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Training with little spare time

wahoo-kickr.jpg

Howard Calvert of Team ShortList blogs about his progress so far

Monday, 2 June, 2014

Howard CalvertAlthough the ShortList 2014 Tri Challenge is three months away, I am, like many people, what is known as ‘time crunched’. With two children, a full-time job and a long commute, I have little time to fit in a five-hour weekend ride through the Surrey Hills. So I’ve been looking at ways to train more intensely in my limited spare hours.
 

One essential purchase is a turbo trainer. With this, you can set it up at home and grab some time in the saddle pre- or post-work. I was lucky enough to trial the new Wahoo Kickr . Endorsed by Team Sky, this stationary trainer replaces your back wheel and requires a plug socket and an iPhone (you can then control the resistance via your iPhone). The Kickr automatically sets your power output, and, due to the cutting-edge electromagnetic resistance, feels just like riding on the road.

 

Set up in my shed á la Bradley Wiggins while training for the 2012 Tour, (although I doubt he was inches from a humming freezer like me), I signed up to US training programme Trainer Road (trainerroad.com) to use its library of workouts – $10 a month gives you unlimited access, featuring hundreds of rides, most 60-90 minutes in length.

Trainer Road syncs with the Kickr, so you simply select a workout and start pedaling. The first session you must do, however, is one to determine your FTP (Functional Threshold Power), which involves a tough 20-minute, all-out ride. Once you’ve recovered from that, you can set your FTP and the workouts adjust to match it. Then, simply sync your heart-rate monitor and cadence pod, if you have them, and away you go: an hour of pure fun awaits.

You can choose a training plan, or just pick and choose from the library – there is even a sprint triathlon-specific plan. If you love data, you will be overwhelmed with it post-workout. You can even upload your session onto Strava.

It’s a great way to get the hours in if you can’t get out on the road as much as you’d like.

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