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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am going to be riding the MS 150 here in Dallas in May. Have never ridden anything like this before, neither have I ever really had to "train". When it was raining, I have generally just not ridden. Too tired? Same thing. Now I need to be able to train more often, so I feel the need for a trainer or rollers. Trainer seems easiest, might increase tire wear I hear. Rollers look like they would train better, but I wonder if I have the skills for them. I am looking at Nashbar right now as they have some clearance deals. Any help?
http://www.nashbar.com/results.cfm?...ry=1087&storetype=&estoreid=&init=y&pagename=
 

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Both are good for different reasons

Make sure and do a search and you'll get good insights. My experience-
-Trainer is great when all you want to do is get on the bike, work out and watch tv.
-Rollers will give you a workout and improve your bike handling skills. I usually have the radio on instead of the tv because I have to concentrate. i've only had my rollers for about six weeks, but I've noticed the difference. Riding them the first few times is tough.

Bottom line for me is that I usually rely on the rollers for the better overall workout. I get on the trainer when I'm tired but determined to get a workout in.

Good luck and make sure and get some miles in before the event!
 

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gastarbeiter
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common wisdom is that Trainers are better for workouts, and Rollers for form, supplese.

I'm a rollers guy. as longhorn mentioned, the 1st few times are tricky, but then you're fine. i watch TV, zap channels, and talk on the phone when i'm on my rollers.

after a 10 year break from using them, i noticed a big difference in pedal efficiency when i went out on the road after a few sessions.
 

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Sure you need them?

You're in Texas. Its almost March. The MS 150 rides are a two day affair, right? 75 miles per day (or is it 75 km?) is not that big of a deal. You've got all day to ride 75 miles.

Indoor riding really sucks. Trainers are boring and rollers definitely have a learning curve. Of I were you, I'd just buy a cheap trainer from Performance or Nashbar. You probably won't use it much since the time is going to change in 5 weeks and it will be warmer.

I'd rather run the stairmaster and lift weights than ride a trainer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well, there are two problems here for me. Rain and wind. The wind can make some days basically unridable. With the narrow country roads where I live and the country folk, there is little room to begin with. Put a 30mph+ cross wind in there and, if I can even stay up, it blows me into traffic. The rain also sucks as I don't like riding it, plus the roads get muddy and slick (all the roads here turn to gravel at some point any way I go). I don't have access to any real gyms (a small one at work, but hours are limited and not very useful. Time is also an issue for me, as I have family responsibilities (soccer practices and games, dinner, wife). My goal is not to finish, but to finish well.

It would be nice on some days to either be able to get up early and spin in the garage (riding at night is not an option around here, the people are too dang nuts and will kill me) or after the kids are in bed. Plus on those rainy or windy days I can still work out. I don't have a ton of money, selling some things so I can afford this. We also only have one car and the wife has that as I commute, so I can't go to lit trails or what not.
 

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Botto's got the differences nailed. Either will work for your needs. You can get the work you need out of rollers, and I think they'll keep you engaged longer. Yeah, they'll be a challenge for the first handful of rides, but after that it will only help keep the boredom away. Don't worry about having the skills. They're really not that bad. Just find a doorway to start in.

If you're looking at nashbar, take a look over at performance, too. They usually have a good deal on their house brand rollers, and they're decent stuff.
 

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Basura Blanco
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I vote for rollers

Rollers, they add excitement, I have both and since I got the rollers the trainer has the wifes bike permanently affixed to it, gathering dust I might add.

If you *Gasp* ride mountain bikes, rollers with help there too.

Dan, 3 years on rollers
 

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Riding indoors just stinks, but if you must and don't have time for the frequently not short learning curve of the rollers, go with a trainer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
critchie said:
Riding indoors just stinks, but if you must and don't have time for the frequently not short learning curve of the rollers, go with a trainer.
Looks like I may have found a deal on some Minoura Mag rollers. I hope it works out, he only wants $55 with a fork mount too.
 

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Rollers hands down. Rollers Rollers Rollers. Riding a trainer sucks. The only thing you won't be able to do is standing intervals, which, imho, you should be doing outside anyways. Rollers all the way baby!
 

