5 Common Bad Habits #Indoorcycling Riders Slip Into

As instructors, we often see the same riders in every class. Some have been loyal for several years, with flawless attendance records. Some riders come and go. However, whether you are a new rider, a veteran one or an occasional rider, you may have formed one of these common bad habits. Not to fear, breaking out of such habits is relatively easy.  Here’s how:

 

You Are Not Setting Objectives

As noted in a previous post on SMART goals, it is absolutely critical that you arrive at each ride with a pre-defined intention to achieve a specific goal or tackle a specific challenge. Goal setting involves establishing specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-targeted goals (S.M.A.R.T). This does not have to be a complicated effort; simply set your mind to exceed last week’s numbers or to reach a specific goal for watts expended, distance covered or KCALs used. Which leads me to my second issue: not keeping track.

smart-goals

 

You Are Not Keeping Track (Progress Not Perfection)progress

You must attempt to keep track of your progress for each class. If the bike is not Bluetooth compatible or if you are not using a wearable fitness device, write down your numbers per each class. It is critical that you establish a baseline in order to uncover progress towards a goal. It is also equally important to monitor your numbers so that you can identify where problems my exist and where you have “plateaued”. If you are using an app or if your studio provides such capabilities (IQniter, Performance IQ, MyZone, etc.) then that takes the guess work out of keeping track of your performance. If not, create a simple spreadsheet, then, at the end of each class, take a snapshot of your power meter using your mobile phone and update the worksheet. If your bikes don’t offer power meters, try using an HRM watch with a chest strap to monitor your heart’s rate and other vital statistics.

 

You Fall Into Poor Technique

It is easy to slack off, especially when others are doing it. Sometimes, you may find yourself sprinting at high cadence with little resistance. Or, there are times when you slump over the handlebars, in a strange aero position, just to finish the ride. I understand that we all have off days. The issue is essentially related to the discipline of maintaining good posture, good form and good “power-to-resistance” ratio in order to maximize the benefits of your workout. Simply put, if others are doing it, you should not. After all, you have been doing this for a while and some riders can learn a thing or two from you!!

 

hsYou Are Not Learning About Your Body

The only way to substantially improve any workout is to know more about your physiology, basic muscle groups, important fitness metrics and nutrition essentials. For example, learn about the Quadriceps Muscles making up the front of the thighs. This leg muscle group is popular – it’s what most people think of when they hear “leg anatomy.” This  group consists of four individual muscles: Rectus Femoris, Vastus Lateralis, Vastus Intermedius and Vastus Medialis. Then learn about the Hamstring Muscles.  Additional muscle groups include the Hip Flexors & Iliopsoas, Hip Adductors and Gluteal Muscles. You owe it to yourself to not only learn the names and functions of important muscle group, but to also know their interaction, relationship to power output and to a certain degree, causes of injury or pain (previous posts on IT Band Syndrome, VMOPFPS….).

 

"Priorities" Road Sign with dramatic clouds and sky.You Reassign Priorities

It is important to schedule and prioritize your workout routines. Once scheduled, they become a staple of your calendar. Additionally, once you are committed and disciplined to the concept of investing in  your health, rescheduling or skipping a class becomes less of a challenge. Life is full of surprises and there are times when you have to miss a class or two. That’s understandable. My recommendation is to ensure that your emotional support systems (your family and then your friends) fully understand your desire to attend indoor cycling classes as a way to remain fit, strong and healthy. Once they are clear on your vision, there will be less excuses to skip a class. Without the emotional support system, the slightest of inconveniences or challenges will immediately relegate your spin class to a non-priority.

 

In a world of never-ending to-do lists and constant demand, never lose sight of the fact that if you don’t take care of yourself, no one else will. Refocus your priorities, learn more about your body and recommit to your goals. See you in class!!

 

Tom

 

 

 

 

#Indoorcycling Instructor Retention: 10 Steps to Keep The Best!

CEO: What if we train our employees and they leave?
HR Manager: What if we don’t and they stay?

how_employee_retention_saves_you_moneyWe have often heard that the cost of customer acquisition far outweighs the cost of keeping existing customers. The fitness industry is no different: high turnover of membership as well as a constant struggle to recruit and retain high caliber instructors are common themes. Many studio owners/operators often neglect the primary reason for their success: their instructors. I write this post due to my frustration with my current work at a New York-based indoor cycling studio where, for the past 4 years, not a single dollar has been invested in offering continuing education, CPR training, team building or certification workshops to the instructors.

While I understand that one of the many challenges an indoor cycling studio faces is its operating expenses (including payroll), neglecting your instructors will ultimately lead to their departure. For many studios, as well as larger fitness facilities, the instructors play a critical role in customer retention. Rock star instructors keep classes full, ensure consistency in coaching delivery, build persistent excitement and lend credibility to their workplace. However, not offering the most basic of incentives is something you should seriously reconsider. For example, the studio owner balked at the cost of hosting a CPR/AED certification for the 8 indoor cycling instructors. We were forced to attend the workshop on our own and pay for it individually. Yet again, the owner refused to invest in a certification workshop for new bikes with Bluetooth technology. And, we were never offered any financial assistance when attending industry conferences or continuing education classes.

Some of my readers will probably think that the employer has no obligation to us beyond a paycheck.retention I disagree. It is a good business practice to invest in your workforce – not “spend” but invest. When you do not, the only thing keeping me there is the paycheck. If another studio offers a higher pay, guess what? I will likely leave. By investing in your instructors, you are fostering a relationship of mutual growth, loyalty and dedication. This will set you apart from the competition, even though they may have newer bikes, a more glamorous studio or a national chain supporting them.

Moreover, to dispel your fears if you are a studio owner/operator, the investments I am referring to above range between $50 to $100 a year per instructor. So, for a team of 8 instructors, the “investment” would be about $800 (or less) for the entire year. I will further explain below using examples of what you can do to retain the best indoor cycling instructors for your studio:

1.      Pay for CPR/AED certification: This is imperative. Instructors with no current CPR/AED are a liability that you cannot afford. The average cost is about $50 per instructor and needs to be done every two years.

2.      Share the cost of continuing education classes or conferences: Many of us would greatly benefit from attending a workshop on using power meters, new techniques in group fitness training or related indoor cycling/spinning training classes. Most of these classes are conducted online at less than $75 each.

3.      Share the cost of certification: For many of us, we may need to recertify or obtain new certifications. Why not help by sharing 50% of the cost? For example, recertifying with Mad Dogg Athletics is about $199 every two years. That translates into $50 per instructor per year (the other $50 paid by the instructor). Other platforms like Schwinn or Real Ryder do not require recertification, so there is no additional cost.

4.      Host a team building workshop: This can be done at a very low cost. Once a year, invite all of your indoor cycling instructors to a 2 or 3 hours’ workshop to share experiences, ideas and suggestions. The cost: a couple of pizza pies. If you are an adventurous studio owner, invite an exercise physiologist or Master Instructor to speak to your team and help expand their knowledgebase. Appearance fees vary, but a local expert will typical charge less than a national expert.

5.      Recognize & promote your instructors: An “Instructor of the Month” award goes a long way to establishret good will. The cost: a $10 gift card or voucher for a meal at a nearby restaurant. Promote this award on social media and on the studio’s website.

6.      Establish a performance pay system: Some studios are starting to reward instructors using the “BIS” model (butt in seat). The more attendance you can garner, the higher the reward. For example, if a 50 bike studio is filled to capacity during a certain class/time, you can add $0.10 per bike to that instructor’s pay rate for a total of $5. It is not a lot of money, but it does create a “reward/benefit” approach that several studios are using to retain instructors.

7.      Leverage your instructors’ other talents: Many instructors excel at creative writing which you can put to good use for your studio’s blog. Others are avid cooks, who can share a recipe or two for that blog. Even others are social media /SEO savvy and can promote the studio in very low cost ways. By harnessing these talents, you can monetize the advantage of the human element. A small $10 reward (monthly) for each blog entry will add a new dimension to the retention of that instructor.

8.      Go beyond: This is no-to-low cost. Many instructors would gladly volunteer an hour or two per month to help you host a charitable ride or an event for your local community. There is a level of pride that we all feel when we selflessly give of our time and treasure. By making your studio a community beacon, that sense of pride will transcend the paycheck.

9.      Recognize tenure: Some of your instructors may have worked with you for 5, 6 or more years. Is it acceptable that you still pay them the same rate as the instructor who just started? These tenured instructors are a special breed. Treat them as such without breaking the bank….how about a small raise (3-5%) for every year of service?

10.  Invest in technology/studio: Instructors love it when the stereo equipment is functioning properly, the bikes are in great working condition, the facility is clean and well maintained. It is not just you who looks bad when things are broken – we do too. We appreciate it so much when everything works!!

motivateI believe that for indoor cycling studios owners/operators to succeed, they must differentiate their compensation models to encompass a combination of creative as well as traditional methods. Sometimes, even if a raise is not feasible, instructors will continue to give their best as long as their basics are met: working bikes, functioning stereo, a simple thank you once in a while. Without the basics, there is little left to retain us. And, with the competition heating up, you are faced with important decisions to make. Please remember that it doesn’t have to cost a lot of money. A simple gesture such as picking up the cost of a CPR class or a thank you note is sometimes all we need.

 

 References:

1.      http://clubindustry.com/human-resources/health-club-operators-face-retention-challenge-millennial-employees

2.      https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/what-cost-customer-acquisition-vs-retention-ian-kingwill

3.      https://www.zanebenefits.com/blog/bid/312123/employee-retention-the-real-cost-of-losing-an-employee

 

Note: For those instructors who work full time, you may already receive additional healthcare benefits, life insurance, child care reimbursement, etc. This post is mainly targeted at instructors who are paid hourly.

 

#RideOn

 

You’re not everyone’s cup of tea–and that’s OK. 6 Strategies, for #indoorcycling instructors, to build a resilient character

It’s a well-known fact that you can’t please everyone. If you try, you will certainly fail. That’s why seeking approval of others is a futile endeavor. This post, perhaps controversial to some, is the result of a personal observation that many indoor cycling instructors can relate to, especially when they are subbing for other instructors.

Last week, I subbed five classes for a fellow instructor who is recovering from shoulder surgery. I have never subbed for this particular instructor, so I asked her about the audience’s demographic and what she liked to do. By attempting to learn more about the riders, I could prepare an appropriate routine with specific drills and companion playlists. In three of the five classes, I witnessed 3 or 4 riders who were in the studio already on the bikes before I arrived, see that I was subbing, get off their bikes and immediately walk out. As they walked out, they turned around and gave me “the look” as if to voice their disapproval and dismay that the regular instructor was not present.question

After several years of teaching indoor cycling classes, this is the one and only rider behavior that I just cannot understand. You’ve already made the trip to the studio, planned your time, paid for the ride, and are ready to work out. Now, you just get up and leave – what gives? You haven’t even seen my routine. I would understand if you leave during the ride because you didn’t like the music or drills, but leaving even before giving me a chance? 

Iteat turns out that this statement – “giving me a chance” – is where I am wrong. It really is not about giving me a chance. It is about me no taking this personally and allowing for the simple possibility that, as an instructor, you are simply not everyone’s cup of tea, even before they take the first sip. So, going back to my original premise that we can’t please everyone, instead, we should focus on pleasing ourselves. Selfish you say? Perhaps, but allow me first to make a good argument by sharing my six strategies of building your character instead of seeking approval from others.

1. Find your unique style and wear it like a badge of honor
Whether its music, choice of drills, your kit, the way you cut your hair or your coaching cues – those are the hallmarks of your character. You have developed this character through years of learning, training, workshops, certifications and a passion to inspire others. If any of this bothers someone to the point of leaving your class, so be it.

