SPOILER ALERT: Yes, it’s worth it…FOR ME!
Before I get in to the rest…because some of y’all don’t like to read, lemme drop some pertinent Peloton info:
My Peloton user name: CatchGifUcan (creative, right?)
Referral code: Use someone’s referral code. You’ll receive $100 off your accessories when you add this promo code at checkout.
Now let’s get to my story, shall we?
So, why did I buy one?
Cycling, for a long time has been my preferred method of cardio. I’m not a runner, no matter how much I try…I just don’t love it. I’ve had cycle shoes for like 15 years and have been taking cycle classes at gyms since living in Virginia. However, here in NYC, cycle classes at many gyms fill up rather quickly. Also, music is important to me…if classes include country, rock or a bunch of house music, I’m not motivated. So, last year I picked up an expensive habit of SoulCycle! I was very particular about the instructors I went to, and once I found the ones who played the type of music I like, I stuck with them and was loyal to their classes. Fun Fact: Sometimes they’d slip in a little too much house music, and I’d have to take a break from them for a while, LOL.
Anyway, as I said before, though the experience of SoulCycle is dope, it’s a pretty expensive habit. Classes cost anywhere between $30-35 a pop, and I was going 2-3 times a week. Yes, your math is correct…
So, I decided to start looking into other options. I knew Peloton bikes were relatively expensive, but what I needed to figure out was whether or not it was worth the investment considering what I was spending on gym memberships and SC classes in NYC. After going down the rabbit hole of watching YouTube review after YouTube review, I pulled the trigger. Peloton offers an interest/fee free financing option for their bikes, if you don’t feel like dropping all that cash at once. When I did the math, the monthly cost plus the Peloton Membership, I found that I’d be saving a lot of money plus be able to take as many classes as I wanted at absolutely any time I wanted.
Note: I am not anti-SoulCycle and will still be attending classes when I have friends to go with. Oftentimes, my out-of-town friends come to New York, and we’ll take SC classes together. I don’t plan on changing that. The energy in the SC classes is something special!
Let’s talk about why I love it, so far…
I’m one of those people who would have probably been at SoulCycle everyday if I could afford it. However, because I wasn’t willing to spend that kind of $$, I limited myself to a couple times a week, and supplemented it with jogs outside (hate them) and gym workouts. Now that I have a Peloton literally right next to my bed, I’ve found myself walking up, not even getting fully dressed, putting my cycle shoes on and clipping in. I also have come in after a night of drinking and completed a quick 20-minute ride before bed. I’ve had the bike for a week now, and have done two-a-days almost every day. I’m getting the bang for my buck! Also, just that quick, I am seeing results. Peloton also maps out which hotels have Peloton bikes! This is a God-send for travelers! Hi, it’s me…I’m “travelers!”
I work harder
Though I miss some of the choreography from SoulCycle, I have found that my workouts have been a lot more intense with Peloton. A lot of the work is in the saddle and the workouts I’ve been doing focus on power and less on speed. When we get to the portions of the workouts where we get up out of the saddle, I feel relieved and my quads get a break. Unfortunately, when I do workouts at SoulCycle, we spend so much time out of the saddle racing that my feet ache, and I tend to not work as hard to remedy the pressure on my feet.
One of the reasons I am able to work harder is because I can make sure I am keeping up with the exact amount of resistance and cadence the instructor is calling for. They give you a number range of where your resistance and cadence should be, as opposed to you just guessing like you do in most classes. In addition to that, you see your personal milestones and output metrics from past rides, so you can work to best your own scores. Of course, your screens are customizable, and you can hide or display whatever works best for you.
When you search on Facebook, you can find a number of Peloton groups. This includes the official one, as well as a plethora of subgroups created to help members have a sense of belonging, motivation and accountability.
When I’m in class, I tend to filter the leaderboard to only show who is currently taking the class with me, as opposed to looking at the total view of everyone who’s taken the class before. I’d much rather see that I’m #10 out of 25 riders currently in the class than seeing that I’m #1,465 out of 2,000. While in the class with others, you can give each other high fives, and respond to high fives as well. Seems minimal, but those things matter. It’s like someone saying, “I see you. Keep it up!”
I have a couple friends who have Peloton bikes too. What’s dope is that we can attend classes together. We can even turn on the webcam feature and see each other during the workouts. ProTip: Follow friend on the Peloton app and make sure you are building a community to help motivate you and hold you accountable. If you don’t do that, you are doing yourself a disservice and you might as well just go to a local gym, and ride a stationary bike there.
Live classes + On-Demand
This is self-explanatory. When you open your Peloton app, you can look for the schedule of upcoming classes, and plan to attend them live. When attending live, if you’re hitting a milestone, celebrating a birthday or whatever else, you will most likely get a shout out from the instructors during the ride.
Miss a class, or want to take a class at a time that’s not on the schedule? No problem! You can search classes by instructor, duration, music genre, workout type, etc. Even if you are taking an on-demand class, you’re able to see if anyone else in the world is taking the class at the same time as you are.
So many music choices
Period. Ride to the music you prefer.
Note: There was a big music lawsuit against Peloton, so I hear a lot of the music has been limited. I imagine this will be worked out eventually, but so far, I’ve enjoyed the music they’ve been offering. And that’s a strong statement coming from me…
Access to so many other workouts outside of cycling
Lots of other workouts right in the pal of your hands, or on a plethora of other devices:
Running - Strength - Yoga - Meditation - Stretching - Bootcamp - Walking - Cardio
Other things to note:
Be sure cycling is for you.
If you don’t enjoy cycling, or aren’t sure, you may want to hold off on this investment. This is not the type of equipment you want to turn into a clothes-drying rack. If you buy it, commit to using it!
Your butt will hurt…at first.
Cycling can be quite uncomfortable when first starting. It’s said that it takes about a week for your butt to get use to the saddle. And if you take a long break from cycling (which you shouldn’t do with this bike, because of how much you paid for it), you’ll need to break in your butt again. For me, I added a gel seat cushion to my saddle. Even when I take SoulCycle classes, I use a gel seat cover. It makes a world of a difference.
Set the atmosphere
Just like you would do in any expensive fitness class…especially cycling, put your phone away! You can go 40-minutes while being disconnected from the world and focusing on you for a moment. When I’m riding at night, I actually turn the lights out in my apartment and stream my sound through my Alexa, and it feels like I’m right in the studio with the instructor. Trust me, it works! ProTip: You can connect your Peloton to wireless headphones, speakers, etc. to make your experience more immersive.
You can get a lot of accessories for cheaper online
I already had cycle shoes (I caught a SoulCycle shoe sale). You can also get a bike mat, weights, and heart rate monitors on Amazon. However, keep in mind that if you use a referral code (mine is NCU6W4), you get $100 off accessories, so take advantage of that, too.
Again, for good measure:
My Peloton user name: CatchGifUcan
Referral code: NCU6W4