I have a trekking bike (similar to this one : http://www.hervis.at/products/product?code=BASE:1842986&referer=at-bike-cross ) and I plan to join some triathlon events in the future. I try to do some long runs (sorry if that is not that long for you) around 70-80 km, but I cannot be faster than 21 km/h. I see the others with road bikes are much quicker than me(but I don't know whether this is because of me or the bike).

My first point is that I dont want to spend money now and I am really undecided whether this is a good strategy to train for later. Do you think there is room for big speed improvement with the road bikes? Is it similar to train with the trekking bike and then change it or does it change the style a lot?

  • 1
    You are still training your legs and cardio. Yes a road bike will be faster and better training. You can't get in triathlon form to train for technique but you can pick that up pretty quick.
    – paparazzo
    May 6, 2015 at 16:47
  • Closely related bicycles.stackexchange.com/questions/10294/… May 6, 2015 at 17:49
  • 6
    There is an argument that says there's nothing wrong with your training bike being heavy and cumbersome, as it will develop your muscles more than a light, racing bike. But your race position will be different from a trekking bike, and you will need to train your body for that position as well. Ultimately though you're asking a question that is a judgement call - we can't really answer you ojectively
    – PeteH
    May 6, 2015 at 19:08
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    In addition to the above comments, you cannot train on a bike you don't have, and without training, won't be able to complete, let alone compete in a tri. Train on the bike you have till you can buy/beg/borrow/(not that one) a road bike. Get in touch with a bike or tri club, ask around family, friends and work mates - you may be surprised how many people have an old road bike hanging around unused they will let you borrow. Someone may even have one your size they will give you.
    – mattnz
    May 6, 2015 at 22:50
  • Thank you for you comments. I could buy one, but the question is wehther is worth to buy it now or not. Of course I am not asking for a objective opinion. I wanted to know whether training with my bike can be counterproductive or not, and whether not being able to be fast with the trekking bike is because of my limitation or of the bike.
    – pokeRex110
    May 7, 2015 at 7:37

2 Answers 2


Yes, you will need to have a road bike in order to properly train for a Triathlon. The ergonomics of a road bike a totally different to a mountain bike and you will therefore have to set aside some extra time for your body. You may at first feel discomfort when riding as you won't be used to the bike, but that'll go away very quickly.

As to whether you should buy a bike right now or not: I would say wait until autumn time when bicycle retailers will be cutting their prices in order to get rid of the current season bikes. I got my bike for £240 and it was Originally £600.


No, you do not need a road bike to train correctly. What speed you travel at is irrelevant to the training effect, what is important is the duration and intensity of the workout.

It is very common practice for cross country (XC) mountain bikers to do a large quantity of their aerobic base training on road bikes. And likewise many road pros choose to do some miles on MTB during the winter.

You will need to get the bike you plan to use for the event (or at least one with the same geometry) around a month before the event to get the fit dialled in and get used to riding in an aerodynamic position.

  • I would allow more than a month, partly to allow for cable stretch (on a new bike) and also to get familiar with the different position.
    – srank
    Jul 8, 2016 at 15:50

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