Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Send the Men in the White Coats

And tell them to bring their pint-sized butterfly nets.

I have gone back to spin class.  Twice. And let me just tell you, it has *not* gotten easier.

The 2-minute "warm-up" is really nothing more than a way to weed out the wussies (and I totally want to wuss out but the bikes are in a circle so everyone would see me leave.)
Now, if you decide to stay for the rest of the class, you are in for a treat an hour of pure torture.

OK, here's the thing.  I use up my first wind in those first two minutes and my second wind never quite finds its way. Perhaps that has to do with the fact that the cycle studio is always safely tucked away at the top of the stairs. Which means, I spend a good part of the class hatching plans for how to get back down the stairs at the end of the session. It has come down to these top contenders:




And by the way.  All that fancy *standing* on the bike gives me some serious stitches on my right side.  Which leads me to believe that I may not be exactly, what in some circles you might call, totally upright?  

Why hello, athletic stance.

Also: why must we increase the resistance each and every time we move in and out of the seat?  Can I tell you a secret?  But, you have to promise it will just stay between us, ok?  

*Sometimes*...I cheat. See, what I do is, I put my hand on the resistance knob, and I just pretend to turn it up.   (Oh, the shame.)

(Or, on only the rarest of occasions...I turn it DOWN.  But that, uh, almost never happens. Nope.)

By the way, all that pedaling and bouncing around makes the room just a tad bit warm, so there are about 10 fans blowing on you at any given time.

Hmm?  What's that? Oh, ok.  FINE.

Yup, that's more like it.

The last teacher I had kept telling us to do something more challenging ridiculous in one minute increments.  In what I can only assume was a ploy to have us obey her commands, she repeatedly said

Really?  Wow, me too.

After the second class I asked the teacher how long it takes before you start to feel know, not feel like you have cycled through the nine circles of hell, a trip from which you will never quite recover physically or psychologically (or something to that effect).  She cheerily told me to stick with it, saying it *only* takes SIX classes to get accustomed.

Really?? 'Cause I'm pretty sure crackheads need fewer hits to develop a full-blown addiction.


PLUS: AN EDIT TO SOME OF LAST POST'S PICTURES (Because it's my blog and I can do that if I want to :D...Thanks Ann, Ann-Marie and Rachel)


  1. I love running, I love swimming, but I HATE cycling. One reason I could never do a tri. I commend you for going to a class that makes your legs fall off :) And don't worry, your secret is safe with me! haha

  2. I have been teaching cycling for eleven years. A few tips.

    Go at your own pace. Don't push yourself, or you will never like it. 60 minutes of turning your pedals will be just fine in the beginning as you get use to proper form, pedal mechanics, and the seat feeling like a metal spike!

    Shop and the right teacher can make or break a class.

    Resistance is key, but I always tell my class touching the resistance nob is nine tenths of turning it! Sometimes, I cheat too...I get tired as well!

    Funny, I always say "you can do anything for 1 minute" then I always say...I can eat a kit kat in one I laughed when I saw your drawings!

    Stick with it, it will come...and you will be stronger for it.

    I could never do a you are better than me!


  3. I'm a triathlete and even I'll admit I've avoided the spin classes up to this point. haha So you're one step ahead of me already! I do agree with Tales of a Hockey Wife though - don't push yourself into hatred. If you want to back off on the resistance, do so. The last thing you want to do in any sport is to push yourself so hard you no longer enjoy it. Spinning will take some getting used to, but you don't have to hate it during that period.

  4. I love your approach of keeping it real and letting us know it is never easy. Greg Lemond said it "never gets any easier you just get faster".

    Showing up and staying active for the duration of the class is my #1 goal for my students.
    Keep pedaling and your intensity level, seat comfort, pedal speed; power output will all improve over time. Consistency in all of your training is the key.

    Good luck and keep making up laugh.

  5. Okay, so I am thinking I should try one of these classes???? Maybe, but you are in better shape than me still. I am trying to catch up. Mom says that if my little sister can do it.....:-p

  6. Hahahaha! This is hilarious, in that painful, treacherous sort of way. I am so glad to hear that I am not the only one who hasn't quite warmed up to cycling.

  7. Li: You could do it waaay better than I can. You'd be going into it already knowing how to ride a bike (geez, between you and Dave the competition to keep up is getting out of hand :D )

    TexaGermaNadian: Thanks for keeping this between us :)

    Hockey Wife: Have we met? ;) And thanks for the tips. I'll definitely keep them in mind.

