Indoor training can be a controversial topic - some people love it, others hate it - but the inescapable truth is that hard intervals are often best ridden without the distractions of the open road.
Lizzie Armitstead has recently chosen to become an ambassador for Wattbike - the all in one indoor trainer that provides all the data you need on an in-built screen - saying: "I chose Wattbike because I'm a cyclist, and it feels like riding a bike, and it's not like your average home trainer which feels uncomfortable and difficult. It's the most natural comparison to a road bike."
Wattbikes are fully adjustable so you can dial your position, and the in-built computer screen relays a lot of data: displaying power output, as well as showing the shape of your pedal stroke so you can work on building the most efficient technique.
Armitstead, the reining Road Race World Champion, will be training on hers as she builds up to the Olympic games in Rio this summer. Breaking from convention, Armitstead is self-coached and plans her own sessions - she said: "It [the Wattbike] will be an instrumental tool in my training in the run up to Rio. I have some very specific training goals and with the Wattbike I will be able to accurately monitor my power outputs, train in the right zones in a controlled environment and measure my progress to ensure every session is of high quality."
The Wattbike sounds great - the highlights that Armitstead has mentioned, as well as a few others include:
- Full adjustability
- Road-like sensation
- Accurate power reading
- Pedal stroke analysis
- Sessions can be uploaded automatically to training software via a smartphone app
- Pre-set sessions are available to download to follow on the Wattbike
There's got to be a drawback? Well - yes - a Wattbike will set you back £2225 - though you can pay on finance from £100 a month, which seems a little more manageable.
For now, we'll have to settle for dreaming of owning one, but here's Armitstead talking about the Wattbike, and her season ahead: