It’s okay to be carried every now and then you know, even strength needs a rest.
-Tyler Knott Gregson.
Hello my beautiful (and handsome) Bikergang and hello October!
I don’t know about you, but I find these Autumn months to be more of a transitionary period in my life than the ever famed January. There just seems to be something in the wind, and in the way the leaves aimlessly dance about that causes me to truly wonder just what i’m doing with my life. Perhaps this is nothing but a simple nudge from the Universe, a slight suggestion that I begin to truly pay attention to my surroundings and to live for the moments rather than for the expectation of outcome…or perhaps it really is time to just begin anew.
While I may be infantile in my understanding of life, I do know one thing, and that is this… life is going to pass us by regardless of our ability to truly savour it. And so, in every effort to simplify this hectic life we all lead, I offer you the following suggestion via the ever talented Mary Oliver:
- Pay attention
- Be astonished
- Tell about it
But really, tell me all about it , I want to get to know all of you! If you have an idea you really want to share, or if you have something you would like me to include in an upcoming post than send me an email and we can connect!
Your challenge for this month is a simple one. Try to remember the very reason that caused you to enter the doors of YYC Cycle (and I know that for the majority of you it was a result of your secret crush on Warren, so give me the other reason). Early last year I found myself complacent and in need of a change but I didn’t know exactly how to achieve this. I am a habitual creature, I live for routine and for the expected (I am that person who reads the last page of a book before I even get half way through). So, in order to stir things up in my life I created an idea jar, a jar that I filled with an abundance of “ideas” that I have always wanted to try but never quite found the time or person to do so with. Well, one of those ideas was trying a spin class, and after my first class (with Warren, by complete chance), I was hooked.
So there you have it my gang, there’s my motivation, now send me yours!
Speaking of motivation.. have you ever wondered just why certain genres of music really resonate with you and others do not? Well I did, and so I asked our resident music specialist to shed some light on the connection between music and motivation. Interested? Read on!
Written by Elle McAndrews, MTA, MT-BC
As a motivator at YYC-CYCLE, I often get those happy ‘feels’ when I get to create a playlist for the Bikergang. When I’m sitting at home finding tunes to spin to, I’m often dancing around my house, on the couch, at the kitchen table or wherever! When a track catches my ear, I cannot help but groove it out in my body.
As an accredited Music Therapist it is my job to find out what kinds of music my clients enjoy. When we are listening to or making music together, the response will be greater if the client enjoys the music. The motivation factor increases. This means I am learning many genres of music on the guitar or piano in order to reach my clients more effectively. Back to the spin room…
When you are in spin class and a favourite song comes up, you are more likely to work harder, and feel those good vibes during that track. Which brings me to the big question: How does music motivate us?
Music activates our sympathetic nervous system: airways open, heart rate accelerates, and muscles are primed to move. These are all excellent physical processes that need to happen when you get your spin on Bikergang!
Music affects the coordination of activity within and across different parts of the brain: Studies examining patterns of electric activity across the brain when listening to music suggest that brain signals become synchronized which is crucial for cognitive, motor and perceptual processes. This means that when you listen to music while working out, your brain signals become synchronized with the music allowing you to plan and execute your next move accurately, and get in sync with the beat. Is your criss-cross game strong? The music is definitely a part of that accurate coordination.
Music has the ability to draw our attention away from negative aspects of a task.
Your physical and mental endurance is enhance by music. So next time you are in the thick of a serious hover or a badass HIIT* track, focus on something you like about the song and forget about the temporary discomfort you feel and track will be over before you know it.
Music is able to connect you emotionally and enhance your mood: can I get “HELL YES?” You probably already know what song makes you cry when you are driving in your car - Adele makes me shed tears every time I listen to her, and you know what tunes get you in the mood to dance, party, get it on (oh that surfboard Bey!) exercise, work, relax, and sleep.
Got a request? I love when the a Bikergang member comes up to me and asks me the name of a song I had in my playlist, or even better when they give me suggestions or request of songs they would love to hear in future playlists. I am listening to you! If you ask, you shall receive unless the song is not spin appropriate - sorry death metal lovers, I still love that you love death metal!
Have a music related question? You can email Elle at firstname.lastname@example.org or find me on Instagram @mcpeaches.
*HIIT - High Intensity Interval Track