A New Ride

When I was a student at the University of Central Florida, Hurricane Charley hit and caused some pretty intense damage on campus. The UCF gym was affected pretty badly and for months students didn’t have access to the amazing workout facility.

UCF worked to move weights into other rooms around campus, but everything felt very out of whack and I began limiting my workouts to group exercise classes since they were well organized. Spinning was my favorite! (This was also during my “cardio queen” phase, so I wasn’t too bummed out about not having access to weights at the time.)

This morning I took a spinning class and remembered why I liked it so much. Spinning really is such a great workout. Talk about sweaty!

Though I used to take spinning classes at UCF and post-college at our gym in Orlando, this was my first time taking a class at our gym in Ocala.

Our gym apparently spent some dough on some snazzy new spinning bikes! I’ve never seen anything like them. 

A 0171


At first the bikes looked totally normal, but after adjusting my seat and hopping on, I noticed that there wasn’t a nob to rotate to change gears, but a little silver thing to tweak up and down that altered the resistance.

keiser spinning bike

(It’s the silver piece right below the handlebars.)

The bike was also equipped with a computer that told riders the following information:

  • RPM
  • Power Output Displays in Watts
  • Heart Rate (Polar compatible)
  • Pedaling Time
  • Gear (Resistance)
  • Odometer / Trip Distance

Knowing my RPM and resistance level was incredibly helpful because the instructor would use it as a reference point, saying things like, “Your RPM should be between 90 and 95.” I’ve never really had a direct measure of my work effort in spinning before and loved having a way to make sure I was working in the zone I was supposed to be in. It was also neat to see how “far” I biked at the end of the 45-minute class.

It made me think that taking a treadmill class that did something similar would be really cool. I’m not sure how a gym could work that out since treadmills are usually located with all of the other cardio machines, but I think a group treadmill class would be awesome! I’d love to tackle treadmill interval workouts and intense incline walking with other people by my side, motivating me to kick my booty!


Breakfast this morning was the usual egg, cheese and jelly sandwich.

egg sandwich 001egg sandwich 006

I are my breakfast at the kitchen table with a hot mug of Georgia pecan coffee. It’s a rainy morning in Ocala, so eating a warm breakfast sandwich and sipping on a steamy mug of coffee felt oh-so-cozy.

Still Missing Blogger Reviews Updated

Just a little head’s up that the following book reviews were added to the Still Missing review page yesterday:

I was off my rocker earlier in the week and posted my review early, so these blogger reviews were sent my way after my review was published. Check ‘em out!

No Marathon on the Books

To avoid any confusion over yesterday’s post, I just wanted to let you guys know that I am not planning on training for a marathon (nor is my relationship with Ryan on the fritz). Those were just two examples I used for the whole “yes but/ yes and” analogy. Sorry to disappoint my running friends out there and any evil little rascals who may be rooting for the big Fagan family break up of 2012.

living with ryan

I will not be running billions of miles and Sadie will continue to hog a bed shared by her two loving humans.

Question of the Morning

  • What is an out-of-the-box group exercise class you’d love to see offered at your gym?

In addition to the treadmill class I mentioned above, I would love some kind of a swimming group exercise class that centered around games like sharks and minnows, water polo, water volleyball, Marco Polo or something of the sort.


  1. says

    I am so not a gym person that I am of no help.

    I only recently signed up for a community center weights class that I can’t get enough of. And that would be about it for me. :)

    Sadie photo and caption however…hilarious!


  2. Jyll says

    You should see if there is an Orange Theory by you. You’d love it. It is a treadmill, rowing and weight class and its amazing. It’s expensive, but good! The first class always FREE!!


  3. Sky says

    They used to have a treadmill class here in Ocala – when Compass was still around. It was called Tread and Shed and was literally the only way I could make myself adhere to a treadmill interval training workout! It totally needs to make a comeback!


  4. Megan says

    My old gym had a great treadmill class. You could get on any treadmill in the gym and you plug into the sound system with headphones. The instructor would be on a treadmill in a central location wearing a headset and we just went to the channel he was on. He ran with us and told us what to do as we went. Everyone was at different paces of course but doing the same intervals or hills or speed sets. He played music at the same time and just talked over the music occasionally to motivate or tell us to speed up or slow down. I learned to do great intervals from that class!


  5. Ruth says

    I bought a DVD once that did a treadmill workout, it was pretty different, some walking backwards and sideways hops. I really enjoyed it, but lost the DVD with moving. I always wondered if the walking backwards did anything, but on the news the other night they did a little segment saying how it can really improve your forwards running by doing some backwards moves: builds muscles, balance and coordination.


  6. Ruth says

    lol, I just thought I would Google and see what came up on Backwards running and see that it helps a lot! And thought of you and your hip thing, it says it can help with that too. I have had a few knee surgeries, and now I have hip pains, so maybe I will try a bit of backwards moves, can’t hurt….well…lol….only if I fall!


  7. Jane says

    Have you heard of Barry’s Boot Camp? They don’t have it in Ocala (yet) but its in some major cities. It includes intervals on treadmills with strength training. My friend who lives in LA is obsessed and I’m trying my first class today (in NYC)! It’s a little pricey but hopefully worth it.


