In the winter season, most cyclists turn to their bike trainers to maintain their biking fitness, and it is easy to see why. With the risk of poor lighting and bad weather, indoor cycling is the safest and most effective way for riders to keep their training on track.
In addition to helping cyclists beat bad weather, using indoor bikes, rollers, or turbo trainers allows riders to target specific training goals when they are short in time. Everyone – from the pros to beginning bike riders – can enjoy the benefits of indoor cycling. In this article, we will discuss indoor cycling benefits in detail.
What Are the Benefits of Indoor Cycling?
If you use your bike trainer the right way, you will enjoy the following indoor cycling benefits:
1. Time Efficiency
Compared to riding your touring bike outside, using an indoor bike for exercise takes much less time. If you are short on time, turbo trainer workouts can help you squeeze in training sessions when otherwise it would be impossible.
If you are planning to go mountain biking, you have got to find a good route. If you live in a big city, you will need to get out of the city. By the time you mount your hardtail mountain bike on your chosen route, you could have done a whole session when training indoors.
The indoor bike trainer is always set up and ready to go – you won’t have to waste any time. You can get on the bike trainer, warm-up, get into the workout session, finish, shower, and be left with enough time to work on other important activities. The uninterrupted nature and specificity of indoor cycling allow you to make big gains in a small amount of time.
2. Beat Bad Weather
Indoor cycling allows riders to eliminate weather elements. This means that you won’t have to deal with ice and snow in winter or heavy rains and wind in other seasons. Although the right biking wear and gear can keep you comfortable when riding outdoors, sometimes riding in inclement weather is just unenjoyable.
You will also need to consider your safety. If your favorite bikepacking trails are covered with ice or snow and the visibility is poor, sticking to your indoor trainer can help you avoid accidents.
3. Uninterrupted Training Sessions
When riding outdoors, it is generally hard to complete specific training sessions – especially targeted interval sessions – without the training rhythm being disrupted by the undulating nature of your route, or the need to stop at junctions or for traffic.
One of the indoor cycling benefits is that it removes all uncontrollable variables and interruptions. This gives you enough concentration to complete your workout.
4. Allows Consistency
The focused and structured nature of indoor biking ensures consistency from one workout to the next. If you have already planned your goals – whether it is completing your first 100-mile biking trip or getting into competitive racing – indoor cycling will allow you to keep your cycling training on track.
Unlike when riding your budget road bike outdoors, every session when cycling indoors counts. The sessions are predictable, you know what the session should feel like and it is easy to figure out whether you are improving or not. This makes the bike trainer a good environment for setting and doing cycling training.
5. Training with Power
Some of the benefits of indoor cycling have to do with improving indoor training technology. Smart trainers come with built-in power meters that allow cyclists to target various training goals with improved precision.
Once you take an FTP test to determine your ideal training zones, you can then take advantage of power-based workouts to achieve your cycling goals. With the right indoor cycling workouts, you should be able to improve your climbing performance, sprint speed, and endurance.
Smart bike trainers also come with external resistance control. For example, you can set an ideal wattage for your bike trainer to lock on and then allow a third-party application to control your trainer based on your workout’s demands. This means that if you are doing an interval session, you will be able to hit the necessary numbers to get maximum indoor cycling benefits from your workout.
6. Focus on Technique
Indoor cycling allows you to focus on your technique, most notably, your road bike pedal stroke. For example, if every mountain bike pedal stroke you make needs 0.5% less energy, and you make 1000s of these pedal strokes within one ride, this will add up.
You can also use your indoor trainer to work on your dead spots – this is where you don’t produce any power and end up losing efficiency. Doing drills in your sessions to eliminate the dead spots is an ideal way for improving your commuter bike handling skills.
7. Riding Convenience
You do not need to purchase a smart bike trainer to enjoy the benefits of indoor cycling. Most gyms feature some form of static bike or spin class. You can also find specialist turbo clubs at various studios. This means that it is possible to take advantage of indoor cycling anywhere and at any time.
If you happen to use the indoor trainer at the gym, you can combine it with weight training or other off-bike workouts. This is an ideal way to stay fit in the winter season, when this off-season gives you time to work on other areas of your biking performance, alongside targeted sessions on your indoor trainer.
8. It is Interesting
If your idea of indoor cycling is pedaling for hours in a cold spare room with just a wall staring at you, then it may be time to rethink your turbo sessions. Interactive training apps have made indoor cycling lively.
Consistency and having the needed motivation to get on your trainer is the key to gaining benefits from indoor cycling. Modern training apps are a great way to motivate yourself to train indoors.
Compared to 10 years ago when indoor cycling meant sitting on a noisy, wheel-based trainer in the garage, nowadays, it is much easier to join indoor training. Now, it is possible to get an interesting virtual world or cycle indoors with friends.
9. Set Your Own Pace
Almost all indoor cycling trainers give you maximum control over your rides. If you prefer to crank up the resistance and speed frequently, have a go at it. if you are recovering from an injury, new to cycling, or you are just not the “high-intensity type”, you can set a pace that favors you. Every time you ride an indoor trainer, you can find your comfort zone and make the cycling experience your own.
10. Expands Your Social Circle
If you visit a gym to take advantage of indoor cycling, you will meet a group of people with the same goals as you. Indoor bike training unifies people through dedication and hard work.
You won’t just sit on your bike trainer unaffected by your neighbor. You and your neighbor will start motivating each other. In these motivational moments, you end up becoming more than just a group of riders – you become a team.
Riding together allows cyclists to encourage each other. You can inspire those who are yet to achieve your fitness level, while those who are ahead of you fitness-wise will inspire you. Working together increases your chances of achieving your fitness goals.
Q: Is It OK to Spin Every Day?
Even for experienced cyclists, daily spinning sessions may still be overkill. Expert spinning instructors recommend taking spin classes an average of 3 to 5 times per week. However, for exceptionally fit cyclists – and those who do not have leg or joint problems – spinning daily may not have any negative effects.
Q: How Often Should You Cycle Indoors?
Plan to do 3 to 5 indoor cycling sessions per week for ideal results. Sessions generally take an average of 45 to 60 minutes. In your sessions, focus on variety in terms of the exercises you do. For example, put a focus on bursts of speed, uphill climbs, endurance exercises, and short recovery periods with easy pedaling.
Q: How Much Should I Cycle A Day to Lose Weight?
If you are cycling for weight loss, slow but long rides, at least once per week can help you out. Long rides – up to 6 hours – burn a lot of fat. If, however, you are short on time, you can use short rides to burn fat – when using short rides (for example, thirty-minute rides) go hard to get maximum benefits.
Globo Surf Overview
Cycling is a great way to stay in shape. However, as most experienced riders already know, outdoor cycling is now always possible – for example bad weather and having a limited amount of time can make outdoor cycling impossible.
In the event where you can’t ride outside, taking advantage of indoor cycling may be the best way to go. This guide details the benefits of indoor cycling. If you are currently on a budget and can’t afford a bike trainer, you can still enjoy indoor cycling benefits by visiting your local gym a couple of times a week.