go the Tripetalk route and ride for 6 hours on the turbo.
  • I would just let the thing gather dust in the corner and go out side and cycle.

    even with all the windows in my living room open and the fan on and winter winds howling through the house with me cycling in my underwear i roast and can't perform very well......image

  • Turbos are a great idea to save time. It takes so much longer to get all your winter kit on and if you're limited to cycling at night in the winter - you'll struggle to get a high quality session in.

    Weekends though - yeah get out and ride.
  • Dustboy wrote (see)

    Single leg pyramid drills, suffer baby!

    I like it when you talk dirty. image

  • meface wrote (see)
    Faiths daddy
    Yes I joke a lot. Give me something to go on more than I have a turbo and I'll be more constructive. What are your weaknesses endurance, speed, power.
    Then we may be able to advise on how to build sessions. First things first can you manage 30-minutes at a steady pace? 60-minutes? What pace is steady. Do you have either power or HR to support training.


    Weaknesses???  Er, I'm shockingly cycle unfit.  I was only able to push a low 42X15 at 90RPM.  Any higher and I would have had to dig deep.  I have a HRM.... somewhere.

    I'd like to build up my fitness so I can ride 'meaningfully' once the cold weather's done.  If you really want to put a number to it, I recon I could do a half iron bike in about 2:30 if I get my sh1t together.

  • Thanks for all your responses ladies and gents.  Thanks for the detailed answer Popsider- I'll give that session a go.


  • Faithsdaddy

    42*15 at 90RPM doesn't mean a thing on a turbo as we don't know what resistance you have on. So either use an HRM and work on zones, get a power measurement or proxy through speed that gives a consistent level to see improvement.

    20mph+ for a HIM isn't shabby at all. Many here would be very pleased with that.

    But if you are cycle unfit then build to 2*20 as per popsider's post and you won't go far wrong in the beginning. When you get bored with that do it again! By all means look up some other sessions but be very wary of ofcussign on your strengths on your turbo to get good numbers. Focus on the weakness.


    Meldy - Are you thinking about me in bed again?

  • In a word, No     image

  • for anyone who wants to give themselves a right beasting on the turbo, get a copy of the Sufferfest Revolver.    it's "only" a 45 min session - did it last night for the 1st time.

    it hurt.

    but tell you what, I feel good for it this morning

  • And theres 10% off today if you use the code Sufgiving

    I've stocked up for the Tour of Sufferlandria next year.
  • The reason I did that particular session geared towards climbing is because of a particular hill on my regular route that kicks my arse. With my current fitness I can't spin up it (even in my lowest gear it takes some effort to keep the cranks turning, and then it gets steeper), so I've decided (rightly or wrongly) to get some turbo sessions in to work on it between being able to actually get out and tackle the hill itself on proper rides. On Saturday I managed to get to the top before I died. Luckily the missus' chain came off near the bottom, so I had an excuse to stop and wait at the top

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