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What to expect in my cycling class

September 12, 2012

I am coming back to teaching Spinning / Indoor Cycling. I am really, really, really excited to be joining the talented and diverse teaching team at Cycledelic, an indoor cycling studio  in Rochester. It’s the first of it’s kind around here.

This is the studio. I LOVE IT!

I have taught spinning … and I think since spinning is trademarked we now call it indoor cycling….. for the better part of 17 years now. I started in college at the Buffalo Athletic Club, where I later became the Group Fitness director while I finished my degree. When I came to Rochester I taught for the Rochester Athletic Club for many years, then moved on to the IRon Butterfly. After a few years there I taught indoor cycling as a college course at RIT. If you aren’t familiar with RIT, they have a vast hard of hearing population. I had a sign language interpreter for my indoor cycling class.

It was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. I learned so much from that experience.

I took a break from teaching on the bike because I was burned out. It was long before I came to QT2 systems and learned how to recover the right way.

A few months ago I began taking classes at Cycledelic and Kathy, who owns it  reached out and asked me if I would be interested in teaching again. I was torn. I was an old school Spinner and so much had changed in the spinning world, just in 3 years of being off the bike. I worried a lot about whether I would be able to move and grow.

She assured me that I can do it just fine. Got my certification renewed but through Cycling Fusion, which brings a new and refreshing flavor to the world of indoor cycling. Developed by outdoor cyclist Tom Scotto, who has blended… or “fused” indoor and outdoor cycling. I took a Master class from Tom Scotto a few months ago and I like what he brings to the bike. I am not one of these…… let’s ride a hill from our heart and feel the scenery around us….. feel the breeze….. there isn’t any. We are inside. So he brought the things that I love about both worlds together. Plus he was down to earth, not one of these…. look at me I am the star on the bike type of people.

I am excited. I am a let’s get together, turn the lights down, music up and let’s ride like we mean it. (not to be translated into…. every class will be the most difficult one ever. Read on.)

Here is what you can expect from my class:

1. I will teach by heart rate / power and perceived exertion: To stay consistent with my fellow teachers at Cycledelic I will be teaching heart rate zones and power as they already do. Some of you are with me as QT2 athletes, and if you have QT2 heart rate zones I will help you correlate them before class. If you don’t know your HR or power zones we offer testing dates at Cycledelic. Come to a testing class and walk out with a spreadsheet or zones that you can take home and have with you to measure progress. for those who are not interested in HR or power, I will do what I have always done…. teach by perceived exertion. I don’t give a number to how you should feel, I equate a feeling. For example in a tempo set I might describe the feeling as…. you are riding hard but if your arch nemesis came up next to you, you could drop them.

Once you come in you can grab that list of testing dates.

2. I will teach by cadence and resistance: I will give you cadence and resistance guidelines. For example on what should feel like a flat my cadence guidelines will be 88-92, on a climb I will offer you a different range.

3. I utilize the positions: You will never ride outside in the standing climb position, nor will you ever execute a jump outside. I like to utilize different positions on the bike to enhance what happens outside. While we don’t do a standing climb outside we can do that inside to help build strength. The running position transitions over very nicely to outdoor running, and it helps develop more quad and hip flexor strength. We will utilize jumps to build strength, never to see how fast we can go.

It’s not how fast you ride indoors, it’s how you ride that makes the difference. Using these different positions helps us to become well rounded athletes both inside and outside.

4. I am a stickler on form: If you know me …… how you ride that bike is critical. You will never see me bounce and flop all over the place. (And you will never hear me breathe into the mic either!). You will learn to ride with a relaxed upper body and you will learn to ride steadily and controlled.

5. I have good music. I have good music and I choreograph the ride to it. Sometimes it’s loud. I have a slight hearing deficit so you have to help me with volume.
6. I grunt when I teach. I don’t grunt like they do in tennis. But I apparently grunt…. more like a HA!  HA!!!! Not a laughing HA! but a….. I don’t know….. we are in the moment and let’s go kind of a HA!!! Ask those who have taken from me in the past. I can’t describe it. I taught for two years before I knew I did it. My sister actually pointed it out to me, because she liked it and wanted to know why I did it. I thought she was kidding me. She wasn’t. But again you will never hear me breathe into the mic.

7. You will have fun. You will have fun in my class. I will address the class as “Team!” (and then I will do that grunt thing). I tend to get excited when I teach, I get a little bit passionate. I absolutely love to teach indoor cycling…… it’s a weird thing to love but I hands down drool like mad love it. That’s just the way I am.

8. Everything is optional: At the beginning of every class I will go through the rundown of how I teach. I will ask that if for whatever reason you need to change the ride to fit you…… I want you to do that. If you are dealing with injury, or are tired, or whatever and need to stand when I sit, sit when I stand….. that’s fine. You have to do what’s right in your body and on your bike.

9. I learn from you. I have been teaching a long time. Over 15 years. To me I teach yoga and I teach spinning. To me however when I am in front of the room I am the student. I watch the journey that all of you take. I have watched people come in having never ridden a bike before and not too long later they run a 5K. It’s not because of anything that I do, trust me. I shout and grunt and play music. You are the athlete. You are the one taking the journey and realizing that the athlete you thought you were is no match for the one you truly are. I have learned so much from all of the years I have taught….. more than you will ever understand.

10. Everyone is welcome. I don’t care if you have never been on a bike before and I don’t care if you won the Tour Dr France. I care that you move and have fun. If you are the beginner athlete sitting on a bike next to Lance Armstrong I can teach so that both of you get an exceptional workout. I will teach you how to make it work for you. There is no level I can’t teach to from beginner to elite. I have taught athletes with one leg, I have taught professional hockey players. I have had every kind of person in my class.

No worries, I got this!

Lastly….. sign up in advance. There are only 15 bikes and many are already reserved. Cycledelic has a wonderful online reservation program and many options for “membership.” If you come and all bikes are taken, then you are OUT! So make sure you reserve the bike ahead of time. Our online schedule will also let you know when I won’t be there (like when I am in Kona in October) so you can see who is subbing. We have an amazing group of instructors here. Check them all out here.

You can reserve your class that right here.

I begin teaching this coming Tuesday, September 18th at 5:45pm. I can’t wait to see you there!

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One comment

  1. Thanks for a great class tonight!!!



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