Cycling in the winter in this area is extremely tough. Once the snow gets deep enough the riding is restricted to fat biking, getting out on the gravel bike that odd warm winter day or sitting on the trainer indoors. Each one of these offers something different, I tend to choose the easy way out and head to the torture chamber in the basement for the winter months.
Riding indoors at home offers several advantages to freezing your butt of in minus temperatures during January and February. Sessions are often much shorter, you can ride with normal cycling clothing on and you can can catch up on all those Netflix shows on your list!
For the best experience you don’t have to spend a lot of money on equipment, however, you need to be smart about what you purchase. There are many different trainers out there and like anything else you can spend as much money as you want. I tried out several trainers and ended up with the Kurt Kinetic Road Machine. If you are looking for "bang for you $", the Road Machine is the best you will get for under $500. I could bore you with all the countless hours of research I have done, but you need to trust me on this one. The Road Machine is solid, consistent and extremely reliable. I have used the warrantee only once after riding it for two years. The peeps at Kurt Kinetic shipped me another frame, no questions ask (amazing customer service).
I pair my Road Machine with Trainer Road for the fall and winter months. Trainer Road is a SAAS (software as a service) solution that makes training inside during these colder months bearable. Its monthly cost is $12 and it provides hundreds of rides to choose from. Along with your monthly (no contract fee) there are several different training plans to pick from depending on what it is you are trying to achieve. Trainer Road also pairs extremely well with Sufferfest videos and has recently started providing online “Training with Power” webinars to its members. Another benefit to using the Road Machine is its consistent power curve which allows Trainer Raod to estimate virtual power when paired with your Ant+ Garmin Speed/Cadence sensor better then other trainers in the same class. Training with power is the way to go, no cheating power numbers, its proven to take your riding to that next level.
So there you have it, my secret to riding during the winter. If you need a goal to work towards, plan for the Tour of Sufferlandria which occurs at the end of January each year.
If you are looking for a better idea of what Trainer Road is and how it works, check out the video below.