Review: The Sufferfest – The Best Thing In The World
Another of The Sufferfest’s latest instalments for enjoyment in the pain cave, The Best Thing In The World is best described as a gift from Sufferlandria to citizens everywhere.
In the introduction we are treated to footage of happy children gleefully unwrapping Christmas presents and told to remember back to a time when we were made happy by these materialistic things. This was a simpler time, before we discovered our inner Sufferlandrian; and now the only thing that makes us happy is suffering.
The video has the same special effects and introduction that we saw with Do As You’re Told, which i perfect for setting the tone of the video and getting you into the zone for some turbo time.
TBTITW itself is quite short, coming in at 47’15” but that is definitely long enough to cause some serious suffering.
The plot of this video is a little different from the others, which usually place you in a professional race situation as part of a pro team. In TBTITW, the plot is that you have been invited to two special races as a gift for your loyalty to Sufferlandria. These races pit you against other Sufferlandrians with the goal being to suffer the most to come out on top.
The actual breakdown of the workout is two 13′ race simulations after the warm up, however there is no structure to the race simulation and you are expected to follow the on screen instructions to mark attacks and make climbs etc. The workout is as follows:
11’30” Warm Up
13’30” Racing With Sufferlandrians
13’30” Racing With Sufferlandrians
3’00” Bask in Glory
Whilst this isn’t the most structured of training sessions, it doesn’t make it any less fun and the storyline helps to make the video a little less informal. The plot of the warm up features footage from the early stages of the 2015 Amstel Gold classic, with lots of easy riding and rumours of a Couchlandrian (eugh!) amongst the ranks of riders. The easy riding parts are interspersed by climbs where low cadence but big gears are needed and short attacks to get the cadence up.
After being told to show your stuff to prove that the interloper isn’t you, you move into the first racing set which features footage from the Amstel Gold race which is much more competitive than the sedentary warm up. The fast-paced dance and techno music on these sets are more than enough to encourage you to keep going, as well as the helpful on screen prompts.
This popular classic includes some iconic scenery and plenty of cobbles to get stuck into. The race set itself includes plenty of changes of tempo as you race through the flat Netherlands and take on the occasional climb. The workout is tough and the constant gear changes can be difficult to keep a track of.
This is compounded by sections where a range of gears are needed such as climbs followed by attacks. Some of the intervals are relatively short which makes these constant gear changes a little frustrating, especially further into the set when the suffering kicks. The saving grace here is the on screen information that tell you what kind of effort you will be moving up to or down to in the next change – something which we praised in the Do As You’re Told review – as this allows you to per-empt a gear change almost and get your hands in a better position.
The recovery set follows one of the MTN-Qhubeka riders as they ride to the start of a rainy Gent-Wevelgem, weaving through team cars and spectators to get to the start where the next race set will take place.
The recovery takes the opportunity to remind you that there is still a Counchlandrian amongst your fellow riders and to continue to prove that it’s not you.
The high-paced electro music kicks in again as you take on the next section of racing with Sufferlandrians, where you attempt to get into a breakaway group on the plains of Belgium where you face fierce cross-winds and short, sharp climbs – all of which require big gears to push on through.
Again the lack of structure makes it a little difficult to anticipate what’s coming next and the constant gear changes can be a little tough to keep on top of later in the set but the information you get on screen is extremely useful in countering this issue.
The second set is arguably the most difficult – as it should be – and the footage and prompts are exceptional in making you feel like you’re part of the race. You finish with a big climb followed immediately by an attack which is absolute hell on the legs as you switch from low gear and low cadence to big gear and high cadence.
Of course this is immediately followed by a final massive effort as you sprint for victory against Alexander Kristoff and Niki Terpstra in the finale of the Tour of Flanders.
Once again the footage is excellent as it combines bike cams with moto footage to give an immersive experience into the race, complementing the plot perfectly and drawing you in.
The Best Thing In The World is a great gift from The Sufferfest to Sufferlandrians. Whilst the workout itself is extremely hard it includes a good mix of climbing and attacking on the flat to give an all round session that is often hard to find with training videos.
As with any training video that relies on a perceived effort, without a HR and cadence sensor it can be difficult to gauge the effort put in but The Sufferfest do their best to counter this by giving you a lot on on screen information.
They were right at the beginning of the video, now Suffering does make us truly happy and no matter how much it hurts, we keep coming back.
You can buy The Best Thing In The World at The Sufferfest for the great price of $12.99 (~£8.45) which is amazing value for the quality of a workout like this.
+ Excellent all round workout with a mix of climbs and flat sprints
+ Immersive footage from on bike cameras and motos
+ Engaging plotline that is easy to become invested in with entertaining on screen messages
– Many gear changes of different variety which can be difficult to keep up with
– Unknown structure to each race set making it hard to measure effort
– Without cadence sensor can be difficult to gauge effort
Overall we give The Sufferfest: The Best Thing In The World 8/10.