Is it possible that my skin could look younger? Healthier? From merely taking a spin (AKA cycle) class?
My husband said to me one morning, hair akimbo, makeup-less, making breakfast for the boys: "Your skin looks really good. Really healthy."
I'd only taken four classes at this point, but I was already in love and now starting to wonder if, in addition to feeling stronger, healthier, and seeing inches seem to melt off my body, I would have other side effects?
It turns out I'm not alone
If you’re unfamiliar, a spinning or cycle class is a form of high-intensity exercise that takes place on a stationary bike in a dark room. This is all paired with loud music, a high energy instructor, and in some cases, a leaderboard that tracks your speed, rotations per minute (RPMs), or your watts of energy expended in a ride.
I knew it would be tough. I knew it would be intense. But I had no idea how much my life would change in one short month.
After Five Cycle Classes:
I started to look forward to the next class almost as soon as I walked out of the one I'd just left, high on a significant boost of endorphins and adrenaline. Wondering how I can challenge myself and up my numbers.
After Two Weeks of Cycle Classes:
Clothes started to feel slightly looser. My appetite began to regulate naturally. On days I did spin class, I would crave more carbs than on days I didn’t. My sleep started to improve. It was easier for me to fall asleep and easier for me to stay that way. Even with a three-year-old and a one-year-old waking me up in the middle of the night.
After Three Weeks of Cycle Classes:
I hit a personal best in my overall energy expended. I felt newly energized.
After Four Weeks of Cycle Classes:
My oldest son got sick and was home from school for two days. The day he went back was Valentine's day, and there was a school program that I attended instead of going to spin. The following day his little brother was home, sick. So I was now at almost a full week of no spinning, and I was anxious. Antsy. Stressed out. I kept trying to figure out ways I could get to a class.
Thankfully my husband had that Friday off, and even though the littlest man was still home, sick, I went to spin class.
I’ve always heard people talk about this phenomenon of craving exercise. Of enjoying a work out so much that you miss it when you miss a workout. I’d never experienced it quite like this, however.
I missed it so much; I cried when the class began.
I’ve Cried in Cycle Classes, A lot:
It’s a relatively common event to be in a spin class and find yourself balling uncontrollable tears. Where does this emotional release come from? Some say it’s a combination of the repetition of your legs plus the positive and inspirational coaching from your instructor.
Others suggest that it’s something that happens simply from any high-intensity workout, where your body is physically going through a change, a mental component follows as well.
For me, I broke down crying when the instructor said: “Think of the person who challenges you the most in your life. Push for them.” And also when a different instructor said, “ Push for the person, you will be in ten years.” And again when another instructor said, “You’re moving away from one thing and toward something else. Something better.”
I’m Forever Changed by Cycle Classes:
I’m hooked. It’s something that I enjoy it’s something that I look forward to going to, and it’s the first exercise regiment that I feel like I want to do, not just because I have to do it.
I’m not saying you should check out spin classes, but I’m saying it’s important to find something that you love as much as you love your self. Because this is going to be a lifelong journey and I can’t wait to see where it takes me.