Which bike for my first Zwift set up?


I am sure that this has been asked a million times, however, after trawling through various forums and constantly going round in circles, I turn to you good folk for some much needed advice. In the past few months I have discovered Zwift and developed somewhat of an addiction for it. I am not a cyclist, (I love and live for trail running and hiking) but discovered Zwift during my ongoing recovery from a ruptured Achilles. I have not been able to run for many months and it would not be a lie to say that Zwifting (is that a word?) has pretty much saved me from desperation and depression. To cut a long story short, I borrowed my brother’s road bike and trainer and now it is time to hand it back.

I am really struggling to decide which bike I should buy for my new indoor set up. My plan is to use a Tacx Vortex Smart trainer (I will update this if I am still as obsessed in a few months) but I need a bike to hook up to it. Initially the bike will stay as part of the indoor set up and the issue, as always, is budget. Ideally I want to spend sub £300 on the bike. As I will be back running again soon I am not planning on cycling on the road to start with so only need this bike for indoors. When next summer comes around I will definitely be looking to get a decent road bike to use outside as my running programme will definitely be cut to fewer miles per week.

I am 6ft 1 inch in height and in short would love you guys to give me some suggestions or links as to what to buy.

Thank you in advance.

I spent $200 kiwi dollars (a couple of cups of tea in your language) on my trainer bike and was the best investment I made with my Zwift setup. Getting something cheap means you can just leave it set up and not faff about if you want to go for an outdoor ride.

Best tip I can give resulting from very recent lesson learnt: make sure the drive train is in good condition, or at least you know what is wearing etc. I am a mountain biker and regularly rotate and clean chains on those bikes as well as closely monitor for wear given they are susceptible to high levels of wear compared to say a road bike, but I somehow thought my trainer bike was immune to wear, didnt really monitor wear, and the chain stretched so far that it ruined my chain ring as well.