Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Time Trial (aka Spinning Like a Madwoman)

You know, I'm kinda getting into this whole cycling on a trainer thing.

I usually reserve regular trainer workouts for those times when I'm injured and can't run for two months. Both times that happened I went from nothing to three trainer workouts per week. Once recovered I went back to running and the cycling tapered off again.

This time, I'm not injured. Running is going well. So is swimming. But I'm still managing to get two cycling workouts in per week. Sometimes three depending on the weather.

Some days I bend crank arms. Other days I ride the Bow Valley Pass which has me climbing up a rather nasty mountain for the better part of an hour.

This past Sunday, Doug pulled out a yet untried video and suggested we try it.

So we did.

It was called Time Trial and was created by CycleOps, the guys who build the trainers we use.

The workout was exactly one hour.

It started off with a warmup (of course).

The main workout involved three 5-minute power sets where we had to keep our cadence above 110 rpm (in a fairly easy gear). Spin, spin, spin like crazy until we're dripping with sweat and can hardly feel our legs. Between each set we had 5 minutes to recover but we still had to keep our cadence up at 90 rpm.

Once we survived the three sets, we moved into a 12-minute steady state where we had to cycle for 2 minutes at 95-100 rpm followed by 2 minutes at 80-85 rpm and back and forth for twelve minutes. It was supposed to keep us at our lactate threshold and get us used to pushing hard in races.

Finish with an 8-minute cool down and we were done.

And I mean done.

I really really liked that workout. I'm used to workouts where I have to power up mountains in the hardest gear. I don't do too many workouts that involve spinning madly for extended periods of time.

It was surprisingly hard.

It hurt my lady bits more than I care to say.

And, after our long runs the day before, it felt like the perfect 'recovery' workout.

I think I might add Time Trial to my basement cycling repertoire.

I just need to figure out a way to tie a pillow on to my bike seat...


  1. oh dear! welcome to the world of high cadence!
    the lady bits are GOING to hurt if you aren't used to high cadence.
    The more you do it, the more your body will learn to spin without the bounce. It takes practice, just hang in there and be sure to give yourself plenty of recovery on the bits before doing another high cadence workout. Chamois cream will help but in my experience, learning proper technique helps way more than dealing with saddle sores ;)

  2. Also, make sure your saddle is level (or as level as it is off the trainer). You don't want the pressure in the wrong place.