When I first moved to Fresno, my husband and I bought I road bikes. With the ocean hours away, we packed in our surfboards and thought cycling would be our new thing. I actually got really into it - My hubby and I did a few century rides, we brought our bikes with us on long weekends away, we truly enjoyed riding together. When I started having babies, however, that all changed. First, it was harder to find the time to sneak away, and it became an activity we couldn’t really do together because one of us needed to be home with the baby. Mostly though, as a new mom, I was just too nervous to head out onto the road to tempt fate the way that cyclist often do.
So I took up spin classes. I would bring sleeping baby A to the day care at GB3 and choose a bike in class where I could see into the the daycare area. I was usually able to time it well and she would sleep through class but if she woke, I would leave class to get her. I did this for a few years, I loved the instructor and got in a good workout. But as Lady A grew out of her sleeping phase, I slowly stopped attending class because as a new mom, the childcare situation was a little too overwhelming for me.
Eventually, my hubby and I found ourselves attending SoulCycle classes together every time we went out of town for a parents get away. Most people think we are crazy for working out on vacation but it is truly the best, and only time, we get to enjoy each others company while working out. Let me also say that I want to be a SoulCycle instructor in my next life. These people are rockstars. Physically fit, motivational performers with badass attitudes that make you feel like you can conquer anything.
While, It is exciting to see spin studios and other innovative fitness studios in general popping up around Fresno, I’m often frustrated by having to coordinate childcare for each workout I do, or factor in travel time – or even the need to shower - between workouts and meetings or appointments. I firmly believe that It is about time we, as a community, adopt more healthy and active lifestyles, but my workout reality is that as a mom, convenience is king.
So, in our attempt to balance the need for an entertaining yet intense workout, with the reality of a demanding schedule, my hubby and I decided to gift each other a Peleton Bike (an indoor spin bike). It was a pricey purchase, but they offered a 30 day money back guarantee so we figured - let’s try it out. We were both somewhat skeptical as to whether or not we would actually use it, whether the teachers would be inspiring, whether we would feel the energy felt in a group environment, riding at home alone. I was also very hesitant to put a huge piece of workout equipment in my bedroom.
Luckily, It didn’t take long to put my mind to ease. To really learn what the bike is about, you’ll have to check out their website to do it justice, but some of the first things that stood out to me was that when the bike arrives, so does a technician to make sure it is set up properly. It does need to be plugged in to an outlet, but it has an otherwise minimalist feel to it. There is a large touch screen attached to the handlebars which is easy to navigate and provides great video and audio. Each user sets up a profile and account to track your rides and progress. Along with the cycling classes users have access to “beyond the ride” classes that include longer stretching sessions, focused body weight exercises, like abs and arms, along with Yoga classes . You have the option to “attend” live classes filmed at the New York studio or can select from a plethora of recorded rides – you have total control over the kind of ride you take EVERY TIME!
After having the bike for half a year, here is a general summary of some of my thoughts:
1. The teachers are amazing! There are several instructors to choose from with varying styles and personalities. They are able to come though the monitor and captivate your attention. I do feel like they are talking to me, they are able to make me giggle, motivate me to push harder, and lead a great class.
2. There are a variety of class types. Do you like pop rides where you follow the beat of the music, or Tabata rides to train for an actual outdoor ride? There are high intensity, low intensity, anything you can think of, they have it.
3. The music selection is on point. Since you can take recorded rides you can see the playlists and choose your ride based on that. They even offer live DJ rides, what a party!
4. The bikes are comfortable. Over the years I have conditioned my perineum to tolerate a thin, hard, road bike saddle - but this seat has to be one of the most comfortable I’ve ever sat on. The pedals are very smooth and in general you feel supported by a very large, well made, bike.
5. It is actually motivating. You get achievement awards for taking 50, 100, 250 rides. If you are in a live class the instructor might call you out for a birthday or special achievement and there is a bit of a competition with a leaderboard sharing your rank in class.
Why I love having a Peloton:
1. I can workout when I want and where I want (at home!). Having to book a babysitter to workout is one of the biggest barriers to entry. If I have to pay money to take a class, then pay a babysitter (for not just the class time but the drive there and back) it can be a very expensive proposition. Now I can spin while the girls nap or before they wake up.
2. It makes working out more efficient. It’s easier to get in a workout before I start my day. I can literally roll out of bed and onto my bike before I put makeup on. I can quickly shower after and be ready to go.
3. I have the ability to control my workouts every time. Everything from the instructor, music selection, genre of ride, time length is on demand and at my finger tips.
Instructors I have loved so far:
Ally Love - @allymisslove
Jessica King - @Jesskingnyc
Robin Arzon - @robinnyc
Cody Rigsby - @codyrigsby
Denis Morton - @denis_morton
If you think you are ready to bite the bullet and purchase a bike, you can receive $100 off with discount code TTJ7SE. If you are already a rider, let's connect because everything is better surrounded by community. You can find me on the bike at ChefShaynaSpins. Until then, ride on!