With fall temperatures dropping below the nineties aka out of my Dallas girl comfort zone, I have been a bit panicked to find some fun ways to move exercise indoors on the weekends. After a fun Bounce class, I was lucky to find out about the soft opening of a new spin studio in Highland Park called Flywheel. Flywheel is a national chain and this is their first studio in Texas. It seems like spin has had a big reemergence and I felt very cool and trendy to be trying this new fitness spot!
I did spin classes for a while, but when I went to Flywheel on Saturday I hadn't been on a spin bike in probably over four years. So basically I was terrified. One thing that caused me to kind of fade out from spin was to really feel confident and get great results from class, it seemed like you really need good spin shoes. I am the worst about investing in good athletic gear of any kind, so this was a big deterrent to me. I was so pumped when I got an email from Flywheel a few days before my class encouragining me to make an account online with my shoe size so they could get my spin shoes ready for me!
Once you have a Flywheel account, you just come in to the studio and sign in at one of their laptops. You will have alrady reserved your spot in class online prior to coming and will have your bike number. Your shoes will be prepped and in the cubby below the laptops that are marked for your bike number. No long lines to check in with one person working the desk before a class, which is so much the norm at other studio style fitness classes. I hope all other gyms and studios are going "oh, duhhhh" right now. Genius.
Markus came with me to class and I was really excited to get an experience comparison. Markus loves cycling and has done crazy 150 mile rides before and even has a spin bike at home. I was pretty impressed when my spin shoes from Flywheel were the exact model he has for road and spin biking! They really were a huge game changer for me. They really lock you to the bike so I felt so much more confident moving on and off the seat knowing my shoe wasn't going to slip off and send me flying. These are the things spastic people have to guard themselves against when exercising.
Remember when I mentioned not investing in atheletic gear? Please check out the secksi paint spattered capris. I was looking real good next to the Lululemon team who was visiting the studio during the same class. I think they might have been tempted to take me on as a charity project, but my feet seem to pedal just as fast in my perfectly worn in, customed decorated paint pants, thank you.
One thing that usually gets me about studios is that you pay more than a gym, which is often worth it for the customized instruction, but the amentities are lacking. I was so surprised to see that Flywheel was completely the exception to the rule. There is a large locker area so everyone can spin happy knowing their cute handbags are secure. (True story - I once left a yoga studio who told me I could not bring the "materialistic energy" of my Speedy bag into the classroom, but I could leave it by the door. Sorry but no yogi is above grabbing a free LV on their way out of class if I trail behind. No way.)
I've also often marveled at studios that offer 7am classes but no shower. That is a lot of driving for someone wanting to get a morning workout or very icky. Flywheel has multiple private restrooms and full showers that are stocked with Bliss products. There is also unlimited water that is super filtered and ready for your reusable water bottle. You can imagine the ways that this excited my inner tree hugger.
As for the actual class - it was such a great experience! Markus and I both agreed that we loved the teaching style. Sometimes spin teachers can be really shrill and drill seargent-y, yelling out instructions. Our intructor knew the microphone was his friend and was direct and clear without ever coming off as yelling. It made for a really positive and pleasant class!
A huge benefit of this class is the technology. My biggest problem with spin is how subjective it can be to determine if you are at the right speed and resistance. The Flywheel bikes are custom made for their company and have small computer screens so the instructors can give you the base numbers you want to be at for optimal results. This was one of the first spin classes where I felt like my effort was really consistent and I wasn't overdoing it in the beginning and then working the rest of class to recover. It's perfect for people like me who haven't taken a class in a while and are getting used to the feeling again or people trying spin for the first time.
One thing that I thought I would not like but ended up really appreicating was the leader board! There are two screens at the front of class that show who is at the highest currents based on resistance and RPM. Since I was getting the dust off my spin game, class was a big challenge for me. I assumed I would be one of the lowest performers in the class, but I was shocked to see little bike 44 in the top five on the leaderboard! Can I get a "You Go Glen Coco?!" It just goes to prove that sometimes with workouts, it's hard because you're accomplishing something, not because you stink.
Flywheel has some other really great features, like the stadium style setup (like my sweet pic above? Note to self: Do not attempt photography after spin when your body is a large pile of jello bliss) and the great incorporation of arm weights for some songs. My favorite perk might have been how the staff lines up outside the class afterwards to give you high fives. Um, I love high fives!! I hope I remember that correctly. Maybe I just went around high fiving people. I was feeling really, really good so anything is possible...
You can get your own free class at Flywheel by signing up for an account at Flywheelsports.com. There are new schedules and fun theme classes around the corner so make sure to like their Facebook page, Flywheel Texas, as well!
I'm so glad I heard of this place for the preview and wil definitely be back. I was invited to try the class without any knowledge that I would be blogging about my experience, but I was happy to share the fun with you all!