Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Spin Class Heroes

Really cool sunset going down right now. Kind of sucks that it's happening at 8:00, but four months from now when the sun's going down at 4:30 and I'm in the midst of a near-suicidal bout of SAD (yup, I'll own up to it, it's all I can do not to cry like Paula Radcliffe at an Olympic Marathon - Jesus that was a bit of a low blow - when there are two and a half hours of sunlight a day. Keep in mind that most times my office is somewhere in what will soon be an underground parking garage. That picture on GamJams a few weeks ago was like the executive suite at Google compared to my usual corporate digs - I never get a window), I'll be jonesing like a fiend for a 6:00 sunset. We always want what we can't have.

Went to spinning class tonight. The outside ride on Sunday made another week of pounding out sub LT intervals seem as boring as it actually is, so I decided to join the class to keep things interesting. Those workouts they do are WAY too hard for the people in the class. Imagine doing a pretty hard VO2 interval and then having some guy scream at you "okay, now take it up one more notch for me!!!!" W. T. F? Ever wonder why most of the people in spin class are kind of not looking as fit as your average real cyclist? Ever wonder why a pyramid is big at the bottom instead of the top? It's like they took the Joe Friel book and ripped out all the pages except for the ones that cover the two weeks before your big important race.

Some of the people almost get it too. There was a woman in there who I would have thought was a real cyclist, except you know for the part about her being in a spin class and not riding outside on a beautiful night. Maybe she just broke her leg this spring, I don't know. Anyhow, she even had a mismatched pair of Defeet socks on. Fashion faux pas, to be sure, but a little hard core. Just a little. The granny pannys underneath the PI cycling shorts (and not the cheapies neither) gave the lie. A spin class hero to be sure.

I threw my last crutch away today. Screw it I don't need them anymore and it's nice to have my hands back. But I'm walking down the stairs to the locker room just as this guy is walking up. My leg is swollen like the Hindenburg and looking about as stable, but the guy stops in his tracks and gives me this really "holy goat raping shit" look and I'm like "what?" He says "wow, are you okay - oh, sorry, I thought you were bleeding. So sorry." So that's how attractive my scar is these days.

Work's going cuckoo these days. Talk about an LT interval. I tore through my first cell phone battery before 9 this morning. Of course they only give us these piece of shit Nextel bricks, circa 1997. They do tend to last through some amazing feats of strength, though, like the time I sent one about 50 feet across a garage into a block wall. It still worked for like three weeks after that. If only I could save some of the rage for the weekend I'd be kicking some serious ass at the races. But my job is way ahead of schedule, as understaffed as we are, while the company's other big project is overstaffed, over budget and over schedule. Which means when we go to the monster that ate Fairfax (our next job), I will be seated in the center of the cockpit. Or at least very near the center. Closer than any of those wankers from the other job.


Jim said...

Spin class is always really really weird. The instructor says something like, "go at 80% now" and I go at 8/10ths perceived exertion. For what that's worth, 8/10ths is really f***ing hard to maintain. Then I'm rocking that for like 5 minutes. Blood is starting to pulse out my ears. Then she'll say, "Okay, now go 100% for a minute!!!!" (You can see the exclamation points coming out of her mouth when she says it). So I give it everything I have for a minute. My lungs turn inside out and they're hanging out of my mouth, and flapping on the greasy, plastic handlebar. Then she goes, "Okay, crank it up to full resistance and give it 110% for just 30 seconds!!!!" and she throws in a quick Tony _ _ _ _ TV marketing, "You CAN do IT!!!!" just to twist the knife.

I'm like, "110%? Really? WTF is this? Spinal Tap, where our knobs go up to 11 or something?" and I sit down and start to do an easy spin just as myocardial infarction sets in, and smoke starts rising off the friction brake because I've had it cranked down to the stops and besides you can't actually turn it while you're sitting, if it's set to that resistance level.

Meanwhile the really svelte hot chick next to me, the one who hasn't broken a sweat yet (it would mess up her makeup), gives me the evil eye (Occulus Corruptus) for having messed up the vibe of the class for being such a f***ing slacker pussy and taking it easy when everybody else is busting their ass so hard and giving 100, nay, 150% effort.

Yeah, I hate spin class. It could be an awesome workout to be in a spin class led by a cyclist, you could do major VO2 work on those bikes, but I've always found normal spin class to be an hour's worth of fake effort, at least for most of the people doing the class. They don't know how to suffer, and the instructors don't seem to know how to teach them to suffer or motivate them to suffer.

RayMan said...

Spin classes are for the wannabes'.

But, don't ever take a spin class in Italy. I did last year, and thought I was taking a gymnastics class. The dude had us practically jump over the handlebars, doing one legs pumps on the opposite peddle. Stupidest thing I've ever seen.