by Angela Reed-Fox
And that, my dears, is the best example of clickbait ever.
However, now we've got your attention, how about squishing a cheeky little workout in before anyone else is up? Y'see, that's the secret of the perennially smug. Get your workout in nice and early, and then you've got the rest of the day to swan around in Smugland. Just think of those endorphins! Think of the Hobbit breakfast you'll be tucking in to afterwards. And think of the free access to elite smuggery. It's totally worth it.
The Monday and Wednesday 7am sessions are 'pop-ups'; that means they're not long-term additions to the timetable - we're just testing their popularity. If you like them, we keep them - if you don't, we won't.
So if you like to start your day being just that teensy weensy little bit superior, this will be right up your street (we're not judging). You'll also be increasing your fitness, strength and stamina through some carefully designed sessions - but don't worry, because although it's tremendously good for you, it won't feel like it because you'll have the benefit of lots of lovely drums and things, so it'll be like your guilty pleasure that you just had to creep out of bed for. Yes!
Oh, and the t-rex quad thing? Well yes, they're available, but you're going to have to pedal...
by Angela Reed-Fox
It's that time again, Rogue Bella has teamed up with Illustrious Ben to bring you an extra special 12 week festival of power to get your cycling season started with a bang. Whether you're dipping in and out for the odd session, or you're clocking up all the sessions, you'll be reaching a higher level of epic.
"There isn't much time. Every day they grow stronger."
Developed by seasoned competitive rider Ben Aldridge and delivered by our very own Rogue instructor, Bella this neat little set will be focusing on power and endurance, ready to tackle those juicy hills and leave the lesser folk standing! Take 12 weeks, and up to 24 sessions - put the effort in, and you'll be a formidable roce to reckon with.
"Take hold of this moment. The force is strong."
Sessions will be run on Thursdays at 7:30pm with an omnibus edition of the same class on Mondays at 7:45pm. These sessions are 'advanced' and last an hour.
Advanced sessions are suitable for cyclists and studio riders who have been riding with us a little while. Bring water, bring a towel. You're going to need it.
"May the Force be with us."
Take it easy, chipmunk, be one with the Fox, the Fox is with you. See you there.
Book now: www.foxstudiocycling.com
New Fox Cycling Instructor!
Only a couple of weeks after successfully completing the Fox Studio Cycling Instructor course, we'd like to introduce our newest instructor for your delectation!
You might recognise Emma - she's often to be found near the back of class, sweating her socks off!
So, we caught up with her to ask her lots of questions:
FoxBlog: So why cycling instructing? Why Fox? And why now?
Emma: My back ground is estate agency (I'm a nice person honestly!) and that quickly turned into an operations role managing big teams of people and training them; this is where my passion really lies - seeing other people succeed at their goals. After having my two boys I knew going back to my old job wasn't for me and that's when I decided to turn my obsession with Fox studio cycling into a career! I am born and bred Portishead and live with my Husband Dave and two boys Archie and Stanley.
FoxBlog: How did you find the Fox Cycling training course?
Emma: I found the training fantastic; it really suited my learning style of practical and theory which gave me the knowledge I needed but kept me interested through out the two days. What made me finally take the plunge with the training was the need to have a work/family life balance whilst doing something I enjoy and am passionate about!
FoxBlog: What are you top three favourite things?
Emma: Gin and wine! Studio Cycling and spending time with my great family and friends.
FoxBlog: Umm, that's four... Glad studio cycling was in there though - it was a trick question! What do you love about studio cycling?
Emma: The buzz afterwards , you feel you can tackle anything.
FoxBlog: What you want people to get out of your classes?
Emma: To feel motivated to accomplish their own goals big or small.
FoxBlog: What/who inspires you?
Emma: My 7 best girl friends who I have known since aged 11 - they have all been through tough times, highs and lows and they always do it with wicked humour!
FoxBlog: What do you think customers will like about Fox Cycling?
Emma: The friendly welcome you receive; it's like being part of a community and everyone helps each other along.
FoxBlog: What's your top tip for studio cycling?
Emma: Ignore your legs ! You can always push further than you think.
FoxBlog: Who would you most like to have in your class?
Emma: Jessica Ennis Hill - I reckon she would love a bit of Fox!
Emma has now covered two sessions - look out for her classes on the timetable!
And don't worry - she's tried and tested: Michelle and Beth couldn't believe her first class was her first - and Richard said she gave a brilliant workout. David was REALLY impressed, and Amy thought she was 'just great!' So there you have it. No excuses.
And now for something completely different...
Always on the alert to perk things up a bit, we're introducing a special weekly session delivered by Shona at 7.30pm on Tuesdays. Why's it special? Because each week follows a different theme. Could be the music, could be the cycling-based antics, could be... well you never know.
The session is billed as 'progressive', so if you've been to a few of our sessions, you'll know what to expect. 'I wish I could make it more often,' says Beth, 'the pace is perfect for me as I tend to go to the class after a run.' Jean had a good time and brought a friend too: 'The Glastonbury theme was good and the atmosphere was friendly and fun. Shona made Leanna feel very welcome and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to have a fun time.'
And the music? 'I love Shona's class,' says Sallyann, 'It's well organised and structured, there's great music that's different each week; it's always interesting.' Emily agreed; 'Shona's classes as always are fab! It's so good to have her classes on a weeknight.'
