I took a 6 am spin class during college and thought it was one of the most miserable experiences of my life. I equivocated it with doing taxes and getting food poisoning. I was sore for days and not the good “I’m so sore because I just exercised and it worked” kind but more of the “I can’t sit down because it hurts” feeling.
In the fall of last year, 4 years since that scarring experience, I started checking out different workout studios all over LA (email me if you want to hear my @classpass pitch). After kickboxing, Pilates, circuits, and yoga, I decided to try it again- I convinced myself that since millions of people do it, like it, and get good cardio out of it, maybe spin deserves another shot. I promised myself I would go to 3 classes to give it a real chance (I still can’t seem to apply that to my dating life).
My inner dialogue went as follows…
Class 1: Yup, I still hate it. My crotch hurts, I spent an hour feeling bored, and I hate the “you can’t spin with us” tank tops.
Class 2: Okay, maybe it’s not so terrible. I’m getting a great workout and the music is decent. I can probably stomach this twice a week to mix up my cardio.
Class 3: Is this spin class or therapy?
Needless to say, I got a pair of spin shoes for Christmas.
Okay, so what’s my point?
In lots of spin classes, there’s this part I wish everyone could experience. The lights are turned low, the music emotionally builds (for example, this song), and the goal is to climb for four minutes straight.
The ground feels heavy beneath your feet, the instructor gives cues to breathe, to let things go, to think about why you came. The hill is hard. It takes emotional and physical energy. It takes thinking through what’s weighing you down and pedaling harder- using your emotional burdens to make you stronger.
But then when you feel like you can’t pedal anymore, you make it to the top of your hill. You peak over the edge, take off all of your resistance, and fly down. Your legs go faster than you thought was possible and you’re almost (gasp) having fun.
And it’s funny how it works. After facing so much resistance and pushing all the way to the top, the next hill doesn’t feel so bad. The next time you face resistance, you feel stronger. It feels easier. Your legs have been trained. They know they can do it.
It you’re climbing the hill right now- in work, in a relationship, in a move- don’t forget about the other side. The fun part, the flying. The way your legs build up resistance.
Put your head down, get lost in the music, and keep pushing.