2. Embrace the unknown
When subbing, it sometimes feels like you are teaching your first class. This is an opportunity to embrace the ride and riders as you do with regular classes. Show the same passion, energy and spirit. And, for regular classes, do not be afraid to incorporate new drills, inject new routines into your classes, adapt non-indoor cycling workouts to your indoor cycling classes (keeping safety and function in mind) and find new ways to be a better motivator. Leaving the stale and ordinary is the only way to get to the extraordinary.

3. Be inclusive
For those who decide to leave (like what happened when I subbed), let them leave. Focus instead on those who stayed and make them feel that their commitment to fitness will always come first. 

4. Be humble. Be gracious. Be respectful
For those who decide to attend, show your humility, say “thank you”, express gratitude at the chance to sub and be part of their fitness journey, and never miss an opportunity to give a sincere compliment. 

5. Do the right thing
We’ve seen too many instructors using far too many contraindicated moves, from insane cadence with no resistance, to borderline dangerous moves. I am not going to do that, in my regular classes or as a sub. If you don’t like my routine because I do not do the crazy stuff your regular instructor does, then that’s ok. I’d rather that you be safe than sorry.

6. Be confident, not arrogant
Riders who leave the class when you sub may have other reasons than not liking you. It could be that some may feel uncomfortable with the substitute, fearing an instructor who may push them beyond the routine they are used to. To some, that’s reason enough to leave. For you, remain confident in your ability to deliver a powerful class. Show your self-assurance, but avoid any  disparaging comments towards the riders who left. Confidence gives elegance to your delivery.

 

approveAs indoor cycling coaches and instructors, we all want to know that we’re making a difference. The best way to accomplish this is to focus on staying in favor with yourself and not to seek the approval of others.

#RideOn

  

Tom

 

 

5 Ways To Deal With Numbness in Your Feet During #indoorcycling Class

A new rider recently reported to me that they are feeling constant numbness in their feet when attending indoor cycling classes. They had just purchased new cleats and had rejoined the class after a prolonged absence.

After making adjustments to the seat and handlebar positions, adjusting the clip positioning on the cleats and advising the rider to easy off on the resistance, the numbness gradually diminished. After about two weeks, the rider has reported that she is no longer feeling the numbness sensation.

If you have encountered a similar situation, ask your instructor to help you modify the bike’s setup as well as your indoor cycling shoes. It is imperative that you seek medical attention from you primary care provider if numbness persists or gets worse. If it does, cease all indoor cycling activity and contact your physician.

Here are five techniques you can employ to deal with numbness in your feet during indoor cycling class – please remember the note above if symptoms continue.

  1. 51kEYD8jbAL__UX695_Tight Shoes: if you just started wearing indoor cycling shoes, your feet will need a bit of an adjustment period. Assuming the shoes are the correct fit, any numbness sensation should disappear rather quickly. Wearing tight shoes causes inflammation between the joints that connect your toes to your feet, which results in decreased blood circulation that triggers foot numbness (when you ride, your foot will swell due to increased blood flow). Also, your socks may be too thick. If possible, wear thin socks or (and I have seen riders do this), wear no socks!
  2. Incorrectly Positioned Clips: In addition to the issues related to incorrect fit (shoes too small, bike seat too high), the clips (SPD or LOOK) may be positioned incorrectly. For new shoes, if Velcro straps or closures are used, try to loosen them a bit so that your foot can easily slide in and out, but not too loosely so that you do not compromise your balance while riding. The cleat position should be where the ball of the foot lines up with the pedal spindle. Ask your instructor to adjust the clip positioning (most of us carry the typical Allen wrench). Remember if it takes you several attempts to clip in or if you struggle to clip out, the clips are incorrectly positioned.
  3. cycling-sweatEase Off: Riding with excessive resistance, mashing the pedals or not completing a full circle can contribute to incorrect posture, which may lead to discomfort in your joints and possibly numbness in the feet. Ppush and pull on the pedals, but do not pull up until you have reached the   6 o’clock position – a.k.a kick back with your heels. Build your endurance gradually, listen to your body and easy off on the resistance if numbness persists. Riding “hard” may build callouses on the bottom of your feet; when you pedal and push down on the pedals, they can cause foot pain and even some numbness.
  4. trainer-primaryRest: When you notice the onset of numbness, reduce your resistance to that of being on a flat road, slow down, wiggle your toes and rest. Pedal at low speeds. Gradually increase speed and observe at which resistance number the numbness returns. Your body may not be ready yet. Give yourself enough time to build stronger foot muscles and ankle joints.
  5. See Your Doctor: Of course, if numbness does not subside and it is noticeable during walking or normal daily activities, seek advice from your physician or podiatrist.

