A friend asks me to go with her to a spinning class. I hesitate, think NO but say YES. I haven’t any idea about spinning, I don’t even know this word, but I say YES anyway, it’s part of my Code here: since I’ve moved to the US, I never refuse when somebody asks me out. I check online to know what spin is, and I see people smiling on indoor bikes. Let’s go for this. I have the feeling it’s fun and cool.
On my way to class, I have some doubts, I’m stressed. Manu told me to keep it cool, because he was said spinning can be hard for a beginner. I arrive in advance and I wait outside for my girlfriend, because it’s impossible to breathe in the hallway, the air is too sweaty. I encourage myself mentally “It’s only for fun”.
My friend is here, we go upstairs. The room is tiny, with about 15 bikes. It’s dark inside, and the air is wet and warm, probably because of the last class. I adjust the height of the saddle, I put something to pad it. I notice how far the saddle is from the handlebars: to reach it, I have to bend myself, and my abs and arms are already tightened. I adjust my sneakers on the pedals, and this evidence strikes me: I can’t leave anymore. I smile to my friend sit close to me. She asks me how to say ‘right’ and ‘left’ in French. The music starts, she will never hear my answer.
Chris, the teacher, puts his cap on, and explains how to turn the big red button in front of us, from an easy position to a hard one. And it gets starting, we pedal. Chris asks not to move the hips, keep a flat back: pedaling without waddling. I get it. I pedal.
After 3 electronic/dance songs very loud, it’s already too much for me. I say to myself: that’s it, it’s now, I’m gonna die in this tiny overheated room, on an indoor bike, my shirt totally wet by sweat, my ass painfully stuck on a small saddle, surrounded by American girls super motivated, wearing tiny shorts and headbands (while my hair stuck on my forehead), listening to a song of Cyndi Lauper. I breath in, I let myself be inspired by Cyndi, I don’t want to stop, and technically, I can’t.
No, Cyndi, Girls just want to sweat
I pedal, down on the saddle, up, I turn to the right, to the left, get back to center, to the left, to the right, I bend my arms, tighten them, sit down, up. I give everything. As in an American movie, I try to say to myself that my life is in stake here, but let’s face it: it’s hard, it’s too hot, and the class has just begun. It lasts 45 minutes. Same as a Mad Men episode. Why am I here? What’s the point? « Stay focused » Does Chris say that to me, does he see I was looking around, or is it just my persecution mania?
I’m still pedaling, and I try to look around in the room to see how the other girls are dealing with the bikes; but the sweat fog prevents me for seeing anything. I’m alone on my bike. My thighs and arms are hot.
We keep going: we are going to climb a mountain. Really? I’m thinking of the Tour de France. « Effort is on the mind. » And I pedal, again and again. I may have a cramp on my left foot, but I can’t even scratch me. Okay, stop complaining. I don’t go to yoga so often to stop breathing, I’m going to breath. I breath in, breath out, and I pedal. I’m climbing the mountain, speed 7, speed 4, speed 6, up, down, up. « You’re doing good, ladies ! ». I think it’s finally the end, I don’t want to hope anymore. How many songs left? This is what hell looks like: never stop pedaling, ever.
Well, well, it may look that it’s the end. Yes, it is! It’s over. I stretch my legs, up on the bike. I turn my head, right, and left. I go down the bike, my legs are shaking, I zigzag to the changing room.
My face is red, I look like Iv’e had a sunburn. I sweated so much that my clothes are totally wet. I understand now the name of this center: Sweat and Soul. Before, I was reading : Sweet and Soul. I feel good. I just want one thing: to go to another spin class. I want to do it again! Let’s go, 3 more classes, there’s a special offer. Next time, I’ll wear a short and a headband. I go out, I’m frozen. I look in my back bag for my lock key ; to come home, I have to ride my own bike.
Is this video real?!