Cyclists don’t like working out their upper bodies. The road cyclist body type remind me of the dinosaur T-Rex,a creature that is all legs and their arms are just strong enough to hold them onto their carbon fibre handlebars. While doing shoulder presses a cyclist advised me  “I want to avoid hypertrophy” and opted out of the strength session as he was worried about “getting too big in the upper body”.  I admire the dedication, but as a human being you may have to lift a soup can from the top shelf and you perhaps need a modicum of upper body strength and stability in the shoulders, so they don’t pop out of place under the extreme load.

small armed cyclists

This is a quick and dirty Airdyne workout that involves the Tabata protocol for timing. 20 seconds of work 10 seconds of rest. 8 minutes in total.

Tabata Protocol for 16 rounds.

20 seconds Airdyne for calories

10 seconds Rest

20 seconds Push Press with 50 or 35 pound dumbells

10 seconds Rest

Repeat the above for a total of 8 rounds.

Make sure you have a timer on your phone or mp3 player, as your brain will quickly let you down and not be able to read a clock or focus on your watch. If you are exercising in doors and are near a computer, you can use this timer. If you are outside, you can download a Tabata app or a mp3 Tabata.

I coupled this workout with a heavy push press 20 seconds on airdyne for calories then quickly write down calories and then transition to push press. I used 50 lb dumbbells.


You could also sub this workout with thrusters or wall balls as well , but I was really looking at a workout that would put the hurt on most roadies and stick to shoulders and arms while allowing a work : rest ratio that kept the tempo high.

As for tracking the Airdyne calories you might as well keep it rolling for the total 8 minutes and add it up at the end. If you are working with a partner then just remember you calories and write it down in chalk or whiteboard before you grab the dumbbells.

For weight you probably want to pick a weight that is going to be similar to your Airdyne calories. 10 calorie 20 seconds. Rest 10 seconds 10 push press in 20 seconds.

Set your Tabata timer up for 16 rounds of Tabata and go to town!

How do you Size up?

Score: Calories on the Airdyne and Push Press reps count as 1 each and added together for a total score. 

  • Anything over 160 is badass
  • > 150 great
  • > 140 cyclist
  • > 130 getting there!

Based on my limited observations, I’ve estimated Power percentages typically are 33% lower on the airdyne for women as compared to men.

20131222-170301.jpgFor more Airdyne workouts Click here 


7 Quick and Easy Airdyne Workouts!

Looking for a quick workout on the Airdyne? Look no further and download our FREE PDF 7 Quick and Easy Airdyne Workouts! 


P.S. most people love workout #5 ! 

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