Editor’s note: Dr. Nick Green is writing a series of posts documenting his winter training progress as he works to drop weight, build power, and be ready to take Strava KOM’s when spring rolls around. Browse his past posts here.

It’s a cold (-10 C) morning in Northern Ontario and 15cm of snow has fallen in the last 24 hours. Basically it is a perfect Saturday morning to spend an extended amount of time indoors on the bike.

The 7am start time with “I’ll hurt you” Karl came earlier than expected, but we were soon off to do laps of London with a planned 100 km of fun. Despite the hard ride around Richmond yesterday, I was pleasantly surprised by a PR on the “London Loop Forward 1 Lap – Zwiftblog Verified“. Yes, as stated in my last blog post, the hard riding and weight reduction are paying dividends.

More to the focus of this post is the social side of Zwift. Riding with Karl is great fun. He pushes me up the hills just a little faster than I am comfortable with, and injects a little bit of commentary when things get interesting. We have been using the voice communication program “Discord“, which runs on the same tablet as the Zwift mobile app. Discord is a free app which is targeted at the PC gamer market, but makes a great addition to a Zwift setup. I have two little issues with this setup:

  1. Switching back and forth between the two applications can be difficult when the going is really tough, but it works;
  2. Sometimes the audio can be difficult to hear over the sound of the trainer. This is more the fault of poor tablet speakers than the software itself.

Roughly 60km into today’s ride I was somewhat shocked to see a name from my past. Well, it initially appeared to be a friend that lives 3000 km away. A message was sent through Zwift and a delayed response proved that indeed it was a good friend from college that I haven’t spoken to in at least 10 years. The power of the Internet, combined with the Zwift training software is making this winter training thing so much more than I could have ever dreamed possible. Lighter, faster and reconnecting with friends. That’s a good day of training!