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Trainers and Treadmills vs. Bikes and Pavement

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I rely on a bike trainer for winter workouts. I would also sooner kick my own ass than run on a treadmill. On a bike, I like fast – can’t do that safely in the snow and ice so I simply use the trainer to keep as much of my fitness as I can over the winter months.

Running outside however, except during heavy snow and ice storms, I find quite nice – I become accustomed to the cold easily enough though it does take a some time.

I’ve also heard from plenty of friends who actually prefer, for one reason or another, indoor cardio training.

As far as I’m concerned, I say whatever floats your boat. However, and this is the purpose of this post, I’ve heard from a few people who don’t bother with cycling because the indoor trainer bores them.

I’ll be the first to admit that cycling isn’t for everyone – it takes a certain adventurous kind of person to take their bike out for more than a 20 mile ride – especially when you’re using lightweight equipment (road bikes, thin tires). Also, depending on where you live, there may be safety issues to consider.

Many people fear mechanical issues or flat tires on a ride… However, consider that bicycles not like cars, they are made to be easy to fix and adjust – you just have to know the steps and sequence in which those steps go. Once you gain this knowledge (use a smartphone app), it’s a snap – you can carry simple tools to fix virtually anything that can go wrong on a ride.

The point I’m trying to get at is this: If you find that you are bored by indoor cardio, don’t assume that the outdoor counterpart is the same – it most certainly is not – especially cycling.

Cycling, done properly on a proper bike, is the closest thing there is to owning your own roller coaster. It’s also a fantastic way to see the world without windows – outside “the box”, if you will.

So consider, please, just for a moment, that if you’re bored by the indoor trainer, take it outdoors and smell the fresh air at 20 mph… It’s sweet!


7 Comments

  1. Kecia says:

    I couldn’t agree with you more Jim!! There is nothing like hitting the pavement…either on foot or on the bike 😉

  2. Sandra says:

    Agreed. But ya can’t smell when your shnoz is frozen solid! 🙂

    Movies it is.

  3. Chatter says:

    I agree, but some of us have to get up to 20mph on the bike still. Of course any speed is still great fun.

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