On Saturday I was leaving for a trip and needed to fit in a 30 mile bike. A friend of mine teaches a spinning class and has invited me numerous times. I have never taken him up on the offer but thought this would be a good time. I can go to the class get my training session in before I leave in a set amount of time without a worry of a flat tire or not making it back in time.
I used to teach spinning before I became a triathlete and cyclist. I was certified by Johnny G and used to take people through interval workouts in my spinning classes a couple times a week. At the time I had never been out on a road bike and had no idea what it felt like to actually ride.
Since catching the "triathlon bug" and buying my first road bike I haven't been in a spinning class since. The bike is my favorite leg of the triathlon and I could even see myself doing some bike races in the next few years because I really enjoy cycling. I love getting out on my bike for a workout.
So I arrive about a half hour early on the recommendation of my friend who is teaching and people have already staked out their bikes by putting their towel and water bottle on them. So I quickly throw my water bottle and towel on a bike to make sure I get one. I had no idea how popular his class was. The room had about 40 bikes and by the time the class started every one of them was taken. Now, I live in California and this particular morning was gorgeous outside- a perfect day for a ride. Infact I was tempted when I woke up to just go out for a ride but I told my friend I would be there so I didn't want to be a flake. But why were 40 other people wanting to be in this little, hot, dark room with no windows dripping with sweat when they could be outdoors? Who knows?
The class started and my friend runs a great "workout" with some very hard intervals, a lot of climbing and tons of sweat dripping off of me. No joke- I had a pool of water around me when I was done. He said the people in the class don't like to turn the fans on because they like to sweat- they feel like they had a better workout that way. Well, when I looked around I was sweating more then anybody and I definitley could have used a fan. By the way, how much you sweat doesn't = how hard the workout was. I sweat a lot anyway and don't need a hot room filled with 40 people to make me sweat so I was completely drenched when I got done.
Anyway, I realized that spinning is a great workout to do interval training, burn some calories and sweat buckets but I don't know how much it crosses over to cycling. It felt nothing like being outside, climbing hills on my bike. I don't know if I'll go again unless I need an hour of burning some calories, getting my heart rate up and sweating a few pounds off. I prefer heading out on my bike instead.