My early days of bike riding were not particularly auspicious. My parents love to tell the stories of how I was the last kid on the block to master a two-wheeler. I wasn’t particularly coordinated and I think I was terrified of falling! I eventually figured it out and spent many a childhood day blissfully riding around our neighborhood.
And then I just stopped. Somewhere around the time I got my driver’s license the bike just lost its allure and I took a long (really long) hiatus from riding. I have friends who ride, my husband rides, and of course my kids ride. But not me.
Until this weekend. Now before you get all excited I did not go buy a bike nor did I hit the open road. Instead, I eased back into the saddle on a Real Ryder spinning bike. Have you heard of these?
Not your ordinary spinning bike, the Real Ryder brand allows you to shift from side to side mimicking the feel of a turn on a road bike. Like this.
This engages your core and provides another fitness benefit to the workout beyond the intense cardio you’re getting by pedaling. The leaning takes a little bit to master – I’m definitely still learning! (And in full disclosure my seat is S-O-R-E after years of being out of the bike saddle. Ugh. I hear that resolves after about 3 rides.) They even build in some arm conditioning near the end of the class so you really get a full body experience.
I took two 45-minute classes this weekend at the Power Ryde Studio in Loveland where I live. This studio, operated by a mother-daughter team, Meg & Casey Hilmer, has been open for about a month and they have great introductory specials (e.g. 3 classes for $15 or an unlimited summer for $225!). Casey is a competitive marathon runner who was introduced to RealRyder while a student at the University of Michigan and was the genius with the idea to bring these bikes to Cincinnati. (You can imagine how much I love the story of a young entrepreneur following her passion to get people healthier!)
I also loved that while I was riding, I pushed beyond what I would have done left to my own devices – something about the room full of people, the music, and the vibrant instructors stoked my competitive fire making me work harder. Even as a non-cyclist, I loved this workout. But if you ARE a rider, then you have to check this out.
Why? Here’s a little bit of insight from the Real Ryder website, “RealRyder® International is the only indoor bike maker on the market that focuses on one thing, and one thing only: Making the best indoor bike on the planet. Ever see a kid ask to put the training wheels back on? We haven’t. We’ve taken the training wheels off the indoor bike; once you’ve experience our ride you will join the legions of riders who adamantly state that they’ll never ride a conventional stationary bike again.”