It’s been too long since my last blog for the Revbox Erg - and there has been a whole heap of developments since! For sure if you’re a kiwi and into all things road cycling (just like the Revbox), you would have heard that Linda Villumsen and Revbox Erg ambassador, finally claimed gold in the recent World Championships Elite Women’s Time Trial. Other exciting news for Revbox Erg users is that from next year the Lotto Soudal Men’s Pro team will be using them as their trainer of choice.
Back to Villumsen - she is known for her unorthodox approach to her training and competition. From taking an extended break from competition last year to train back in New Zealand; to favouring the U.S. racing scene to the European (and her original birth place); to not riding her team’s sponsored bike in the race of her life (last month’s winning ride in the World Championships). Despite this, Linda has proved to be one of the most consistent female competitors EVER! Over the past seven years, she has never finished outside the top 10 in the Worlds time trial, making it onto the podium five times, including three third places and two second places! Is it coincidence that she has ended her string of podium places with her first World’s gold since using the Revbox in the last year?
I like many will be looking forward to the feedback Lotto Soudal riders have to say about the Revbox erg in the new year (one of their riders pictured above, obviously having had enough already, or in need of more training on one!).
It is interesting to read some of the comment threads on posts about the Revbox. On www.bikerumur.com a recent feature drew what seemed to be uneducated/uninformed criticism in addition to uneducated praise. There were however a few key points made from users - an analogy to explain the key difference between using the Revbox Erg over other trainers; and is really necessary to have a smart app with the your home trainer.
In the past few months the guys at Revbox Erg have released a power-app which combined with your smartphone (ios version to come), gives you your cadence and power readings. With the development and popularity of programmes such as Swift, this is an obligatory development for any indoor trainer looking to stake its claim in the market. But interestingly Revbox erg users have commented that not having any numbers or visual entertainment to chase but listening to the audible feedback the huge fan provides (and an indication on how ‘smooth’ your pedal stroke is or is not); is what sets this trainer apart. Ha - it’s like the retro craze has begun and next we’ll be ‘unplugged’ and listening to cassette tapes of woodland sounds in our painted forested garage!
Another comment which resonated with me, provided an analogy for explaining how the Revbox erg works you differently:
“Low inertia (trainers such as the Revbox Erg) can be compared to training uphill or into a headwind while high inertia (trainers such as the Lemond Erg) is like cycling in a tail wind. So imagine cycling at 300 watts into a headwind vs 300 watts in a tail wind. The power output is the same but as the headwind is trying to slow you down more it has a greater effect on the dead spots in the pedal stroke.”
Now that’s a good way of making sense of something that isn’t rocket science but isn’t fully understood by the wider cycle community. This also brings us to the fundamental question you should ask when you’re looking at what indoor trainer is most suitable for YOU. Do you want something that is better for recovery rides (i.e. cycling downhill/Lemond Erg), or a trainer that is going to give you hills every time you train (Revbox Erg)?
In my next blog I will explain why I recommend and for what type of training I recommend the use of the Revbox Erg (with the understanding that as a cyclist I like and understand most other cyclists like, training in a peaceful woodland forest from time to time).