Journey To Becoming A Spinning Instructor...

Never thought I would title a blog post like that. I mean when I started this weight loss/fitness journey almost four years ago - Spinning wasn't even on my radar.

But, as the pounds starting coming off, I found myself comfortable ENOUGH to take my first Spinning class.

Yes, I hung out in the back row ... in the corner ... where no one could really see what I was doing.

Thankfully the Spinning Instructor I usually attended also liked to keep the lights low ... maybe because it was like 5:30 in the morning. :P

But, once I started attending Spinning classes I got hooked. Especially because of the diverse population of the class. There were people of all ethnicities, sizes, athletic abilities and ages.

Spinning appeared to be a class that ANYONE could take ... and I loved that.

The more and more I attended Spinning classes the more comfortable I felt on the bike.

Oh don't think I started plopping my big butt in the front row. HELL NO!

I - to this day - tend to keep myself in the back row, but I don't tend to think that everyone else is staring at me judging my form.

I love Spinning because you get in your OWN zone and can make the class what YOU want. LOVE!

When I was featured in TimeOut Chicago in December 2011 about my weight loss - I talked about my love of Spinning so they had me do my photo shoot on the Spinning bike! :)



Who would have thought that 1) I would be in a magazine and 2) They would want to take my picture on a Spinning bike.

But that whole experience just solidified my love of Spinning.

So when we made the decision to move back to Boston in 2012, the idea of possibly becoming a Spinning Instructor started popping into my head.

I got wrapped into running road races and becoming a Weight Watchers Leader during that time so I just attended my usual 2-3 Spinning classes a week and the idea of becoming a Spinning Instructor was pushed to the back burner.

But that all changed in December 2012 when I finally took the plunge and signed up on December 18 for the Spinning Instructor Orientation for March 9, 2013.

There was no looking back now.


And if I didn't like it or didn't do well - at least the all-day orientation would give me a nice lesson in the background of Spinning.

Before I knew it it was time to attend the Orientation in Manchester, NH ... which was yesterday.

It is roughly an hour trip from Boston to Manchester so I woke up at 5:45 to make sure I had all the essentials packed - lunch, snacks, water, workout clothes, manual, etc - and hit the road at 6:30.

I made sure to stop by Dunkin' Donuts for an Iced Coffee before I hit the highway. ;)

The drive was simple since pretty much everyone else was probably asleep at that time. It was simple until I was about 1/2 a mile from the facility then I got into trouble. I kept circling and circling, but couldn't find the right path to the Executive Health & Sports Center.

Thankfully I found a local Dunkin' Donuts and the women there knew exactly where to send me and within 3 minutes I was there. :)

And THAT is when the nerves really started setting in...

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This adventure was FAR out of my comfort zone and as I saw the other students walking in and looking super fit ... I started to doubt my right to be there.

But, with the help of my other half and my Twitter peeps, I got the courage to walk into the conference room.

There were 20 of us in this particular orientation with an amazing Master Trainer Jennifer Ward.

We went around introducing ourselves and of the 20 people in that group, 4 had lost over 100 pounds ... including one woman who shed 198 pounds. Wow did I feel lame with my 60+ lb weight loss. (I was the third person to introduce myself so those 4 people were all after I shared).

(Editors Note: Yes I know I cannot compare my weight loss journey to anyone else's because I didn't have 100 lbs to lose - but I still get caught in that initial reaction of "man, my story isn't that great.")

The majority of the morning was spent learning the background and basics of Spinning - which was thoroughly entertaining - before we actually got on the bikes to ride.

We learned all the basics of the Spinning bikes and how to truly fit someone to a bike ... and then it was time to ride.

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 Our first of two rides of the day was all about the forms and moves of Spinning.

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It was a great experience. I felt more knowledgable just walking out of that ride.

We then broke for lunch at about 2:30/2:45, which made the afternoon fly since we were supposed to end around 5:30.

The afternoon was looking more into how to put together a Spinning class, which I was most interested in. It was enlightening. There is SO much that goes into a 45 minutes Spinning class.

Before we knew it, it was time for a shortened final ride - since we were running a little over - and then the day would be complete.

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The Master Trainer put us through a great 30 minute Spinning class. Boy was I feeling it, but loved every minute of it.

And with that the day was over and I officially completed the Spinning Instructor Orientation...

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... but the journey isn't over.

This certificate does give me permission to now lead Spinning classes, but I still need to pass an online assessment to officially be a certified Spinning Instructor.

And then of course I need to start searching for a gym to teach at. Eeek!! Another "out of the comfort zone" experience I will be going through. :P

But I went into the day frightened and doubting whether I deserved to be there and left feeling stronger and more determined to reach the Finish Line! :)

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Additional Note: After publishing this post, I actually took ... AND PASSED ... my Spinning Instructor Assessment!! WOOOO!!!