Mind Your Mind

This Month: Mind Your Mind

by Proverbs


Of course you know a well-rounded, balanced diet and a vigorous mix of exercises are important for health. After all, you’re a RiDEr!


You are in touch with your body, in sync with your soul, and plugged in to your community. I wonder, though, if there’s room for even more growth on your health and wellness journey?


May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Some of us are already in the counselor’s office once a month, once a week, or even more frequently (doubles aren’t just for back-to-back RiDEs!). But many of you aren’t thinking about your mental health in relation to physical health.


Every Sunday at 2pm you plan your RiDEs for the week, but do you plan to go see your therapist with the same fervor? Do you set alarms that say: Book your therapy session!?


Listen…I get it. Mental health gets a bad rap in lots of different cultural communities, BUT, life is hard. Add in tough issues like stress, loss, grief, trauma, divorce, addiction, anxiety, depression, self-doubt - the list goes on and on - and it’s easy to see why there is no shame in getting the support that you need to help you process through your life’s experiences.


Honestly, even if you had the picture-perfect childhood, it doesn’t hurt to sit down and talk to someone who is formally trained to help you figure out your behavioral patterns. Why do you do what you do? How did you come to think, act, be this way?


On this beautiful, gritty journey of life, it’s important to take time for self-reflection (and by that I mean more time than what you get in a 50 minute spin class!).

As your instructor, I want you to live your best, healthiest, most fulfilling life. No one but you knows what you come into the studio with. You could have had a crap day at work, you and your spouse aren’t seeing eye-to-eye again, or your parent’s chemotherapy isn’t going well. Sick kids. Ill pets. Life. Happens. And that’s why we love having you as RiDErs. Because you consistently show up and show out for yourselves, even when things get tough.


So, keep coming. But keep adding on, too. If you want change, you have to challenge yourself, turn up the tension, and push past discomfort to get to new personal bests. As in RiDE, so in life.


Visit PsychologyToday.com to check out therapists in your area. You can find someone based on race, gender, sexual orientation to “build” the perfect listening ear. And I know that even considering mental healthcare is a major feat. Finding a therapist is a lot like finding a romantic partner; you may have to try more than one before you find one that’s the right fit. Keep at it.


Lastly, if you’re a mental healthcare provider and would like to be listed as a service, please let us know and we’ll be sure to pass on your contact info.


Remember RiDE Tribe…we’ve got your front, back, side, and saddle.


See you soon!

Posted May 20, 2018 0 Comments

Tagged: indoorcycling mental health therapist therapy

What ARE Those Muscles Burning During my RiDE?

What Muscles ARE Burning During that RiDE?


We all feel that burn after a great spin class. We sometimes even walk out of class feeling jelly-legged as we make it to our car and wake up in the morning with that awesome feeling of new muscle soreness. Not only are we getting our cardio in by moving our legs with such power, but we are also strengthening those muscles at the same time.


What muscles DO we work so hard during class?


Our legs are made up of a bunch of muscles – but the main ones are the glutes, the quads, the hamstrings, the hip flexors, and the muscles of the lower leg (mainly the tib anterior, gastroc, and soleus).


The quads are actually four muscles in the front of the thigh (yeah, thus the name QUADriceps) that attach from the upper femur and pelvis down to the tibia via the patellar tendon. The quads mostly extend your knee (straighten your leg) but also help with flexing your hip.


The hamstrings (three muscles) run down the back of your leg from your pelvis to your lower leg. The hams primarily bend the knee but also help extend the hip.


The glutes, referring mostly to the gluteus maximus but there is also a minimus, extend your hip (and get you up those hills!). The hip flexors (mostly the psoas), flex the hip (well, that one was obvious).


In the lower leg, the gastrocnemius and soleus extend the ankle (plantarflex or point the foot downwards). This happens as you push the leg down.


ALL these muscles work together to create that perfect “full circle” pedal stroke you strive for during each ride. Check out the diagram below to see when you are working each muscle in a seated position. In a standing cycling position, you use even more quads and glutes (and a whole lot of CORE but we’ll save that topic for another post!).


Posted Apr 26, 2018 0 Comments

Women Athletes from Oakland

Being an athlete is a challenge, but being a female athlete in a male-dominated arena makes things even more difficult.

Some female athletes from Oakland that you may have heard about include Alexis Gray-Lawson, a professional basketball player in the WNBA, Jan Henne (better known by her married name, Jan Hawkins) Olympic swimmer and former world-record holder, and Zoe Ann Olsen-Jensen, an Olympic diver. But being well-known doesn’t determine one’s athletic abilities. There are thousands of athletic women residing in our town that deserve equal recognition for their talents and skills! Below are a few of the many talented ladies.

From Oakland Boot Camp, a 4-week long outdoor fitness program that provides a combination of fitness, nutritional counseling, and motivational training, come athletes Jennie Votel and Anna Gunn. Jennie is a certified NASM Personal Trainer, a NASM Certified Teen Fitness Specialist, Adventure Boot Camp Certified Boot Camp Instructor and holds a Certification in Nutrition through Precision Nutrition. Anna Gunn is a NESTA Certified Adventure Boot Camp Instructor and Certified Personal Trainer. What is particularly inspiring about these female athletes is that the two show strength and resilience through not only running their own business but also working their clinics. Talk about kicking butt in a male-dominated industry!


Oakland Movement is made up of two, but the female counterpart of the duo, Jaimi Patterson, is the yogi extraordinaire. Her teaching is rooted in the Alexander Technique. She embraces a personal blend of Vinyasa yoga that she calls EmbodyFlow. Jaimi is inspiring because of her dedication to helping others move better through her knowledge and abilities. You can take yoga classes from Jaimi at a variety of Yoga Studios, including Namaste Yoga and The Green Yogi.


