Video Review: Spinervals 24.0 HILLacious

photo 1It’s been a long week – and there’s still a day to go.  I was finally able to jump back on the trainer, and I needed a workout to beat some stress out of me.  Of course, I’m still a little hesitant to do a harder workout now that I’m back on my new 1UpUSA trainer (and it’s a heck of a lot harder than the CycleOps I was using).

I looked at my collection of DVD’s and Spinervals 24.0 HILLacious was sitting at the top of the pile – just teasing me and daring me to give it a shot.  Right on the front of the case, I can see that the difficulty rating is 9.5 out of 10.  And it goes for 60 minutes.

“Learn to Climb as if you have HELIUM in your Tires!”

I had done the workout before, and I vaguely remember liking it – so – I popped it into the DVD player and went to work.

Now, let me say that this is the first Spinervals DVD I noticed that was obvious in its sponsorship by the Great Harvest Bread Company.  I’ve never been to one of their stores, but a quick search has them marketing themselves as a healthy whole-wheat bread kind of bakery.  There are none in my local central Pennsylvania area (Panera seems to have the local hold).  I can only imagine that they must have funded the production of this workout – so it would be natural that they get some billing on the cover (either that or Coach Troy worked out a deal for free bread for a year or two…).

The folks at Spinervals certainly find some interesting places for their videos.  This video is made on a rooftop in the Inner Harbor in Baltimore, MD.  Troy references that there’s a heat index putting the temperature around 100 – which is nice to imagine as we are just getting out of the polar vortex.  The scenery is kind of neat – watching the skyline in the background (beats the heck out of looking at people in a closed room).


There are really only three main sets of this workout – which doesn’t sound like much, but remember that the workout goes for an hour.  So, each set is longer than other workouts offered by Spinervals.

The first set has two simulated climbs – each one lasting 8 minutes long.  You get a 4 minute low-gear rest between the sets – which is a nice break.  The 8 minutes drag a little bit, but it’s only because I like more of a variety while riding.  But it’s tough pedaling for the first set.

The second set was more exciting to me.  Coach Troy simulates rolling hills.  He starts off on an easier gear (Big Cog front/21 on rear) and has you switch down one gear in quick intervals.  Essentially, you’re simulating a start on a downhill – progressing into a flat – and then back up the next hill.  Each section ends with the hardest gear ratio (Big Cog front/12 on rear), and he has you stand for that section.  Fun!  Fun!  Fun!

One point to make:  I think Troy loses count of the gears on different sections.  A few times, he has one too many jumps.  The screen shows a Big/16 ratio – and that’s the first time I’ve ever seen that ratio on any of his videos, and I just wonder if it was inserted simply to keep from reshooting the workout.  He then continues to 15…14…13….12.   If you would have clicked from 17 to “16,” you would need to have an 11 on the back.  Other times, he seems to jump right over a gear (say 14) – so you have to just watch and adjust accordingly.

The last main section of the workout has you doing a few sections of pedaling in the hardest gear ratio (Big/12) for 30 seconds.  Then, you get to stand and sprint in that same gear ratio for 10 more seconds.  Again, a fun section – and a tough one!

Every once in awhile, the video cuts to Troy on his bike.  These really seemed like afterthoughts inserted later – and they didn’t really need to be there.  I suppose it was meant to break it up a little bit, but the workout itself is all that is needed.

I happened to like all of the references to the Gates Pass Virtual Ride that I love so much.  Not sure if this was produced around the same time, but this workout would probably help you do that virtual ride and all of its climbing.

The riders in this video are all sporting nifty Great Harvest cycling jerseys (which, I admit, would be nice to have in my collection – though I prefer sleeves on my jerseys).  Through the introductions, you have a wide variety of riders with different racing experiences.

photo 3The “Big Cheese” of Great Harvest gets the front and center spot of this cycling video.  He’s introduced as an athlete, and I’m sure he does compete in events.  It makes me feel good that another bigger guy is out there pounding the pedals.

That’s him – waving hello at the start of the video.  With a reference to Mel Brooks:  “It’s good to be the King.”  You get the much-deserved attention (and I think I caught Troy being his water boy at one point in the video).



It got me thinking…..   Maybe I should have my business, Fogarty Homes, sponsor a future workout.  Then, I could get featured – waving at the camera and having folks get me water during the workout.  Just think about it….the millions of copies that would sell just so folks could see my handsome mug waving at the camera…..

photo 2


OK…..maybe not….

Ride on!

4 thoughts on “Video Review: Spinervals 24.0 HILLacious

  1. Hey Brad, thanks for that I did HILacious last week for first time last week and found it hard, fun and I enjoyed the variety and scenery – your review helped me relive the fun without the pain 😉 looking forward to Spinervals 48.0 Fogerty Homes “hills at home” 😉 Anth

    • Hey! Great title! Thanks for your pre-order. When that time comes, I’ll need to assemble some riders, so I’ll need to round you up. We’ll shoot at some exotic location – like a house that has just been framed.

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