Erin Hesselink takes on a spinning class at the MAC. PHOTO: FARNIA FEKRI

Spinning dizzy at the MAC

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By Erin Hesselink

My stereotype of spin class: It’s an easy class for soccer moms to build up a slight sweat.

I have never been so wrong about anything in my life.

When I got home, I was physically, mentally and emotionally exhausted. The Spin and Sculpt class kicked my butt – in a good way.

“Spin and Sculpt” actually turned into spin and stretch because the spinning part went longer than expected. That was slightly disappointing but I kept spinning. Whatever you do, just keep spinning.

The bikes are all stored in the closet and everyone needs to grab their own and drag it to the studio floor. I found one and started tugging it. I pulled it a little harder — and pulled it and pulled it. I was moving steadily, inch-by-inch when the instructor saw me and taught me the advanced technique of lifting pushing the bike. Turns out there are little wheels under one end of the bike for this very purpose.

I’m not sure if it was the tug-of-war with the bike that gave it away, but I think she noticed that I’m a spin class rookie. She gave me my own private mini-lesson before class started and taught me that my bike seat is supposed to be at the height of my hip and my handlebars parallel to that.

Always get to this exercise class early. They ran out of bikes and some sad souls were turned down at the door.

After a slow warm up, the instructor bumped up the intensity. We started going faster — standing and sitting and standing and leaning and swerving. It was crazy and tiring and ridiculously awesome.

She would say “Stand!” and we would start to stand but then she would say “Sit!” — and we were barely standing. It starts to feel like a sort of dance. Your body becomes a trained machine because it can do all of the fast movements and rise and sit on command without you even thinking about it.

After an hour of this, it was time for stretching, which was heavenly.

Everyone put away their bike, grabbed a gymnastic mat and found a spot on the floor again. The instructor led us in basic stretches and my eyes started to shut — but then  I remembered I was in a Mattamy Athletic Centre (MAC) studio surrounded by sweaty women and one man.

The Spin and Sculpt class costs $8 and it happens every Saturday morning, from 11:00 – 12:15 at the MAC.

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