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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I really really don't want a road bike, but I want more saddle time. I am down to riding once or twice a week and I want more. I have looked at a trainer setup, but don't want to carry my bike down stairs and put a slick on it. Any thoughts on a spin bike like the gyms have?
 

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Hi Dude,

I'm by no means an expert in bike geometry, but am a spin instructor and a road and mtb cyclist. What I can tell you is what I "feel" rather than a comparison by numbers. In comparing my road bike in a trainer vs. a spin bike, there's a definite difference in the "reality factor", so to speak. If you are looking to maintain aerobic conditioning in a cycling specific workout, a spin bike is fine, but if you're looking to improve your riding, I think the trainer is better. It is more realistic and transferrable to real riding to use a bike and manipulate the tension and gears on a trainer, than to just adjust the tension on the flywheel of a spin bike. I know that spin bikes are set up to more or less mimic a road bike, but neverthelss I always feel like I've gotten a better quality training session on the trainer than the spinner. Again, this is personal opinion based on my experience - I'd be interested to hear others' views especially as a spin instructor. Also - not sure from your post, have you ever used a spin bike? If not, try taking a spin class or ask your gym if you can try a bike out to see what you think. Just beware though - not every spin class is created equal and some are more like an aerobics class than a bike ride...

Also, given the cost of spin bikes, you might be better off buying a trainer and a 'mildly used road bike' than a spin bike.

Cheers,
HH
 

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I agree

Happy Hampster is correct. I take spin classes regularly and to me the spin bike is completely different from being on a trainer. I have expericenced a better training session on the trainer vs a spin bike as well. My 2 cents.
 

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climb
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The one _real_ advantage of a spin bike is that you can push a lot of resistance. High resistance training isn't always applicable to real world riding, but it is good for muscle strength training.

In general, I like the trainer for some things, and spin bike for others. If I had to choose only one, it would be a trainer.
 

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LititzDude said:
but don't want to carry my bike down stairs and put a slick on it.
I picked up a rim-drive trainer that works great... just dropped in my old hardtail that was collecting dust anyhow. Now when the weather craps out (which has been way too much lately) I can actually get some benefit while catching Sportscenter :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks, but more q's

HappyHamster said:
Hi Dude,

I'm by no means an expert in bike geometry, but am a spin instructor and a road and mtb cyclist. What I can tell you is what I "feel" rather than a comparison by numbers. In comparing my road bike in a trainer vs. a spin bike, there's a definite difference in the "reality factor", so to speak. If you are looking to maintain aerobic conditioning in a cycling specific workout, a spin bike is fine, but if you're looking to improve your riding, I think the trainer is better. It is more realistic and transferrable to real riding to use a bike and manipulate the tension and gears on a trainer, than to just adjust the tension on the flywheel of a spin bike. I know that spin bikes are set up to more or less mimic a road bike, but neverthelss I always feel like I've gotten a better quality training session on the trainer than the spinner. Again, this is personal opinion based on my experience - I'd be interested to hear others' views especially as a spin instructor. Also - not sure from your post, have you ever used a spin bike? If not, try taking a spin class or ask your gym if you can try a bike out to see what you think. Just beware though - not every spin class is created equal and some are more like an aerobics class than a bike ride...

Also, given the cost of spin bikes, you might be better off buying a trainer and a 'mildly used road bike' than a spin bike.

Cheers,
HH
I have been riding my Sugar for 3 years and love the sport. I am an ex-smoker and have gotten much better with my cardio , but I still go anarobic(SP?) when keeping up the guys I ride with. It's not that they are at a race pace or anything close. They wait for me, at the top of the hills. and I was thinking that a spin bike would help? I looked at trainers and a dedicated bike for it and the cost is about the same as a new spin bike and the spin bike is a much simpler machine? I read the reviews of trainers on the road site and was less then eager after reading about oil leaking, noise and general breakage. I like the sound of trying it out at the gym. I think I will call around. Thank you all for your thoughts, and if you have any more please reply.
 

