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I am back on the lead bike!!!

I can't believe it, but I am finally back on the lead bike at Harlem Cycle. After a total right hip replacement and 15 months off the lead bike, I taught my first couple of classes! I never thought I would be back to teaching this soon. Even though I desperately wanted to be back on that lead bike, the little voice in my head kept saying, "nah, you are not ready." I would hear that voice repeatedly and I was actually starting to believe it. I wanted to be at least 20lbs lighter before I started teaching again. Teaching cycling is no joke. You have to cue, instruct, observe, and motivate, all while peddling fast and then faster. It is hard but I love it.


Pre-covid, I was teaching 4 - 5 cycling classes a week at Harlem Cycle and LA Fitness. I was occasionally subbing at New York Sports Club and getting ready to start subbing at 24 Hour Fitness. My classes were full, and I was having a blast. It was like a dream come true because cycling was my first true love. I initially wanted to become an instructor to teach cycling not Zumba. I was inspired by some bad ass instructors whose classes I took as a student. Bell Thunder, Nicole, Kate & Dom kicked my butt every time I took their classes. I left feeling exhilarated and utterly exhausted. I loved that feeling.


Becoming a cycling instructor, forced me to become a better instructor and motivated me to start riding an actual bike again. After 10 plus years, I rode a bike in Central Park as part of Harlem Cycle's community ride. Let's just say the first 15 mins of me trying to balance and peddle up a hill was hilarious. I entertained a lot of people in the park that day.


I was really enjoying riding outside and teaching cycling...and then covid hit. Although the gyms were closed, I was able to ride outside once the restrictions eased a bit. I was riding all over Manhattan trying to keep up with Christina. We would ride anywhere from 14 - 20miles twice a week and then walk for three miles. Everything was going great until my hip pain eventually became unbearable. I dealt with the discomfort for a while, but the excruciating pain made it impossible to ride.


But now the pain is gone, and I am on the lead bike again. I was nervous for my first class, but the support I received was overwhelming. I had two of my fellow instructors take my class along with another friend. Yes, I was still a little rusty cueing my intervals and talking and breathing while pedaling. But all of the practice and tweaking my profile paid off. The class went great, and the feedback was positive. My second class was even better, than the first. I am finding my groove again and starting to feel confident on that lead bike. I am almost able to clip and unclip my spin shoes in about 5 seconds. Trust me that is a big deal because I purchased my first pair about a month before I started teaching. During my first class, everyone had to start the cooldown without me. I was having a slight problem unclipping my right shoe. LOL! We all had a good laugh!


What have I learned from this experience? I have learned to stop using the weight that I gained and surgery as a crutch and excuse to stop pursuing my goals. While I am building my endurance and focusing on my nutrition, I can teach certain classes. I can still kick my students' butts and give them the workout, push, and sweatfest that they deserve during class. Most importantly, I have also learned to be thankful for my tribe at Harlem Cycle and for my family and friends. They have supported me during this journey as well as giving me the kick in the butt when needed.


I hope everyone surrounds themselves with the right tribe. It is easy to listen to the naysayers especially when you are struggling with your self-esteem. But I can speak from experience, I would not be back teaching at Harlem Cycle or the Bronx House, if I listened to them. What about you? Do you have a tribe who supports you? If not, get one!


So now with the help of my tribe, I am working on my next goal. You can read about it in my next blog to be posted soon.


If you want to take a class at Harlem Cycle. click om the link for more info:

Class Schedule - Harlem Cycle (harlem-cycle.com)


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