None of my friends has a good word to say about spinning. Words such as hell, torture and hate circle the conversation with rigour.
Imagine. A dark, well air-conned room, music blaring and an instructor facing you yelling to add more resistance, keep your head up, relax your shoulders and point your toes…all at once! Then stand up, now sit down, now…race!
I’m either Machiavellian or downright crazy but I absolutely love it. For me it’s the only form of exercise which tones my entire body and fast, and yes I agree it’s 45 minutes of pain, an inhaler being my only comfort and that burning pain in my legs, ouch. But not only that, it’s a fantastic way of releasing any negative emotions which have managed to seep in. It’s also an ideal place to shout as no one can see or hear you, that means no funny ‘she’s lost it’ looks.
It keeps me focused, apart from the fact I have a wall-length mirror in front of me in my class which is a tad distracting. You really can’t avoid looking at yourself, but in an odd way, it pushes you harder. The whole class is looking at the same mirror which means they can also see me. No chance of slacking.
You also can’t bail. You’re stuck there for the duration.
My heart rate increases to 156 bpm which, according to Fitbit is within peak zone. Totally fine with me as seeing as I am drenched, fighting the odd cramp and totally out of breath I should hope so. Where’s the clock, how much longer to go?!
That was just the warm-up she says.
The words hell and torture spring to mind. My friends were right.
Then I am pushing my body to its max, I want to scream out loud and give the instructor a few choice words, I literally cannot race any faster, I need to stand up, I need to get off this damn bike. But as I reach that point, I realise the tension in my body has gone, I have managed to squeeze the stresses and strains of the day, out.
Then I hear her say it’s time to cool down. Thank god. But I did it, I made it through the other side and I feel awesome.
There’s a sense of pride, an achievement for getting through it, not to mention relief. Knowing I have a date with the sauna straight afterwards makes the class even more rewarding.
Getting back into spinning after a long break was the tough part, I now have a melt-down if I can’t go at least three times a week.
Having a form of exercise that we love helps clear the mind, releases endorphins, improves sleep, our skin and generally keeps us feeling healthier. The benefits of regular exercise are immense, it can reduce heart conditions, sometimes eliminates depression and boosts our happiness levels.
I regret that work-out
…Said no one ever
Spinning is my excuse to dance on a bike. It isn’t for everyone I admit, what’s your favourite form of exercise?
By Nicci McShane