Training

Fitter & Faster Podcast: How to Make the Most of Your Indoor Cycling

We dive into all aspects of indoor cycling—including the pros and cons of training inside, how to set yourself up for success in virtual racing, and all the gear you need to maximize your experience.

Welcome to Triathlete’s training podcast, Fitter & Faster, where we cover one training topic in-depth each month—from the basics to your in-depth questions, plus all the gear you need. This month: indoor cycling.

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You can listen to past episodes with Dr. Stacy Sims, Jay Dicharry, Dean Karnazes, Matt Dixon, cycling guru Matt Bottrill, sports psychologist Jeff Troesch, ageless wonder Dede Griesbauer, coach Ryan Bolton, and plenty more.

In episode 14 of Fitter & Faster, we dive into all aspects of indoor cycling—from the pros and cons of training inside to how to set yourself up for success in virtual racing, as well as all the gear and equipment you need to maximize your experience. We chat with professional triathlete and Ironman champion Meredith Kessler and hear from Joe Friel and Jim Rutberg, endurance coaches and authors of the book Ride Inside. Then, we’ll close out the show with our Gear Up! section with Triathlete’s resident gear guru and senior editor Chris Foster. 

Indoor riding has undergone a huge evolution in recent years and is no longer considered something athletes do just because of adverse weather outside. It’s a legitimate form of training that can lead to significant boosts in performance and can help when time is tight and you’re looking to balance training alongside work, family, and social commitments. Friel and Rutberg give us some insights into how they think indoor riding can work in a triathlete’s training program, as well as some of the advantages and limitations of only riding inside.

Kessler, a self-proclaimed “promiscuous Zwifter” who won the latest Zwift Pro Tri Series (Series 3) tells us how she’s currently doing 100% of her riding indoors—and gives us some helpful tips for when you do return to riding outdoors again. She also gives us the rundown of her “She Shed”—the name she’s given to her pain cave where she rides and runs throughout the winter. And, she answers a couple of questions from members!

And then our gear guru Chris Foster runs us through all the gear you need to ride inside. It’s not a short list, what with smart trainers, rolling tables, fans, waterproof earphones, and more—but if you’re going to be spending significant amounts of time riding indoors, it’s an investment well worth making.

Here are some of his gear recommendations—and be sure to check out more workouts and tips on our indoor training hub:

Transcript for the show is available here.