Turbo trainer advice

howiejmidlands Posts: 389
edited February 2008 in Road beginners
I have just purchased a gel turbo trainer, hooked the bike up and had a blast for half an hour.

Its surprising how rather hot and sweaty one gets.............. phew!

But how long should you ride one for, i couldnt see myself doing 2 hours to simulate a normal road ride. Is there a min max i should be aiming for?
Just a fat bloke on a bike


  • Garybee
    Garybee Posts: 815
    It depends what you are trying to achieve. I've used my turbo for 2 - 3 hr rides because i've been unable to get out on the roads (snow/ice, 50mph winds etc.) and it's a bit soul destroying. I use it for the harder sessions (intervals, lactic acid tolerance etc.) as it means I can be sure that my session won't be interrupted by stopping for junctions and other distractions. I think the turbo is best used in this way, for the harder sessions as part of a structured training program.

    Hypocrisy is only a bad thing in other people.
  • popette
    popette Posts: 2,089
    I've read that one may prefer to limit turbo sessions to 45-60 minutes. My sessions are usually about an hour long. I either do a virtual reality course, which aren't too boring, or I do 2x20min intervals, which are hard to keep going. Within minutes of starting my interval, I start thinking to myself "I've got to do another 30 odd minutes of this!" It becomes quite a mental challenge not to cut the interval down and to keep going until the end.

    Have you got a sweat cover? If you're sweating lots you might want to get one to protect your bike.
  • geoff_ss
    geoff_ss Posts: 1,201
    The most I can cope with on my turbo is 30 minutes hard, keeping my pulse rate about 130 bpm (my theoretical maximum is 152 but I can get to 160) After 10 minutes I do 100 revs as fast as possible (about 1 minute) and repeat each 5 minutes. My resting pulse is about 48 bpm so I don't think I do too badly.

    I have a beat up old frame permanently mounted on he turbo so there's no messing about and I don't care about sweat damage. However I avoid using it and only have a session when I feel guilty about not going out.

    Old cyclists never die; they just fit smaller chainrings ... and pedal faster
  • cart71
    cart71 Posts: 21
    hi there if you have a heart rate monitor i have an excel file with loads of training sessions in it if your interested pm me and i can forward it onto you
  • andyrr
    andyrr Posts: 1,819
    The Tacx site and also, I think, Joe Beer's site had various suggestions for sessions.
    The limit for many people is, mentally, aroudn the hour.
    I've done about 90 minutes once when I was not able to stray from the house and wanted to doa long ride but > 60 mins is fairly tough.
    Having a preplanned session with your overall ride broken down into smaller parts, eg 10 mins really hard and within that 10 mins change gear each 2 mins, type of thing, makes it easier. Also music or video/dvd helps the time pass.
    The classic 2x20 or 3 x 20 mins as discussed in the Training forum here might be of interest : if you have a solid plan that is set out before you climb on then you are more liable to do the whole session at the intended effort.
  • Thats really interesting advice, i couldnt do 2 hours, although i may have a go at some point to see how tough it is.

    I think the 1 hour max, and interval sessions may be the way to go.

    Just a fat bloke on a bike