7 Tips For Cycling Class That'll Help You Get The Most Out Of The Workout
I don't know about you, but if I'm spending money on a workout class, I want to get the most out of it as humanly possible. The thing is, I can work out (ahem, for free) in the comfort of my own home, whenever and however I want to. I love workout classes like cycling for the atmosphere and to get that extra oomph in my routine, but whenever I leave feeling unchallenged, it all seems like a waste of time, not to mention money. Thankfully, a few experts have shared some of their best tips for cycling classes to help you make sure you're always getting the most out of this workout.
From proper attire to the right warmup stretches, these experts know what it takes to have a rewarding sweat sesh each and every time — one that, time and again, will make you want to keep returning to your bike and challenging yourself in new ways. Because, let's be real: Making the most of your cycling class isn't as easy just listening to and doing everything the instructor tells you. Sometimes you walk into a cycling class and you're just not feeling it that day — which is totally fine. But it doesn't mean the entire experience has to be a waste.
Here are seven ways to get more out of your next cycling class, as told by the experts.
Get To Class Early If You Can
Jessica Cifelli a master instructor at CycleBar, recommends arriving at least 15 minutes early to your cycling class to get more out of your workout. "You will not only get a chance to let the instructor know about any of your injuries, questions, or concerns, but this will allow you time to get your bike properly set up," she tells Elite Daily over email. "A great instructor or staff member will not only help you set your bike up, but they will teach you how to do it on your own as well."
After all, the setup is essential to having a comfortable and fun workout.
Proper Attire For Your Ride Is Essential
For a really good cycling workout, you'll want to make sure you're not only dressed in athletic-wear, but breathable athletic-wear, says Cifelli. While there are fans for ventilation in most cycling studios, she explains, it can warm up significantly once the class starts riding, potentially making for an uncomfortable 45 minutes if you're not wearing the right clothing.
"Sports bras, dri-fit tanks, athletic leggings, or shorts are generally the best avenue when it comes to dressing for your ride. The moisture-wicking fabric doesn't weigh heavy on your body or abrasively rub against your skin as you ride," the instructor tells Elite Daily.
Keep Your Phone In Your Locker
Cycling studios have become a sanctuary for many riders, and to help maintain that atmosphere, some locations have firm rules against bringing phones inside the class. "While it can be off-putting to the instructor teaching in front of you, the dark room and the glowing light from your phone will be extremely distracting to riders around you," Cifelli explains. "Not to mention, it will be a nice 45 minutes to an hour of disconnecting from the outside world."
She's right, my friend — try to enjoy the fact that you have this time to focus solely on yourself and your body.
Warm Up Before You Get On The Bike
According to orthopedic specialists Drs. Leon Popovitz and Michael Mizhiritsky, it's super important to warm up before your cycling class with the right stretches so you can avoid running into any injuries during your workout.
"Pigeon pose can loosen muscles and prevent hip injuries," the doctors tell Elite Daily.
Move Around While You're Cycling
Popovitz and Mizhiritsky recommend you "vary your position" throughout a cycling class, rather than stay in the same stance the entire time. More specifically, the doctors say that periodically tilting your head side to side will help release tension in your neck — something that could be an uncomfortable nuisance and distract you during your workout.
Remind Yourself That It's Not A Competition
While it might make you push yourself a little harder when you pretend you're "competing" with the rider next to you in your cycling class, Popovitz and Mizhiritsky say it's probably best not to fall too deeply into this mindset, as it could "result in overexertion and injury."
Instead, they suggest, "strive for your personal best" — compete against yourself, and where you were at yesterday, or even last month in your fitness journey.
Stick Around After Class
According to Cifelli, staying for a few minutes after your cycling class can give you the opportunity to speak with the instructor about any thoughts or questions you have regarding the ride.
"As an instructor, I love using time post-class to talk to new riders about how their bike setup felt, and any concerns they had with some of the more challenging aspects of the ride," she tells Elite Daily. And remember: There's no such thing as a stupid question.