Friday, October 7, 2011

Morning ride in Southern California

This morning I did my first EVER trainer ride to a DVD. I was pretty skeptical and was not sure how this would hold my attention. It's the rare show or movie that I can actually sit through. No way it would motivate me. I braced myself for some boredom. Boredom didn't stand a chance.

Usually my Coach prescribes the trainer workouts, I program them into my Garmin Edge, and I settle in to watch old episodes of Biggest Loser or Modern Family or whatever. So this was a departure.

I popped the RIDES DVD in and off I went - me, and about a dozen VERY strong and fit cyclists in Southern California. Except I was in my house in Virginia, with no helmet!

I got sucked in pretty quick. There's a dashboard along the bottom that tells gives a cadence range, heart rate zone, and level of perceived exertion. I love numbers! It counts down the time for each phase of the ride. (The DVD includes a card that shows all the info in tabular form if you want to plan ahead.)

There is a coaching voice-over (can be disabled) that I found that to be really useful. As a fairly newbie cyclist (2 years) when I am on the bike trainer, all I really think about is general effort as it registers in my legs and lungs, plus some technique in terms of pedaling full circles. But the coach had lots of suggestions for things to think about and do with position, breathing, and imagery. And by gosh, when that guy said stand up and PEDAL up that hill! I DID! Motivation was not an issue. I liked the facts about the local community and the inspirational quotes too.

The video had a variety of shots from the back, front, and side of the pack, and it really showed how solid and steady those guys are. They waste nothing and you could balance a teacup on their handlebars.

I enjoyed this ride through the mountains and canyons of SoCAL and when I was done, I just clicked my heels cleats and I was back home in Kansas Virginia, ready to shower and drive the kids to school. 

I will be doing this DVD (and my other RIDES DVDs) a lot this winter. Especially when I am snowed in and want to remember what cycling outside was really like!!  So if you are looking to spice up your trainer workouts I would definitely recommend the RIDES series from Endurance Films. Just be prepared to sweat. A lot.

(disclosure: I am sponsored Endurance Films Racing Team athlete and received this video gratis but was not obligated to say nice things about it. It just was surprisingly fun and effective.)