It’s so fun to “rediscover” a workout. That has been happening to me recently with spinning. As I’ve mentioned (here), I taught spinning in college and for a couple years after. In fact, before I discovered running, spinning was my go-to cardio of choice. But since I stopped teaching, I’ve lost some of my fire for it. I just preferred teaching to participating, mostly because I got to pick the music 🙂 Also, every time I go to a spin class at a gym, they have no less than 25 fans going in the room. I really hate that because I like to get drenched in sweat when spinning (personal preference… I know not everyone likes that, hence all the fans). I cannot do that with hurricane force winds blowing on me from all directions. But when I tried Soul Cycle in NYC, it totally relit my spinning flame!
When I came back to DC, I really wanted to try out another studio style cycling class. This past Sunday, I had the pleasure of attending Francina’s Extended Body Ride at Revolve Cycling in Clarendon.
Revolve offers three different styles of class – Real Ride, Body Ride, and Barre Ride. A single drop in class is $18 with the option to purchase class packages of 5, 10, and 20 classes. For first timers, you can purchase an intro month membership for $59. (More info on pricing and memberships here) In the interest of full disclosure, I was given a complementary first class, but I think that’s just because I connected with them over Twitter about my interest in trying the studio. Clips are required to ride and you can rent them for $2 (which is what I did… I really need to just invest in a pair of clips already).
Towels are provided, which is awesome because my sweaty self cannot spin without at least one towel (I usually use two because I’m just THAT sweaty). I broke out my cycling shorts for this class and OMG what a difference they make. I totally forgot how much the padded seat helps. Anyways, before I knew it I was clipped into my bike and off we went!
Extended Body Ride was a 60 minute class that included two tracks of upper body strength training. The cardio tracks were great! I personally prefer more climbing / resistance work in cycle as opposed to “spin your legs as fast as your possibly can,” and Francina totally delivered. I was sweating and breathing hard by the end of the warm up. Her music selection was great, which earns major points in my book (if the music isn’t good… seriously… what is the point?)
The strength training part is really interesting to me. I had never included that in a spin class before Soul Cycle and I was super intrigued by it. Revolve provides a larger selection of weights, which I definitely liked. I ended up grabbing 8 lbs weights to get a more serious burn. The only thing I didn’t LOVE was they use these weighted bags instead of actual dumbbells. There is absolutely nothing wrong with them but my hands were really sweaty by the time we got to strength (yes it’s gross my hands sweat a lot, let’s move on). I kind of felt like I was going to drop them the whole time because the bags were so smooth. To be fair though, they did have free weights and Francina told people they could grab them before class if they wanted to. In the future, I probably will since they will likely be more comfortable for me.
Final Summation: I had a blast at Revolve. If you’re looking for the studio cycling experience, I definitely recommend checking them out. As a runner, spinning is a great way for me to get a kick-ass cardio workout while giving my joints a break from pounding the pavement. Revolve wasn’t just a workout, it was an experience! Surrounded by other riders in a dark room with pumping music, I was able to completely release the outside world and focus on my workout. I think there is a class pack at Revolve in my future…
Questions for you guys:
- Runners – what do you use for cross training?
- Have you ever attended a studio cycling class before? What did you think?