Stop being scared of cycle!

Great feedback from my protein powder posts last week.  I admit, I do not drink very many smoothies (although I should) because for some reason I crave solid food right now.  I did try my recommended whole food protein smoothies though and I can honestly say they’re great!


Today I wanted to hit on a point I’ve been trying to make at the local Y where I teac.  However, it’s still not hitting home SO LISTEN UP!

Why is everyone so scared to try a spin class?

And, yes if you are a SPIN instructor, I know I should be calling it “cycle” but, let’s be honest, no one really does that.

Look how happy and “perky” those ladies are in that picture!  How could you refuse?

Anytime I ask people to come to class I usually hear this excuse

Spin is way too intense, way too technical, will make my legs HUGE and way too much pain for my butt.

I will agree with the last point.  Until you come 3-4 times, it will be a little painful.  It’s like building calluses.  On your butt.  Great visual there.

However, I will NOT agree with the other points.  So, let me break them down for you.

1)  Any class can be as intense or as moderate as you want.  In spin, no one knows how fast you’re going or how much resistance you have on your bike.  Therefore, as long as you can act like you’re working hard, from everyone else’s point of view in the class, YOU ARE!  In Zumba, BodyPump, Bootcamp, all those other group ex classes, people see exactly which modifications you’re choosing.

Not sure why I chose that picture, but major modifications here right?!
2)  Again, every class can be as technical or not as you make it.  In Bootcamp, I could tell you we’re working your pectoralis major, or, I could tell you we’re working your chest.  In cycling there are so many terms:
cadence
resistance
watts
And while you can get into all that and really monitor your workout, you don’t need to.  As long as you’re going easy when I occasionally let you, and out of breath when I tell you to be, you’re fine.  Confused as to whether you’re working hard enough?  When in doubt, turn up the resistance and pick up your speed.  That should get you there every time.
Just like with any other hour long class, you need to learn to pace yourself.  All you BodyPumpers out there know the exact weight you need for each track because you’ve been going for so long.  Same deal with cycle.  You’ll start to learn which gear equals a moderate climb, etc. only after a handful of practices.
3)  Oh the good old BIG LEG syndrome.  Yes, if all you do for a workout is sit on a bike and power through steep hills, your legs will get bigger.  Bigger as in more muscular.  Whether you find that repulsive or not, that’s your call.  BUT from Women’s Health:
Harvard School of Public Health researchers studied more than 18,000 women over a period of 16 years, they found that those who biked as few as five minutes a day gained less weight than those who didn’t ride. In fact, cycling at a comfortable pace, a 135-pound woman can expect to burn through nearly 500 calories in a single hour. And the more muscle you gain, the faster your metabolism.
And, according to the American Council in Exercise, women’s low testosterone levels make it almost impossible to bulk up, unless supplements are being taken.
I’m not telling you to cycle everyday.  In fact, don’t do anything everyday or else your body will start to adapt.  Instead, add 1 class a week.  It is HIIT (high intensity interval training) and weight training at it’s finest.
 Where can you go both cardio and strength training in one class besides some sort of Bootcamp!?
So, if you’ve been on the fence, go try a spin class… not once, not twice, but at least three times.  Try different instructors, try different gyms if you’re able.  I hope you’ll find a low impact but heart pumping (well as least as much as you want it to) workout you won’t want to miss each week!
If you are in my area, come try me sometime!  Or, if you want something a little different than just a cycle class, I highly recommend Boho Cycle Studio.  and TidalWheel in Richmond. I’ve heard about SoulCycle in NY and CA.  Although, I also heard SoulCycle is banning cycling instructors from coming to their classes so we can’t “copy” their ideas.  That’s crap, but that’s a whole different post!

My Summer Sanitize Ladies have just 2 weeks left and are reporting weight loss each week!  If you’d still like the plan, register here.  It’s never to let to cleanse for the summer!
summersanitize
What scares you most about spinning or what do you love about it?
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11 thoughts on “Stop being scared of cycle!

  1. Karen Loves to Run (@karenlovestorun) says:

    Agh I am guilty of this! My fear is that everyone will be a pro on the bike and I will fail miserably. That and my bottom will hurt too much! I plan on getting back on the bike this summer as part of my cross training focus. I will let you know how it goes!
    Karen @karenlovestorun

  2. Jaclyn @ Bumpsweat says:

    I took cycling classes in college and really loved them! Now, I’ve been on such a weight-lifting kick, but I may try to get back to taking at least one a week after baby girl arrives. And I just have to say, if someone throws Excuse #3 at you, you could just say, ‘look at my legs, do they look manly, hulkish, or scary-huge?!?’ or something to that effect 😉

  3. Laura @ Mommy Run Fast says:

    Yes! Such great points! I was surprised when I heard people making the same excuses… it really doesn’t have to be that intense, if you’re just starting out. And I love that it’s a strength/cardio combo workout, too!

  4. Carly @ Fine Fit Day says:

    Yes! Great post. I remember being terrified of taking my first spin class, even though I was super fit and a runner. It gets built up as the hardest, scariest, most painful exercise class ever, but all your points are so true. Especially that you need to commit to doing it 3 times before forming your judgement.

  5. Change of Pace says:

    I’d love to come to one of your classes, and I’d love your point about trying something three times.
    I’m ashamed to a emit in all my years of going to the gym and then cycling and triathlon training, I’ve never gone to a spin class! I keep saying I’ll go one of these days but have yet to go. Hopefully soon!

  6. Tina Muir says:

    Great post Emma! I am scared of spin classes, but it is mostly because if I add any more to my training, I think I will literally fall over dead from exhaustion, but I promise I do go on occasion when my training load is lighter! I am right there with you that it is a great class, and yes, any class can be as hard as you make it!

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