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gastarbeiter
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Buy 'em, but ditch the fork mount.

It's the indoor training equivalent of smoking pot, but not inhaling.


24601 said:
Looks like I may have found a deal on some Minoura Mag rollers. I hope it works out, he only wants $55 with a fork mount too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I'm going to try the mount at first, but the plans are to ditch it eventually. Might help when I am dead tired in the morning though.
 

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Wrong, wrong, wrong

24601 said:
I'm going to try the mount at first, but the plans are to ditch it eventually.
This is completely the wrong approach. The value of the rollers is that they force you to have a smooth pedalling style and learn to ride in a straight line. For many riders, these things are far more valuable than the fitness they will gain from riding indoors through the winter. Once you have "roller skills" in hand, you don't need to worry about whether you are tired in the morning. Using the fork stand eliminates all of the advantages of riding rollers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Well, for now, it is like having a trainer, which is fine. I am not going to buy both when I can do this. If I need to get up tomorrow and ride and only have 45 minutes, I am going to use the mount rather than spend 45 minutes doing nothing but falling. When I have time, I will learn to ride them the right way. Until then, I hope you can forgive me for not doing things your way.

I also plan to ride them with a camelbak and toe clips, maybe even in baggy shorts and a cotton t-shirt. I might even flip my stem up and ride a wide seat. Also, I will put fenders on in case a water pipe burst in the garage.
 

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24601 said:
Looks like I may have found a deal on some Minoura Mag rollers. I hope it works out, he only wants $55 with a fork mount too.
When buying used rollers, make sure that the drums are symetrical. Roll them by hand, look at the edge of the drum, and determine if its edge is moving up and down. A little movement is OK, but more than a little will cause vibration when riding. Also keep in mind that the vibration may or may not be a big deal, and that the amount of vibration will vary by speed.
 

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Rollers

no comparison to trainers

rollers are close to road riding
a trainer is like going to the gym

plus rollers are fun
and your mother can not do it
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Got the rollers today. Interesting ride. I do have a bit of a vibration, but not bad. I did a 45 minute ride in the doorway, staring at the crackers on the kitchen counter to try to stay in the middle. I started out really leaning on the door, but then found it easier to just ride and grab/lean when I lost concentration. I found myself wanting to stop spinning when I seemed to be moving to the side, which was the opposite of what I needed to do. If I just kept going I was OK.

I did find my hands more sore than usual. Maybe it was the death grip? I didn't wear gloves like I normally do just because I forgot. Getting on these things is interesting too. Not sure what the normal method is. I tried to straddle the top tube, clip in on foot, then get up on it and clip in the other. Not sure if I could do it without something to lean on.
 

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Kerry Irons said:
This is completely the wrong approach. The value of the rollers is that they force you to have a smooth pedalling style and learn to ride in a straight line. For many riders, these things are far more valuable than the fitness they will gain from riding indoors through the winter. Once you have "roller skills" in hand, you don't need to worry about whether you are tired in the morning. Using the fork stand eliminates all of the advantages of riding rollers.
Kerry is absolutely right - throw the fork stand in the trash. The problem with rollers seems to be two-fold: 1) some don't dare try them, and 2) most that do, limit their speed to under 25mph for fear of riding off the sides. If one could ride at higher speeds without fear, then the issue of lack of resistance would go away, IMO. Riding no-hands and standing are two additional issues for some. I'd be curious if cyclists would prefer rollers over stationary trainers hands-down if the fear of falling were removed. I suspect most would; seems like rollers would be ideal in that case.
Anyway, I'd be abliged if everyone reading this would complete my questionaire at the link below. I'm doing some market research on this very interesting subject - thanks.
 

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You'll master it in no time. Faster is easier, don't stop pedaling. I usually hold on to something to get started. After a while you'll be able to look around without any problems. All your contact points will be sore to begin with, because you're probably too tense to shift around much. Once you relax it'll be better. Also, learn you to ride no handed and standing, and you'll be able to ride indefinitely, or at least 'til your brains get fried.
 
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