 

As indoor cycling instructors, we can help you modify the bike’s setup, adjust your cleats or clips and advice you on proper ride posture and profile selection. However, there is no substitute to contacting your physician if numbness symptoms persist or worsen.

 

Be well.

 

Tom

 

How to Successfully Plan & Execute a 2 Hour #IndoorCycling Ride in 6 Steps

A 2 hour indoor cycling class is quite a challenge even for seasoned riders and instructors. Such ride can be done in the context of a fund raiser or simply to create a unique and demanding challenge. You may be wondering why 2 hours? If you have taken a 60 or 90minute class, you probably wondered ….how far can I push the limits and how much more can I endure? I was recently asked to deliver a 2 hour ride at three separate locations (on three separate dates for the same fitness chain) and I thought that I should finally formalize what I would consider to be the critical factors to ensure that you have a successful ride, and more importantly to inspire your riders to bring back the 2 hour ride again and again!!

Indoor-Cycling3

Step 1: Why 2 hours?

When pitching the ride to your studio’s management or even your students, you have to be clear on the benefits of such a cycle1prolonged ride as well as its unique advantages. The most important selling point is the personal challenge such a ride can pose. Are you ready to see how far you can go? Are you ready to set new personal bests? Are you ready to overcome barriers and push through to new heights? These are some of the questions you can use on posters, social media or the studio’s website to elicit a direct, powerful and engaging response from indoor cycling riders who consider themselves to be the elite. Sure, some may have done two or even three classes in a day, but have they sustained a single ride for 2 hours?

Step 2: Clearly Identify The Benefits

It is not enough to ask the hard hitting questions. It is equally important to identify the target goals of the 2 hour ride. For spinexample, with the help of HRM and Power metrics (e.g. Performance IQ or Polar devices), you can set specific and measurable deliverables such as power achieved, distance traveled, calories expended, heart rate thresholds, etc. For many tech-savvy riders, these metrics will appeal to them because they can see themselves reaching new heights and establishing new baselines for their desired personal workout goals. However, do not be exclusive. This ride should not specifically target just elite riders – it is open to any rider, regardless of age, gender or fitness abilities. This way, your message is inclusive and will appeal to a wider audience from which you can create a buzz for future rides.

Step 3: Promote The Event

Come up with a unique slogan for this event and ask your studio to promote it on social media and their website. Use your own cycle1social media outlets to invite riders and further promote the ride. A recent 120 minute ride I conducted had this as its slogan: CYCLE 4-3-2-1: 4 Instructors, 3 Zones, 2 Hours, 1 Epic Ride (yes, that was a multi-instructor event). Additionally:

  • Communicate (through social media or other tools) to the riders about start time, location and the ride’s profile.
  • Ask your riders for music suggestions. If they contribute, chances are they will show up.

Step 4: Come Prepared & Make Sure They Are Prepared

As an instructor, this special ride requires careful profile planning and music selection (more on that next). Here are some other items to pay attention to:

  • Do not teach a regular class prior to the 120 minute class. Come well rested and hydrated. Eat a light meal an hour before the start of class.
  • If budget allows it, bring a case of bottled water, energy bars and fresh fruit. Riders will appreciate that, especially those who did not prepare well.
  • Bring an extra towel, extra batteries, a backup music source and wear your favorite outfit.
  • If you feel your audience would be receptive, bring some affordable “dollar store” items such as noise makers, light sticks, etc.
  • Bring your camera/mobile phone to take pictures for posting on social media.
  • Bring an ice pack or two. Some riders will discover new pains as they ride for 2 hours. Having an ice pack or two will help alleviate the pains and prevent unnecessary cramping.

