Monday, February 20, 2012

Embracing the Climb Part II

I continued with my "embrace the climb" mission yesterday. My tri team had a group "ride" scheduled but we had to bring our own bikes and trainers (still too cold here for the average Joe to ride outside. Only the bad a$$es are riding outside right now). Queue excuses.....we are trying to sell our condo. We had an open house yesterday afternoon and the place needed a lot of work. We are also hiding all of our clutter in miscellaneous places (the car, the shed, my parents house, my in-laws house, etc). The bike and the trainer just aren't all that easily accessible at the moment. End excuses.

I did have the opportunity to participate in one of our other TNT coach's (Tim) spinning classes. It's at a gym with spinning bikes so all I needed to do was locate my cycle shoes and a sweat towel. Easy enough. I was in....and let the coach know I was interested. I then found out it was a 90 minute class. Lord help me. I haven't been on a bike of any kind since probably October. I was in for a treat.

I'm still smiling because we must not have started climbing yet...I was also sweating a lot which must have been why no one wanted a bike near me.

Not really knowing what to expect, I just went with it. We were spinning fast but easy. Tim gave us a heads up that a climb was coming. We heard the first few bars of the amazing "Baba O'Riley" from The Who....and where told to add resistance and get up out of the seat.

"Tim, please don't make me hate The Who because of this climb."

Tim then reminded us of one or our team heroes who's cancer recently returned and he's undergoing chemo again. I'm not going through chemo. The least I can do I muscle my way up that climb....all 5 minutes and 7 seconds of it.

We spun easy but fast again for a little while when it was time for Tim to pull out the big guns.

Knowing I am a huge Pearl Jam/Eddie Vedder fan, Tim was sure to point this out....and then told us to add resistance and get up out of the seat again.

"Tim, I can't sing and climb at the same time."

5 minutes later, I wanted to fall off the bike into a puddle of my own sweat. But I didn't. I'm too stubborn. And so I kept spinning.

We got a "rest" and time to let our heart rates come back from jacked up to slightly elevated.

We got a warning that we had another climb coming. What?? Did I really have another one in me? Embrace the climb, Amber, stop whining!

Tim then shared that when one of our other team heroes was undergoing treatment, he literally had to learn to walk again. And that's all I needed to get up out of the seat for another climb.

I was starting to feel really hungry by this point. Lunch time was approaching and I had been spinning for nearly and hour and a half. Remember, I haven't been on a bike in months. Let's just say that my derriere isn't used to sitting in the saddle. Towards the end of the class, I was more than ready to get up out of the seat. I would have preferred to get off the bike completely but that wasn't in the cards just yet.

Tim then pulled out a blast from the past. In a matter of seconds, I was transported back to high school.

It was a fun way to end the class....though another 4+ minutes of climbing was killing my hip flexors. We did spun out for a little while to bring the heart rate back down and then it was time to stumble off the bike. Even though it was crazy hard, I was dripping in sweat and it felt great.

It's now been more than 24 hours since the class and I have all kinds of reminders of my 90 minute spin (with 20 minutes of climbing). My shoulders HURT (I tend to raise my shoulders and tighten my grip on the bike when I start to get tired). My butt HURTS. My legs feel OK....until I have to walk up stairs and then I curse Tim the entire way.

It's a wonderful thing, embracing the climb.


  1. This sounds like an awesome workout! Awesomely hard, but awesome all the same.

  2. Way to go! Sounds like a good, but tough one. We had a climbing workout at my cycle class on Thurs and I thought I was going to die. We made it through :)

  3. What an amazing workout...and great motivation. Nice work!

  4. Totally dig the workout music. :-) Annnnd, I thought of you the other day, how in a recent blog you mentioned something about making actual goals vs. making a broad, generic goal (aka, "I'm going to get more exercise, I'm going to get in shape, etc.") and I've been really trying to take that to heart and follow your example. Those weren't your exact words, but that's what I took from it. I've been making generic goals for so long, and that's probably why I'm not succeeding. I'm spending this week breaking things down so they are more attainable, and I'm sure I'll have my PJ playlist with me to keep me company. :-) So thanks for the jumpstart and motivation!

  5. I have to check my HR monitor for the 'Jacked up' setting......... LOL

  6. Ack, 90 minutes of spin! Go with your bad self. That had to be killer. way to push through it.