Nearly once a day I walk past the SoulCycle in my neighborhood. After a year of this, I finally decided to become one of those glistening workout goddesses I often see exiting the cycling studio.
“I heard it’s like the Marines of spin class,” I said to my friend.
This was not a selling point for her, however, and I quickly realized my mistake as a frightened look spread across her face.
“I mean, I heard it’s awesome,” I added. Also, swiftly thanking her for adventuring into a new class with me.
Sweat With A Friend
Don’t get me wrong – there are definitely certain activities I enjoy on my own.
Running for example.
But cardio classes are more fun to do with friends and you’re also more likely to maintain your routine with a workout partner.
Arrive Early & Ask Questions
As SoulCycle newbies, we arrived at the studio early, so we could walk through any questions – we were a little intimidated and nervous.
The studio was exactly what we expected – a cool downtown spinning studio with blaring heart-thumping music.
We entered our class – a bit nervous for the unknown but excited for the experience and calorie burn.
Since the Soul Staffers knew we were beginners, we were thoughtfully guided through the bike set-up by a helpful instructor.
She showed us how to adjust the bike properly and let us know we should feel comfortable to go at our own speed – she explained that it takes time to learn the choreography. This immediately lifted some pressure off of my shoulders.
Sometimes you try out a new class and the experience and environment can be so intense that it actually sucks any ounce of enjoyment out of it.
Because let’s be honest – this is hard work already, so I really don’t need someone yelling in my face in between reps. You know?
When the instructor assumed his bike and cranked up the music, it was clear this class was going to rock. Literally. And riding by candlelight?! Love it.
The instructor was so psyched-up that his enthusiasm was immediately infectious. He expertly led us up the hills and through the fast-paced intervals. He did this all while head-banging to the music.
You Want Me To Push-up What?
This class also included lots of upper body work and something I hadn’t done in a spin class before – handlebar push-ups. Yes, it’s as tough as it sounds, but the music and the instructor really keep you going.
We also did a series of arm curls with light hand weights (1-2 lbs) at the end of the ride.
The Oh EFF Moment
It was helpful that my friend and I booked our seats in the back row, so we could go at our own pace and not feel too much pressure to keep up with the pack.
I did have that “Oh EFF” moment in the middle of a tough workout when you question, “Can I actually do this?”
But I took some deep breathes, focused, and powered through.
And then came those magical, delicious, and addictive endorphins. I was still fighting through some of the hills, but I was owning it. And soon after, the instructor let us know we were on the home stretch.
A SoulCycle High
An awesome feeling of accomplishment washed over me as my friend and I geekily high-fived each other at the end of our ride.
That’s another thing I really dig about SoulCycle, they don’t allow attitudes, or anything derogatory that would put you off your game.
There’s so much positive mojo in the air that you leave feeling victorious.
And seriously, my post-workout high even made the air outside taste better.
My advice? Get yourself on a bike. At SoulCycle. Now.