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JaRok2300




Joined: 01 May 2014
Posts: 127
Location: Worcester, UK

PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2016 2:27 pm    Post subject: Bkool, Zwift, TrainerRoad etc Reply with quote

I bought a Bkool trainer at the end of 2014 which came with a year's subscription that I managed to get two winters out of due to them adding on unused months.
We're now approaching the winter again (sorry to bring that up!) and I'm looking to subscribe to a VR service a month at a time to see me through the worst weather.
I'm happy with both the hardware and software of the Bkool so no issue with re-subscribing but wondered if there were better options and if so why?
Thanks
Jase
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Wheezy




Joined: 10 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use trainerroad and really like it. Following a yellow line and a graph is not everyone's cup of tea but as most of the sessions I do are 60-90 minutes, I find the time goes pretty quickly. The bottom line is, it's made me a faster cyclist, so job done, using a few of their plans.

Have not used Zwift but might try it for a laugh. A few mates have used it and have enjoyed it. I think they now have training plans too as well as the group rides etc.
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gingerbongo




Joined: 21 Sep 2012
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 25, 2016 7:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

+1

There's something i really enjoy about just doing what the line on the screen is telling me. Don't think i'd be as motivated watching clips of tour de france or chasing virtual racers around - that would probably do the opposite as i got continually dropped!
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moonmonkey02




Joined: 30 Sep 2008
Posts: 169
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 25, 2016 8:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Been using TR for nearly 2 years and seen serious improvements. As already said before not everyone's cup of tea following a graph but I like it for its simplicity, ease of use and training plans.
A friend has used the Bkool trainer like you and liked the vr features such as racing against others on courses.
If you're chasing a tangible improvement you could be better off with TR, if you want to dip in and out and need more visual motivation/competition Bkool or zwift might be better.
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hammerer




Joined: 19 Nov 2007
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 25, 2016 12:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

trainerroad linked to sufferfest is excellent. you can do the video with a power figure to hit. I have used I also use Zwift which is fun but I do find it ends up closer to a virtual recovery ride as watching people fly past at 9watts per kilo gets a bit frustrating and i find it hard to do workouts on there.
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Redjeep!




Joined: 20 Sep 2008
Posts: 417

PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2016 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jase,

Will your trainer integrate properly with Zwift ? I thought that anything pre Sep 2014 didn't do FE-C and so didn't mate properly.

I'm in the same boat as I have an early Classic (bought Dec 2014) and have been happy with it for the past two winters but was looking at what service to subscribe to this year.

Mine doesn't do FE-C and I emailed Bkool yesterday as I'd read on DC Rainmaker that Bkool were prepared to upgrade the very early ones. I don't know how much they charge.

I'm actually pretty happy with the Bkool s/w but was actually thinking of taking up something like Zwift as well as Bkool for the winter (still cheaper than gym membership) and see which one I preferred.

If you go into the Zwift website you can see how to mate the trainer to the s/w and see if it's compatible.

Cheers,
Andy
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JaRok2300




Joined: 01 May 2014
Posts: 127
Location: Worcester, UK

PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Andy

I never tried Zwift in the end, it sounded like it might be fun for a couple of sessions but a bit samey after that.

I've been using the free Bkool for the last few weeks, building various interval sessions using the manual route planner for time/distance/gradient etc.

However that option seems to have vanished with the recent upgrade (they also gave me a free trial to premium at the same time). I've queried if that is a permanent situation but haven't had a reply yet.
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Ozzie1973




Joined: 31 Jul 2013
Posts: 104
Location: Swindon

PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 9:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I signed up for Zwift, and really enjoyed it, for while. It's a great app for long steady rides, but I don't think the training plans are up there in terms of quality when compared to TrainerRoad.

I've since signed up for TrainerRoad, and I'm enjoying the extra detail and structure that it provides.
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Redjeep!




Joined: 20 Sep 2008
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 8:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jase,

I got a reply from BKool today which seems hopeful. See below.

-------------------------------------------------------

Thanks for your message. If your Classic trainer has been manufactured before August 2014 (has a rear Mini-USB or USB socket) there is already a firmware update that will enable it to use the ANT+ FE-C protocol and connect to other compatible simulators. Bkool Indoor simulator will guide you throughout the update.