    Kurt: It's not so much self-loathing as self-deprecation :) But you're right, it has to be fun!

    Dane: I appreciate your advice as well and I'm glad neither you nor Hockey Wife are offended...I mean no offense. The teachers are great. Just on a whole other stratosphere of 'athletic' than me :)

    KT80: That is exactly the feeling I was going for!

  8. ahhh! I LOVE all your posts your blog just brings a smile to my face! I hate cycling too

  9. Thanks Toesthattwinkle! I love positive reinforcement :D

  10. Julie, if we could be real life friends and hang out all the time, just know that I would totally brave it through a spin class with you...and by that I mean that you would have to literally drag me there even though it would be for my own good. But I would endure! And only turn the resistance knob down every other time. Like a CHAMP.

    PS: I recently was like, holy crap, I need to get in shape (see: swim suit season starts early when your friends decide to go on a weekend getaway to a LAKE house). But, of course, I kept putting off early morning runs and late night crunches, so when I found myself with only five days to get bikini ready, I said, screw it, and went tanning instead.

    Oh, yea. Tan fat looks better than pale fate, I've heard.

    PPS: Keep up the good work! You really do inspire me every day!

  11. andrea, I keep telling myself it is good for me and one day i will enjoy it! I have to agree that tan fat is better than pale fat...unfortunately i no longer live in sunny TX and i have been rockin the Seattle tan for the last 5 years.

  12. This is great! I was laughing throughout the entire post. I feel the same way about my bootcamp classes though. Misery, awful, hideous, can't finish. Okay let's do it again tomorrow. Eventually it gets better. . . I think.

  13. thanks for your comments tonight. I was reading it with Ryan and said that you always know just what to say to make me feel better about things or make me smile/laugh. I have to confess sometimes I don't always turn the resistance up either. The people who teach those classes are not real, I swear. It's not natural to keep turning, turning, turning LOL. Glad you survived going back though! Have a great weekend :)

  14. Rachel: 'bootcamp' does sound miserable! But you're right--for some reason once you're done you want to go back again for more punishment!

    Meg: i'm glad you stopped by and hopefully you're feeling good/better now. After all, you've got the 5k in the bag. 3 miles is nothing! And, coming from a seasoned spinner, it makes me feel better to hear that you don't turn up the resistance every single time either :D

  15. I remember my first spin class - what a nightmare. I mentioned to the instructor at the end that my whole pelvic section hurt, and was I sitting on the seat properly? She laughed and said "Yeah, it does hurt the soft parts at the beginning, but they toughen up after awhile!". Ummm...I'd rather not toughen up that particular area!! I still do a class now and then, but I've realized I'm just never going to love it like I enjoy aerobics/zumba/ kickboxing. Too bad, since it's a great workout.

    Visiting from FTLOB weekend wander :)

  16. I never said "if your little sister can do it"...I'm impressed that you're still at this spin thing...didn't think that you enjoyed torture that much :)

  17. This is such an awesome and fun blog. I'm looking forward to my power walks at the track soon, soon as it gets a lil warmer. :-)
    All Around Autism

  18. ixy: Thanks for coming over! Yeah I'm still not quite sure i understand how you 'toughen up' that area (i've even had that specific conversation with a friend of mine). I love zumba too but i injured the ball of my foot a few months back and have had to back off :(

    Mom: i'm thinking it's going to get better...that's why i have gone back :)

    Madison: Thanks!! Now that we've changed the clocks it will definitely be easier to get out and be active :)

  19. Hi, I came from comment love. I love how you've illustrated your experience. Best wishes with the training. Me, I hate exercising!

  20. haha hilarious! Just came across your blog from FTLOB... and reading your post just made me smile. I've been to spinning too. I try to make it once a week but I can't always keep up to it. I start looking at the watch already 10 minutes after start of the class! Your picture describe just exactly the same that happens to me!

  21. liberal sprinkles: Thanks for the good wishes and the comment love :)

    Katherina: Once a week! Impressive :) Good to know it's hard for the regular class-goers too!

  22. Hi! I'm a new follower from the Totally Tuesday Blog hop. Your pictures are funny. I don't even know what spin class is, but I know a few who go. Good luck with it. I think I'll stick with a little Zumba.

    Heather From and Mommy Only Has Two Hands!

  23. hahahahahahaha!!! LOVE. THIS. POST!

