Sunday, 23 November 2014

Spin Class 101

I've found that the best classes are the ones with an instructor whose style you like the best and who plays the best music.  If you've never taken a spin class, just arrive a few minutes early and talk to the instructor.  They will help you adjust the bike to your height and explain how to dial up or down the intensity.  You can go at your own pace though and work as hard as you feel comfortable. 
Spinning is such an awesome workout and not just for your legs.  Some teachers have the participants do push-up motions on the handlebars, etc.  Unless you sneak out of the class early, you are pretty much guaranteed a good 45-minute workout.  Being in a class definitely helps you keep going, as opposed to when you're on your own, you might have quit earlier.  I've read that spin class burns between 400-600 calories and, depending on how fast you pedal, a 40 minute class is the equivalent to 15-20 road miles.  
My word of caution is definitely bring a large bottle of water with you to class- and a towel.  It gets pretty sweaty- in a good way!  Oh, and you might be pretty sore in the "crotch region" after the first couple of classes- sorry, no real way to avoid that, but you can buy padded shorts or a seat pad that actually does help.  I've used one before, but then forgot to take it off the bike seat/saddle and left it behind. You don't need special shoes, regular tennis shoes work fine, but if you get to liking the class so much and you're doing it often, they do make special shoes that clip into the pedals as opposed to your regular tennis shoe being strapped to the pedal.

One more thing, about group classes in general- if you find one you like and start going regularly, you'll end up seeing the other "regulars" and it gets to become kind of a connection-sharing thing.  You become friendly with the other members and get used to meeting up with them at class and that can be inspiring and fun to have a regular group of people to workout with.  You never know who you'll meet- just sayin.

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