I’ve been riding inside relatively consistently at the Trek Toronto Bicycle Store and as always I’ve been using a power meter. A couple of weeks ago was the last inside spin class at the Trek Toronto Bicycle Store and the Canadian Cycling Magazine came by to document the event. They put together a piece on using power to improve your training and racing. I was interviewed after the ride and rambled off something about how I would suggest you go about starting to use power in your training. Surprisingly, I didn’t come off sounding like a total idiot. After thinking about it more here is my more complete answer to how I would suggest you go about starting to use power in your training.
First, I’d suggest trying out training with power at a spin class that has power trainers. There are many types of spin class offered around the GTA. The classes at the Trek Toronto Bicycle Store are a great option and very reasonable at $20 per workout. The class size if small, 9 or less, so you will get lots of attention, but alas these classes won’t start again until next winter.
After trying a power spin class, if you like what you see, the next step would be to consider purchasing a trainer with power. Trainers with power can also be pricey, mid hundreds to thousands, really depends on what you get. Again there are many trainers around and Trek Toronto Bicycle Store had a great sale on the trainers they used in this year’s spin classes. The trainers were the TACX, Flow T2200, see the link below for more details. http://www.tacx.com/en/products/trainers/flow#tab_2
Finally, if you are going to do longer races and are really concerned about your race results, you might consider buying a power meter that is built into your bike, again there are quite a few models out there. Built in power meters can be pretty pricey, from over a thousand to 4 or 5 thousands. If after you go to a few classes and you are serious about your race results, I’d suggest forgoing the trainer with a power meter and going right to the build in power meter. This will give you the best of both training and racing with power. You can buy a trainer without power meter (much cheaper than those with power) and use it with your build in power meter to do indoor workouts with power just like with a power trainer. And when it’s race day and it counts you’ll be able to hit the numbers you’ve been using in training and have your best possible race result. I have a PowerTap, and I’m very happy with it.
The link to the article/video using power to improve your training and racing by Canadian Cycling Magazine is below.