This past Sunday, B East Real Ryder Fitness Studio in Amagansett hosted a ride, with all the money raised going toward people affected by the Boston Marathon bombings.
I registered online at eastfit.com, excited that a local fitness studio was willing to donate their time and money to a greater good. All proceeds went to The One Fund, a charity established by Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick and Boston mayor Tom Menino to help people most impacted by the April 15 tragedy. I thought I was being extra-sacrificial with my time, because I was going to a class that I had mentally vowed never to try again. My standoff with spinning came after one particularly unpleasant experience at college in North Carolina, and I hadn’t attended a class since.
In retrospect, I regret that decision. Clearly, all spinning studios are not created equal. B East instructor Romaine Gordon, a Massachusetts native, crafted a class that was both intense and motivating. I’ve discovered that spinning is a full-body workout, and this is one of the few studio classes I’ve taken that mimics the cardio benefits of running. It’s also resistance free, which is a nice break for joints if you’re pounding pavement several times a week.
Spinning is unique in that each rider has a say in how difficult their workout will be. Romaine told us when to up our resistance—from a level 1, steadily increasing to a level 10—but each rider controls what that means by turning a knob at the front of the bike.
Cycling classes, particularly at B East with their RealRyder bikes, give the feel of a road bike. Your feet are completely locked into the pedals, which makes it easy to increase your speed without fear of falling off. The RealRyder bikes are able to move from side to side, mimicking rounding a curve. Controlling the motion works your core as you try to keep the bike steady.
The hour-long class was feisty, as we climbed up and down up a series of hills, with some sprint straightaways also thrown into the mix.As we rode through the varied “terrain,” we alternated between seated cycling and cycling while standing (re: ab workout).
And when I was feeling beaten by a “hill,” Romaine came through with a reminder of why we got up early this weekend morning to go to Amagansett. Was it for us? Was it for Boston victims? The combination of benefits the class represented? Whatever the case, “keep pedaling” was the answer.
The music was upbeat and, most importantly, loud enough to drown out thoughts about how hard you were working. We ended the class on a high note, all joining in with a group rendition of Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline,” a staple at Boston baseball games. We sprinted like we were on a long, flat road and waved our sweaty towels in the air for the “ba ba ba!” part.
After class, I enjoyed petting the sweet house dog before embarking on a nice stroll through Amagansett village. Brunch was my first-ever dosa from Hampton Chutney Co. I opted for the Breakfast Dosa with mango chutney. It consisted of two eggs, spinach, roasted tomato, jack cheese and avocado.
For those not in the know, i.e. me pre-dosa, a dosa is a light, crispy sour-dough crepe made from rice. And it’s about a foot-and-a-half long, prompting me to dub it a breakfast burrito of champions. Which is exactly what I felt like eating after my ride. I’ll be back for both.
Now through May 25, save your bottles when you buy Hamptons Water Company water at the studio or elsewhere. Once you have 24 empty bottles, bring them to the studio to get a $1.20 deposit back and one free class! How’s that for some local love?