The forerunner in the evolution of indoor training is Californian based company, Zwift. Founded in 2014 the platform has quickly become the software of choice for anyone looking to focus their training efforts indoors, to reap the rewards when back on the trail.
One such adopter of Zwift is 2019 FNB Wines2Whales Pinotage winner Courteney Webb, the University of Cape Town student has been racing both on and off-road for a few years and has incorporated indoor sessions into her training plans for as long as she can remember.
Courteney Webb and partner Amy Tait, winners of the 2019 FNB Wine2Whales Pinotage, at the finish in Onrus. Image by Xavier Briel
We sat down with her to find out how she keeps the #SeriousGees alive during her indoor rides:
This year has obviously changed a lot of things up! Often in the winter period I am actually fairly busy racing various mtb/road races, so I have taken this opportunity to increase my training intensity and work on my sustained power. Something I found helped a lot last year. The steady climbs on stage 1 out of Lourensford really played to my and my partner Amy Tait’s strengths, as we were able to get into a good rhythm and build a lead that allowed us to win the overall title.
Looking at this year’s route, the back end of stage 1 will again be an important part of the race. Seeing how much indoor training helped me focus on long steady power for last year, I saw this lockdown as a chance to further build on that.
Courteney Webb using her mtb skills to build an unassailable lead in the 2019 FNB Wines2Whale Pinotage. Image by Nick Muzik
Indoor training can seem pretty boring and the thought of sitting staring at a wall or computer for 2hrs, isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but having recently joined Zwift, my perceptions towards indoor training have completely changed.
My top bit of advice is to make your workouts fun and spice things up with new challenges and with friends!
Zwift has so many challenges, workouts and races you are bound to find something you enjoy, so try them all.
My friends and I have held each other accountable by making sure we do our workouts or races, and have been using Discord to talk while doing the sessions, which has been a fun way to catch up and make the time fly by.
With all the time spent in a static position on the indoor trainer, it’s even more important to focus on stretching to prevent injuries, it’s something that is so easily overlooked.
I’m really excited to see how Zwift evolves and becomes a bigger part of my racing calendar throughout the year, with long wet winters down here in the Cape, I am really grateful to have the option to ride on Zwift and already seeing how much it has benefitted my outdoor riding, it’s going to make this years Switchback even more fun.
I’ll be hoping to repeat last year’s win in 2020, it was such a surreal feeling crossing the line in Onrus. I will never forget how stoked Amy and I were being able to take home the Varsity Cup and getting our moment on the finishing line with champagne, all the hard work over the 3 days all came together.
The Gees in the race village is like no other, with the best food and snacks, I never feel guilty stuffing my jersey pockets, as I know the climbing will make me earn them. The chill zones are such awesome places to catch up with old riding friends and make new friends. I can’t wait for all the new twists and turns of the 2020 Switchback.