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Try this:

LititzDude said:
I looked at trainers and a dedicated bike for it and the cost is about the same as a new spin bike and the spin bike is a much simpler machine? I read the reviews of trainers on the road site and was less then eager after reading about oil leaking, noise and general breakage. I like the sound of trying it out at the gym. I think I will call around. Thank you all for your thoughts, and if you have any more please reply.
1UpUSA.com has the best trainer you can get. Check it out.

Buy a used road bike from a Salvation Army, Goodwill, yard Sale, or Police auction. Older frames are usually 27" wheels which are slightly bigger in diameter than the current standard, 700mm. I bought a steel Trek about my size for $49 for this. Do a little maintenance and cleaning and you have a $350 solution that you can leave in your basement. :)
 

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i still think

LititzDude said:
I have been riding my Sugar for 3 years and love the sport. I am an ex-smoker and have gotten much better with my cardio , but I still go anarobic(SP?) when keeping up the guys I ride with. It's not that they are at a race pace or anything close. They wait for me, at the top of the hills. and I was thinking that a spin bike would help? I looked at trainers and a dedicated bike for it and the cost is about the same as a new spin bike and the spin bike is a much simpler machine? I read the reviews of trainers on the road site and was less then eager after reading about oil leaking, noise and general breakage. I like the sound of trying it out at the gym. I think I will call around. Thank you all for your thoughts, and if you have any more please reply.
I can relate with your anaerobic comment, I have the same issue with the guys I ride with. I have been spinning for a couple of years now and while it is a good cardio workout, I still think a trainer is better for both training and cardio. As for the the mechanics of a spin bike, I would think HH might have some thoughts for you. I think going to a gym and trying the spin bike for a while is a good idea. Maybe you can find someone you can borrow a trainer from also and compare the 2 before you spend the money? good luck
 

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a couple things to consider...

Regarding the spin bikes, if you want to check one brand out, check out the Johnny G bikes at www.spinning.com - you'll see the bikes, click on the "home bike". It sells for about 500 bucks and comes with training DVDs or videos. It has a one year warranty, but one thing not really mentioned there and to consider is maintenance. It might be more of a pain in the rear to deal with maintaining a spinner with a flywheel set up than a road bike and a trainer. I suppose this all depends on how you use either bike, the type of trainer, and your mechanical skills. But, something to think about...

Regarding going anerobic too quickly, one thing to consider is have you spent sufficient time building your aerobic base - that is, training between 65-75% max heart rate? Most gym spin classes end up being the interval type, and don't provide for aerobic base building. Ideally, you should build this base first - it allows for physiological changes in the body which increase oxygen delivery to the working muscles at lower effort. After base building, then move on to interval and anerobic threshold training. A stationery bike of any type works well for aerobic base building. OK I'll shut up now before I derail this thread! :p
 

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LititzDude said:
I really really don't want a road bike, but I want more saddle time. I am down to riding once or twice a week and I want more. I have looked at a trainer setup, but don't want to carry my bike down stairs and put a slick on it
I don't have road bike and I never ride slicks. It's boring to swap tires or wheels every time I go out to ride on road or off-road so I ride my FS bike with 2.1" knobby (training) tires on the road. I just put more psi into them.
 

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Well, if your getting to the top of the hill but your going anaerobic you probably should just get out and do some more hills on your own. Find a place where you can charge up one hill (the same hill) follow through some single track for a couple minute of recovery back to the bottom of that hill. Then you charge on up that hill again and repeat. When doing this repeats, stay seated at all times. The hill shouldn't be soo steep that you need to move forward on your saddle.

A trainer can help, but nothing beats riding outside. I have no idea how you plan on riding in the summer on a trainer. Having said that, trainers are great for the winter with a nice fan. I would really consider whether or not your going to get good use out of a trainer in the summer.

Someone mentioned the amount of tension on a spin bike is unrivaled, but my Cyclops is very strong. In my 52x12 (road bike) I can get tons of tension, works very well. On a mountain bike you may have problems with getting the gearing for a good workout on a trainer, that is what a cheap road bike will give you though.
 
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