  24. LOVE it!!!!! I just started a boot camp, so I totaly understand, I am about to leave for it and this is just cracking me up!!!

    I am a new follower from the Totally Tuesday Blog hop, I would love it if you could follow me back! I hope you have a wonderful day!


  25. Repaying the visit...first time here. Oh dear heavens you make me laugh. Love the drawings. There are days when I actually feel like exercising, but I have been able to find anything passive enough for my screwed up knee. :( Which makes me jealous that you can spin. How sick is that?! :)

  26. I don't know if I have ever did spinning but my friend and I try to walk on a regular basis.

    I am blog hopping today and would really like for you to stop by (and become a follower if you aren't already) at either of my blogs:

    So Stylilized is where I am currently offering FREE Custom Blog Designs at

    Jessicas Lil Corner is where I blog about life and family at

    I hope you have a happy and blessed Tuesday!!

  27. Thanks to everyone for coming to visit!

    Heather: Zumba is really fun, isn't it? It certainly burns calories too!

    allenaim: THANKS!

    Hope: you're not the first person to mention boot camp after reading this post...which is getting me thinking that I might need to try it...someday.

    Amanda: Hahaha! I guess the grass is always greener :)

    Jessica: You definitely don't need to do ridiculous things like this to get in shape. Walking is great but unfortunately i'm way too impatient for it!

  28. I stumbled over here from Mingle Monday and I am dying laughing at your cartoons and commentary!
    Good luck with the cycling venture! :)

  29. Haha, so hilarious! I found your blog from Meg's MM, and I rarely find a random blog that I actually want to follow! Thanks for making me laugh today, I am your newest subscriber. I don't frequent the spin classes anymore --- heck, I don't frequent the gym so much anymore :) but I know exactly what you mean. Have a wonderful day- look forward to your next post.

  30. haha this literally made me laugh out loud alone in my office!

    I really love spin class! Spin is really all about finding your own personal limit. When the instructor says you should "be at a 7" that means YOUR 7 not hers or anyone else in the class. Go at your own pace and enjoy the experience while you get used to it. After a handful of classes it WILL get better and you might start enjoying pushing yourself.

  31. Spinning does suck. It's even worse than bootcamp. just go at your own pace, and if your legs are still 'stitchy', have a trainer show you how to roll out your legs on a foam roller.

    Hang in there!

    I'm following from the Tuesday hop! I would love a follow back at!


  32. OMGosh your blog just ROCKS! ♥ it -- and the drawings are amazing!

    Hiya! Newest follower from The Totally Tuesday Hop-- please stop by and say hello! Would love if ya followed back!


  33. Thank you so much for stopping by Concetta's Cafe this week and viewing Gabriella's small space! I am still laughing with joy over your post - will be smiling for awhile!
    Have a wonderful day!

  34. ha ha I am your newest follower:

    I am following you (suelee1998) from the blog hop, you have a great site. Would you please follow me back?
    thank you :)

  35. OMG I HATE spinning. My hubs loves it, I went with him once and it was horrific. I cried, I tried to pretend it was sweat, but it was obviously tears and body shaking. I pretended to turn my knob up and the teach got off her bike and came over and turned it up for me and announced to the class that I didn't. Oh the shame. I never went back.

    But guess what? My hubs has a spin bike in the garage, and he uses it a few times a week. Me, never! But I have to see it everday and relive the horror.

    Give me a pool and I'm a duck to water, that's my sport!

    LOVE your blog and your art, so awesome!
    Maegan :)

  36. Wow, that teacher sounds HORRIBLE!! I would be crying too! (And I'd probably have to switch gyms--if I end up with a teacher like that you won't be seeing any more spin posts). But, I'm jealous about your swim abilities. I suck at that too.

    Thanks for the compliments on the site. It makes me happy :D

  37. I am following you on google connect from "Boost My Blog Friday"! Cute blog;-)

    Jeanette Huston

  38. Went to a class today. LOVED IT! I did have several moments of "self-giggles" as the instructor told us to do certain things. I kept thinking "do I look like Sis's drawings?" Probably, but it was a fabulous workout and I can't wait to go back :)

    Love Sis.

  39. I'm glad you loved it :) It is a fabulous workout. Your legs will get very strong! Maybe you can get mom to go next :P

  40. I am a spinning instructor and this CRACKED me up!! Love it!

  41. lisapow: Thanks! It's good to know i'm making instructors laugh!

  42. this is so freaking funny! I just started getting into spinning and I already can relate to this! good stuff!


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