Monday, October 19, 2009

Today I went to a spinning class.

Really; there's no reason to snicker after reading that title.

I never thought I'd go to a spinning class. In fact, I was oddly terrified of it for years. I've gone to a local gym on and off (off when I wasn't feeling well) for the last couple of years, with little effect. I'd eat - in creamy chocolate - what I lost. You say vicious cycle? I say delicious cycle.

Tonight I forgot my headphones. Without headphones, I cannot watch tv while on the wretched Trendclimber or listen to MGMT while sailing along on the elliptical. It felt like the time I forgot just one sneaker: there is just no way this is going to work.

But then I saw the sinewy (and pleasantly not-so-sinewy) walking with sweat towels in tow to the spinning room. I have never entered that room. Daily, at 6 pm, the room would ominously darken, and I would hear electronia thumping on the bass. Then, at 7 pm, they emerged, looking mainly like their former selves, except for drenched t-shirts and limp ponytails. They looked...utterly....defeated. I vowed I would never subject myself to that insanity and continued to lollygag around the treadmills.

Except for today, when I realized I had no access to the comforting distractions of television and music, and though, "What the hell?". I entered the room and approached the instructor. She was gorgeous: middle-aged with big eyes and bigger eyelashes. "Can," I started, "people who aren't in shape do...this?" That's all it took. I found a bike - in the back, as I requested - and we adjusted the seat. "How tall are you?" the instructor asked. I said I was probably 6' with my sneakers on. The woman on the bike next to me snorted. I smiled tersely, and chose to decide she was jealous of my long legs. I also silently called her a beyotch, which always helps.

I can explain a spinning class in six worlds: It's a fun sort of hell. You each have a stationary bike with a resistance knob. The instructor wears a microphone and shouts things like, "Okay, we want an 8 outta 10 resistance - this is going to be a BIG hill! Position three!" Position three is when we rise out of our seats (which I was frankly thankful for because those seats are made for bony, boy butts) and "climb" a fictional hill. We are each in charge of our own resistance, so my 8 may be another woman's 4. This is all done in the dark with crazy lights dancing around the room, and to, what I call, steroid music. It's loud, it gets you pumped, and it's exactly what you would never admit to listening to in your free time.

I'm going to be honest: I chose a bike in the back with a close proximity to the door...just in case either my bowels or my glutes decided to conk out. But the hour went by in a flash. I felt invigorated. I felt proud of using my body in such a physical way: after spending months of the couch I was sweating my ass off (and everything else). I gave it all I got: after each uphill climb I thought less and less of my job and stress at work, and just thought more of more of, "Wouldjya believe it, I can DO this!" I came home to Matt cooking dinner, and commenced a thirty minute monologue of how "tough" I was and the strength of my legs. He listened politely while sauteing the onions, and mentioned that he feels like that after a two-hour game of badminton. "Badminton?!" I barked. "You are just too cute with your little badminton! I then belly-laughed.

What can I say: I was feeling the rush - and somewhat obnoxiously.


  1. Oh Kathryn, you are too funny. I am glad you enjoyed the spinning--nothing like getting those endorphins going!


  2. Although you wouldn't know from looking at me, I have been doing exercises classes for 25 years and I love them. Sometimes, I can't get to a class so I make do with the elliptical and the minutes pass like hours. With a good class I work much harder and I never watch the clock.

  3. I'm starting to agree - classes are the way to go. But we don't have cable, so I do enjoy the elliptical, if only to catch up on "Top Chef" and "Say Yes to the Dress". Oh, and "What Not to Wear", that crazy Duggars show on TLC, "Project Runway", doesn't really end, sadly enough. (This is why we got rid of cable in the first place.)