Step 5: Carefully Craft The Ride’s Profile & Music

I know you have been teaching for many years and you can instruct a 60 or 90 minutes class with little planning. On the otheradvanced_indoor_cycling_workout hand, a 120 minute ride requires careful scripting of routines and companion music for some very important reasons:

  • Your profile should have a balance between prolonged climbs, seated drills and combinations. Do not focus on just one drill – keep it varied, keep them interested and keep it moving!!
  • Your profile should have enough recovery times so that you do not burn the riders out.
  • You must pace the class and be clear about effort/energy output. Set targets for every 30 minutes using your power meter (if available).
  • Temper your own expectations: During my most recent 120 minute class, we started with 36 riders. After 60 minutes, 4 dropped off. After 75 minutes, 3 more dropped off. After 90 minutes, 27 riders remained. At the 120 minute mark, only 22 riders finished the class. The 120 minute ride is not for every rider. Some may try to see how far they can go. Some may try to complete it. Do not be alarmed if only a few riders remain for your first 120 minute ride.
  • Brush up on cues and write them down so that you do not “sound like a broken record”. Since the riders will be hearing you for 120 minutes, consider the “less is more” approach when verbally engaging the room.

Step 6: Acknowledge The Accomplishment

Riding for a sustained 2 hours in a remarkable milestone, irrespective of your fitness levels. As you coach your riders into accomplishment-clip-art-free-1874170unchartered territory, you will find that some will develop a new found confidence in their abilities to meet the challenge and overcome it. Your job is not to please everybody, but to focus on those who are willing to advance beyond personal limitations. You must reward their accomplishment: door prizes (something affordable), a personal acknowledgement on the studio’s website or your social media feed, will go a long way towards earning the bragging rights for having completed 120 minutes of an indoor cycling ride.

Ride on.

Tom

8 Leg Exercises for #Indoorcycling Instructors

As an indoor cycling instructor, there are several, brief-duration leg exercises that will help you reinforce the endurance, strength and stamina you acquire while coaching classes.

Although many instructors incorporate cross-training as a way to explore and implement other fitness avenues, these eight specific leg exercises are primarily intended to help you pre-empt injuries or nagging pains such as PFPS, IT Band Syndrome and others. The eight exercises described below are ones that I personally perform a few minutes prior to the start of an indoor cycling class, or when the class concludes (some of the studios I teach at offer full fitness equipment).

Leg Muscles Overview

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8 Leg Exercises for Indoor Cycling Instructors

Walk around the gym, and you will notice the Squat rack/area is always occupied. Why? The most popular and favorite leg exercise is indeed Squats. There are several modifications to this popular format: Back Squat, Front Squat, Overhead Squat, One-Legged Squat, Single Leg Squat (a.k.a Bulgarian Squat), Hack Squat and many others. I will probably write a future blog post to address these variations. For now, let’s focus on these leg exercises:

  1. Leg Extension
  2. Calf Raise
  3. Leg Curl
  4. Glute Bridge
  5. Step Up/Down
  6. Leg Press
  7. Box Jump
  8. Lunge

With these exercises in mind, here’s how to focus the workout on specific muscle groups:

legEx

How Should I Train / How Often?

Aside from squat and squat variations, any leg exercise is a good exercise. Use a combination of the 8 leg exercises shown above based on time availability. If you can set aside 10 minutes per muscle group over the course of a week, you will ensure a varied routine that you can modify and personalize. More importantly, you can advise your class participants on this approach and coach them for improved strength and endurance.

