Things you'll only understand if you're a Sufferfest convert

The nuances that Couchlandrians just won't understand...

The Sufferfest has its own humour

Indoor cycling was big news last year, and the sweaty march in pursuit of elevated functional threshold power and improved sprint watts looks set to continue.

There's a variety of indoor cycling apps designed to keep boredom at bay for those pedalling indoors - but The Sufferfest has been at it since before applications were even a thing living in your iPhone, let alone Android.

The bringers of pain, misery - and ultimately, glory - have been flogging riders and setting minions on their souls since 2008. Initially The Sufferfest inflicted its "training effects"  via single purchase videos, but more recently it's begun to spread self-inflicted torment via an all howling, all chamois dancing app. 

As sadistic as it all sounds, the sessions have been written by experts at Apex Coaching since 2011 - and the creation of the app allows for effective and precise power targets, especially when completed within a downloadable training plan devised by the minions of Apex themselves.

But of course, training science is not what you came here for. Here are nine things you'll only know if you've frequented the auto-sadisto-dictatorship whose capital is called Agonia...


You're not a Sufferlandrian if you need to Google that.

The Tour of Sufferlandria is superior to the Tour de France

Because Geraint Thomas never had to ride through molten lava and breathe in volcanic ash to get to Paris, did he?

15 intervals means 16

Do the minions ever stay away from the control desk during the creation of a video? See also: 60 second intervals that last for 90 seconds.

Despite the fact you've done Revolver more times than you've eaten hot lava rocks, you're still surprised and upset every time that extra effort flashes onto the screen.

But hey, 'Fluffy' looked real menacing when chasing you during the warm up, so best crack on.

Your pain cave is a creative shrine to your personal pursuit of misery

Suggested accessories: blizzard fan, comedy sized inflatable hammers (nine of), traditional flag of Sufferlandira. No mirrors - you'll be smashing through them with your pain face.

A three minute effort AFTER 2x20 is totally worth it for an imaginary leader's jersey

Especially when it looks like the above. Plus, you get to dance on the chamois' of your enemies - which is a deep seated desire we all hold, only enabled by the will of Grunter von Agony. If you complete that extra three minutes.

The only thing worse than Downward Spiral's agony is the soundtrack

And yet, you just keep going back to that repetitive Euro dance fest for more doses of the pain shakes.

4DP is actually The Truth

Sure: the concept has existed for longer than it's been practicable via Full Frontal - but The Sufferfest brought the Knowledge to us, for which we are eternally grateful (if a little sad that we can't boast about our superior FTPs without having to admit abysmal sprint abilities).


Two hours on the turbo trainer always seems like a good idea, until you actually do it.

Pain is temporary, Suffering is forever

There's no going back once you've gone this deep...

Michelle Arthurs-Brennan
Michelle Arthurs-Brennan

Michelle Arthurs-Brennan is Cycling Weekly's Tech Editor, and is responsible for managing the tech news and reviews both on the website and in Cycling Weekly magazine.

A traditional journalist by trade, Arthurs-Brennan began her career working for a local newspaper, before spending a few years at Evans Cycles, then combining writing and her love of bicycles first at Total Women's Cycling and then Cycling Weekly. 

When not typing up reviews, news, and interviews Arthurs-Brennan is a road racer who also enjoys track riding and the occasional time trial, though dabbles in off-road riding too (either on a mountain bike, or a 'gravel bike'). She is passionate about supporting grassroots women's racing and founded the women's road race team 190rt.

She rides bikes of all kinds, but favourites include a custom carbon Werking road bike as well as the Specialized Tarmac SL6. 

Height: 166cm

Weight: 56kg

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