Wake up and Thrive

Wake up and Thrive

August 31st, 2012 by Mary Beth Torgerson in Local Regional News

Spin instructor Josh Harris demonstrates how to lean the Real Ryder bikes into the turns during the Drive Thru 45 spin class at Thrive Studio.

Spin instructor Josh Harris demonstrates how to lean...

Nurturing both body and mind, Thrive Studio provides an excellent balance of fitness and nutrition to help you reach your goals - and best of all it can be done during lunch break.

Clients at Thrive can pop in on their break or for an hour before work, have a total body workout, a latte and a nutritious, vegetarian meal without ever having to leave the building. "The café is here to serve people," says co-owner Kimberly Gavin. "We feel nutrition is a part of fitness. You can come work out and grab breakfast or lunch and know you got a healthy meal."

Although Thrive provides workouts for every taste and skill level from yoga to spin to personal training, one of the unique things about the studio is that it caters to busy schedules with classes like ThriveFIT, a total body workout in 30 minutes, and Drive Thru 45, a 45-minute spin class at noon.

Claudia Moore, director of marketing at River Rocks, says she has been taking spin classes for five years. "It's fun. It keeps me motivated and in shape when I can't get out and bike outside," she says. "I sleep better and just have a sense of general well-being. After a spin class you just feel like you've done something good for yourself."

An hour-long spin class can burn upwards of 700 calories, making it a great cardio and fat-burning workout. Thrive also offers RealRyder bicycles - stationary bikes that have the ability to lean from side to side, working core muscles as well as leg and glute muscles - which are said to burn 30 percent more calories than the average bike.

"I can get my heart rate higher here in spin class than when I'm running, and it's less impact so it protects the joints," says Anna Mercer, co-owner of Thrive Studio. "There is a lot of excitement in here. You feel like you're a part of something. You're in this ball of energy."

Although the fitness aspect is important, the fun atmosphere of the classes is what keeps many people coming back for more. "There are people here to take classes at 5 a.m. and they are energetic and ready to go. I'm used to leaving night clubs at 5 a.m. when I was younger, but this is a constructive atmosphere instead of a destructive atmosphere," says Mercer. "It's great cardio, energy and it's fun...and that's important. If it's not fun, why are we doing it?"

Mary Beth Torgerson leans into the handlebars of her Real Ryder bike during her first spin class at Thrive Studio.

Mary Beth Torgerson leans into the handlebars of...

For more information about Thrive Studio and its classes, visit www.thrivestudio.net.


¦ Don't forget your water bottle. With the sheer speed of the class, you will tend to dehydrate quickly.

¦ Do consider investing in padded shorts or a gel seat cover. The first class or two will be rough on your backside as you're getting used to the bicycle. Bringing one of these options can save you from the soreness.

¦ Don't forget a towel. Many classes will provide one for you, but bring your own just in case - you will get sweaty.

¦ Do let loose and have fun. Focus on the music and enjoy the ride.


"We haven't had anyone fall off the bike yet," explained Anna Mercer, co-owner of Thrive Studio, as she tried to alleviate my concerns about the RealRyder stationary bicycle I was preparing to mount for the first time.

I was terrified that my klutziness combined with my lack of spin class experience might make me be the first.

The RealRyder, similar to a stationary bike but with the ability to lean from side to side in order to engage more muscles, wobbled precariously as I slipped a foot into the straps of the pedal and hoisted myself onto my seat.

Above my head was a disco ball and our instructor, Josh Harris, was already clicking through upbeat music on his iPod to get us psyched for what was about to come. As the music began pumping and Josh began guiding us up and over imaginary hills, I started gaining a rhythm with the bike, although my feet couldn't possibly pedal as lightning fast as the others in the class.

They gained speed. Josh instructed us to increase resistance...and I became more exhausted.

The Drive Thru 45 spin class unwinds with some light stretching the last five minutes of class.

The Drive Thru 45 spin class unwinds with...

But beyond the sweat pouring down my face and the screaming in my thighs was the soreness of my backside.

The best shape I've ever been in during my lifetime was when I spent a semester studying abroad in Cambridge, England where we traded in our cars in favor of bicycles. Needless to say, I was excited to take my first spin class at Thrive to try to relive some of those moments from my college experience - except I conveniently forgot all about the soreness when your body tries to get used to the bicycle.

The uncomfortable equipment aside, I got a fantastic workout that sometimes didn't feel like a workout at all. I mean, when there is dance music and a disco ball, even 45 grueling minutes on a stationary bike can feel a bit like a party.

I think I will try spinning again...soon...when it doesn't hurt to sit anymore.