Whilst I had an amazing day riding stage 8 of the Tour of Britain I saw the photos and realised, what I already knew, that I do not look great in lycra and i need to lose more weight – again something I already knew but this has spurred me on to change things up a bit.
I want to ensure my training does not reduce during the winter and so going to use our Wahoo Kickr (otherwise it is quite an expensive piece of kit just sitting in our spare room). The Wahoo Kickr is an indoor turbo trainer for the bike. The difference between this and others is that the back wheel from the bike is removed and you attach it directly to the Kickr for a more realistic road feel – and it is just that! The first time I used it I was surprised that it felt tougher than our previous turbo but is more realistic and I will remind myself of that as I sweat profusely during my training on it that it will make me improve.
My hubby recommended signing up to TrainerRoad and so I did. Following joining a running club this is the second change I am making with more to come!
TrainerRoad measures speed and power and then creates customised training plans to use based on your individual fitness, all of which have been developed by a USAC Level 1 coach. Him indoors trains off cadence and is a complete gadget geek and likes to know all the stats including power and as I am clueless with most of this I am happy to follow his lead and from what I read about TrainerRoad it sounded perfect.
I signed up and after entering all of my information took my first fitness level test to get started. This 20 minute test establishes your Functional Threshold Power (FTP), which is used to plan the workouts and monitor progress.
When you train with TrainerRoad, you’re using the most effective training tool to become a stronger, faster and better cyclist or your money back. Indoor cycling training can be hard, it takes diligence and it takes dedication — but with TrainerRoad, it works.
That had me sold!
So him indoors got me all set up and headed out to leave me to it – probably because he knows how grumpy I can be on the turbo this was a wise decision on his part.
The training test is self explanatory and you basically follow the plan they lay out and it explains as you go what is coming up so you know you have 1 minute sprint intervals for example.
Being slightly dim I thought the 20 minute test would last for well 20 minutes but it would seem not. The 20 minute test is in fact 1 hour long, with the FTP set at 200, you have 30 minutes of warming up before the 20 minute test itself even begins. I was doing ok up until 30 minutes and managing to keep pretty much at the same level as set but by the time I got to 30 minutes knowing I had 20 minutes of all out effort and feeling somewhat uncomfortable in the saddle I started to get fidgety as can be seen from the profile (the three dips are where I had to stand briefly to change position).
After the 30 minute warm up and 20 minute test there is a 10 minute easy spin cool down, which was lets just say……nice. I looked like I’d been swimming (and that’s not the best look).
It gave me an average of 167 and it sets my plans according to that. I have no idea what an average is but this is my starting point and I will be able to see over the coming months any improvements.
Things I learnt from this:
- 1 hour on the turbo is not fun
- 1 bottle of water is not enough
- I sweat a LOT
- I need to invest in a fan pronto
- Wearing the best padded bib shorts when doing this is a definite!
Also thanks to my hubby of course for his help with all of this and his usual encouragement and also a friend from Instagram, the amazing Miguel, and Graham from Havering Tri – I have been picking their brains about all this and they’ve all been so helpful – much appreciated!