I very stupidly told a colleague of mine about this blog. Granted I’ve neglected it recently but if I hear him read the last post aloud in the office one more time I will throw something at him. So for the sake of his health I suppose it’s time I gave him another post to tease me about.Reasons to love spinning
I live by the philosophy “ Try everything at least once”. (Within reason obviously. Things like heroin and necrophilia are some of the things I categorically leave off the list)
Spinning was the first thing I did when I started my fitness journey a couple of years ago. It was “my” thing for a while.
Quite frankly I had no idea what to do at the gym and it all seemed rather intimidating. So a stationary bike seemed harmless enough.
3 Years later I am now a qualified instructor- mainly because I did it so much so “I might as well get paid for it”. I have an old love for spinning and cycling that I feel I should share. It’s a great toe in the water if you are looking start anywhere in the fitness world and helps start the fire.
So for all of you too scared to give it a go or feel like you need convincing to go back and give it another try, here are my top ten reasons to give a class a try.
1) Let’s start with the first reason that most of us go to the gym for. IT BURNS CALORIES: In an average 45 min-1 hour class (and assuming you’re doing it properly and not cheating) you’ll burn about 450-550 calories.
2) Sense of accomplishment: You may curse at yourself/ the instructor during the class but nothing beats the adrenaline rush and self-five moment you want to give yourself afterwards. You leave each class with a natural high feeling on top of the world ready to concur anything. Really great to start a day or if you want to destress.
3) It’s Cardio: Heart rate goes up, you sweat and the more regularly you take part in aerobic and anaerobic *exercise your endurance and stamina will improve. This means you will get fitter.
4) It’s social: It’s a class where you have the best of both worlds. Enough people so you don’t feel like the spotlight is all on you, but you’re in control of your own bike so you can zone out, get in touch with the music and find your own rhythm. And you meet people. My little gang of girls I met at the back of the class was motivation to keep going again and again
5) You’re in control of your workout: For as much as the instructor tells you what to do, the power of your workout is in your hands. Each bike has a resistance knob/lever. Each person is resistance scale is from ( 1-10 (1 being little or no resistance. 10 meaning you’ll need to stand to move the pedals). For me a level is roughly one full turn on the resistance knob but this is different for everyone. You never really master it. The stronger your legs get the easier the resistance will seem and the more you’ll turn it up. The more progress you’ll see the more addicted you’ll become. (You can cheat by turning it down if you are struggling)
6) The music: assuming the instructor matches your tastes in beats, a good class will always be a party and take your mind off your workout
7) Hot legs: since you are working the major muscles in your legs it doesn’t take long before you start to notice them looking leaner and more toned. (Don’t shy away from the high resistance because you think your legs are going to get “big”.) A good class will also work your abs and arms however.
8) Easy on the knees: (assuming your technique is correct of course). It’s low impact so a gentler form of impact on your body. Good for people that hate running.
9) It’s more than just sitting in a room and pedalling:You now get different variations of spinning classes. From the strictly choreographed routines, to the endurance classes to the race simulation classes there’s something for everyone. I recently went to a “sound journey” class in total darkness and the only guide is the music. Great for aerobic classes (which would actually be really boring as your heart rate doesn’t get up all that high). Heck you can do classes in swimming pools, with weights and with a live band too! You’ll also feel the need to get on a real bike afterwards and hit the real roads- you’ll notice the difference.
10) Its inexpensive: minus the gym fees obviously. But you don’t need to buy a bike. Don’t have to wait for the right weather. If you want to invest in cycling cleats then it’s an advantage but other than that a good pair of trainers will do just fine, a towel and a bottle of water. Again if you want to mark your progress a heart rate monitor is great for the more serious spinner but most smart phone have apps that work it out for you.
• *Anaerobic exercise:where you don’t breath-think sprinting.
What are you waiting- give it a go
3 warnings that no one gave me.
1) Your fist class won’t be fun(unless you are already fit and enjoy cardio). I found my seat right at the back and though I didn’t actually vomit I sure as hell wanted to.
2) You will sweat. A lot (You’ll learn to look forward to being dripping wet)
3) Your backside will hurt after your first class (maybe your second or third even). It may feel like someone has pole vaulted the seat up your rear end. Padded shorts will ease it a bit but remember the seat doesn’t get softer- your butt just gets stronger. (and who doesn’t want a stronger butt)
Anyone pregnant, heart problems or injures- the following does not apply to you. Always make the instructor aware or get medical advice before attending.
I teach and attend classes at fitness first and virgin active. For any advice get in touch