Yesterday I decided to go to my first ever spin class. Alex is closing in on 5 months old now and apart from that one 20minute run I did last month and the few times I did some yoga youtube videos, I haven’t done any exercise. I have been very lucky that, thanks to breastfeeding and good genes, I have pretty much sprung back to my pre baby weight with very minimal effort and I have not even had to shy away from the cake. Despite all this, my body may look good in clothes but underneath it is a bit of a squishy mess that is in need of some attention if I want to be rocking it in a bikini on our holiday next month. I decided now was the perfect time to get fit and tone up the mum tum once and for all and I
foolishly believed a weekly mum and baby spin class was the answer to my wobbly problems. Um, I was SO wrong. If you are thinking of going to your first ever spin class please learn from my mistakes, this is how not to get back into exercise after having a baby.
How NOT to do a mum and baby exercise class
When I arrived at the leisure centre yesterday morning for my first ever spin class, Alex in his car seat in one hand and big bottle of water in the other, I was feeling nervous but excited to do some exercise. I couldn’t wait to feel the buzz of those endorphins and feel that satisfying burn in my legs knowing that I was transforming them from limbs of jelly to rock hard thighs and maybe I would get a super toned bum too.
As I followed the seasoned mummy spinners and their brood up to the spin studio I was surprised at how relaxed I felt. I was actually looking forward to doing exercise, I couldn’t quite believe it. Once in the studio, I got Alex settled next to my bike, the instructor gave me a quick briefing on how everything worked and then before I knew it the class was starting. When the dance track started, the lights began to flash on the ceiling and the instructor started shouting out her encouragement and instructions I was feeling pumped. I. Could. Do. This,
I am not going to lie, I struggled to even make it through the warm up without collapsing in a sweaty heap – spin is HARD! Although I was clearly the least fit mama in the class I persevered through all the dips, sprints and ab blasting moves that I could and, even though my legs were literally on fire, I was actually almost enjoying myself.
Until I fell off the bike that is.
Yes, you read that correctly, I fell off the friggin bike. Lesson number 1 in spin my friends, make sure you have your bike set up properly before you begin. I could tell from the start my seat was too far back but once the class had started I didn’t want to ruin my momentum by getting off and sorting it out. I carried on pedalling away, also very aware that my feet were not strapped tightly enough in to the pedals either. It is no surprise I ended up falling off really is it?
Anyway, my almighty blunder happened during the particularly gruelling routine of upper body dips set to the beat of Sexy and I know it. As I was coming down from standing my foot slipped out of the too loose pedal strap and my bum missed my too far away seat and somehow I fell to the side and ended up on the floor between the bike and the wall – wall being a window right next to the gym, I am sure they all had a good laugh at my expense!
So, there I was crouched on the floor by Alex’s car seat trying to figure out what the hell just happened when I decided to just style the fall out. I would just hop back on my bike and carry on with the class like nothing had happened. No such luck. Do you know what happens when your legs go from working crazy hard for 15 minutes to a crushed up squat position in a heap on the floor? I do. Your muscles just pretty much give up on life. I tried to stand and I couldn’t, it was terrifying and agonising all rolled into one. I seriously could not stand, move or anything. I sat next to Alex convinced I would be living out the rest of my days stuck on this very spin studio floor, forced to listen to upbeat dance tracks I don’t even like all day while watching super fit mums totally slaying this spinning business.
Luckily after about 10 minutes of pure humiliation I managed to get my legs into some kind of order and I stood up. That’s all I could do though, I couldn’t walk and I could no way get back on that bike. I was so mad at my stupid legs and general lack of fitness, I couldn’t actually believe this was how my return to exercise after pregnancy had panned out. After what felt like a life time the class ended and I grabbed Alex, eager to escape the torture chamber and get back home. Yea, I couldn’t even walk out of the class – could things really get any worse?
Once all the others mums and their babies had cleared the studio I hobbled up to the instructor to share the fantastic news with her that I couldn’t walk. That’s where everything got even more ridiculous. While explaining to the instructor that my legs were not actually working and I didn’t know how to get back to my car I started crying. For the last half hour we had been in a room full of babies and yet the only tears that were shed came from my 25 year old eyes. Luckily the instructor was so lovely (obviously that made me cry more!) and she told me I did amazing for even coming to the class and she carried Alex all the way out to the car park while I dragged my sorry self back to the car along side her (you will be pleased to hear I didn’t ask her to carry me too, although the thought did cross my mind).
She gave me a little pep talk at the car and told me not to let the experience put me off trying to get back into shape after having a baby, she coped really well with me blubbing so that makes me think perhaps I am not the only one who has been reduced to tears following a spin class?
Anyway, what with going arse over tit off the bike and all the crying, it is safe to say my first ever spin class was an epic fail and I shall not be going back. I am not saying my mission to get my pre baby body back is over but I am pretty sure spin is not the answer to my fat blasting prayers. I am thinking maybe yoga or swimming is more for me, much less physical (and emotional) pain is involved and they are both things I could actually do before I brought two little humans into the world.
I guess the moral of this story is don’t run before you can walk. Our bodies go through so much during pregnancy and birth and although we may be keen to get into shape again we need to ease ourselves into it slowly. If you want to voluntarily subject yourself to torture for half an hour then perhaps a spin class is for you but, learn from my mistakes, please set your bike up properly before you get those legs pumping.
I must say though, I did enjoy the massive pizza and salted caramel profiteroles I had last night in an attempt to cheer myself up after my morning from hell. Who actually wants a rockin’ bod anyway?
Confession time, has anything like this ever happened to you? Anyone else humiliated themselves in an exercise class? I refuse to admit I am the only one! In all seriousness though, anyone got any tips on how to tone up after pregnancy? Let me know in the comments.
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