I have really grown fond of spinning classes. You know the ones I mean, the ones for fit and young and pretty people. Where BMI averages 22.5, where you have your sleek hair in a pony tail and wear white leggings and listen to radio 1 and after have a pizza and a beer, that never make home on your hips.
The only issue here is that I could not be further from that category. I am middle aged, menopausal, have a hair anarchy and I’m grumpy as hell. But when I join the class it is as if none of it matters, and what remains is a sweating bulge of pure power.
Don’t get me wrong, I would never ever go to an actual studio spinning class. I don’t think they even would have lockers large enough for my size L pants. But in my living room, hidden behind a plaster that hides me from the camera, I am equal to the thousands of others who join the same class. There we cheer on Bob in Maryland who just completed his 500th class, and feel compassion to Crace who calls herself fat on facebook. Bob and Crace don’t know that I had a pillow on my seat for the first month. Eventually I cut a piece from our mattress topper, and duct taped it on the saddle. Not pretty, but practical. Then I discovered the diaper pants they conveniently call cycling shorts. I did not think I would be wearing them kind just yet, but when my bits rested upon the thick pink inner gel pads, first time ever I could focus on sweating and not on the agony that happened on my cheeks.
I have learnt that you can sweat from places that supposedly don’t have sweat glands. Like the inside of your ear. And from your eyeballs. I don’t know if I am a medical wonder, but I swear my eye balls sweat. And its not the kind of sexy little moisture that you see on tv. My sweat is the kind that makes t-shirt soaking wet, socks dripping and oozes from all pores of the body until it dripples on the floor. It leaves streaks on the bike, stains handlebars, and splashes on the screen. It is the non sexy middle aged woman sweat. It shouts my cheeks are made of steel. It says I can, I will, and I am doing it. And I don’t care what anybody thinks, behind my screen name and plaster I am equal to those others. Trained by my world champion cyclist, just me and her, us two, making this ride count, just now.