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.
Booked your #PainCave place? Nice job.
Here are few things you need for preparation:
We are very excited to announce that the #PainCave has now arrived. Bookings are open for the very first #PainCave session next week.
The #PainCave is a 2 hour session specially designed to improve your fitness, strength and stamina on the road - so if you're planning on getting a few cycling events in your diary this year, this one's definitely for you. We will be following the route of the the Grand Depart of the 2014 Tour de France from Leeds to Harrogate, taking in the sights (and probably also the smells) and heading over the fabulous Cote de Buttertubs.
Rocking tunes come as standard, there will be no gimmicks, just camaraderie and plenty of challenges to increase your fitness, bust your personal best, and smash other people up the hills when you get out on the road. What's not to like?
Think you can't manage a 2 hour stint? If you can do a 45 minute progressive session, you'll still be fine for the #PainCave - your legs can do more than you think. Have a go in a supportive environment with nice people who are also having a go.
Just begs the question, Ah, but who's going to WIN?
Join us at 7am on Sunday! (Yep, early bird gets the worm, and the early fox gets the bragging rights.)
Foxette: I suppose I'm led by the riders, really. They're a jolly bunch, totally impervious to mornings. I think they might have a screw loose. They tend to be 'builders' rather than 'maintainers' so my class profiles reflect that.
FoxBlog: Anything special coming up?
Foxette: Funny you should mention that. Recognising that each rider has different goals and different needs, I'm putting together a series focusing on one particular rider. We will start and end the series with a special session so we can measure results, but sandwiched in between, we will be running featured sessions. For example we have a rider who is keen to train for her first triathlon, we have other riders who want to improve hills, or stamina, or want to increase their power output, or just want to grow in confidence on the bike. These all require slightly different features in a profile, so we will have a different session specific to each - but yet put all together it will make a great all-round training series. Not only that, but throughout we'll be discussing extra tips for understanding how our bodies work and how to get better results faster. I already have riders who would like a special tailored session - but I'm keen to have a few more.
FoxBlog: Is it progressive, really?
Foxette: Yes, despite the emphasis on building, it is progressive. And there are plenty of options too - for a good workout, you can just stick with the heartrate profile, but there are always extra challenges you can add in, perhaps working with watts (power output), or employing little tricks like always adding resistance for the second half of a hill or a sprint, or only recovering to a certain point and no lower. So if you want a more advanced class, you have the option.
FoxBlog: Is it true there's a gunge tank?
Foxette: Totally not true. It's an urban myth. There is always a special prize for the quickest recoveries during the session though.
FoxBlog: It's not a very good prize, though, is it?
Foxette: No, not really. But you've got to be in it to win it.
FoxBlog: Who do you think would benefit?
Foxette: Riders who want to get stronger or build stamina faster. Or lazy people.
FoxBlog: Wouldn't lazy people be still in bed?
Foxette: Maybe, but I consider myself to be a lazy person when it comes to workouts - I like maximum results with minimum input. I'd rather have 45 minutes of serious lung-busting euphoria that gets results than spend twice the time at half the intensity. The joy of studio cycling is you can go at your own pace, no one judges, and you only compete against your previous best. It's brilliant. The #8amClub aims to get one hour's workout in 45 minutes. Naturally, it depends on how hard you want to push though.
FoxBlog: How does this differ from a class anywhere else?
Foxette: We use the iQniter system to track cardio, and we also invest far more in top-notch bikes; we can use the wattage feature for those who want/need the extra challenge. Also, I offer riders a personal review of their stats, so we can see where they are, and aim at where they want to be more successfully. The iQniter stats are great for giving you pointers of where to go next. That's really valuable for moving to the next level. And recent events have shown the cardio tracking software is good for enabling riders to get fit safely - and has helped flag up heart issues that have led to medical investigations, diagnoses, and avoiding massive heart attacks - as a registered nurse with an interest in preventing problems before they start, this is the safest, best, and most effective way to exercise that I can think of (short of training with a cardiologist and endocrinologist in your pocket!)
FoxBlog: How will riders be able to measure their improvement?
Foxette: I'm encouraging those riders who are keen, to measure their power:weight ratio. If they are working on building, keep a record of their ratio over several weeks, they should see a good improvement. Heartrates can't be increased indefinitely - especially as we're all getting older! By using watts and heartrate, you not only know when you've had a good class, but also you can see over time how your fitness is improving.
FoxBlog: Why is it important to have measurable results?
