Question: I admit it. I’m a wimp when it comes to riding in temperatures below 50F degrees. So I try to stay fit by taking spinning classes at my local community center or riding my bike on an indoor trainer. Which method do you recommend? — Ted S.
Coach Fred Matheny Replies: I like both. You get more variety that way. For years I’ve used a LeMond RevMaster stationary bike as well as an old road bike on a trainer. I pedal in a downstairs room rather than attend organized classes.
With the RevMaster, I can work out with a Spinervals tape or do my own thing while watching TV or race videos. I gauge intensity by perceived exertion and heart rate.
A big advantage of the RevMaster is its resistance capability. I can crank it down until I can barely turn the pedals if I want to do low-cadence/high-resistance work or short sprints.
The RevMaster is adjustable so you can duplicate your road position. It also accepts clipless pedals and road handlebars. Don’t buy a spinning bike that doesn’t allow this customizing.
On the trainer, my bike is equipped with a PowerTap. With it, I can do periodic testing to see how I’m progressing in my winter program. Simply checking average wattage for several three-minute intervals at a given heart rate is a pretty reliable test.
Tip! Indoor trainers can devour tires. Save the worn fronts from your road bike and use them on the rear wheel of your trainer bike.