Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Hello all. :)
I'd like to make this as short and sweet as possible, since I have a biology test to study for (blech!). There is something I've been dying to do forever, and I finally got my chance today:
As someone who loves to bike it has ALWAYS fascinated me, and one of the great bonuses of the new school I'm attending is that you get a free membership to a kickass local gym, complete with all the trimmings, classes, equipment, pools, etc. When they gave me the fall class schedule, I realized that one of their 3 class studios is dedicated just to spinning. So, for the past few weeks I've been dying to take one of these classes, but I just couldn't rustle up the courage to do so. I was afraid I'd fail in a room full of 30 dedicated, sweaty people, haha. Plus, the "intro" spinning classes weren't during times I could attend, so it was the regular class or nothing at all.
Tonight...I forced myself into it. I got out of lab early and knew I'd be able to meet the 5pm class deadline with time to spare to slowly warm up on an elliptical beforehand. I was so freaking nervous, it's unbelievable, but the women waiting for the class to start were really supportive and told me what to do (pick a bike early, fill my water bottle, get paper towels, etc), and the instructor introduced me to the class as a newbie and gave me some pointers for how she conducts her class and how to keep up.
So, the class starts and though it's hard, it's tolerable. I'm keeping up with my RPM (rotations per minute, which is how you keep track of where you're going with the class for those of you like me who have no idea what you're supposed to do), and then BAM. This instructor was a BEAST. Holy crap. She was pure evil. For the next 40 minutes it was nothing but "ADD RESISTANCE ADD RESISTANCE ADD RESISTANCE ADD RESISTANCE AND GET. OFF. THE. SEAT!" Three major climbs and at least 4 minor/shorter ones, and I was dripping. I mean drenched. Like, when people say "sweat is fat crying," my fat wasn't just crying. It was HYPERVENTILATING. Halfway through the class I thought I was genuinely going to vomit on the girl in front of me, and she had such a cute exercise top on that I forced myself to swallow it and push myself as hard as I could without my heart giving out. Not only was it an intense class, but it was about 20 bikes in a 9x9-ish room and it was freaking hot in there. I can't remember the last time I had such a prominent sweat line on the buttcrack of my pants.
So, rather than give up. I continue. I can't always keep up with the same RPMs the instructor is looking for, because I think my muscles actually laughed out loud when the instructor demanded 110 RPMs at almost maximum resistance, but I was still working my ass off by the end of the 50 minute course. I felt like I was going to die, or throw up, or throw up and then die, but I survived, cooled down relatively quickly, and gave my body a good stretch. And all the women who had noticed that I was new at the start of the class congratulated me for doing so well; apparently most beginners can't even finish. As one woman put it, "you've never done this before and her class is NOT for beginners." And then told me if I wanted to puke, I was doing it right, haha.
I have to say, long story short, I loved it and will take the class again, but wow. It was easily the most difficult, grueling, intense workout I have EVER done. Ever. In the 1.5 years that I have been exercising at least somewhat consistently, I have never encountered something quite so extreme. But completing that really showed me how much I can push myself and what my body is capable of, even as I'm working to get back to the top fitness level I was at a year ago. I can't remember ever being more proud of myself. I'm beaming and I feel invincible. And I know that survival means I can only get better from here. If I completed it now, I can complete it again. And over time I'll get better and better and faster and faster and I know later on down the road I'll be able to not only complete the class, but I'll be able to do it while hitting every RPM the instructor asks for. :)
Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go shower, because I REEK.