#RideOn

Tom

7 Things Successful #IndoorCycling Riders BELIEVE

Smart indoor cycling riders aren’t smart just because of what they know. They’re also smart because of what they believe, as explained in these 7 critical success beliefs:

fitjourney2

  1. Their past does not dictate their future
    Many of us did not start our fitness journey until much later in life. Some of us are just getting started. We come from different backgrounds, fitness abilities and conditioning levels. Some of us face weight challenges, financial difficulties, relationship issues and work-life stresses. Yet, for those riders who believe that they can shape their own destiny, letting the past dictate your fitness future is a recipe for disaster. Letting go of this belief, that you were always overweight and will always be, that you were never fit and will always be, is the start. With indoor cycling, getting started is not easy and the road to fitness is a long one. But, as they say the journey of a thousand miles begins with a first step, I encourage you to set aside what happened in the past and embrace what you can accomplish on the bike.

  2. Having an investment approach to riding
    You are in it for the long term. Taking a few indoor cycling classes is a great start; yet, making indoor cycling a part of an exercise regimen or committing for the foreseeable future by attending one of more classes per week is a proven method to become stronger, increase your endurance, benefit from a cardio workout that is low impact and enjoy the challenge of riding in a group setting. One class per week, even two per week will yield many future dividends. The investment strategy of making steady and constant contributions to your health is an undeniable strategy that guarantees success.

  3. Setting near-term & long-term plans
    Coupled with the investment strategy mentality, setting near term goals is equally important to setting those that are long term. The benefits of attending indoor cycling classes can be realized rather quickly – within the first 6-8 weeks: improved stamina, ability to exceed certain durations and resistance levels on the bike, improved metabolism, increased strength, stronger leg muscles and much more. Staying focused beyond the immediate results and creating a long term plan is where you will realize the most benefit. Making indoor cycling an integral part of your fitness journey for years to come is possible – in fact, I’ve been teaching for several years and I’ve had riders in my classes who have regularly attended for well over 4 years. It can be done.

  4. Creating a balanced strategy
    Balance in life is a key to successful outcomes. When you think about your fitness journey, there are many distractions. Your work, your life, your family and social obligations, etc. Yet, much like scheduling events, attending meetings, commuting to work and so on, attending indoor cycling classes and participating in fitness workouts can be part of your daily or weekly schedule. Many people think of exercising as something to do when you have “spare time”. However, this invites many excuses to avoid working out. There will never be a convenient time! It is best to “schedule” your fitness much like you schedule anything else. Gaining support from your family for “fitness time” is also important and can be a driving force to honoring the schedule.

  5. Seeking to improve by learning & asking
    Although attending indoor cycling classes on regular basis is a first step, knowing more about other fitness and health factors will make these steps more valuable and more rewarding., Understanding ride mechanics, cadence vs. resistance, the muscle groups being used, safe and proper ride techniques, the science behind riding with power, the physiological impact, heart rate zones, RPE, nutrition, etc.. – all this knowledge and the advantages gained by knowing more will help you to fine-tune the fitness journey and hone in on specific goals, target certain metrics and be in the know. Ask your instructor when you have questions, educate yourself, become empowered!

  6. Never take it personally
    There will always be stronger and more athletic riders. There will always be someone who ranks first in power metrics. There will always be someone who appears to be the “perfect” indoor cycling rider. But then gain, who’s journey is it anyway? IT IS YOURS!! Remain focused on your body, your breathing, your workout and feel confident at the end of the ride that you accomplished what you had set out to accomplish – but even if you didn’t, you will have another chance in tomorrow’s ride! It is your time, your workout, your ride!

  7. Fit in just to fit in
    Attending indoor cycling classes just to be part of something else is never the right mind set. The first and most important goal is to realize that this form of exercise is about improving your health and helping you to become stronger, healthier and much more. While indoor cycling is something that anyone can do, it must be done for the right reasons. Be yourself. When you stop trying to fit in or make an impression, and instead focus on a healthier body, your will honor your fitness journey and achieve your personal fitness goals.

 

#RideOn

 

Tom