Friday, February 21, 2014

Le Tour de Spin

“Only five hundred yards to go!  Push it with all you have, only 300 yards, 200, yards, keep pedaling you are almost there and………stop!  Congratulations, you just finished the prologue time trial at the Tour de France!”
Those were the words spoken by the instructor who was leading this particular spin class. Leaning against the handle bars, exhausted and sitting in a pool of my own sweat, I was amazed at what an excellent workout “spinning” or indoor cycling class can be.  In a mere forty-five minutes of spin class I warmed up and completed the prologue time trial of the Tour de France, listened to some awesome music, grunted, groaned and met some new friends.  Not a bad way to start the day.

Spin classes are growing in popularity in health and fitness clubs across the country.  Combining great music, cycling on stationary exercise bicycles, an instructor that leads the session and a host of avid spin participants, spin classes are an excellent way to enhance your exercise routine and an equally excellent way to improve your cardiovascular health.
You do not have to be an avid cyclist to enjoy and excel at spinning. While the opening to this article captures the fun and intense effort I put into this spin class (hey I won the opening stage of the Tour de France) the intensity with which you ride is total up to you. Exercise bikes in most studios that are fully adjustable to accommodate all shapes and sizes, they also come equipped with a wide range of gears that allow the rider to adjust the tension which helps you regulate your intensity.
Classes are conducted by a certified spin instructor that pairs a wide range of music closely choreographed to routine that takes rides from warm up, to peak intensity, to cool down within fifty minutes.  Where else can you get a good workout, listen to great music, meet new friends and do it all in less than an hour?
Spin classes are an excellent way to improve your fitness and here are some of the many benefits of spinning:
Excellent cardiovascular workout
It is an excellent cross training workout out
Low impact aerobic exercise
In fitness centers with a running track it gives triathletes an opportunity to get in a bike/run brick indoors when Mother Nature is not so accommodating.
You control the intensity of the workout to meet your needs
You don’t need a fancy bike or purchase expensive equipment
A great instructor will have a wonderful challenging and fun routine with some killer tunes
You get to meet new friends
I am using spin classes to help me prepare for my first full IRONMAN triathlon in June and find them an incredible fun, exciting and exhaustive way to get in shape.  Not only do you get to meet new friends and share the experience, you get to win a stage of the Tour de France as well!  Where else can you have that much fun while getting in shape in forty five minutes?

Chris is a Certified Personal Trainer and exercise and endurance enthusiast.  He competes yearly in numerous running races, marathons, ultra marathons, triathlons and other endurance events.