After a few weeks using the Peloton services, another question popped up.
First off, the exercises are for real. But they have very little to do with cycling “proper”, meaning, it’s exercise for sure, but it’s not structured like a training plan. For instance, there’s very little attention paid to a smooth stroke, or spinning easy between efforts (they ask to keep the intensity but lower rpms between intervals). That per se is not a problem. The question I have is if the result down the line would be the same as if i were doing a racer-specific program. In the end, fitness is fitness, but I have to question whether the unstructured (for us) workouts would get us as fit after 3 months as if we had followed a specific base program.
The advantage of Peloton is the workouts go by very quickly. A 45min session blazes by, and in some sessions they add weights for the upper body while pedaling. That was surprisingly hard. And in some efforts i got my HR higher than on regular insideride sprints/intervals.
If i had to pick a bone it’d be the excessive talking, but that doesn’t get in the way of the intensity or quality.
So for the scientific folks out there, please chime in.
In my humble estimation, the difference between Peloton rides and TR (or other structured sessions) is the difference between exercising and training. They’re both good, but one (structured training) works towards a specific goal and the other elevates your heart rate and makes you feel good without the need or obligation to be involved with some kind of program or progression.
During the ride, the display (in fact, just a tablet with an iOS app) shows all the required statistics. The duration of the workout and how much is left, the current speed, the distance covered, heartbeat, the speed of pedaling, the intensity of resistance to scrolling, calories burned. Depending on how much energy you spend on riding, you get a place on the leaderboard. This is a very interesting idea, but can there be any bugs? Any feedback? In addition, I recently purchased special peloton dumbbells. I will be glad to receive feedback.
I’d argue that Peloton as a platform these days is pretty broad. If you compare some of the more jump-around dance-type instructors that Peloton is probably oft-associated with from competitive cyclists, it’s vastly different than if you compare someone like Matt Wilpers’s classes, where his workouts are basically no different than anything you’d find on TrainerRoad or elsewhere.
Today, there isn’t a clear progression plan by itself from one Peloton workout to the next, though, that is coming - but is a bit shorted focused (8-weeks 'peak your power). Whereas TrainerRoad has obviously longer range calendering/etc…
Of course, practically speaking, there’s such a massive backlog of classes, that you could easily build out your calendar of just Wilpers/etc classes on Peloton and have something no different than what TR has in terms of workout output and ultimately athletic benefit. The difference is that TR is going to build that calendar for you, ensure your wattage as appropriate, etc… Whereas in Peloton, you’re more on the hook for assembling it.
Either way, whatever keeps you on the bike and making gains will make your stronger.
Used a peloton for the first time over the weekend at my in-laws. I just did a 30 min aerobic ride. Gotta say, that thing is QUIET. And comfortable. If I had unlimited $ I would get one, slap on some power meter pedals, and use it with TR. no interest in the peloton workouts