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I had to give it a go!
I’ve always been a fan of spinning, but not really given it the full hog. Having now done it every day for the last 2 weeks, I have experienced many of the positive benefits of spinning.
In this post, I’ll talk you through exactly what I think the 15 most important benefits are of spinning every day! It’s definitely different from spinning once a week, or even three times a week.
You should note – most exercise experts would recommend that you have one rest day per week from whatever your activity of choice. Although I don’t think this is 100% essential, I think the optimal experience for you would be to go spinning six days a week and have one day off.
1. Tone Thighs, Butt and Abs
One thing to understand straight off is that spinning is much more about toning rather than building muscle. If you want to actually grow your muscles, then spinning can help slightly. Lifting weights would be a much better plan though.
The real impact of spinning is in toning.
Why is that?
Well, spinning, and any form of cycling for that matter is a high-repetition exercise. This means that you are doing a large number (hundreds, even thousands) of repetitions of the same movement.
For actual muscle growth low reps are the way to go. If you lift weights, then 6-12 reps it’s what you’re looking for to grow muscle.
Cycling is clearly using many more reps than that. So what does this do? Well, it develops muscle endurance. Muscles don’t really grow much, but they do become sculpted, shapely, and toned.
Spinning every day really sets this process in motion rapidly. In two weeks you will be shaped and toned in a range of places.
The key five areas that are toned by cycling are:
So basically your legs, butt, and belly.
To be more specific, the two most important muscle groups are the quadriceps (on the front of your thigh), and your glutes (the muscle in your butt). They do the lion’s share of the work.
Here’s a table of the muscles used in cycling, and the amount they are used:
|Muscle Group||Intensity Of Use In Spinning||Role In Cycling|
|Quads||High||Applying downward force to the pedals|
|Glutes||High||Working with the quads to provide power, and acting to stabilize the hips|
|Hamstrings||Medium||Helping to straighten the leg|
|Calves||Medium||Working alongside the glutes and quads to apply power to the pedals|
|Core||Medium||Maintaining balance, and keeping a good posture|
2. 27 Percent Higher Chance Of Sleeping Well
If you’re wondering how much more likely you are to sleep well after spinning every day, then the answer is pretty specific…27 percent.
Let me elaborate!
Sleepfoundation.org has cited a poll where they found that 83% of individuals that engaged in light to moderate exercise regularly enjoyed good-quality uninterrupted sleep most of the time. On the other hand, only 53% of those that engaged in only sporadic or no exercise enjoyed the same sleep benefits. (Source)
I’d actually say this is a minimum likelihood, to be honest. When I went spinning every day I slept like an absolute log…or like a boulder. The chances of dreams were zero. It was pure oblivion.
You could do it too!
3. Builds Discipline and Mental Strength
This is probably my own favorite benefit of spinning every day!
This is what sets it apart from spinning either once a week, or even three times a week.
The more times you go, the less resistance your mind has to spin classes. It just becomes almost second nature to keep going through the session.
In the early days of spinning, I was always telling myself to keep going and trying to break down how long was left of the class.
The more I went, the less this happened. I was much more ‘in the moment’, and not worrying about how long was left, or anything else like that.
In researching this blog, I found the following brilliant video by Dylan Johnson. He takes a look at the science of mental toughness applied to cycling, and comes up with some fascinating ideas:
4. It Gets Easier!
This is partly a mental phenomenon and partly a physical one.
The more you go to spinning, the more your physiological capabilities develop, and this really helps from both a physical and mental standpoint.
Your body just becomes better at taking the experience. You particularly improve your:
- VO2 Max
- Muscle endurance
- Ability to recover
All this feeds into the melting pot and makes each spinning class potentially easier.
However, there is always scope to keep on pushing! Go faster, ramp up the resistance, and push yourself that little bit harder!
You can keep on making progress day after day.
5. Non-Weight Bearing (Mostly)
One of the beauties of spinning for many is that it can be non-weight bearing.
What does this mean and why does it matter?
Well, non-weight-bearing activities are those where the weight of the individual is not carried by their legs during an exercise. For example, when you go swimming, your body weight floats in the water, and your legs are not responsible for it.
In cycling, when you are seated, your body weight is supported by the saddle. This takes the weight off your legs, and they are free just to focus on powering the peddles.
This is really beneficial for anyone that has knee or ankle injuries. I’ve met several people that are trying to get back into cardio following leg injuries, and spinning seems to be a really popular way of doing that.
Of course, it should be said that as soon as you leave your saddle, then the exercise becomes weight-bearing. There is more force on your legs.
This is optional, though. If you’re reluctant to leave the saddle for whatever reason, just mention this to the instructor before you start and they’ll be very understanding.
