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Spinning classes(12 posts)

Spinning classesjaybird
Dec 14, 2001 5:57 AM
Does anyone have an opinion (I know that's a dumb question here) on spinning classes. I just did my first one this morning and it felt like a good workout because I was sweatin like a bastard but I just wonder what it will do to my riding technique. It feels a little more intense than a trainer but with the forced spin like a fixed gear...
My friends are kicking my buttRetro
Dec 14, 2001 8:29 AM
Couple of friends of mine started going to spin classes at the YMCA late last summer--6 in the morning; I can't go 'cause I have Daddy stuff to do. Both were in good riding shape, doing a century or two a month, but the classes kicked their butts at first. And now they just ride away from me whenever they feel like it (at least they had to work at it a little before).
re: Spinning classescioccman
Dec 14, 2001 10:09 AM
When I first took one, I thought, "what the hell is this?" Later on I was able to bridge the gap between the two and mitigate their differences. I now teach classes at least twice a week and use them to effectively supplement my entire training routine.
It's better than riding alone.dzrider
Dec 14, 2001 11:31 AM
An lbs has them in the back room. We bring bikes and trainers or rollers and the leader tells us to shift every few minutes. Sometimes we're supposed to sprint. It beats my basement 10 to 1 and nobody has to wait or gets dropped.
re: Spinning classesgreg n
Dec 14, 2001 11:48 AM
For a few years now, I've been doing spin classes through the winter. The first couple years I was an instructor, so I was able to structure the classes exactly to whatever was in my training schedule for that particular week. I found that doing them really helps me come out strong in the spring. The good thing about the classes is that you control the intensity. Definitely use a heart rate monitor to reach and maintain your proper targets. I found it's really easy to get too intense. Also, don't get too carried away with the amount of intensity. Otherwise you could risk OT or early season burn-out.

The other thing is the instructor makes a big difference between a good and a crappy class. If you've got some aerobics queen who just does the spin classes to fill in the schedule, chances are you'll get a pretty gay class. But if you have an instructor who is a cyclist or other competitive athlete, the class tends to be much more beneficial and productive.
re: Spinning classesashleyrenfroe
Dec 14, 2001 12:01 PM
I have just started taking one, as it seems winter finally has arrived in the Carolinas. The instructor is a competitive mountain biker who really kicks you hard. I think that I am being too intense though early on, as I am feeling a little nauseous from all the work. Up and down in intensity, in and out of the saddle, you name it.

It's pretty brutal, but I hope she can turn me into a "real" cyclist.
re: Spinning classes - my rantcioccman
Dec 14, 2001 12:15 PM
If you are getting to the nautious level, you're definitely going too hard. You must educate yourself regarding heart rate zone training, fuel burning, etc. to effectively use indoor cycling as a supplement. During this time of year, you should not move over your AT. You want to be doing all your foundation building right now. You want to stay under 75% of your MHR all the time.

I have a real problem with most indoor cycling programs. As the above posted said, most are aerobics bunnies jumping on the newest gym fad. Most have no clue what they're doing other than working very hard. Most of the attendees are just as clueless about what they're doing and why as well.

I make sure to separate myself from the norm in this respect and do a lot of "teaching" in class. I do not have large classes for this reason. I don't yell and scream and push people to the barf limit. Instead, I educate the attendees about cardio training and tell them why I don't teach an electric, 95% intensity, fully anaerobic interval, but more an endurance and fat burn class. Even after educating people and showing them they can get just as good a workout and even a more effective workout while remaining in the proper zone, many attendees falsely think the harder they go, the better. They really don't care about smart training either. Fine with me, go away. :)
Righteous RantDCP
Dec 14, 2001 3:04 PM
If you ask me, anyway.

How long do your endurance classes last?

I've been trying a lunchtime class the last few weeks. The class is only 45 minutes, which doesn't really seem like enough to do anything but interval style training. Maybe I need to be looking for other classes.
Righteous Rantcioccman
Dec 16, 2001 7:43 AM
My favorite class to *run* is a long, boring, seated endurance class. I sometimes arrive an hour before my class and do just that. I just sit exactly on my HR number that I've planned for that day.

I suggest you do the same. Get your Polar or whatever out, turn on the stereo and train solo when no others are there.
Does it feel at all like your regular riding?dzrider
Dec 14, 2001 1:00 PM
It doesn't sound like mine. I work pretty hard for some part of most every short ride, but never feel nauseous. The ups and downs in intensity and ins and outs of the saddle sound like contrived work to me. Listen to your body!
re: Spinning classestarwheel
Dec 14, 2001 12:59 PM
Spin classes can be a great workout, but you need to structure the class to your own needs. Don't get to carried away trying to keep up with what the instructor says. Most of the classes I attend, the instructor has you "climbing" more than half the time with the pressure cranked up to 80% or higher. So, the class is like doing high intensity intervals for a hour or so. That's OK when I'm feeling like a tough workout, but many times I'm just looking for a recovery or moderate ride after a long weekend in the saddle outdoors. On my recovery days, I halfway ignore the instructors -- that is, doing the drills they call for (eg, standing, sprinting, etc.) but I just keep the pressured cranked down to a more reasonable level so that I'm still able to spin at a relatively easy, high cadence. I think spin classes could be counter-productive if you went day after day and slavishly followed the instructors directions because you would never get any recovery time.
You nailed it. nmcioccman
Dec 14, 2001 1:16 PM