Foxette: Because we're rational beings, and we like to know what we're doing works! Not being able to measure results, and having to rely on blind hope that what you're doing is of some kind of benefit is depressing - hamsters and wheels spring to mind! It's good to get rid of the guesswork, and get some rigour. That's where encouragement is, and that's how to stay motivated. Time spent exercising shouldn't be a black hole. It's definitely time to get results.
FoxBlog: Do riders need a particular level of fitness, or need to do any preparation before they start?
Foxette: It's a progressive session, but it can be as hard as you make it. There have been riders who have progressed to the #8amClub straight from Newcomers' and they're still alive, (and still nutty!) There are others who are advanced/progressive stalwarts, and I make sure I give them something extra to chew on. The key is, it's a good class for progressing to the next stage - whatever that stage is.
FoxBlog: So what about the music?
Foxette: Music is powerful. Some people are more susceptible, and therefore they find that a really rocking groove means a better workout at higher intensity. There are particular beats that are good for getting that extra 10% you didn't know you had - and I am happy to make the most of them in our 8am sessions!
FoxBlog: So what do you do?
Foxette: I play a huge variety - Rock, dubstep, euphoria, metal, high-school pop, and we regularly have other features - we've had Tchaikowsky, Mozart, Schostakovich and Lloyd-Webber recently, as well as Hans Zimmer, and my new discovery Stromae, and also the odd tune from Vexare and FriskyNippa, Disney in Hungarian made a brief appearance too (for a cool-down!)
So there we have it - #8amClub is high energy, great for building, and great for if you want a bit of personal help with how to get to the next level with your fitness. Bring it!
Riders can also make use of the #8amClub page which features the latest Fox articles on improving performance.
by Angela Reed-Fox
You're working hard, you're seeing improvement, and CRUMBS what's that?! Your training effect tanks from a very respectable 4.5 when you're really pushing hard, to 3.7. And you can't seem to reach the heady heights of where you were when you were less fit. Sound familiar?
What is happening in the session above is that because my fitness has improved, my recovery rate is much faster, so by the time the instructor has just finished a short sentence such as 'And ease off', I'm already heading for the blue. What that means is that by the end of the session, on average you've spent less time at the higher intensities because you aren't taking so long to recover.
So what do you do about it?
First of all, before you try anything - make sure your max heartrate is recorded accurately. Find out how here.
Next, there are a few things you can play with, depending on how hard you want to push yourself.
I followed the class activity, but tried to maintain the same output whether standing or seated. It was certainly a challenge, but it was do-able. Heartrate will naturally increase the more you challenge your legs. You'll see I wasn't challenging myself so hard I was too tired to reach the black zone, but by maintaining the pressure, I got a good solid, challenging workout.
By looking at watts (this is shown on the console of your bike, and alternates with calorie burn), you're bringing your training into line with how professionals train for races. Using watts will not only help you to maintain a great training effect, but you'll boost stamina and strength (and calorie burn!) Watts are an absolutely vital bit of kit for getting those elusive gains.
As with anything, you need to use common sense. If you have atrial fibrillation or have been recommended to stay away from the higher heartrate zones for other medical reasons, you can still use watts, but you will need to keep a close eye on your heartrate. If you're unsure of anything, ask an instructor.
Watt the Fox?
If you fancy a good burn, join us in the #8amClub on Saturdays - and if you like you can get a tailored review of your results and tips on how to get what you want more quicker whilst staying safe.
by Angela Reed-Fox
Why is accuracy important?
Heartrate training is great for seeing how your condition affects your workout. If your maximum heartrate (MHR) is not recorded accurately, you won't get accurate results, and your readout at the end of your session is no good for planning your training, clocking your progress, or giving you the encouragement you need.
How to spot if it's not accurate
You could do a MHR test (eminently unenjoyable!) or you could be aware of a few basic principles as you do your training. Your heartrate may need changing if:
What to do about it
If you think your MHR is inaccurate, change by 1-2 beats per minute only. If it's still inaccurate at a subsequent session, you can change it again. By making small changes you won't notice too much of a difference during the session, and therefore won't have to pass that discouraging psychological 'hump' of finding a session much harder than usual.
When not to change it
It's tempting to think 'Oh, I've been under the weather for the last couple of weeks, I'll reduce my max heartrate.' Don't bother.
If you're frequently changing your MHR (say, more than twice a year) the chances are the changes are too frequent for the data you collect to stay accurate. You MHR isn't going to change a huge amount. There are many factors affecting MHR including:
Once your MHR is accurate, you can then start to really focus on the aspects that need improvement - because now you'll be able to see a clearer picture.
I discovered the power of being committed to an exercise routine many years ago. Investing in a routine and being physically fit has returned value into other areas of my life.