And Shona herself? 'Great atmosphere, Shona is fantastic and enthusiastic, and gets me working really hard, and I like the themes,' says Emma, 'I really love Shona's new class and will be trying to get there every week.'
So there we have it - it's road-tested by our very special members/customers, and it's ready for you have a go.
How does that look to you? Tasty? Yep, your eyes are probably bigger than your stomach, my dear. It's no joke - those are 110.5km right there, and we're going to be doing them in 2 hours. There'll be something for everyone, sprints, timetrials, climbs, some climbs, more climbing, and a massive climb to a lung-busting mountaintop finish. You even get to sit down while you do it. What is not to love about that there route?
Get booking, plan your sessions working up to it (freshish but fit legs needed) pre-hydrate, and make sure Fox has your heartrate max recorded accurately.
As usual, there is glory for:
Enter the PainCave - 7am 17/4/2016, Portishead, Bristol studio.
by Angela Reed-Fox
Humans are rational beings. We like results. In fact, we need results as it's this that keeps us motivated. However, once we've bedded in a healthy habit, often the results can slip. Studio cycling is no different - but it doesn't have to be that way. Protect your motivation, and make the most of your time on the bike with these handy hacks:
Workout Killer No 1: Too much recovery. Interval training is great for fitness and stamina - but pay attention to those little recovery parts. The temptation is to slack off completely between the challenges. By taking off the resistance and significantly slowing your pedalling, you decrease your effect. (We see this all the time!)
What to do about it: After an interval, reduce the intensity by taking off only a little resistance, but keep your leg speed brisk and recover as you continue to work. Save your real recovery for the end. By continuing to work when you'd really rather recover, well that's how heroes are made.
Workout Killer No 2: Coming out of the saddle at the wrong time. Yes! There is a wrong time to come out of the saddle if you've got your eye on getting some results. When you're in the saddle with a decent level of resistance you will be working some big muscle groups. But often when riders get tired, they'll come out of the saddle, let their technique slip and not add enough resistance - they'll be using body weight to turn the pedals.
What to do about it: A standing climb is a workout - it isn't for resting. If you come out of the saddle, make it a real, effective climb. The resistance should be harder and you should be working your technique, keeping your upper body still and powering through your legs. When you have a tight technique, it will feel good. If you just flop around up there, you'll just be, well, floppy. If you need a rest, push through for a further 10 seconds, then take a rest, but only allow yourself a short 10-15 second rest and then put the pressure back on. Don't turn a working climb into a rest.
Workout Killer No 3: Smashing points. But surely that's a good thing? Not necessarily. The points are great for motivation, but if you're already motivated to exercise, you need to be looking towards results instead. Winning points with your heartrate will maintain your fitness, not necessarily make you any fitter - and it won't help you tone muscles significantly as you focus purely on your heart rather than on what the rest of your body is doing. It won't give you an idea of how effective your workout is, nor will it give you an idea of how fit you're getting. In fact the heartrate points can distract you from what requires your focus for an effective workout.
What to do about it: If you're wanting to build rather than maintain fitness, shun heartrate points in favour of more reliable metrics. If you're not comfortable with using watts, clock the gears you use and the RPM in each riding position (flat road, standing and seated climbs, sprints etc). For a much more informative insight, use watts. Look at the power you are able to maintain at each of these positions. Work on boosting that power. You can also easily calculate your power:weight ratio which will improve as you get fitter. As an example, following points in a class rather than focusing on power led to a decrease in my power:weight ratio by around 40%! Why power? Because if you're focusing on your strength, you're working your muscles harder, and the extra tone will not only look and feel good, but also will mean your basal metabolic rate increases (leading you to burn more calories when you're not exercising).
You can easily calculate your power:weight ratio by taking your average watts in class (stop pedalling as you enter cool-down; your bike will equalise and calculate your average watts for the session). Divide this number by the number of kg you weigh. This is your power:weight ratio. Jot this down each time you do a workout and as long as you're keeping the pressure on, you'll see an increase. Heartrate won't make a significant change as you get fitter, but power:weight ratio will let you know you're getting results.
Workout Killer No 4: Pedalling too fast. Really? Yes, you can pedal faster than is safe or effective, but it's pointless. We see this frequently when riders are sprinting. If you're bobbing around, or going more than 130rpm, it's too fast for the resistance you have applied. Turn the resistance up, and feel a better burn in your legs. Ineffective pedalling doesn't burn calories and it certainly doesn't tone.
What to do about it: Get some decent resistance; if you're sprinting, you'll be pushing more power through your legs so you'll need a higher resistance than you would use on a flat road, and definitely more than the gear you use to warm up. Keep an eye on streamlining your technique by keeping nice and still in the saddle and enjoy that powerful feeling as your technique improves.
And there we have it. Four lovely tips to get your results racking up. Enjoy!
If you found this article useful, there are plenty more here.
We will be looking at a different goal each week, and we will be kicking the series off tomorrow with a benchmark session so you can record for your PERSONAL reference where you’re at, fitness-wise, and we’ll do the same at the end of the 8weeks so you can see how far you’ve come. There will be lots of information about getting more out of any session – and of course, you don’t need to attend ALL classes, although for great all-round fitness it’s going to be a bobby-dazzler if you do.