Singlespeed MTB'er using TrainerRoad

Hey guys, Im a Singlespeed 24hr Solo & Marathon MTB’er who has always trained outside and spent enough time over the years using coaches that I essentially coached myself for the past 3-4 years.

Now having had our old son nearly 2 years ago, I decided to put my faith in the team at Trainer Road and commit to an indoor training program along with a couple of longer (3-4hr) outside rides per week as its more efficient to balance Family/Training life. I’m currently in the 3rd week of Sweet Spot Base Low Volume II with plans to stack Sustained Power Build off the back of it and then some form of Specialty (yet to decide). ANy suggestions here for specialty?

My other question to all of you guys is really around whether I should spend my time on the kickr on one of my SS MTB’s or continue to use my roadie as I have been doing so far? I have 2 x SS MTB’s so can quite easily leave one on the kickr for a while for indoor sessions, the road bike will then sit and gather dust as MTB or CX would be my choice to ride outside anyway :slight_smile:

Has anyone out there spent time on a Kickr on a Singlespeed? Thoughts? I figured it to be really important to be training in the position you will race in compared to training on the road bike which is quite a different position? Worth the change to the MTB or is the training effect much the same?

Any suggestions or help to make some decisions will be much appreciated!



The Kickr won’t care much if you have gears or not. I usually pick something in the middle of the cassette and it gives a good amount of resistance throughout the pedal stroke.

I like your plan for a couple of 3-4 hr rides coupled with the LV plans. The one thing I can’t seem to get out of the trainer alone is the ability to overcome really steep stuff on the trails. For some reason I can’t get those gains following an indoor plan.
Maybe if I was a pushing a bigger FTP? I don’t know the answer to that but I can look at PM data from outdoor rides and see some massive outputs that I very rarely encounter on the trainer.

I keep getting faster though. Smooth is fast right?


XC Marathon or Rolling Road Race might work for Specialty. Consider your efforts and see if those or something else could be a good fit.

For fit on the trainer, using a your spare MTB makes sense to me. More specific to match your body position and efforts to make the best adaptation possible.


I’m basically in the same boat. I use 34x17 on a Tacx Neo. Don’t miss shifting at all. TR and Erg mode have been a revelation. I focus on pedaling technique during every trainer workout and my natural pedaling cadence has risen. Balance left/right is a work in progress, but I am seeing results. Only been on TR since January 2019!


I’m not on a SS, but I use my MTB for everything; trainer, gravel, trail, etc. I like the specificity of position and training my muscles in the exact way I will ask of them on race day. You could if you wanted to use the road bike during Base, but as you get closer to your event your training should get more specific. There is however no “need” to use your road bike for anything.

I race XCO and MTB 100s and use the General Build MV for both. Depending on your local trails or races, give a good look at Sustained Build to ensure those are the fitness demands you’ll be under. I have a PM on my MTB and I find that rarely (less than 10%) do I need a sustained effort of tempo/sweet spot or threshold. Even on long events I’m rarely in those zones, so Sustained Build isn’t a good fit. Rather I either need lots of power (anaerobic) to get up a punchy, technical, rocky, rooty or hills, or I am in zone 2 and under for 40-55% of the time. I can only imagine this would be even more exaggerated for 24 hour events.

My advice is to do General Build then XCM Specialty. That is assuming you’re doing Specialty into an A event or race season which you haven’t mentioned.


Thanks for sharing those stats. It’s interesting to read how much time you spend in zone 2.
My last 100km (2100 vm) race had me in Tempo/SS/Threshold for nearly 30% of the time. Another shorter Stage race was around 40% and my training ride on Friday was bang on 50% over 50km (1200vm).
It’ll be interesting to see how that changes as my FTP goes up.

That also could be unique to SS versus us gear folk, unless you were referring to your geared bike.

No way I’m fit enough to push a single speed. I’ve met a few guys who do and they’re beasts.
I’m running a similar setup to you on the Spark RC.
My training ride on Friday broke every power record from 1hr onwards and left me considering a second lap. It’s interesting seeing my power profile change over time.

Apologies to the OP for going sideways a little bit.
MI-XC is way faster than me and posts a load of race vids on YouTube. Pretty interesting info about power zones.

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About a year ago, I bought a SS specifically for the trainer and gave my road bike away. I did it for the exact reason you said – to ensure I was in the same position as I race. I can’t say whether it’s been better or worse for my performance, but I’ve had no issues with it. ERG mode makes it all so brutally simple. Even the ramp test is as simple as getting on it and peddling until you can’t anymore.