Are Spin Classes Good for Losing Weight?

by Eliza Martinez, Demand Media Google
    Spinning can help you drop excess weight.

    Spinning can help you drop excess weight.

    Spin classes are a great way for women to exercise in a social setting, which for many increases the odds that they'll show up. Spinning burns calories, but might not be enough to produce weight loss on its own. Don't skip your class, though, because regular exercise is a vital part of staying healthy and fighting off diseases. Just make sure you ditch poor eating habits at the same time.

    Healthy Weight Loss

    Weight loss occurs when you burn more calories than you consume, not just occasionally, but on a consistent basis. To lose 1 pound in a week, you must create a deficit of 3,500 calories. That means 500 calories per day, through exercise and good eating choices. Spinning is a good addition to your routine because it burns calories. Though spinning alone probably isn't enough to produce a lot of weight loss. You also have to eat healthy and make going to the gym a consistent habit.

    Calories Burned

    Understanding how many calories you burn during a spin class is a good way to balance your food intake so you can drop unwanted pounds. In general, a 150-pound woman burns about 475 calories an hour while spinning at a moderate speed. At this pace, you'll feel winded, but should still be able to have a conversation with the spinner next to you.

    Routine

    The potential calorie burn during a spin class is beneficial for helping you lose weight. But if you tend to slow down toward the end of your class, you leave early, or you take lengthy breaks throughout, your overall calorie burn is lower. Overestimating how many calories you burned during a class gets in the way of weight loss. Keep a consistent pace throughout your class. If your time is tight, try intervals. This involves spinning at a moderate pace for several minutes, then going all out for a minute or more. Alternating back and forth boosts your calorie burn and reduces the amount of time you need to spin.

    Diet

    You made it to spin class and burned several hundred calories. But if you hit the fast-food drive-through or head out for a cheesy Mexican meal afterward, you're probably undoing all your hard work. Taking in more calories than you just burned off won't help you lose weight and may even cause you to pile on the pounds. Instead, eat a low-calorie meal after your workout. Choose foods from each of the food groups, which covers your nutrient needs, but don't overdo it on calories. Try whole-wheat pasta with steamed vegetables and low-fat cheese or a turkey and low-fat cheese sandwich with sliced vegetables on whole-wheat bread.

    About the Author

    Eliza Martinez has written for print and online publications. She covers a variety of topics, including parenting, nutrition, mental health, gardening, food and crafts. Martinez holds a master's degree in psychology.

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