Taking on the journey in preparing for a road, gravel or mountain bike event, get into the world of ultra distance cycling or even use cycling to shape or maintain a healthy lifestyle is an exciting and fulfilling adventure. As you progress, having the right tools can enhance your training. Most importantly, you will need these tools if you ever want to follow a structured training plan or hire a cycling coach. In this post, we will explore a comprehensive list of tools that can aid in your journey.
Table Of Contents:
Cycling GPS Computer
Heart Rate Monitor
Indoor Cycling Trainers
Indoor Cycling Apps
A bicycle for the intended discipline (mountain, road, time-trial, cyclo-cross, gravel, ultra-distance, etc.) that is adapted to fit your body and riding style. You should be able to -
Comfortably ride for a given duration through a variety of terrain and conditions.
Produce efficient/optimal power output at any given time.
Safely control it at all times, especially the brakes.
Cycling GPS Computer
A cycling GPS computer is a device that records and displays various data such as speed, distance, heart rate, power, cadence and more. It can also sync with your smartphone and other sensors to provide navigation, training plans, performance analysis and social media sharing. Training with it can help you improve your cycling skills, fitness and motivation. You can monitor your progress, set goals, and customize your workouts.
A power meter is a device that measures the amount of power or watts you produce when you pedal your bike; it reflects how hard you are working. Training with a power meter can help you improve your performance. It gives you objective feedback on your effort, intensity, and progress. You can use a power meter to set specific training zones, monitor your fatigue, and optimize your pacing.
Heart Rate Monitor
A heart rate monitor is a device that measures your heart rate, which is the number of times your heart beats per minute. Training with a heart rate monitor can help you pace the effort to match your goals and fitness level, optimize your workout intensity, track your progress, and prevent over-training or injury.
A cadence monitor is a device that measures how fast you pedal your bike. It can help you improve your cycling performance by optimizing your pedalling speed and efficiency. Training with a cadence monitor can help you avoid fatigue, reduce joint stress, and adapt to different terrains and conditions.
Indoor Cycling Trainer
An indoor cycling trainer is a device that allows you to ride your bicycle indoors without moving forward. It can be a stand that holds the rear wheel or a connection to the drive-train. Indoor cycling trainers can be basic or smart interactive; both are useful for training when the weather is not favourable, the daylight is short, or you want to follow a specific workout plan. Indoor trainers can help you improve your fitness, endurance, power, and technique while avoiding traffic, pollution, and other hazards of outdoor riding.
What is a smart interactive trainer? A smart trainer is a device that connects your bike to a computer or a smartphone and simulates different riding conditions. It can help you improve your fitness, performance, and motivation by providing a realistic and more engaging cycling experience.
Purchase a basic indoor cycling trainer if you are on a tight budget. Spending more money is not going to make you a better cyclist. A smart interactive indoor trainer won’t make you fit and fast – being consistent with your training will. Even if you can afford a smart interactive trainer but don’t have a power meter on your bicycle, purchase a basic indoor trainer and a power meter instead. Having a power meter and training by power indoors and outdoors will make your training process more effective.
Indoor Cycling Apps
Indoor cycling apps are software programs that control a smart interactive trainer and access features such as virtual routes, workouts and social interactions. Yes, you can use a basic indoor trainer with indoor cycling. Of course, the app will not control the trainer, but you can still access those features by pairing your power meter, heart rate, cadence and speed sensors to the app.
Cycling clothing does not have to be of the highest quality; it only has to wick away sweat, provide ventilation, provide protection from bad weather and fit you comfortably. Most importantly, cycling shorts or bib-shorts with good chamois will enable you to train longer with more comfort. In cycling, a chamois is a synthetic foam pad (varies in thickness and shape) sewn into bike shorts to provide comfort and protection for cyclists. The chamois absorb shock, reduce friction, and prevent bacteria growth in sensitive areas.
A cycling pedal is a device that attaches to the crank of a bicycle and allows you to transfer power from your legs to the wheels. Training with a cycling pedal can improve your pedalling efficiency, cadence, and power output. It can also help you avoid injuries and fatigue by optimizing your biomechanics and posture on the bike.
A cycling shoe is a type of footwear designed to improve the performance and comfort of cyclists. Cycling shoes have a stiff sole that attaches to the pedals, allowing you to transfer more power and efficiency to the wheels. Cycling shoes also have a snug fit and breathable upper that prevent blisters and overheating. Training with cycling shoes can help you improve your speed, endurance, and technique, as well as reduce the risk of injury.
Let me tell you a little secret. The price of your bike, kit and gear does not matter, your equipment does not have to be the highest-end equipment, something less fancy or complicated is often better, and a lack of equipment doesn’t mean a lack of progress. Make the best of what you have and train smart, follow a training plan or hire a coach.
That is it, thank you for reading, I hope you found it to be a useful resource.
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