On my daily walks I have come up with creative ideas and solutions for business endeavors. Boxing has been a release for built up anger and stress, of which I have then been able to deal with on a spiritual level.
The limits I have exceeded by working out have produced hope in other areas of my life. You create each day by what you put into it.
The discipline and habits you build will be reflected in what you achieve, your health and goals as well as relationships.
Don’t underestimate what a diligent routine can do for you.
Some of the benefits of exercise are:
Maintenance of health and well being
Increased energy levels
Reduced risk of disease
Increased self esteem
Increased workability of joints and muscles
Increased physical work capacity
Increased cardiovascular and respiratory efficiency
Changes in metabolism
Delaying effects of ageing
The benefits of exercise depends on the type of exercise participated in.
The 7 reasons why an exercise routine can boost other areas of your life:
1. The obvious, fitness and health
Being physically fit and healthy can positively affect anyone’s life. Alongside reducing risks of certain diseases and giving increased abilities such as physical work capacity, it will also help one’s stamina.
There are unlimited ways to workout and achieve specific results. From relaxation, to helping with stress release, to increasing endurance, muscle and strength – no matter who you are, there is something for you.
2. “I wish I could wake up earlier”
For those who wish to wake up earlier in the morning, starting your day with exercise is a great way to get you out of bed.
Have a routine on set days to keep you accountable to yourself. Achieving your exercise goals in the morning can set you up for the day.
An excuse I have often heard is, after work people are too tired to work out. Whilst that may be a valid reason, by getting your workout done in the morning, you don’t have to worry about missing any in the evenings.
3. It may inspire you to eat healthier
When you exercise and even when you don’t, your body requires that you eat sufficiently to avoid lethargy, damage and deficiencies.
Having an exercise routine may inspire healthy changes in the kitchen. Eating healthier is not just about prevention of diseases.
It will assist in your happiness, the way you think and also react. Understanding how food works in the body combined with exercise, showed me that an imbalance can cause other problems such as anxiety, irritability and anger.
What we put in our bodies will come out in some way. Let it be a healthy way.
4. A time to reflect and build a stronger mindset
Having a routine for exercise encouraged me to set aside time in the day for spiritual growth as well.Taking care of the body is only part of overall well being – the mind and soul require attention as well.
I have used exercise as a way to release emotions and stress. A long walk or run combined with prayer and reflecting over my life has brought refreshment to both my mind and soul. It’s a great way to appreciate all you have in life, with no interruptions.
5. Goal setting and achieving
When you are exercising and achieving your fitness goals, it becomes really evident that you can use the same practise in other areas. Being committed to the daily routine of exercise and seeing amazing results, I quickly became aware that this attitude can be used in other ways.
Setting goals in all areas of our lives will ensure that we are always growing and stepping out of our comfort zones.
6. Sharper business-person
Frustrated, stressing or need to resolve an issue at work or in your business? Ever thought of working out or doing something active to gain solutions? I have used exercise as a way to put aside my concerns and be open to ideas.
Focusing only on my workout and nothing else, the most creative thoughts have come to me, as well as words to write about. Also, whilst pushing myself, I visualize how the effort I put into my workouts can be applied to my work. It is a great way to find solutions.
Stress, frustration and anxiety can also be released during your workout. Give it a go and welcome better business deals.
7. Increase your energy
Exercise combined with healthy eating habits increases energy and alertness.This is probably one of my favorite things about adopting an exercise routine.
Whilst I do a range of training, I find that outdoor fast paced walking is one of the best energy increasing exercises. Everyone is different and I encourage you to find what works for you. Being alert and energized will no doubt carry over into your goals, work, study and family life.
The more I focused on exercising as a lifestyle, the more it increased my energy overall.
There are many more reasons why exercise is a great way to booster other areas of your life. Explore them and be open to the possibilities.
Routines can may be difficult in the beginning stages and remaining committed to them, but I encourage you to stick it out. The benefits outweigh the difficult parts.
via 7 Reasons Why An Exercise Routine Can Boost Other Areas Of Your Life.
At Fox we choose instructors not by the number of pieces of paper they have, but on personality and passion. If you like what we do - why not be part of it? LisaB, LisaC and Julie all took the plunge - and now are instructing some great classes! We will be running studio cycling instructor training on 12-13 September. The course is accredited by SkillsActive and we've designed it to be more comprehensive, thorough, and offers a wider coverage of the skills you need to instruct fantastic classes.
Fancy a change? Fancy doing something new? Fancy a challenge? Join us. We are currently running a special early bird price until Monday 17th August. Further information is available here.
And of course, if you need extra advice, call Steve on 07976 276242 or Angela on 07765 701422
Come on - join us! Spread the endorphins!