Monday, November 15, 2010


It is getting a bit cooler outside, which for me means indoor cycling classes! When it starts to get chilly, I'm still able to get my runs in outside, but biking is just too cold for me. So I hit the cycling room ready for a killer workout - and that is what I get! If you are looking for something new to do that will really burn calories, and it doesn't involve layers of clothing outside in the cold, these classes are perfect! Here are answers to some common questions:

What is Indoor Cycling?
Indoor cycling is an intense workout done on special stationary bikes that works the lower body while giving you your cardio workout. It focuses on the quads, glutes and hamstrings, as well as the core. Frequently, classes will simulate hills, sprints, and intervals into different rides.
Do I need special shoes to cycle?
Serious cyclists like to have cycling shoes that allow them to clip into the pedal. It allows better work distribution between the hamstrings and the quadriceps. These shoes are nice if you will be biking long distances frequently, but for indoor classes they aren't necessary. Normal gym goes work just fine!
Can I do it if I'm a beginner?
The nice thing about cycling is that all the classes are multi-level, since you determine your resistance and how fast/hard you peddle. Make sure your instructor knows that it is your first time, and take things slower than the rest of the class. Know that you will build up, but at first you might not go 100% and might end a little early. The next time you can try a little more.
How do I prevent saddle soreness?
First of all, if you are a beginner don't go the whole time, and expect to be sore. But don't let that stop you from going again! Also, be sure to engage your abdominal muscles to stabilize the hips as your ride and prevent excess bouncing in your seat. Make sure you are riding on the back of the seat and keep your core tight. And always take time to to a "standing jog" on the bike to give your tush a break through the class. Just remember that if you get sore, the best way to get through it is keep moving and exercising. Take a few days off the bike, but keep running or doing other things to keep your muscles moving.

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