Today I wanted to show you one of my endurance workouts that I created this summer. My gym has three workouts that we must rotate every month; Intervals, Strength, and Endurance. We have an understanding what Intervals and Strength require in a 50 minute workout; however, endurance is a different kind of workout. It’s hard to do endurance for 50 minutes. I will take a minute and talk about the “endurance” workout and what we should really be doing in our 50 minutes.
Let’s be honest here, you cannot do a true endurance (zone 2) workout in 50 minutes. Most of the professional trainers that work within cycling training will tell you that the minimum time to do an endurance workout is actually 90 minutes. You must workout 90 minutes at your zone 2 heart rate to begin to see the fat burning advantages. So, if you are doing an endurance spin workout you are really doing what we call a tempo workout.
Tempo is between the top of zone 2 and the bottom of zone 4 of your heart rate/threshold power or the type of training that is known as “sweet spot” training.
So, how do we know what these zones are and how do I instruct my class to stay within these zones? If you have an awesome spin bike that comes with power and heart rate, then it should be pretty easy to guide your students within their zones. Most of us do not have the privilege of riding and training with the newest types of spin bikes. Here is what I tell my students when we are doing our “endurance” training.
“We will be working at the top of our endurance zone to the bottom of our tempo zone. We will not be taking any recoveries during our 50 minute spin class. The bottom of our workout zone should feel easy enough where we could still hold a conversation. When I tell you we are going to work harder at the top of our zones, your breathing will be heavy but you will not be feeling the burn in your legs. The top of our workout zone will be good solid work, but at no time do we feel our leg muscles burning heavily, we feel like we are running out of breath, or our heart rates are extremely high.”
I think that statement does a pretty good job of letting the students know how they are supposed to feel during this workout.
Here is our workout:
-Hunger, Of Monsters and Men(4:50): Warm up. Zone 2
-Shut Up and Dance, Walk The Moon(3:19): 1/2 turn resistance with two 60 second stands. Top of Zone 2 maybe Zone 3.
-American Girl, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers(3:34): We spin our legs fast for two minutes. You want them spinning faster than they normally can while only having enough resistance to keep their butts from bouncing on the seat. This moves our heart rate up into the top of zone 3.
-Mercy, Muse(3:52): Do another 3×30 second drills of fast legs to get our heart and lungs into the bottom of zone 4.
-Let You Go, The Chainsmokers(3:39): A 20/30/40 second stands at an easy resistance to let our heart rate drop down into a solid zone 3.
-Tonight Belongs to U!, Jeremih(3:16): Just to keep it interesting, a seated clap with 1/2 turn resistance at 1:12 and 2:12. Moving back into the top of zone 2.
-Uma Thurman, Fall Out Boy(3:32): 4×30 second stands to move us back into the top of zone 3 to the bottom of zone 4.
-Laced, DMA’s(3:23): We are going to do 30 second Isolated Leg Drills to move us back down into the top of zone 2. Focus on one leg at a time and practice kicking over the top, pushing down, and engaging the hamstring by dragging the foot bag at the bottom of the pedal stroke.
-Somebody Told Me, The Killers(3:17): 2:30 of fast legs. Our goal is again to move the legs faster than we are comfortable doing while edging into the bottom of zone 4. This will feel hard but our legs and lungs should be able to manage it. No butt bouncing.
-Hey Mama, David Guetta(3:13): We do one minute isolated leg drills and let our heart rates edge down to the top of zone 2 again. One per leg.
-Run Away, Darling Parade(2:44): 3×30 second stands to get us into a solid zone 3 heart rate.
-Good Life, OneRepublic(4:13): 1/2 to 3/4 turn of resistance with two long and slow claps. This puts us back down into the top of zone 2.
-Miles Away, The Maine(3:38): Fast legs for 3 minutes. Get that heart rate and breathing back into the bottom of zone 4.
-Wake Me Up, Avicii(4:10): 3×30 second stands and 1×40 at the end. I always give me students a chance to go Anaerobic at the end of my endurance workouts. This is the time to let people go and head into Zone 5.
I always end my endurance with with a bit of anaerobic activity. A lot of my students want that anaerobic push at the end and I let them have it. Some of my students are fine not participating in this last anaerobic workout and I let them know they can stay in zone three if they desire.
Have a great holiday weekend everyone and get your spin on!