An important thing to remember about exercising on any piece of cardio equipment is that your workout is what YOU make of it. Outside, whether you're walking, running, biking, or skating (apparently yes, rollerblading IS still a thing), you'll encounter varying resistance in the form of hills or changes in terrain.
Just about every class, I remind my spinners that there is no such thing as downhill when you're riding indoors. You can certainly take all the resistance off and pedal your little heart out, but that's about effective a workout as frantically waving your arms around. So during my class, I encourage everyone to always ride with resistance on. Even if they only turn up the dial to the point where the wheel just barely starts to catch, it's better, and safer, than just free-wheelin' it. Same goes for the treadmill and elliptical. On the treadmill, you want a .5%-1% incline to accommodate for the give of the machine. Otherwise, you're just running one very long, low-grade downhill that might very well work your quads, but could easily fry your knees. On the elliptical, you need enough resistance to balance out your own weight- again, to keep those knees safe. The resistance should be equivalent to walking up a hill.
Also- think about it this way: What ARE you going to the gym for? If you find yourself settled into a routine of doing the same 30 minutes of cardio followed by the same 5 resistance exercises, you should really consider mixing up your routine! Many a study have concluded that variety is key in maintaining an active lifestyle. So challenge yourself! You feel like you're just cruising along? Time to dig deep and turn it up!
9/27 -- Rolling Hills
1. warm up - flat road - "Rollover DJ" Jet
2. cont'd warm up - add a gear - 30s. position 1, 30s. position 2 (standing job), 30s. position 3, repeat - "Weapon Of Choice" Fatboy Slim
3. climb with standing bursts - medium resistance, speed up in pos. 3 - "The Golden Age" Asteroid Galaxy Tour
4. seated sprints - flat road+ (add a gear for control and extra challenge), sprint on the chorus - "Rebel Yell" Billy Idol
5. climb with standing bursts - start at med resistance, add a gear each time you get to pos. 3 (chorus), push through and even try to speed up - "Rolling in the Deep" Adele
6. heavy seated climb - make it heavy enough that it's really hard, but not impossible (no pedal mashing), try to stay in your seat but you may stand for relief or to mix it up - "Dream On" Aerosmith
7. seated flat - fast, push the pace for 2 minutes as you speed down the other side of the hill - "Bleed it Out" Linkin Park
8. hovers - medium res, "hover" over the saddle on the chorus and focus on pulling up with the hamstrings - "Mercy" Duffy
9. long climb (choreographed, time intervals are approximate to changes in the music) -
0-1:00 - medium
1:00-2:00 -add 1 gear (med.+)
2-2:30 - medium
2:30-3:30 - add 2 gears (heavy)
4:00-5:00 add 3 gears, pos. 3 (heavy+)
5:30 - end add 3 gears, pos. 3, 'til 6:30, optional 4th gear in last minute (steep)
- "You Can't Always Get What You Want" Rolling Stones
10. foothills - don't take the res. all the way off, dial it back to medium and stay up, take it off to sprint on the chorus, but it back on and recover in pos. 3 - "Raise Your Glass" Pink
11. standing runs - light resistance, alternate seated recovery and standing run, go with the flow of the song - "Lancaster Gate" Enter the Haggis
12. run it home, seated flat - take it easy the first minute to recover and get ready to run it out, pick up your pace as the music picks up, hold a steady 85% effort to the end - "Walk" Foo Fighters
13. cool down - flat road, slow it down, breathe deep, enjoy this moment - "Chasing Cars" Snow Patrol
Don't forget to stretch!
total time: 54:15