Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Spin-gina Pain

Oh how I love my spin class.  A sweaty, tough cardio workout that also shapes your legs and butt like nothing else.  After class, my legs are sore jello, but as any woman can tell you, that's not all that was sore.  The spin-gina pain was so bad that I almost stopped going. It not only hurt during class, but my entire underwear area felt badly bruised for days after a spin class.  I didn't want to give up spinning, so I researched my options.  First I tried one of those gel filled seats, but it didn't work out very well for me:
These gel seats are nice and squishy, but I felt like maybe they were too squishy.  Since it was so super padded, it offered no support and I would sink my entire body into the seat instead of sitting up on my sit bones.  I keep it in my gym bag in case I forget my padded shorts, but otherwise, I don't use it anymore.

These padded bike shorts really work for me.

These bike shorts look good on no one!  They are tight and make you look (and feel) like you are wearing an adult diaper under spandex, but they WORK! The padding is placed in just the right places to make you more comfortable in the saddle.  Since the padding is not as thick as the seat cushion, I have better form because I can still feel the solid seat under me.

Having correct form on your bike helps immensely with that darn spin-gina pain.  Engaging your core and making sure your seat and handle bars are at the correct height help make you more comfortable.  Any good spin instructor will help you figure out what that is when you go to class.  Don't be afraid to ask for help if you are not sure about how high/low to adjust everything.
One last item that has helped me in spin class are a pair of shoes that clip into the pedals: 

Obviously, mine have never been outside.  The drivers here in San Antonio are morons and I refuse to be on the road with them.

These shoes force you to have good form.  They help create a nice circular motion that make me utilize my quads and my hamstrings. When I was just using regular shoes, I overused my quads and when they got tired, I would bounce in the saddle...which was a pain in the butt, for real! The stiff soles help keep my feet from hurting and the curve of the shoes force me to keep my knees in on the bike when a lot of times, people want their knees to fly out while riding. 
People seem to think you need to be a cycling pro to wear the shorts and the shoes...and I am FAR from being an expert.  I just do it because I think it's a fun way to get my cardio in. I bought the shoes and shorts because I believe paying the money for the right equipment, is better than paying the money to see a doctor when you are injured later.  Also, I'm cheap, so if my brain tries to make excuses for why I shouldn't go to spin class, I think about the money I invested in the shoes and the shorts and tell my brain to stop wasting my money.  
Thanks to my shorts, my shoes, good form, and a tight core, I don't have the pain I used to have from spin class.

If you have any questions about spinning (or preventing the hurt) feel free to ask and I will help to the best of my ability.  If I can't help you, I know a lot of people who can. Hope you give it a try.

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