We’re in the middle of a cold dark winter in the UK, so the only way for most people to keep their cycling fitness going and build some form for next season is to use an indoor trainer. This could be a turbo, rollers, watt bike or  spin bike. For a lot of people indoor bike training is a thing to hate and avoid at all costs. But it can be an incredibly effective training tool, so how can you make it more enjoyable?

  1. Plan your work out ahead.
  2. Understand the purpose of your workout and how it will help your fitness and racing next season.
  3. Chunk it: Plan a workout with distinct chunks eg warm up, pulse raiser, main set with reps, and cool down. This helps to break up the workout and makes it go quicker.
  4. Get a bike computer or training device and use the data available to you to keep you focussed eg heart rate, power, cadence, speed, distance. Set a goal for each chunk of the workout.
  5. Set and use training zones either Heart Rate or Power to keep you focussed and make sure you’re training at the right intensity (there’s no arguing with the numbers)
  6. Have your turbo and bike set up in advance so there’s no excuses on workout day.
  7. Add variety each week – turbo, rollers, spin class, group, solo,
  8. Make a play list of your favourite music in advance
  9. Try some indoor training tools such as Sufferfest, Zwift or Trainer Road.
  10. Recruit a turbo buddy to do the workout with
  11. Join a group session – Cycling Clubs and Triathlon Clubs often have weekly turbo sessions.
  12. Spin Classes can be great fun and incredibly motivating. Just remember that spin bikes are not quite the same as using your bike, so you trade a bit of specificity for fun.
  13. Understand the benefits of indoor training – its much more focussed than outdoor cycling without rolling down hill and stopping at a junction. Its easier to work hard and stick to a zone for set periods of time indoors. This makes it an efficient and effective way to train.
  14. Don’t Think Just Train… will make you faster.
  15. And my favourite – Embrace the suffering.