Most of our FormFinder workouts are fairly specific, and very "indoor trainer friendly". This is deliberate. There are two main reasons for this: firstly, indoor trainers (ergos) are more time friendly, and secondly, there are benefits to the controlled workout environment.
Indoor Trainer (ergo) sessions can be efficient because there is no time wasted at traffic lights, or commuting out to your preferred efforts location, and there is generally less time needed to get ready seeing as you won't have to dress for the weather. The controlled environment takes away the elements, and you're able to compare like for like in terms of your power, weight and time. External influences such as rain, wind, and temperature, will not affect your efforts, so you can easily monitor your progress and numbers.
The key to enjoying your indoor training experience is setting up your ideal work out space. Here are some things that will go a long way to making the perfect ergo set-up:
- Sound proof mat; place one of these under your bike to reduce sound, particularly if you're not on a solid floor.
- Two towels; one for the floor, and one for your bike/using to towel off between efforts.
- A fan (or two); ergos are sweaty business as there is no wind inside. Fans will help reduce the amount of sweat that pours off you, and will help keep your core body temperature down.
- A TV. Ergos can get quite monotonous at times. A strategically placed TV right in front of your bike set-up can mean ergos are craved, rather than dreaded!
- Headphones. The whole house (and your neighbours) don't need to hear your entertainment, which could be quite loud to overpower the sound of some ergos. Headphones will also help you get in your zone for your workout, whether you're watching TV or listening to music.
- A Zwift account.
- A Netflix account. (if you like watching that sort of thing)
- A table or pedestal; perfect for holding your food, phone, remote, snacks, and PC or tablet.
- Drink bottles. One or two pre-prepared bidons, depending how long your session is (use mix if longer than two hours). The last thing you'll want to do mid-session is run to the kitchen to get some water.
- Energy bars or gels; use these for every session that will exceed an hour.
- Motivational posters or notes on a whiteboard Perfecting your work-out room set-up takes a bit of trial and error, and a lot of stuffing around before you get it right. The first, and most important thing is having your bike and indoor trainer set up and "paired" to each other, and more than likely if you're using a smart trainer, you'll need that paired to a Zwift or TrainerRoad account. Don't plan on setting this up 20 minutes prior to your first planned session. The set up will realistically take a couple of hours by the time you trial a few things, and check what works and what doesn't. We recommend going through your initial set up the day or night prior to your first session.
The extra things listed above like the pedestal and Netflix are luxuries. In your early days, the bike, indoor trainer and your workout session will be all you need to get the job done. Some music or radio will add to the stimulation. As you get more experienced, you will probably try adding some things to enhance your experience, and the things listed above are things we like to use in our "pain cave".
There are so many things you can do, these are just a guide that helps a lot of people make the most out of stationary training!