What To Expect at Your First Cycle Class

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Cycling is by far one of the best gym workouts.  AZ Foothills got the chance to talk to Sheila Moore, director of group fitness at Mountainside Fitness.  Check out all her tips to get the ultimate cycling experience below.  Take it away, Sheila!

If you’ve never tried a cycle class, you are missing a great workout experience!  The first time can be quite intimidating, and perhaps that why you’ve been hesitant to join the fun. Cycle is great way to get cardio into your workout without stress to the joints or the boredom of cardio equipment. Here’s what you can expect and some tips to make your first ride successful.

Attire

Wear your regular workout clothes, but stay away from short shorts or very baggy bottoms. A comfortable pair of shorts or workout pants are best.  Athletic shoes are the best footwear if you don’t have cycle shoes. The sturdier the shoe the better.  Don’t wear skeleton toe shoes, sandals, or athletic shoes with no support.

Pre Class

Arrive at least 10 minutes early. Make sure you let the instructor know that it’s your first class. They will assist you with setting your bike for maximum comfort and safety.  This is extremely important. Improper bike fit can cause injury as well as extreme discomfort in the seat area.

What to Bring

Water, a towel, a headband, and an open mind.

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Expect to Sweat

The room may feel chilly when you arrive. Within minutes of the warm up, you will begin to feel the heat!  The instructor will guide you through a 5-7 minute warm up.  The music will be loud, the room dark, and quite possibly lights that flash to the beat of the music.  During the warm up, set you pace for the class.  I always recommend that the goal for your first class is to just keep pedaling!  Don’t worry about completing every hill and drill. Just keep the legs moving and the heart pumping.

Class Format

After the warm up, you will be guided through a series of drills including seated climbs, standing climbs, sprints, and intervals.  The music will keep you motivated and before you know it, you will be at the cool down phase of the class.  The typical Cycle Class is 45-55 minutes.  For a 55 minute class, you can expect a full 50 minutes of cardio work.  Don’t let this intimidate you, the beauty of cycle is that you set your own intensity and pace.  If you need to take a break, come back into the saddle and ease off the tension. Just don’t stop pedaling!

The Pay Back

The average burn in Cycle Class is 500-600 calories.  You just have to show up, the instructor will motivate and guide you from beginning to end.  Give yourself at least three classes before deciding Cycle Class just isn’t for you. The first class is always the most difficult, so don’t base the future on the first ride. Try a variety of instructors as well to see what style you like best. Although the basics of the class will be consistent, each instructor has their own signature style. Before you know it, you’ll be hooked!

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