Re: Peloton-style vs. Smart trainers?

Becky Smith

Hi Mike,

I have a Cyclops Magnus Smart Trainer. The newer version is the Saris CycleOps Magnus 2 Smart Trainer:

I had a stationary bike but I could not do things like measure my power meter output or average speed or cadence since it was incompatible with my bike sensors and my Garmin Edge 810 readings.

While my smart trainer was expensive, it is like riding my bike outdoors. I can elevate my bike and set resistance to simulate hill climbing AND I get “credit” for my workouts since I can download it from my Garmin.

Secondly, it is Zwift-certified. This means you can subscribe and do some amazing simulated bike rides all over the world.

Things to consider:

1. If you do road racing and/or time trials, use a simple trainer for your parking lot warm-ups...not the CycleOps smart trainer. This trainer is designed to remain in place, although super easy to set up and use.

2. Purchase the floor mat. It absorbs vibration from spinning on any floor - indoor, outdoor, and in garage.

3. Purchase the climbing block which you use for the front tire.

4. Purchase a USB dongle if you want to pair and play with Zwift.

5. Buy an adjustable desktop table where you can put your laptop or iPad or cell phone, etc. I paid $40 for one instead of $100-300 as advertised with smarter trainers. The table I chose can adjust in height to fit over the front tire. It also has lockable wheels. If I don’t feel like a Zwift workout from my laptop, I will binge watch something or listen to an audio book on my tablet using this table:

Bottom line: I chose the best product for the money that was available at the time after some trial and error (e.g. purchasing and using a stationary bike vs. the better longer term benefits I gained by purchasing a smart trainer). The flexibility of the CycleOps Magnus Trainer is that it allows you to use Zwift for your peloton training if you want, and save you $$$ of what a peloton trainer costs and the space that it requires (you just want get the simulated movements other than hill climbing and spin resistance).

I have been a proud owner of the CycleOps Magnum Smart Trainer for three years now and it still meets my needs, as well as still remains technologically updated and relevant. 

Again, the newer model is the Saris CycleOps Magnum 2 Smart Trainer.

Hope this helps,

Becky Smith

On Sun, Sep 6, 2020 at 09:27 Mike Moore <mrmoore.usa@...> wrote:
Hi everybody!   As we are fond of saying in Reno, winter is coming.  (That’s pretty catchy!).   I am still trying to get back in shape after last year’s calamity so I am considering buying an indoor trainer.  So I would love to get the opinions (and I know you have them) on these questions:

1. Is it better to buy a Peloton-style or Smart trainer and if so, why?

2. If you’ve experience with a smart trainer, which one would you recommend and how easy is it to set up and get going?   What ancillary purchases are desirable?

3. What do you wish you knew before you purchased one of these machines?

From what little I know, there probably isn’t a single correct answer for every situation and individual preference which is why I would hoping to draw upon the collective wisdom of the club.

In advance, thanks!!   Safe riding and happy trails to all of you!


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