Indoor Cycling: Best Sustainable Short Workouts (up to 1hr)

Hi There, pardon me if this has been discussed in different threads before, but this query has a different angle.

Am a 45 year old former roadie who has not been racing for a few years. My kids are older and this year I might join some local races, never longer than 1hr30min. I’ll also be joining some local group ride beat-downs with stronger riders. I’ve been racing/riding since my teens so positioning/body language are not the point as I’ve generally survived by skill and experience (I’ve raced for many years as a decent Cat 3, and joined myriad Pro123 road races and training races, so I know my way around a fast peloton).

Plus, I live in New England where winters are long and ultra cold, so indoor riding is a necessity. I lift weights (kettlebells) and am diligent with core and general body conditioning/strenghtening.

In that context, what would be the most efficient indoor workouts? The tricky part is I cannot exceed 60mins. Although health and recovery are limitless (to a point), indoor motivation is a finite quantity and I’m very mindful not to overdo indoors so as not to kill my motivation when the weather gets warmer.

As a reference, I have been feeding my body with sessions of Middle (approx 5% beats below my AT, so around 168/170 as my AT is 180bpm), which you call steady-state or sweet spot. As the weather improves I might include short intervals, but for the next month or so, what would be the best, simplest workouts to do indoors? The exercise must provide good conditions for near-race fitness as well as being efficient in a way that burns enough calories.

I do not own a power meter.

The other complicator is my reality as a dad. Plans are nice and all, but in reality I can do up to 4 workouts a week, and structuring them is tricky due to never ending family activities and obligations.

To recap, older roadie, do weights to keep a strong body, ride indoors to stay fit (as in lean) and hoping to join the fray as a fast-ish rider. What would be the ongoing workouts that could get me to a minimum condition to withstand a fast ride sprinkled with some racing. Currently doing Middle work, including a 2x25 yesterday (am a bit sore today). I keep my RPMs high because it provides me with agility at varying the pace. Am 182cm/6’ tall and weigh 78kgs (need to be 75kgs, but since i’m doing weights and my pants fit, i don’t mind the extra meat).

Thanks Guys. I’ve discovered your podcast and can’t stop!


Not sure if you are looking for a workout prescription or not, inside or outside of TrainerRoad. But the TrainerRoad Low Volume plans are 3 workouts per week. Most of them are 60 minutes each. The ones that are longer often have shorter versions that can be substituted as you need.

The plans are a guide, but very malleable so you can shuffle them within the week to place them where they fit best. It is a flexible system that gives you a solid direction, but one that can be adjusted to suit your needs.