The 2017 CTS Super Bowl Indoor Cycling Workout

The Super Bowl is this weekend and this year we have two workouts for you to choose from! As we have in previous years, we have an indoor trainer workout loosely styled after a drinking game. New for this year, we have downloadable .zwo, .fit, and .erg files you can use with a smart trainer like the Wahoo KICKR or KICKR Snap.

Super Bowl 51 Workout for Smart Trainers

The downloadable workout files obviously can’t follow along with the game because they’ve already been built. Instead, we designed a challenging workout with 51 intervals to commemorate the Super Bowl 51! Is it hard? You bet. But it also has a legitimate purpose. The efforts in the structured workout are short (20-30 seconds each) and should be focused on accelerating against resistance. The recovery periods between the efforts are also short. The end result is a series of efforts wherein you accelerate over 30 seconds, coast/spin down over 30 seconds, and then accelerate again.

Click Here to Download Smart Trainer Workout

The great part about delivering this workout download is that we could add in a lot more variety to the resistance, including ladders that ramp up and down in power output over the course of series of intervals. To write it out in a spreadsheet interval by interval would be too confusing to execute, but that hassle goes away when you can download the workout and sync with Zwift or another software or device that can control a smart trainer.

The workout is available as a .zwo, .erg, .mrc, or .fit file. The .zwo files are for use with Zwift. You can use an .erg or .mrc files with TrainerRoad or Cycleops Virtual Training software, and .erg with Computrainer. You can use .fit files with Garmin devices. If you have a smart trainer and you’re not sure what to do with these files, here are some resources:

Import Instructions for .zwo, .erg, .mrc, and .fit files

Using a .zwo file with Zwift

Using an .erg or .mrc file with Cycleops Virtual Training

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Super Bowl Indoor Cycling Game

If you don’t have a smart trainer, we have you covered. You can start the workout any time during the big game, and you can ride for as long as you want. From the feedback we’ve received over the years, the most popular way is to ride the first half and relax and refuel (drink a bottle of water before starting in on the beer…) during the second half.  

When it’s time to start your workout, get on your bike and spin easy for 5-10 minutes. Then increase your effort to EnduranceMiles intensity (your normal, moderate, conversational ride pace, or a 5-6 on a 10-point perceived exertion scale). From this point forward, based on what happens during the game, go to the intensity level described in the top row (red boxes) when the action on the screen matches one of the white boxes in that column.

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Click on the image below for a full-size image. You can also download and print out the board here. For best results, right-click the link and select “Save Target As…” or “Save Linked File As…”. You can also download workout descriptions here.

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Let’s say you’re watching the game and riding at EnduranceMiles intensity, and then one of the quarterbacks gets sacked. You would sprint for 30 seconds and then return to EnduranceMiles intensity. Whenever there’s a kickoff (following a field goal or touchdown, or at the start of the second half) you ride out of the saddle for one minute. When there’s a first down, you complete a 1-minute Power Interval. When there’s a turnover you increase your cadence and reduce your gearing to do a FastPedal interval for 2 minutes. And any time a penalty flag is thrown, it’s another 1-minute Power Interval. At the end of whatever sprint or interval you’re doing, return to EnduranceMiles intensity, and continue following the cues on the board.

Always complete the current task and return for EnduranceMiles before selecting another task on the board, instead of changing mid-task. In other words, if you’re doing a 2-minute FastPedal because a fast food commercial came on, and then the game comes back on and you hear “Deflategate!”, stick with the FastPedal until you’re done the two minutes, return to EnduranceMiles pace, and then wait for the next cue.

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Have some fun with this workout, but don’t try to stay on the bike for the entire Super Bowl. That would be a 4+ hour ride on the trainer, and that’s unnecessary. One-quarter would be a good workout, and a full half would be a pretty tough ride!

Enjoy the Game!
Chris Carmichael
CEO/Head Coach of CTS

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Comments 2

  1. THANK YOU!! I have been anxiously awaiting the game!!!

    My favorite part is when multiple squares hit right on top of each other and you have to “daisy chain” all the different intensities – you know, like a field goal followed by a penalty flag immediately followed by a beer commercial! Makes for some intense reps – and definitely makes us earn our “rehydration” after the workout! 🙂

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