Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Tuesday Night Spin

My playlists are essential to a successful spin class. I use them to energize my spinners and drive them to push themselves. Sometimes, though, I have to cherry-pick from other instructors' lists and workout ideas when I am lacking motivation or inspiration. So in return, I also want to share my delightfully masochistic indoor cycling workouts for anyone else who wants to put together a high-intensity, kick-ass workout. Today's class uses the same playlist I put together last week, which received a lot of positive feedback in the form of everyone spinning their little butts off.

Since I don't always instruct on bikes with monitors, I ask my spinners to gauge their resistance on a simple scale: flat road, light, light+, medium, medium+, heavy and steep. It's up to the rider to find what they determine to be "medium" or "heavy". Steep is as hard as they can set the resistance and still be able to pedal smoothly. Flat road is NOT no resistance, it's the point at which the rider first feels a hint of resistance when adding gears.

I ride in three positions which I call out during class by number: 1) Seated, hinged forward, hands resting where comfortable on the handlebars. Position 1 is for seated runs, climbs, and recovery. 2) Standing, hands light on the handlebars, hinged forward just slightly. This is mostly a recovery or transition position. 3) Standing, hinged all the way forward (flat back), hands at the end of the handlebars. This is for standing runs and climbing. The important things to note in any position is that the spine is neutral, not hunched, the knees to not come out past the toes, and the seat height is adjusted so that the legs do not lock out straight at the bottom of the pedal stroke.

Now that I've gone through my basic intro, here's my first playlist to share. Enjoy!

"You're an animal!" Playlist (55 minutes):

1. warm up --flat road, position 1 -- "Animal" Neon Trees
2. warm up continued -- light resistance, position 1 verse, 2 bridge, 3 & run on chorus -- "Are You Gonna Be My Girl" Jet
3. climb with standing bursts -- medium resistance, pos. 1 verse, 3 & "burst" on chorus -- "In The End" Linkin Park
4. endurance run -- light resistance, pos. 1, easy run for first and last minute to recover, when the music picks up speed it up and maintain a fast run (NOT a sprint -- about 85-90%) -- "Brasileiria" Veron & Praia Del Sol
5. jumps -- light+ resistance, pos. 1 and 2, jump to the count of 8, 4, and 2, repeating sequence twice during the song -- "Jump" Flo Rida featuring Nelly Furtado
6. climb with standing bursts -- medium+, climb in pos. 1, "burst" in 3 -- "Seven Nation Army" The White Stripes
7. seated climb -- increase from medium+, to heavy, to steep, standing once it's too hard to sit and pedal smoothly -- "Feeling Good" Muse8. climb down -- gradually decrease from steep back down to medium with each change in position: start in 3, take off res. and sit, take off a gear in pos. 2, take a gear off in pos. 3 and run (on chorus), repeat sequence -- "The Dog Days Are Over" Florence and the Machine
9. recovery run -- flat road with optional bursts (if you recover quickly, add a gear back in half-way through the song!) -- "I Wanna Be Sedated" The Ramones
10. hovers -- medium resistance, pos. 1 verse, pos. 3 bridge, then take your butt waaaay back over the saddle (as if you're about to sit, but don't) on the chorus -- "Mysterious Ways" U2
11. standing runs with a twist -- medium resistance, alternate between pos. 1 and pos. 3, running fast (85%); keep your momentum going! Music slows and it's time to add resistance on last time, so crank your gears and make it STEEP! You're only going to climb for a moment so make it count. As the music picks back up take off the resistance and run it out in pos. 3 -- "Lancaster Gate" Enter the Haggis
12. endurance run with sprints -- flat road (or more resistance if you need for control- no bouncing), the first minute is to recover before the music picks up, start at about 60% effort, then wind it up and get ready to GO, hold your pace at 90% until the music drops out, recover and repeat -- "Sandstorm" Darude

Always make sure you allow for at least 10 minutes at the end of your workout to recover, bring that heartrate back down, and to stretch.

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