Beloved and I just had dinner at the local pub. I’m now sitting on the recliner, rather carefully.
I woke up in a foul and unrivalled mood today. This wasn’t just waking up on the wrong side of the bed – this was fuck the bed altogether and waking up on the floor covered in tanty pants and pursed lips. I was in an absolute funk.
I had to renew my license today, and I wanted to get the monkey off my back regarding doing classes at the gym. I used to do heaps of classes in Sydney, mainly Pump. But that was years ago now. And what better day to tackle something new than a day when you feel like shit and everything in the world is out to get you?
But I made it to the class and survived, and actually really enjoyed it. So now, I present to you from the comfort of my recliner, a beginner’s guide to doing a class at the gym.
The class I took on today was Spin. This has nothing to do with creating wool from a sheep’s back. It has everything to do with these:
Yep, a room full of stationary bikes with big front wheels. The aim of the game in a spin class is to pedal. You pedal sitting down, standing up, leaning forward, sitting up – and you will pedal like you’ve never pedalled before. Round and round and round.
Fact #1: You do not need to wear a helmet.
Fact #2: The spin room isn’t brightly lit, so it’s actually not all that scary.
Fact #3: You will need your sweat towel. Today I had my Lorna Jane sweat towel, which is probably called something much more ladylike and sophisticated in the Lorna Jane catalogue – maybe the Glittering Moisture Absorbing Fibre With Wings, to position the towel in place and actually pull moisture away from the body. Maybe. I’m a bit cross with Lorna Jane, simply because they don’t make active wear for the body shapes that actually really really need active wear.
But I digress.
The sweat towel. I started with mine kind of slung over the handlebars. This wasn’t a good idea. A better idea is to actually drape that sucker across the handlebars. Your arms are going to sweat, which makes getting a grip on the bars a pain in the arse.
Fact #4: The pain in the arse. Your bottom is going to hurt. My concern was more the lady garden to be honest, but no. It’s my bottom that is causing me to sit so carefully tonight.
The confrontation level of a spin class?
Not as high as I had initially anticipated. I was sure (as I am every time I try something new) that I was going to get everything wrong, that I was going to be laughed at the entire time, and that I’d never be able to go to the gym ever again.
Here’s the reality: Every single person in that room was focused on their own bike. Nobody gave a damn about what resistance I had my bike on, nobody laughed at my boobs dancing around the room as I pedalled, nobody challenged my right to be in the class.
This is something that is so, so important.
The people who will mock you, or doubt you – they are not the people actually doing it. They have no idea of the commitment involved. Of the challenge. Of the continual facing of fears. They mock you because they have no idea. But the people in that spin room next to you? Or the people on the same fun run track? Or the ones that you pass when you go for a morning run or walk? They know exactly what it takes to be doing what you are doing.
So relax. You are probably being greatly admired every single time you get out there.
I think I just digressed again.
At the end of the class I remembered my standard ridiculousness. I attempted to follow the stretches but my leg wouldn’t lift. Oh my god, it wouldn’t lift. I’ve done a hamstring or I’ve dislocated a kneecap or I’ve left my lower bowel on the bike seat. WHY WON’T MY LEG MOVE??
Because my shoelace was stuck in the pedal.
This is me after spin. I’m sweaty. I’m a little sore. But I’m proud. And that arse of a mood is gone.
So there you go. Spin. Have you tried it? What stops you from trying it? When will my bottom feel better?