Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Day 8.141 We Have A Winner

Many a spin class I have asked for enhanced focus from the participants. I have on occasion, turned down the music volume to emphasize the distraction potential or, on a few very special and rare sessions, hammered the mute button like tenderizing abalone.

There is the argument that music IS a distraction, and that the pure, true and fearless athlete needs only the sound of wheels turning and heart beating. The theory being that a minor-key dirge during an up-tempo sweet spot attack will do more harm than good, limiting, dumbing down the output, intentional or otherwise. The beat becomes the goal when it shouldn't be, and we default to the safety our comfort zones.

I get that. I have spent many, many hours lost in the zen ozone (ozen?) of the groove zone with nothing to augment (diminish?) the suffering but my desire to rise above and improve by speed, power or fitness.

Interestingly, I am the first to reach for the volume slider when I recognize the beat, time signature or familiarity of a great tune. And there are many. As one example.

Somewhere between these extremes lies a place we all subliminally seek. We want the groove, we want it to be a dance, we want it to rock. We want the inspirational motivation of a classic song at high decibels. We also want the purity. The complete tuning out of anything the slightest bit distracting. I do not want to be in competition with ambient cacophonous noise. Same goes for screeching teens, squeaky wheels or complaints of any nature.

There is a balance we seek.

Often I intentionally create a set-list that will offer examples of what we are trying to achieve. I will mash-up an hour of Motown, Blues and classical ballads. During all that wonderful harmony I ask for top-notch effort. As measured by watts. There is a fascinating synergy available for those that have the ability to combine these extremes.

Imagine my surprise and absolute joy this morning, when one of our regulars, an ultra-fit mother of three, had this to say when asked how she preformed our second week of Super Eights.

"I had to work real, REAL hard to keep my power up, because, and I know you did this internationally, there was no beat to spin to today."

We have a winner.

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