I’ve been converted to a new cardio love! Please don’t tell running I’m cheating on it with a bike. Though nothing will ever replace my beloved running, spinning is fast becoming a favourite way to sweat it out for me. I went to spinning last night and I am still running off the endorphin high so I figured I’d share a few things I’ve learned so far from my spinning adventures.
Don’t be intimidated – Just like any group class when you walk in and everyone seems to know what their doing, it can be intimating. Spinning even more so because you’ve got to figure out out to make sure the bike seat is at the right level and how to operate the gear. Chances are someone else is in the room is new as well, don’t freak out and ask the instructor for help getting set up! The seat should be at a level where there is a slight bend in your knee.
Bring water and a towel – You wouldn’t think that 50 minutes riding a bike would cause one person who is relatively fit to sweat as much as I did, but believe me you need a towel. I wondered why everyone had one when I showed up for my first class. Also, water is a must, spinning burns anywhere from 400 – 700 calories per 50 minutes class depending on your metabolism and how hard you ride so you are working really hard! It’s important to stay hydrated.
Instructor is everything – If you go once and you like spinning but don’t love it, try it again with another instructor. My first instructor was good but my second one was GREAT. It’s not that the first one was bad I just preferred the teaching style of the second one. She was really into creating visualizations around biking. She’d describe the track like a race, she was so into it her enthusiasm forced you to be into it. Which of course made the class even more fun!
Another form of the all important cross-training – It doesn’t matter if you’re a runner, weight-lifter, or a general fitness enthusiast – you need to switch things up and cross-train to prevent injury. Believe me I know all about injury, so I know how important it is to try new things as part of your training plan. Spinning works different muscles then other activities and works them in a different way. There is a lot of muscle isolation the instructor explained today. Plus it keeps things interesting and interest = motivation!
I am excited I have something new to throw into my training plan. I am especially happy I enjoy spinning because of my inability to run right now, it’s a great way to get a good dose of cardio without the impact of running. Though nothing will replace running I can see spinning as a regular part of my training plan. It’s a great way to cross-train and mix things up! Hopefully if you haven’t tried spinning before my perspective will encourage you to do so!!
Have you tried spinning? Anything you’d add to the list?
What’s your favourite way to cross-train?