They say that you are the company you keep. Having spent my entire career helping brands define themselves through advertising and events, I have to agree. The people and things that surround us shape who we are, what we know–and, how far we go. Which is why walking into T2 was so invigorating to me as someone who’s really into fitness: I found myself among a mix of triathletes of all ages, real road bikes, expert coaches…and A LOT of spandex. I felt like I could definitely learn something.
T2 MultiSport NYC is an indoor cycling studio at the highest level. It’s located on the ground floor of a nondescript townhouse on East 64th Street and, at first look, it feels like a bike shop. There are bikes everywhere–hanging from the ceiling, leaning against their owners who’ve just arrived and those being set up for class.
In place of promotional signage and a wall of merchandise, you’ll find a projector screen with riders’ names and performance numbers, the weekly schedule on a gigantic chalk board and stacks of magazines like Competitor and Women’s Running. No frills, but, totally authentic.
The technology behind T2 is the CompuTrainer, which delivers real-time results as you ride. Whether you bring your own bike or use one from the studio, everyone is plugged into the system, showing the “road” and our individual numbers (watts, distance, calories burned, etc.) on flatscreens.
After inputting my height, weight & age and selecting my virtual outfit colors, my bike was waiting for me, so, I hopped on and started getting familiar. While I’m a huge indoor cyclist, I’m less experienced with riding outdoors on anything more complicated than a Citi Bike, so, my only challenge was shifting gears. Otherwise, it was very simple–each rider followed his/her personal pane, showing our course and metrics (I was bottom left).
My neighbor, whom I jokingly nicknamed “the guy,” was a tall, hardcore triathlete and international finance type whose output was consistently through the roof: he hit 375 watts vs. mine, which ranged between 100-140 during the 90-minute class. I was more than happy to follow his tips and tricks, which he happily offered throughout our ride.
Meanwhile, all around us, there was a lot of sweating going on.
Things to know before you go:
- Bring a slim water bottle that will fit into your bike (mine’s Klean Kanteen); refills provided.
- As with any cycling class, if you have shoes, wear those, otherwise, baskets are available so that you can rock your sneakers, too.
- Eat something light but substantial before you ride: a banana with peanut butter or small bowl of high protein cereal with almond milk.
- And, there are showers, if you’re headed to brunch with friends afterward.
It’s always easy to zone out on an elliptical and call that a workout. So, one of the things that I’ve loved about writing STRENGTH+Sole is pushing myself far from what was once my usual routine.
Next week, I’m back at T2 for another class and my FTP (Functional Threshold Power) test, which will give me an accurate sense of where I am now, performance-wise, and help set my training goals.
And, ya never know, you just might see me this spring in Central Park, dressed in head-to-toe spandex and riding alongside “the guy.”
Are you with me? Try T2! Log on to T2NYC.com and use promo code STRENGTH for 25% off a single class or any class package through February 28, 2014.
Stay tuned for more from my FTP test and a special giveaway, coming soon.
Photos by Jeanne Meyer.
This post is in partnership with T2; all thoughts/assessments are my own.