Here’s a quick table that highlights other weight-bearing and non-weight-bearing activities:
|Cycling in Saddle||X|
|Cycling Out of Saddle||X|
6. Kind To Joints
Another beautiful reason why spinning every day is a really beautiful thing is that it is kind to our joints.
There’s very little evidence to suggest you would ever encounter joint issues through spinning even if you go every day.
Why is that? Well, because indoor cycling is extremely kind to our joints. It is so smooth, that the joints (particularly the knees) receive no jolts or jars at all.
The cycling movement keeps the joints moving naturally, and spinning even warms up the synovial fluid that helps to lubricate the knee.
7. Boost Your Energy Levels By Up To 30%
You heard that right – spinning every day boosts your energy levels by up to 30%.
But surely with all that exercise all the time, you’ll be completely knackered (I hear you cry)?
That doesn’t seem to be how it works. Daily exercise actually boosts energy and makes the body and mind more resilient to future exertion.
Don’t just take my word for it. The clever folks at Harvard Medical School state that, ‘It’s true that moving more can help give you more energy, through several mechanisms.’
These mechanisms include:
- Creating more oxygen inside the body
- Your body also experiences more cell renewal during exercise
8. Hormone Boost
Daily exercise such as spinning results in boosts in four really important hormones
Hahns Petty, from the Piedmont Atlanta Fitness Center, states that ‘Exercise is a productive outlet that stimulates feel-good transmitters that help boost overall well-being.’
Exercise releases hormones that make us feel good, and make our bodies and minds work more effectively in a range of ways.
The four most important hormones that spinning every day boosts are:
Serotonin is a hormone that promotes a good’s night sleep.
This is the male hormone that is related to muscle mass, sperm count, and several other factors.
This is a largely female hormone. It is shown that exercising every day helps weaken the effects of menopause (helped by estrogen).
This is a hormone found in the brain, that is proven to reduce stress and symptoms of depression.
Exercise is a productive outlet that stimulates feel-good transmitters that help boost overall well-being.Hahns Petty, Piedmont Atlanta Fitness Center
9. Build Muscle Endurance
Spinning is a fantastic way of building muscle endurance. It is a high-repetition exercise, meaning that your body engages in thousands of repetitions of the same movement.
This really helps your muscles to adapt to being able to work longer and more efficiently. Spinning every day does wonders for muscle endurance! I found that I could barely break a sweat the next time I cycled to work.
10. Become Part Of A Community
I’m guessing that if you’re going spinning to a class every day, then you’re going to end up meeting a lot of people, and making positive friendships.
It’s close to impossible not to, surely?
That herd instinct part of spinning is a big deal. It’s the community that drives us all forward.
You can even get this to an extent by spinning at home with an online group, or even a video of indoor cyclists going through a routine. There is still some level of connection, which is a really positive thing for our well-being.
11. 400 To 700 Calories Per Session
Spinning is a big calorie burner, and if you’re doing this every day then this is a fantastic way to lose weight, particularly if allied to a good-quality diet.
Most spinners will lose between 400 and 700 calories per session. This is a big calorie deficit if you’re doing it every day.
If you want to see an analysis of the number of calories you’re likely to burn in a spin class, then check out this video:
12. Spin Three Times Or More For Serious Benefits
The experts all seem to say the minimum number of times you should go spinning each week to reap the maximum benefits is three times. I have to agree.
Having been a regular spin once-a-week guy, I now realize I was missing out on most of the good stuff that you only really get from doing it a lot.
Three times a week gets all the benefits of cardio, muscular endurance, VO2 max, and a lot of other good stuff.
But what about spinning every day?
Well, doing it every day really does ramp up the benefits of doing it several times a week, and has a lot of benefits that come from doing something on a daily basis. These include
- You become used to the hormone burst daily
- Excellent sleep levels
- Lack of stiffness
- It promotes longevity
This is an obvious benefit, but one of the most important. Exercising your heart on a daily basis has many benefits, including:
- Reducing health risks
- Managing chronic heart conditions
- Lowers blood pressure
- Lowers colesterol
14. Keep Stiffness At Bay
One of the big advantages I’ve felt myself is that I don’t feel any stiffness now when spinning daily.
A daily session really does brush those cobwebs away, and keeps all muscles supple and relaxed.
Low-impact cardio is one of the best ways to keep stiffness at bay, with spinning of course being pretty much the best source of low-impact cardio (OK, I’m a little biased). (Source)
15. Access At Your Level
One of the real beauties of spinning is that it is completely open to being accessed at any level.
This is great for much older riders, those returning from injury, or those just beginning to build up their fitness levels.
You can literally start on the lowest resistance level with a light pedal movement. Take it at your pace, and listen to your body.
You can increase the intensity of your rides over several sessions, or when you feel ready.