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Spinning® Class Benefits for Weight Lifters

Spinning® Class Benefits for Weight Lifters

Posted by Spinning® on Apr 18th 2018

Cross-training is a valuable tool for all athletes, especially those who engage exclusively in resistance training like weight lifting. Weight lifting produces a myriad of adaptations, including muscular hypertrophy and strength. However, traditional resistance training programs may not be as effective in developing aerobic fitness (1). For this reason, a deliberate cross-training protocol should be chosen, and Spinning® should be the first choice for several reasons.
  • Improved cardiovascular fitness
Spinning classes strengthen your heart and lungs by working in five distinct Energy Zones™ that develop both aerobic and anaerobic fitness. The Endurance Energy Zone sets your target heart rate at 65 to 75 percent of maximum heart rate (MHR) to build an aerobic base and improve endurance, which is the ability to sustain a given exercise intensity for an extended period of time. After an aerobic base is firmly established, one can progress to the Interval Energy Zone, which ranges between 50 and 80 percent of MHR for aerobic intervals and as high as 92 percent of maximum heart rate for short anaerobic intervals.According to the Spinning 8-Week Performance Program (2), repeatedly exposing muscles to high-intensity exercise improves their resistance to fatigue, thus increasing endurance. Additionally, interval training teaches the body to recover quickly after a challenging workout. This makes the recovery phase of the interval a key element in interval training.
  • Caloric expenditure
Many individuals who weight train are also looking to reduce body fat. This gives them the “defined” look that many people desire. Integrating Spinning into a weight training regimen can be a useful way to enhance caloric expenditure and reduce body fat. A report from the Harvard Medical School showed that a general 30-minute bout of resistance training performed by a 125-pound, 155-pound, and 185-pound person expended 90, 112, and 133 calories respectively. A vigorous 30-minute bout of stationary cycling for the same weight categories resulted in a caloric expenditure of 315, 391, and 466 calories respectively (3). For those looking to gain muscle and lose fat who almost exclusively engage in resistance training can significantly increase caloric expenditure and hasten fat loss by incorporating Spinning into their routine.
  • Strengthens lower body
In general, weight lifters tend to focus their attention on upper body training exercises. In a 2013 survey, over 1,400 men who exercise regularly reported that chest, biceps, and triceps received the majority of their attention, while calves, hamstrings and gluteal muscles received the least attention (4). While this imbalance can be addressed in the weight room with lower body exercises, Spinning workouts provide an excellent opportunity to both strengthen the lower body and the cardiovascular system.
  • Reduced risk of injury
Including Spinning workouts in your training regimen can also reduce your risk of injury. Training in one discipline without deliberate periodization can contribute to muscle imbalances and injuries from overtraining. Also, indoor cycling is low-impact, which can potentially decrease stress to joints in comparison to heavy weight training activities.


Knuttgen, H.G. (2007). Strength training and aerobic exercise: Compare and contrast. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 21(3), 973-978.Mad Dogg Athletics, Inc. (2013). Spinning® 8-week performance program. Mad Dogg Athletics, Inc.: Venice, CA.Harvard Medical School. (2004). Calories burned in 30 minutes for people of three different weights. Retrieved from: http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsweek/Calories-burned-in-30-minutes-of-leisure-and-routine-activities.htm.Health and Fitness Education. (2013). Men are neglecting lower body workouts. Retrieved from: http://www.hfe.co.uk/blog/men-neglecting-lower-body-in-workouts/Take this quiz and earn 1 SPIN® CEC