Use The Same Or Different Bike On An Indoor Trainer And On The Road?


Well-Known Member
Nov 24, 2012
My newest adventure - setting up my own home gym - part of that is I bought an indoor bike trainer.

Contemplating the convenience factor of that, I am inclined to buy an inexpensive bike, outfit it with a comfortable saddle, etc, and just leave it there permanently. That way I won't need to take my bike on and off the trainer, worry about changing out wheels and tires (I plan on using a dedicate training tire), and so on.

Any cons to this approach? - and please remember I only do this "for me" - I'll never be in the TdF or anything close. Just trying to maximize my health and enjoyment of life.
I think you have chosen a good approach. If that weren't so expensive, I would recommend choosing the same model for your indoor trainer as the bike that you are riding outdoors. Is it possible to do that?
My primary bike is kinda expensive so I was thinking a cheap one - probably the geometry is the important thing anyway?
I use one of my older, demoted road bikes on the winter trainer. I also swap in some old wheels and worn tires or a trainer tire.

There is nothing wrong with your plan, but try to get the bike set up the same as your outdoor ride.
The only con that I can think of is that there may be a slight loss in your biking performance due to having to adjust to a different bicycle. Everything little aspect of cycling from aerodynamics, equipment, diet, personal geometry, etc can affect performance on some level. Even little adjustments such as attaching toe clips to your pedals or wearing compression shorts can increase your performance by a few percentage points. Humans aren't the best at adapting to change and switching between bikes on a trainer and on road may have a similar decrease in performance. I don't think the loss in performance would be anything significant however and it probably wouldn't be worth it to take a bike on and off a trainer constantly.
I use to use an older bike but I use a Proform TDF trainer now.