I was recently asked to create a Cycle HIIT class for our Tuesday Night spin class in the gym. I was a little apprehensive about jumping at the opportunity only because creating structured and efficient classes takes a lot of extra work. Most spin instructors are slaves to their music selection. You have an idea of want you want to do in your class and then you go out and find the music that works as closely as possible to your workout plan. It is not easy to find songs that fit your intervals exactly. The best thing you can hope to do is just turn the music down during the off periods and then crank it back up during the on period. I decided to take a shot at mashing up my own music using a program called mixed in key mashup. This program allows you to cut your music and mashup whatever songs you like. I gave it a shot, which took me a few hours to build. I put my workout plan together, then I mixed the music to my specific intervals. I will tell you that it was much easier to teach an interval format with songs that actually match your intervals. More information on how you can get access to my music below.
Here is a link that gives you access to my playlist for this Cycle HIIT Class. In my playlist are the actual songs that I mashed up.
Now, you may have to go to my youtube channel to listen to each song. (Mostly there are copyright issues with some songs and embedding them on my blog.) Click HERE for a link to my channel where you can access my playlists directly. If you want to convert my mashed songs into an usable .mp3 song, then head on over to http://www.youtube-mp3.org. Cut and past the youtube link into the box and they will make an .mp3 audio only version available for download.
Okay, so here is the workout below:
This is a 45 minute class. 9 minutes dedicated to a warmup, 30 minutes of solid High Intensity Interval Training, and 6 minutes of cool down. I created/mashed up and cut songs for the three main intervals. The Tabatas use the song “Bad Reputation” for the 20 second sprints and then the “Space Oddity” countdown for the 10 seconds off. You do 8 intervals. It may be easier to just go in and listen to one of the songs, you will see real easy that we don’t need to worry about timing anymore because the music does it for us.
There is an Active Recovery in between these three main interval workouts. The second interval workout has the students working for 9 minutes straight. You are on an interval during the AC/DC part and taking a break during the Italian ballad. A complete contrast of music which suites this interval set very well. You are doing progressive intervals with 1:1 work to rest ratios. Then you start over and we invert the rest ratio so we are ending with a 45 second sprint, 15 second rest, 60 second sprint. If you do these right, it is absolutely brutal at the end. I was off my spin bike shouting words of encouragement to my students.
The last interval is a brutal hill climb. The music fades in and out between two songs. On the song Sandcastles the students are standing on a slower hill climbing resistance. On the Boy Oh Boy song, we follow that same beat converted into a techno thump and smash out some heavy gears in a seated low cadence. Your muscles will be screaming at the end of this 5 minute hill climbing set. We stand and smash the pedals 4 times and sit and grind it out 3 times. Each one is near 40 seconds long.
I hope that all made sense. This is why Les Mills makes so much money, they pay copyright fees and cut their own music. Making your own workout plans are easy, but matching the music is the hard part. I’m not making any money off this so there are really no copyright issues at stake here. However, I have been doing spin classes for over 10 years now, and I’ve never had an instructor go the extra length to cut music for his or her class. Honestly, the time investment is not worth what the gym pays you. I do this because I love a challenge and I want to make something great. Take care folks and have a great week! Feel free to leave any comments.