So You Want to Spin?

spin-bike

My new year’s resolution was to get back in shape, lose a few pounds, and build my endurance. Spin class has really helped me to achieve those goals – I love my weekly spin classes! I remember the first spin class I took, I couldn’t continue after 20 minutes (that’s how out of shape I was!) and felt like giving up. Thankfully, the teacher was really upbeat and the fast-paced music helped. After a few classes, I noticed I was able to last the entire 60 minutes and keep up with the rest of the class. Yes, sometimes you feel like passing out (in a good way) but the benefits you reap from the group fitness class are numerous.

What You Need

You simply need a good pair of gym shoes, a towel, and a water bottle. Cycling shoes are highly recommended if you decide to do spinning long term because they latch onto the pedals and provide better support. If this is your first time and want to just try out spinning, then regular gym shoes are fine.

How to Set Up Your Bike

Let the instructor know that you are a first timer. He/she will help you set up the bike properly so that you are pedaling at the correct height and have proper form. Remember your settings so you can set yourself up next time. Make sure your feet are secure inside the pedal straps. Tighten the straps if it feels too loose. Hang the towel over the bike handles and place your water bottle on the bike frame. Start to pedal and make sure you feel comfortable. The seat is narrow so your bottom might feel strange but you will get used to it after the first few classes!

Ready, Set…Go!

The instructor will direct you throughout the entire class. There is a small lever that controls the resistance. Pay attention to the instructor as he/she will tell you to increase or decrease resistance as the class progresses. Initially, it may be difficult to cycle at higher resistance but your body will become conditioned as you get more fit and you’ll find that you’re able to handle it. Remember to go at your own pace and do what feels comfortable to you.

You will also “sprint” at high speeds for a couple minutes sporadically throughout the class. The instructor may also direct you to move up to standing position and cycle OR hover over your bike and cycle, all while varying the resistance. You may also sit for two seconds, then stand for two seconds, and repeat. The variety in instruction help to keep the class interesting and work different muscle groups. You will probably be drenched in sweat as you spin so make sure you are hydrated by drinking water and use that towel to wipe off the sweat!


keiser-spinning-bike

 

Post Workout

As the class comes to an end, the instructor will do a cool down and stretching session. Congratulations, you stuck through the entire class and are on your way to becoming fit! I hope you give cycling a try and enjoy it as much as I do. FYI – if you’re a first timer, your bum might feel sore the next day but don’t worry it’s completely normal and will subside.

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