An uphill battle

Happy news SUFFmates…call off the fundraising, I have a Kickr Climb on order.

Just had to sell a car. :grimacing:

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Rule 25!!!

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Kickr climb is an awesome add to the overall indoor training stuff, especially when sustained climb is your passion! :heart_eyes::smiling_imp:

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IT ARRIVED!

Ok, so that was…really fun? Set up the Climb and tried out one of the On Location vids with Mike Cotty (Cirque du Litor), in lieu of my scheduled recovery day.

Out of the gate what surprised me was NEGATIVE grades! Wasn’t expecting that. The ride launched with an immediate -3% downhill and I almost pitched over my bars when they sunk toward the floor.

Initial review would be that the Climb definitely increases immersion, even on my sad little iPad Pro setup. When you see Mike heading toward a hill and feel the rise, it plays with your head a little. And the Climb is pretty responsive. I have it paired to my Kickr Snap, and it lagged on in-video grade changes only by fractions of a second.

More important to the actual workout - and I know this has been discussed - I could absolutely feel a difference in muscle recruitment based on the Climb’s input. About 1/3 into the Litor video there is a big power spike that corresponds to a sudden jump from 1%-10% grade:

As the trainer upped resistance and the Climb increased the angle, I could feel the strain move from upper quad/hamstring/glute to distal, closer to the knee. (And BTW, a big FU for THAT little gem, Mike! :wink:)

Bonus points to the Climb for quiet - totally can’t hear it doing anything over fan and trainer noise, and it somehow cured the creaking on my bike/trainer setup!

So first impression: multiple benefits to my setup, enhances my training experience, MAYBE increases/enhances muscle recruitment. A solid buy, worth the $$$. Happy birthday to me.

#kickr climb

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Based on your review, if I had the money I would totally buy one. Just so I can get an FU from Mike Cotty. :wink: :rofl:

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Yeah, nothing but love for Mike, but sometimes, man…

“Oh lets really feel that grade right now. Keep your cadence up. Hey once in 1920 a guy went over a cliff and almost died over there. COW BELLS!” :wink:

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:rofl:

Yeah, I would never be able to keep up with him in real life. My brain doesn’t switch gears that fast. Nor do my legs. :stuck_out_tongue:

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I could never take off my jacket while riding. :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

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Right? And to be clear, I deeply, deeply envy Mike’s existence.

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I wish I could put on a jacket that smoothly while simply standing on solid ground.

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I agree with this for Sufferfest, where everything is power based relative to your 4DP profile and the workouts are not trying to simulate specific road segments. Virtual miles/elevation gain make a lot more sense in simulated riding environments like Zwift and Rouvy, where you are riding virtual roads with your weight and physics represented fairly accurately. Quite different from power based structured training sessions.

The only way you could do it is like Zwift does with their structured workouts, where you still ride a virtual road and your speed is mapped to that road profile based on your mass and power output. But I don’t see the point in this with Sufferfest. The road profile itself has no meaningful relation to the workout.

I quite like the simple flat land based SUF speed calculation to provide a nominal mileage in Strava etc. It would be the equivalent of doing all your structured training outside on a flat circuit. It’s enough to give a rough comparison of your indoor vs outdoor mileage over time.

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I would add that drafting in Z is actually less effective than it is IRL. They deliberately did that to encourage breakaways in races. They went as far as introducing a “double draft” option for group rides to make the drafting more realistic.

The only thing I do find with Z is that aero drag seems lower than normal (at least for me), so I find I can ride a bit faster on the flat than IRL. Probably helps that it’s always a perfectly calm day in Z, while it’s usually blowing a gale here in the UK!

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This article is great timing for me as I contemplate investing in a Smart bike this winter. The climb feature on the Kickr Bike makes it an easy winner for me. I’m training for mountainous Sportives, so I want climbing to be as realistic as possible. I think the other Smart bikes on the market have really missed out on this importatnt aspect.

I use a combination of SYSTM, Zwift and Rouvy for my indoor riding. SYSTM provides my core training plan and structured workouts, while Z and R provide alternatives to riding outside in crappy weather! But they also allow me to simulate extended Alpine climbs which is impossible for me locally outdoors.

For those who can’t afford a Kickr Climb, Elite make a static front wheel elevator block that adjusts up to 6 degrees in 1 degree incrememnts. It’s about £25 and not a bad compromise for simulating a simple slope. Althernatively you could put your front wheel up on a small stool, but I find that a bit less stable.

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The Kickr bike also drops the rear of the bike so it is actually better at climb simulation than the Climb alone.

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I’m still trying to get my head around that! Pretty much every review says that the climb pivot around the BB feels better than it does around the back wheel, but the bike ends up at exactly the same angle. I guess it’s just a more natural feeling with the bike pivoting from the centre.

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I’ve never tried the Kickr Bike but the video makes the movement look more natural. If I didn’t already have all I’ve got already, I’d have bought the Bike just for the nicely integrated nature and incredible versatility of it.

Kickr Climb D+1

Had Attacker on the menu today (again!). The Climb again really enhanced the workout, to my mind. Though have to say, cranking up the effort into MAP while the Climb elevated to 13-15% felt…precarious? Seemed like I was staring at the ceiling at times!

Seriously, I know it was stable, and I was still securely held in, but yeah, weird.

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I’ve been half-considering a climb for a while. You guys are making it really hard to avoid.

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Just focus on the half that’s easy :wink:

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OH MAN! Thanks for linking this, I had never heard of it, I just checked it out and I love it. But yeah, SYSTM data is kinda useless for this, but still very cool!

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