The instrument of torture

Things have been a bit quiet on here of late and I can only apologise.

I’ve been on holiday to not-so-sunny Scotland and did manage one or two rides through the Rotheimurhcus Forest near Aviemore. Tearing through that wonderful Caledonian woodland was akin to careering over the forest moon of Endor on a speeder bike… kind of.

Now the nights are stating draw in and, keen to keep some level of fitness over the winter months, I’ve invested in a very basic turbo trainer.

It’s an Elite Elastogel model, which features magnetic resistance and a gel ‘tyre’ on the roller (hence the name). This is meant to reduce tyre wear, although I have rigged up an old wheel and a Gatorskin for the purpose in order to protect my road tyres.

I’m using my Kona Dew Drop in the garage and placed the turbo on a few foam tiles which help deaden the noise somewhat. So far, I’ve had two sessions of 45 mins each based around a basic interval training programme – warm up and then five minute blocks of increasingly harder resistance separated with a ‘cool-off’ periods.

That, I find, gets the blood pumping the legs working. And, in view of the lack of wind, one tends top leak quite a bit. Consequently, I’ve taken to riding it in bib shorts only… a kind of mankini sportif, if you will.

Many have commented on how boring turbo training is, but I find the time flies. I put the ipod on and concentrate on good pedalling action. I’m hoping it will improve my technique ultimately…


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