7 Ways to Keep Indoor Cycling Challenging

Dru Ryan
by Dru Ryan
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7 Ways to Keep Indoor Cycling Challenging

Indoor riders often flaunt their ride milestones — 100, 200, 500 rides. But not every ride is created equal. Instead of repeating the same rides and workouts, it’s best to look for new ways to challenge yourself. Try one (or a few) of these seven ways to mix it up on the indoor bike.

1

WEAR A HEART RATE MONITOR

Wearable devices, according to the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), are the number 1 fitness trend for 2019. Using a heart rate monitor to track your heart rate and record results, offers real-time feedback so you stay in your optimal training zone. Use these metrics to inform current and future efforts.

2

RIDE LONGER

While most classes are 45–50 minutes, many studios provide 60- and even 90-minute classes. See what you’re made of and find your weekend long ride. And, yes, back-to-back classes count, too.

3

TAKE A PERFORMANCE TEST

The functional threshold test, VO2 max and lactate test are a few of the protocols for tracking performance.

4

TRAIN YOUR WEAKNESSES

Fancy yourself a sprinter and abhor the climbs? Or perhaps you favor distance challenges, preferring efficiency over exhaustion. Identify what kind of cyclist you are and work on your weaknesses. Also, vary your time in and out of the saddle, so you don’t get hooked on one position.

5

TRACK YOUR RIDES USING MAPMYRIDE

Many studios capture your ride statistics. Others use bikes where a thumb drive can be inserted to save data. Besides offering a grand sense of accomplishment, MapMyRide summarizes your efforts and provides advanced metrics on your performance.

6

VARY YOUR CADENCE

Everyone has their happy place when it comes to cadence. If you’re one to favor higher cadence work on sustaining similar effort at a lower cadence. Visualize a change in terrain. Sand, mud, gravel or cobblestone should elicit varied cadences.

7

FIND YOUR SWEET SPOT

Your sweet spot is a difficult, yet sustainable, pace. Getting there requires a focused effort and is important to get the most out of your time on the bike. Sweet-spot training is the perfect balance of cycling intensity and ride volume.

About the Author

Dru Ryan
Dru Ryan
Dru teaches indoor cycling at Equinox in Washington, D.C. His History of Hip-Hop classes at George Mason University and brief deejay career in the Bronx are two big reasons why his playlists are unique. Ryan‘s cycling claim to fame is having the former road world champion, Peter Sagan, comment on an Instagram photo. Follow Dru (drucyles) on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.

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