“How long are we here for? How far will we go in this life? What will that time and distance look like at the end of the road?”

Johnny G. pauses. “These are age-old questions — big ones,” says the South African immigrant-turned L.A. personal trainer-turned international fitness guru, who changed the fitness world a quarter-century ago when he invented indoor cycling. “It’s cool to think that something every human on earth grew up with — the bike — can help you answer them.”

After following-up his groundbreaking Johnny G Spinning bike and workout with two more innovations, the upper-body Krankcycle, and the all-body In-Trinity Board, Johnny has now come back to his cycling roots in a big way: with a radical, high-tech bike and program.

Meet the Johnny G. Spirit Bike and the Johnny G. Method — and the journey of fitness and mindfulness they make possible: The Ride of Truth.

“The Ride of Truth is the culmination of what I had thought about daily for four decades,” says Johnny. “It takes the ‘Time Trial ‘ — a foundational event of cycling training and racing, in which one rider alone races against himself — and turns it into a structured program that ramps up your fitness and teaches you a lot about yourself.”

The Time Trial, historically known as The Ride of Truth, is a staple of road cycling that appears in the Tour de France and other events. Racers complete a set distance as fast as they can. This time becomes a benchmark for physical and mental fitness.

The Ride of Truth comes down to you, your bike and the clock. No one else in the room or on the road matters. The motivation is pure, the effect intense: Get better, get faster, get fitter. And there’s another outcome, too, says Johnny: A journey of liberation, of finding what he calls, “The champion within.”

The new Johnny G. Spirit Bike is designed for any type of indoor riding. But for the first time in an indoor bike, it focuses on time and distance, with features that facilitate the power of time trialing. It includes:

— A cockpit-style console with a high-visibility LED display including heart rate, watts, rpm, speed, distance in miles/kilometers. In a first, the bikes will log a rider’s cumulative miles and times from all workouts, so he/she can link long- term goals from class to class over months and years.

— Electronic, push-button instant-shifting magnetic resistance control on a proprietary handlebar. There are 20 levels of calibrated resistance, so you can accurately replicate and differentiate workouts. (You did Level 13 at 135 rpm last week? Now try Level 14.) There’s no more manual shift- lever guesswork.

— A belt drive system providing the smooth road-bike feel.

— The Ride of Truth Education Program, which includes weekend retreats and an ongoing educational program for instructors.

For Johnny and his team, the Ride of Truth guided design and production of the bike every step of the way. Its metrics and functionality allow riders to make their own choices about how hard to go, how to excel, how to progress.

The program’s focus on time and distance was inspired by Johnny’s training for the 1989 Race Across America (RAAM), a 3000-mile coast-to-coast race across 12 states, which he finished in 10 days. To qualify, he won the 1988 RAAM Open West by riding non-stop for 29 hours and 46 minutes. This was his Ride of Truth, his initiation into the power of time and distance.

Whether you ride 5 miles, 10 miles, 20 miles, or 3000 miles, the time sets the standard for speed, strength, and fitness, while distance sets up goal-setting and training path. The bike’s heart rate, WATTS, and RPM metrics provide additional motivation.

In the end, Johnny hopes that The Ride of Truth and the Johnny G. Spirit Bike can even take you further, into yourself, beyond your 60 minutes of exercise into some of life’s bigger questions.

“Ultimately, do we use time well— and not take it for granted?” says Johnny. “Because time on the bike isn’t just time to get some awesome exercise. It’s time to think.”

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