  8. says

    I’m a Spinning instructor at two different branches of the same health club. We got the Keiser bikes at one last week, and I was lucky enough to be the first instructor to teach with them. It made SUCH a difference- everything you said, I echo. So great to say “be at gear #… and …RPM!!” I’ll tell you though- we’ll never go up to gear 24!
    My spin class at the OTHER club is actually canceled today because we’re getting the new bikes installed. I’m SO stoked about them! I have to tell you though- I catch people just being entranced by the numbers on the screen- it is pretty fascinating. :)


  9. Megan says

    my gym offers a Tread & Shred class every Thursday morning that i LOVE. it is a combo of bootcamp/circuit with weights and then every 5 minutes or so the instructor has us on the treadmill running sprints or hills (or sprinting uphill!) for another 4-5 minutes. talk about a sweaty mess! you would LOVE it!


  10. dana a. says

    i just had to comment and say i love sadies liitle comments! she is so sarcastic it brings me a smile to my face every morning!


  11. says

    Next time you come to NYC, we should go to a Flywheel class – it’s Soul Cycle’s competitor. If you like the computer, you’ll likely love Flywheel – they do their classes based on RPM’s, Torque and Distance, and there’s a little leader board in case you want to be competitive (you can opt out of that part, if you want). And there’s a treadmill class here, too!


  12. Nicole says

    Haha, I thought you might get comments from the “yes but/yes and” post. I also noticed that you said “for the sake of explanation” which to me implies the toxic relationship scenario was clearly an example, not an actual life event.

    BTW, love the caption for Sadie’s picture! I take it the “Daddy 2012″ is winning over the “Mommy 2012″ campaign?


  13. says

    The gym in my complex just got those bikes and I LOVE them! The old ones didn’t tell you how far you were biking, so I’ve developed a new mentality on the new bikes.. instead of cycling for a certain amount of time, I set a distance goal. Yesterday I did 20 miles in a bit over an hour :)


  14. says

    Ommgmshhh Julie, it’s like you TOTALLY read my mind! This week and especially today, I was contemplating about trying out spinning on my own or something….I never thought about it till recently. I love to incorporate every aspect of exercise because it’s fun, freeing, and adventurous! So I think I’ll def. try the spinning machine today. Btw, what exactly do you like about it and how does it feel/affect you physically? I know it makes you sweat a lot. :)


  15. says

    I love those new bikes!! What a great thing to have–and as an instructor, I would love that. Because then everyone knows about ‘where’ they should be.

    I’ve heard of gyms doing that type of thing with treadmills….but only in really big cities. Hah.


  16. Meghan says

    I used to take a treadmill class at my old gym in Atlanta (live in Dallas now) and I miss it so much! We had a Cardio Theater and during the class the instructor had a treadmill facing all the rest up front and would give all three walk/jog/run paces and incline. They played music videos on the big screen and it was awesome!


  17. pluvk says

    Ooooh…. spinning! I tried it once, and thought I was going to die. But those bikes are gorgeous!

    Your Sadie photo today cracked me up! Last night, my dog got scared and jumped on me at 12:00a, which got ME scared. I screamed, and scared the pup again, who decided to sleep next to my husband the rest of the night. After that debacle, I think if the two of us broke up, my pup is moving with the hubs, hands (paws) down!


  18. says

    My university gym has a trekking class on treadmills like you described! When I first heard about it I was all “do they kick people off of the treadmills for the class?” haha. And they do. There are a ton of machines and they start filling up on the end, so there are usually a couple left for people not in the class.


  19. Gina says

    Julie, next time you are in Chicago you should check out Shred415 . . . it’s an interval training workout that combines treadmill and weights. Totally what came to mind when I read your post. I haven’t tried it myself but I know quite a few people who are hooked.



  20. says

    How cool! I have always wanted to do a spin class with bikes like that. I’m always curious to know if I’m going at the “right” resistance or speed actually compared to the goal of the workout.


  21. Elle says

    I love spinning. I have my own spin bike at home, but they are not as nice as the ones at my gym. Man, the ones at your gym are FANCY and look amazing. Wish my gym would get some like that!


  22. Danielle Oves says

    Hi Julie -
    Next time you are in Atlanta, you have to go to Blast900 (www.Blast900.com). It is an interval based training class that caps the participants at 24 people, half start on the floor doing weights/resistance exercises and the rest start on the treadmill (walking, running, sprinting and inclines go up to 30%). It is an awesome and very intense workout…

    Let me know and I could meet you there!



  23. says

    I have wanted to try one these bikes–it would make teaching so much better–participants could “see” their work!

    Cooper (all 80 lbs of him) shares our bed too–My hubby refers to him as a C*#K block!


  24. says

    My husband told me there are entire gyms in NY that are nothing but treadmills. I bet they’d be able to have great classes! I really want to try surf set classes, they have surfboards on a stand that simulates waves, and resistance cables for paddling


  25. Rebecca says

    LOVE LOVE LOVE Keiser bikes!! I recently moved to Hoboken, NJ from an amazing gym in upstate NY. My old gym had Keisers and there are no gyms in the NYC area that have Keisers – or that I’ve found. . In my opinion, they are hands down the best indoor cycling bike there is!


  26. says

    I LOVE spin classes! They are my favourite workout, and its fun since my mom is a spin instructor. We have those bikes too and they are great. I want to get one at home, so I have the option to use it here too. I would love if they had a TRX class at my gym, that equipment kills me everytime!


  27. says

    I love spinning and actually teach it, and one of the things I love is that I can have little contests seeing who has had the most mileage!! I love seeing how far we can ride!


  28. alh1203 says

    We have these bikes at our YMCA – love them but I am not a fan of the water bottle situation. We used to have two spots for water bottles becuase of how the handles were shaped and when we got these in November it was a big adjustment.


  29. says

    Treadmills, exercise bikes and now ellipticals.. all kinds of ways to get back into shape its just a matter of taking action. My personal favorite are the bikes used for spinning because of the fan effect you get from pedaling



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