The Great British Winter can be harsh and sometimes you’re better off jumping on the turbo trainer and mashing out the miles indoors than facing the wind and rain.
Pedaling in a fixed position allows you to ride intervals at maximum effort, without having to worry about traffic, roundabouts and junctions, so you can place your undivided attention into the effort. Add in the fact that there’s no freewheel, and turbo training is generally considered a more time efficient form of training – with 60 turbo minutes comparable to around 90 minutes on the road if you do it right.
Doing it right means actually having a session plan, and understanding why you’re riding the intervals that you are – this means you’ll mentally commit to them more and ultimately go harder.
We’ve provided a selection of example sessions below for you to pick from – some directly from pro athletes and others that we just know and love. However, before we move on, a few tips:
- Never try to turbo train without a fan. This does not train ‘mental fortitude’, and is only really useful if you plan on competing in an event somewhere hot. All that will happen is you overheat, and this will cause your heart rate to rise higher than it would otherwise and your power output to actually drop. And it’s just really unpleasant.
- Always start with a big bottle of water – you will need it.
- Have a towel handy. Since you’re not moving, there’s no cooling air – the difference that makes is astounding.
- Use a mat and a raiser block (or the Yellow Pages!) to lift your front wheel off the ground so your bike is level.
Without further ado – here are the sessions…