Audra Yocom is a certified personal trainer based out of Los Angeles, who will be answering your fitness questions on a weekly basis (every Monday) and will also bring you monthly fitness tips via her regular column (resuming in April) to help us to disspell those myths we’ve all been subjected to regarding fitness at one point or another in our battle with the bulge. You can also hear Audra with her fitness tips during the early morning (5am – 7am) A.M. Blast block of upbeat tunes geared towards your morning workout and via her new “Fitness and Health” Show the second and fourth Wednesday of every month at 7:30 pm on intraffikradio.com (http://tinyurl.com/intraffikradio) or under Intraffikradio under the eclectic section under iTunes Radio. To learn more about Audra or to inquire about training sessions visit her site http://audrayocom.com.
QUESTION: I want to start taking a spinning class, but am a little intimidated. Every time I see one they look so intense and fast-paced I’m afraid I won’t be able to keep up. Is there anything I can do to work up to that level of biking so that I don’t make a total fool of myself and pass out from exhaustion after 40 seconds of a class?
ANSWER: I have been a spinning/cycling addict for some time, but I still remember the first time I tried it and I was just as intimidated as you!
Luckily I had a really great teacher who made sure to guide me and teach me the proper technique right from the beginning. She also continued to coach me continuously each class thereafter if my form was ever off. It’s really important to have a teacher that knows what they are doing and who will gently guide you.
When going to your first class, show up early and tell the instructor you are new so they can teach you how to set your bike up properly and so they know not to push you too hard. Any decent cycling instructor will ask their class in the very beginning if there is anyone new anyway, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Keep it at a slow and steady pace and don’t add too much resistance or try to go too fast. Building your endurance takes time. Just keep going and pushing a little harder each time.
Breathing is really important when cycling. It’s an intense exercise, so breathing in and out through the nose is a good way to regulate breathing so as to keep from hyperventilating. If at any time you feel lightheaded, or find it hard to catch your breath, back off the resistance or slow it down.
If you aren’t comfortable trying to stand when they tell you to stand yet, don’t. Listen to your body and work up to doing anything you aren’t comfortable with. If you can’t keep up with everyone else don’t be hard on yourself. It’s your first time. Just keep going back and before you know it you’ll be a pro, and remember everyone in there had to start somewhere!
Audra will be answering your fitness questions every Monday. If you have questions you’d like answered you may email her at Audra@intraffik.com or send to firstname.lastname@example.org. To see if your questions have been addressed check out past “Ask Audra” Column Entries here