If it is has been manufactured after August 2014 (no rear sockets), the current firmware update already enables it to use the ANT+ FE-C protocol.

---------------------------------------------------------

I may try one of the other simulators, but I'm in the same position as you as I'm 'one of the lucky few' who's been chosen for the free trial of Premium, so will probably stay with it for now. However I don't seem to be able to pick up scheduled sessions anymore, which I figured was something to do with it not being a real Premium.

Anyway, at 8/ month for the next 4 months or so I was planning to sign up for the winter and have spent the weekend rearranging my shed to give me some dedicated "Pain Cave" space.
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JaRok2300




Joined: 01 May 2014
Posts: 127
Location: Worcester, UK

PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2016 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, that's good to know, mine's got the usb on the back. I think it did an update when I dug it out a couple of months back to get everything ready for the winter (I use rollers in the summer)

I'll let you know when they come back to me about the manual routes. I realised the other day that even though I have the premium at the moment I tend to focus on the numbers at the bottom of the screen and don't take a lot of notice of the video (or staring at my stem Chris Froome style). As such I'd take the manual option over premium to be honest.
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Redjeep!




Joined: 20 Sep 2008
Posts: 417

PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2016 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't find the actual video that interesting, but like having other cyclists (or even the ghosts and bots) as I find that it always motivates me to push myself. I've done a few 90 to 120 minute sessions where getting of the bike was a struggle and I could barely stand afterwards.

I know that I never push myself that hard without the feeling that I'm racing. Even if the closest competitor is 10 minutes ahead or behind me, it still motivates me to dig as hard and deep as possible.

Whenever I use my dumb trainer, it's usually just for a routine ladder or pyramid type session where I may catch up on some boxsets, but I never push as hard.
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jibberjim




Joined: 15 Aug 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2016 3:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Redjeep! wrote:
I know that I never push myself that hard without the feeling that I'm racing. Even if the closest competitor is 10 minutes ahead or behind me, it still motivates me to dig as hard and deep as possible.


Do you think that's useful in a training session? For me, I'd have to imagine that would either compromise later sessions, or drive different adaptations to what you'd necessarily want?

My DP is a very successful athlete, she lost an event on sunday (which tbh she was very unlikely to win regardless even though the bookies had her as the favourite) after it, she was collapsed on the ground for some time apparently - I've only seen the photos. That's the first time in all the years I've known her when she's remotely dug as hard or as deep as possible, for a race I can see why she did it, but for a training session, better to do another good one the next day.
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Redjeep!




Joined: 20 Sep 2008
Posts: 417

PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2016 6:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jibberjim wrote:
Redjeep! wrote:
I know that I never push myself that hard without the feeling that I'm racing. Even if the closest competitor is 10 minutes ahead or behind me, it still motivates me to dig as hard and deep as possible.


Do you think that's useful in a training session? For me, I'd have to imagine that would either compromise later sessions, or drive different adaptations to what you'd necessarily want?

My DP is a very successful athlete, she lost an event on sunday (which tbh she was very unlikely to win regardless even though the bookies had her as the favourite) after it, she was collapsed on the ground for some time apparently - I've only seen the photos. That's the first time in all the years I've known her when she's remotely dug as hard or as deep as possible, for a race I can see why she did it, but for a training session, better to do another good one the next day.


To be honest, I don't know. I'd also say that my version of 'digging deep' is wayyyy lower than yours. I am however fairly careful that I don't do it too often, maybe once a fortnight or so and I treat it like I would a hard speed session in terms of how I integrate it into my training. I think that in this context it's useful, but you're right to add a precautionary note.

BTW Jim- thanks for your gel recipes. I've used them a lot over the years and have a lot of respect for what you post.
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Redjeep!




Joined: 20 Sep 2008
Posts: 417

PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2016 7:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can I assume that everybody's seen this ? Posted today I think.

https://www.dcrainmaker.com/2016/11/trainer-apps-guide.html
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Jorgan




Joined: 12 Nov 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 02, 2016 9:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jibberjim wrote:

My DP .


You need to get off Mums Net. I'm disappointed in myself that I even guessed what you meant.
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