Turbo training – that was the year that was
Turbo training – that was the year that was
Riders taking their outside exploits inside their homes and passing the time on training platforms is something that will forever be synonymous with 2020.
As it wasn’t always possible to get out on to the open roads and trails, indoor training gave riders the chance to maintain their fitness and reach their goals. Whether you were a convert well before 2020, you put your bike on a trainer for the first time during or are yet to benefit from cycling indoors, there is no doubt that turbo training is here to stay. A huge reason for this is the convenience and time efficiency of indoor training so let’s take a look at the Specialized products that can help you get on the home exercise ladder.
Bringing the outside inside
We are no longer strangers to indoor training. Thanks to a huge leap forward in turbo, smart trainers and roller tech, indoor cycling has never been easier to do. Couple that with virtual training platforms like Zwift and TrainerRoad and the concept of digging deep and sweating while not actually going anywhere becomes quite appealing. These platforms not only help to keep your concentration on your riding as you follow your virtual avatar but also make you a stronger cyclist thanks to their in-built structured workout plans. Indoor training no longer means just staring at a wall for an hour.
Of course, you’ll need a bike to put on said trainer. For this, road bikes are ideal. For a lightweight bike that can do it all, look no further than the S-Works Tarmac SL7. With SRAM's RED eTap AXS 12-speed groupset and a tiny 6.8kg weight, the Tarmac SL7 is perfect if you want to train on your race bike. For a mid-range bike built purely for joy, there is no better option than the all-new Aethos range. An innovative design, the bikes tube shapes carry the load through the frame making for an all-round comfortable ride. However, if you’d rather just have a bike that will only be used for indoor training, you won’t need all the bells and whistles. Something like the Allez Elite, or in fact any of the Allez range, are top-class entry-level bikes, packed with performance features and perfect for use on a turbo trainer. At just over £1,000, the Allez Elite is a balance of performance and cost efficiency.
Perhaps the greatest glory of indoor training is the lack of pre-ride faff there is when it comes to clothing. No helmet or layers of kit needed here, you can get away with just wearing a top, bib shorts or all-purpose exercise gear as you will heat up quickly. Part of our fitness range is the no chamois Shasta knickers. Comfortable, lightweight and with quick-drying functionality thanks to VaporRize knit fabrics, the Shasta Tights can be used both on and off the bike. Essential bibs like the SL Expert are also ideal as you only really need to focus on the practicality of on-bike comfort. You don't even necessarily have to don a jersey. A simple base layer on top helps to wick the sweat created during your efforts and keeps you cool.
Just like the bike, when it comes to footwear you can either go for a shoe that can be used all year round or one that is reserved just for turbo training. The features you are looking for are comfort and breathability. The S-Works Vent is perfect for not only those sweaty sessions on the trainer but also days in the mountains when the sun is beating down on you. The vented mouthport pulls air in through the front and channels it around your feet while the mesh upper lets the air flow freely through the shoe to cool your foot and evaporate sweat. Cheaper options include the Sport Road Shoe and Trivent SC. With simple Velcro straps and mesh venting, these are ideal if you just want a shoe purely for home training.
Hydration, hydration, hydration
Indoor training is thirsty business. When you are using fans and cooling systems while putting out hard efforts, you can get dehydrated very quickly. Aim to drink about half a litre to a litre of water an hour to stay hydrated. Our extensive range of Chromatek Watergate bottles with self-sealing leak proof heart valves will help you to stay on top of your hydration.
With these bikes and accessories, turbo training becomes less of a chore and more of a fun alternative. To see the bikes mentioned above, come down to one of our stores and speak to a friendly member of our staff. You can learn all about the innovations Specialized have made over the past year to truly make 2021 the year of the bicycle.
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