General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Spin Class vs Mounted Indoor Bike Training Rss Feed  
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2017-10-01 5:13 PM


Subject: Spin Class vs Mounted Indoor Bike Training
I plan on signing up for my first HIM in 2018 (July race date) and am trying to figure out whether between now and April I can stick with spin classes as my bike training or I should be training on the bike I will be using mounted. Outdoor rides aren't an option over the winter here so its one or the other. I'd prefer the spin classes but trying to figure how that would translate come spring when I can move the rides outdoors. Appreciate any feedback.

2017-10-01 6:31 PM
in reply to: 0

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Eugene, Oregon
Subject: RE: Spin Class vs Mounted Indoor Bike Training
I would say that unless the spin classes are oriented toward triathletes, I would stick to your actual bike on the trainer for the majority of your bike training; maybe use the spin class once a week to mix things up if you enjoy it. While the classes can add variety and help you build strength, they aren't on your actual bike, don't usually last that long (most here are 45-60 minutes at most) and tend to have a lot of standing work and other maneuvers that aren't really relevant or needed in large quantities for most HIM training, and can pose an injury risk for some people. They also tend to have a lot of work at very high resistance or cadence, and not much of the steady, "tempo" type riding close to race gearing and cadence that is important (though certainly not the only thing you do in training) for iron distance races.

With the bike trainer, you are using the equipment and position you will use in the race, and can follow a structured training program focused on your goals. Maybe not as exciting as a class, but music, videos, and structured workouts go a long way toward making it bearable. I do 95% of my bike training here indoors due to weather and traffic; I actually prefer my own music, a video, and my coach's workouts to loud music not of my choosing and some instructor screaming at the class.

Edited by Hot Runner 2017-10-01 6:41 PM
2017-10-05 5:49 AM
in reply to: P_Cheetham


Subject: RE: Spin Class vs Mounted Indoor Bike Training
it would definitely depend on the instructor. my gym has one who actually rides a bike. he races cyclocross and road races too. he teaches his class like a bike ride. i find those classes are worth it.

the other spin instructors at my gym are all "lets do jumps!" I dont see how standing and sitting every 3 seconds would ever translate to the road. but it is a good workout. I would rather be on my trainer.

I would recommend doing both if you can.

Im also considering trying out one of those trainer apps like trainerroad this year. has anyone had success with them?
2017-10-05 7:12 AM
in reply to: JonP9576

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Southern Illinois
Subject: RE: Spin Class vs Mounted Indoor Bike Training
For me, spin class is something I can put on my schedule and go do, like any other appointment. Riding the trainer is something I find so boring and painful (yes, it actually hurts to sit on my saddle on the trainer (it doesn't on the road)) that I'll find the least little reason to skip that workout. So, spin class is better than nothing. I agree with the previous poster though, it is all about the instructor of the class. Good ones are good. Bad ones can get you hurt with all that "jumps" junk.
2017-10-05 10:57 AM
in reply to: P_Cheetham

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Subject: RE: Spin Class vs Mounted Indoor Bike Training
I find using Zwift is a great indoor option. You may need to invest in a speed/cadence sensor if you don't have a "smart trainer" or power meter but the interactive nature of Zwift is very motivating. It's worth considering...
2017-10-06 10:58 AM
in reply to: gigolfer

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Subject: RE: Spin Class vs Mounted Indoor Bike Training
I get a lot of benefit out of the weekly one I do, but mostly due to the following two reasons:
1. The instructor is very qualified and is awesome in general. Works us both hard and smart.
2. I can adjust the spin class bike such that it replicates my aero position VERY closely.

2017-10-07 11:42 AM
in reply to: kalish

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Subject: RE: Spin Class vs Mounted Indoor Bike Training
I like the class I go to in the winter time once or twice a week. Of course, I am still pretty new to triathlon and am not very fast on the bike. I think I am getting faster though, and I do attribute some of that to the spin class. That high resistance "climbs" that they do may not be very realistic for a road course, but it has seemed to strengthen my legs. My YMCA has an indoor track, so I will occasionally make the spin class a brick workout and go run a mile on the track after the class is over.

I prefer to do two outdoor rides a week, and one spin class. I've never tried a trainer, so I don't know how that would fit in for me.

J White

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