Alison Roessler is another dominant woman athlete. She is the CEO and founder of Truve, a training facility and wellness center in Oakland. Alison teaches a mix of classes, including Fit Camps, Boot Camps, and Personal Training. Alison grew up an athlete. She water-skied, played soccer, softball, basketball, and finally fell in love with track and field. Alison even qualified for the Junior Olympics for a couple of track and field events. She continued to pursue fitness into her adulthood by opening Truve, which makes her a go-to name in the female athletic game.


Like to dance your butt off? Then you’d get along with Samar Nassar and Gabriela Nassar-Covarelli, the sisters and co-founders of Hipline Oakland. Samar grew up dancing professionally, while Gabriela played soccer and was involved in track and field sports. Now, the two have continued their athletic abilities onward and opened the dance studio Hipline. The athletic sister duo brings energy and spirit to their practice, with their core values being shimmy, connect, and love.


Lastly, Deb and Helen of yours truly, RiDE Oakland, and all of our fabulous, strong instructors that continue to show us what the true meaning of sexy is! Your athleticism is unparalleled.

Posted Mar 23, 2018 0 Comments

Tagged: athletes skills March RiDE Oakland celebrate community female tribe women

New To RiDE?


No worries. We’ve got you. Here’s everything you need to know.


What to bring: A little grit, a can-do attitude, and your water bottle! That’s it. We supply the towel (you are going to SWEAT!) and provide cycling shoes (if you have your own, we do recommend that you bring them. LOOK and SPD cleats are okay).  


What to do: Come at least 10 minutes before class start time. We will help you get set up, help you clip into your bike, and give you the 101 about spin class. Bike set up is IMPORTANT! Don’t miss this part


What to say: Hi! Meet your bike neighbors. They are going to help you be awesome in class. And tell your instructor if you have any injuries or medical conditions that she/he should know about.  Our instructors are experts at suggesting modifications in the workout.


During class: Work hard, but play hard, too. Set some goals and crush them. But have fun! A good goal for newbies is to come out of class sweating AND smiling! Enjoy the ride.


After class: You did it! High-five your neighbor and congratulate yourself on taking your first spin class. Be sure to finish your bottle of water and refill. Soak in all those endorphins and buy a New RiDER Pack on your way out ($55 for 5 classes!) – you are going to be hooked!





Posted Mar 16, 2018 0 Comments

Tagged: motivation tribe workout Cycling Fitness Health March community goals indoor cycling

Women's History Month


The month of March is National Women’s History Month! Though in the Bay Area we like to celebrate women year-round, we’ve come up with some fun ways to enjoy this special month.

1) Admire the art of women!


Women in art are vulnerable, brave, and inspiring. Check out local women artists (and riders!) like Alexsandra Zee and Niki Waters and support them by talking about and buying their beautiful art!


You can also stop by a museum to honor the ladies in the art world. At the Oakland Museum of California, there are pieces by Dorothea Lange, Lucia Mathews, Joanne Leonard, Helen Nestor, and Margaret De Patta. If you venture into the city, The De Young has pieces by many females artists including Mary Cassatt, Georgia O’Keeffe, and Kay sekimachi, while the MoMA houses pieces by women like Joan Mitchell, Helen Frankenthaler, and Lee Krasner.


2) Eat like a woman!


The Bay Area is home to some of the best-rated restaurants, of which many of the head chefs are female. The following are just a few of the many top-rated restaurants in the Oakland area with females heading the kitchen:


  • Shakewell in Oakland, with head chef Jen Biesty
  • Brown Sugar Kitchen in Oakland, with executive chef and owner Tanya Holland
  • Nido Kitchen and Bar in Oakland, with head chef Silvia McCollow
  • Oeste in Oakland, owned by Sandra Davis, Lea Redmon, and Anna Villalobos
  • Miss Ollie’s in Oakland, owned by Sarah Kirnon
  • Souley Vegan in Oakland, with chef & owner Tamearra Dyson
  • Drip Line in Oakland, with executive chef & partner Nora Dunning
  • Cosecha in Oakland, with chef & owner Dominica Rice Cisneros
  • The Cook and Her Farmer in Oakland, with chef & co-owner Romney Steele
  • Nyum Bai in Oakland, with chef & owner Nite Yun
  • Guerilla Cafe in Berkeley, with chef & co-owner Andrea Ali, co-owner Kobu Konte, and co-owner Rachel Konte
  • Chez Panisse in Berkeley, with executive chef and owner Alice Waters
  • Navi Kitchen in Emeryville, owned by Preeti Mistry


3) Attend a show dedicated to Women’s History!


Ashkenaz Music and Dance Community Center in Berkeley is hosting the Maestra Series including concerts, dance shows, and film screenings that are female-centric.


Or, head to the African American Museum Library of Oakland to attend events centered around important women, including their “Honor the Women” event on March 24th from 2:00-4: 00 pm.

4) Exercise like a woman!

And lastly, get your butt down to RiDE OAKLAND, a woman-owned business, and take a class from one of the many female teachers that we have here. You can also check out Game Changer Fitness, Balanced Fitness for Moms, Left Coast Power Yoga, Core Society, Dailey Method, Bold, and Flying Yoga - just some of the AMAZING local fitness studios also owned by women!



Posted Mar 9, 2018 0 Comments

Tagged: Fitness March RiDE Oakland celebrate community female good times history human instructors life mind women Health