How to (Barely) Survive Spinning
Friends, yesterday I went to my first spinning class. I had heard about spinning for years and assumed it would snap me in two and spit me out.
My suspicions were confirmed.
I walked into the dimly lit studio, illuminated in dark red lights, and found my bike. Well actually I didn’t find my bike. Someone found it for me because NEWSFLASH I am over 35 and I might as well have been walking through a cave, or traversing the floor of the ocean. For some reason we are all assigned bikes, which I have yet to understand the purpose behind, but WHATEVER. I am trying to go with the flow.
The instructor’s name is also Laura. She’s also blonde. That’s where our similarities end. I imagine that she’s the younger, hotter version of what I could never be. I make up stories about Laura. I assume she’s probably lived in an ashram and gets up at 5am and drinks green juice before hearing her doorbell ring and seeing a line of men falling at her feet.
Also, she’s very nice.
She helps me set up my bike. I had been given the option of renting a cushy bike pad for $3 prior to the class starting, but if you’ve seen my ass, I assumed I’d have all the cushioning I need BUILT IN. This was a miscalculation on my part. But we’ll get there.
Laura mentions that the heat is still on from the hot yoga class that was in the room prior. And she decides to keep it on. But we can let her know if it’s too hot.
IT’S TOO HOT and I haven’t even begun moving.
I’m sure my cycling furiously in 95 degree heat with no air is going to be fucking fantastic.
The class begins. Laura is at the front of the room on her own bike, giving us commands and pedaling away as we lift ourselves off the seat to pedal, lower back down, bend side to side and raise our arms up and down in hand motions best suited for synchronized swimmers WHILE PEDALING, increase tension on the bike, decrease tension and go faster, faster, FASTER. We have been given a towel, but about 15 minutes into this, my towel now resembles a wet mop. It has lost all ability to clean up my sweat and is now functioning to just spread it all over my body.
Also, I have realized two things:
1. Laura informs us that was just the warmup and now we are ready to really get going.
2. I wonder if anyone in here knows CPR.
I am so covered in sweat that the weight of the sweat had actually distended the shape of my oversized tank top, which is primarily pooling around my stomach and is no longer covering my sports bra. So I’m basically tits out for the next 45 minutes.
Laura tells us we are going to do a sprint. We are supposed to pedal as fast as we can and to keep challenging ourselves.
And I pedal, pedal, pedal and experience a sensation I’ve never felt before. My legs are moving so fast that my fat cannot keep up. My thighs are literally flapping around at a different speed, as my fat attempts to reach an event horizon where it just is flung clear off my legs.
Unfortunately, this does not happen.
Laura gives us several breaks through the course of the class. I use these to try and remember if I can self-administer CPR. I stare at other class members and realize that I am the only one who had to grab multiple towels to mop up myself and my bike and can no longer read the computer readout attached to my bike because I am inclined to drip all over it.
Laura looks dewy and fresh.
I begin to wonder if it’s possible to slip off the bike, because my ass is so wet, I’m having trouble staying mounted on the seat.
ALSO, my vagina begins to hurt. About 40 minutes in, I begin to feel increasingly uncomfortable as the tip of the seat seems to be attempting to shove its hard nose into me. I feel like I’m being assaulted by the seat and keep chanting in my head, “NO MEANS NO!”
It hurts too much to sit, so I take to standing over the bike as much as possible. But given that I can no longer feel my legs, this poses a unique set of challenges.
The only benefit to how heavily I have been sweating is that my soaking wet clothes are now cooling me down.
I’m pretty sure everything needs to be burned.
“Three more songs til cooldown!” Laura exclaims.
She looks so happy.
We have been listening to the Top 40 and I begin to pray that Rihanna sings faster.
We begin the cool down, but are still pedaling, so this seems like a total bait and switch. I finally melt off the bike. There just aren’t enough wet wipes to clean this up.
My Fitbit records that I’ve burned 800 calories. That seems low.
I walk next door to the coffee shop and run into a woman that was in the class with me. I ask her about my aching vagina and she assures me this is normal and it will get better. I am not sure I believe her.
I also run into my friend Chanel, whose face registers shock at the sight of me. She and I had talked about going spinning and I can tell she’s very glad to not have joined me. Like a therapy patient that’s processing trauma, I begin to lay into Chanel about the state of my vagina, arms, legs and boobs hanging out of my tank top. I get up to leave and realize I’ve sweat soaked the seat of the coffee shop.
I waddle to the car, put a blanket over the seat, and head home. I’m not sure what the rest of the day holds, but a glass or three of wine seems in order.