Six weeks ago, I wrote that I had found a spinning studio that I not only enjoy but I look forward to going to. Looking forward to exercise. Am I mad? Yes, actually, I am mad keen about Edge Cycle.
It’s not a place you come to pose and look pretty (as you can see above) but once you’ve finished a 45 minute class – or an hour on Saturdays – you’ll have burnt close to 1,000 calories. After you’ve finished class, you’ll look pretty – slimmer, healthier and happier.
I started doing Edge because I’m training for a marathon in Istanbul and hoping to get a personal best. The last time I ran a marathon was in November 2013, when I ran 3: 36 in New York. Since then, I’ve managed to put on 10lbs in weight and although some of it is muscle, every lb will add minutes to my time. My thinking was that if I can burn the calories at Edge it will make running easier. But the more classes I did, the more I found that calorie-burn isn’t the only benefit of going to Edge Cycle and the trainers put my obsession with weight into perspective. Let me explain the benefits in a list:
(1) It’s a full body workout
Edge is the only studio to offer Bootcamp classes as well as straight cycling classes. In bootcamp, half the time is spent on the floor doing squats, arm exercises and core-strengthening moves. Above you can see Edge trainer Belinda Shipman in a plank – there are quite a lot of these helping you get rid of that muffin-top.
(2) The trainers specialise in indoor cycling and they’re inspirational
Edge’s instructors aren’t just qualified to teach (unlike at some other spin studios) they are super-qualified and are champions in their own right. I never knew that there were levels of qualifications for spinning but there is and the Edge team has the best you can get. Belinda has taught indoor cycling for more than 20 years and she is a triathlete. Gary Spencer is a GB triathlete. They’re all super lean and muscly and this makes me want to do what they do because it’s worked for them.
Sitting down with Gary after a class, he told me that the important factors for marathon running was hydration and relaxation and this made me think. If I’m stressing about my weight or my kit or what everyone around me is doing then I’m not going to get a good time. I went into Edge hoping to sculpt my body…I ended up improving my mind as well as my body.
(3) It’s like a nightclub with lights and great music…most of the time
I mean, look at the photo above. The lights change colour, the music can go up super-loud and there are lots of gorgeous people. If you wear anything a bit fluorescent (or have a fluroscent water bottle) it will shine in the dark. All of the trainers have different music so maybe check the Edge cycle website to check up in advance. The reason I say most of the time is they do like to sneak in a bit of cheese at the end. Think Elton’s ‘I’m Still Standing’ in Gary’s class or maybe Taylor Swift or Justin Bieber in Belinda’s class. When you hear this, you know the hard work is over.
(4) You never know what to expect
In one class Gary, above, turned up in face paint. That was the class where he split the room into ‘A team’ and ‘other A team’ and made us do step ups on the stage as well as squats, squats, more squats and boxing punches. In another class, Belinda decided to make it 15 minutes longer. Some bootcamp trainers like to give you two short floor sessions whereas others focus more on bike work. At Edge, you’ll never get bored. There’s always a nervous feeling before class…which translates to more endorphins afterwards.
(5) You’ll work harder than you thought you would and find out you’re stronger than you imagined.
At Edge you can set your own pace – there are no strict rules – but seeing everyone else work hard is motivation. Also, the trainers can spot if you’re working to your limits and may well come and turn up your resistance. With the rhythm from the music and the lights something happens to make you connect with the bike and before you know it you’re sweating, even if you planned to have an easy session. The more you come, the more you’ll find yourself hitting higher speeds (up to 130 rpm) and turning up the resistance because your legs are stronger. Trust me, this does happen!
(6) Most importantly – you get results.
I lost 5lbs in 6 weeks. (It would have been more if I stopped drinking Champagne, but I only have myself to blame for that. I do have to Live Like a VIP sometimes…)
After the marathon, I will be back at Edge. If you want to lose weight, feel good about life and find an exercise you enjoy not dread, then I hope I’ll see you in class. Visit the Edge Cycle website for more details.