Tag Archives: Motivation

Spring Into Change Challenge: 70 Days of Inspiration from 300+ Cyc Riders

We never could have anticipated how inspiring one 10 week Challenge could be — not just for our riders, but for our entire Cyc family. Beginning on March 23rd, Cyc riders across the country accepted the Spring Into Change Challenge Powered by Vitafusion to ride 4+ times per week, dedicating themselves to becoming healthier and stronger in the process.

Though we knew we had a lot of dedicated athletes ready to take on the Challenge, the outpouring of encouragement, affirmations, and unbelievable results from all of our riders was an incredible surprise. It was also incredibly inspiring. Here are some of our favorite quotes and stories our challengers shared with us…

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Kate Mann’s before and after snapshots

“Not to sound dramatic, but the Spring Into Change Challenge with Cyc honestly changed my life. Prior to the Challenge you would have never seen me in a gym (and if you did, I would not be happy to be there). I hated exercise, and had sworn off everything in the fitness industry as being intimidating and scary, and swore I’d never be one of ‘those people’ who loves working out and talks about it all the time. I was overweight, depressed, and lazy and had pretty much given up on the idea of ever changing. I’ve always had body image issues, but had never had any success no matter what trendy workout or diet I tried. I accepted that I would always be a chubby girl, and that I could never be fit. I tried Cyc once or twice before the Challenge and enjoyed it more than anything else I’d tried, so when I got the email I decided to go for it since I had nothing to lose. After that I was hooked. Everyone at the studio was incredibly nice, friendly, and supportive and I felt like they really cared about my progress and wanted me to do well. I felt myself getting stronger and faster (a feeling I was unfamiliar with) and was amazed at what I could push my body to do. I was exponentially happier and had way more energy. My first ride I couldn’t keep tempo to a single song and now I can keep up for almost all of class. My outlook on life has changed and I love my new healthy lifestyle and am so bummed out on days when I don’t get to work out. As I graduate from the UW this semester and start job hunting, I’m looking for a job somewhere fitness related, so I can incorporate my new found passion into work somehow. I’ve never been happier, more confident, or felt more comfortable in my own skin. I don’t even recognize the person I was before, and I’m so thankful I took this challenge.”
– Kate Mann, Cyc Madison rider

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Joshua Hall and Keoni Hudoba (at the end of the Challenge), Joshua Hall and Savannah Dew (a month prior)

“Not only has the Challenge been a physical journey but a mental one as well. At the beginning of the Challenge I thought of it as just a really good workout. But after 4 classes a week for 10 straight weeks my perspective drastically changed. Due to the frequency of classes it takes more planning and coordination… this ‘hobby’ of a workout became much more engaging physically and mentally.”
-Joshua Hall, Cyc Astor rider

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Megan Bawden Westphal and Cycologist Jenny DeMain

“My Cyc change story can be summed up by this quote: “Don’t forget to be AWESOME”… Throughout the Challenge I’ve seen great improvements. I’ve lost about 10 pounds so far and keep on losing. I’ve stepped out of my comfort zone and crept up closer to the front row in class (I even sat there once) and have increased my weights for all weighted sectors. Last class I was pushing the 3-4 pounders like it was my job! My Cyc rides bring a smile to my face and give me something to look forward to during my busy day of computer work. Cyc’s a place where I can focus on me (which is the whole reason for my goal declaration).”
-Megan Bawden Westphal, rider at Cyc Madison

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Amalia Goldberg’s progress

“The Spring Into Change Challenge has pushed me to a new level of physical wellness that I never dreamed I’d ever see again. After a few weeks, I noticed that I was becoming stronger. My clothes were suddenly a bit looser. People began commenting on how healthy I looked. I began to feel good about my rides, and how I could do less modified moves and actually keep up with the music. Physically, I started liking the way I looked. My eating habits became healthier and I stopped binge eating. I began to feel confident in my own skin and actually see muscles forming. I liked who I was becoming and my confidence came shining through. While the weight on the scale has only fluctuated a pound or two, I’ve lost over 3 inches off of my thighs and an inch and a half off my waist. I’ve also become an inspiration to my friends and family, and more importantly, to myself. I CAN do things if I set my mind to it! I’ve proven it to myself, and I now have the confidence to take on any challenge.”
-Amalia Goldberg, Cyc Madison rider

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Lauren Patrick and Cyc Buckhead Cycologist Annie Czarnecki

“This summer I’m turning 30, which made me do a reality check in regards to how out of shape I’ve become. Since I got married almost five years ago, I put on 20 pounds and just didn’t feel like my best self. So I set out on a quest to lose 15 pounds before my 30th birthday, calling it my #15in15. (You can read more about it here.) When I heard about the Spring Into Change Challenge, I was motivated to see the results I could achieve over 10 weeks. This has been an awesome journey.”
-Lauren Patrick, Cyc Buckhead rider

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Lauren Unger’s before and after snapshots

“This Challenge is just what I needed! I haven’t missed a ride, and as a matter of fact, I’ve even added on rides because I feel so good when I’m on the bike. During this Challenge I took the majority of my rides with Natalie and I’m so grateful for her. She is a rockstar both on and off the bike and is committed to her riders and making sure we’re getting what we need. I’d mentioned to Natalie how I wanted to tone my arms and she made sure we did just that!!!”
-Lauren Unger, Cyc Astor rider

“I give total credit to my Cycologists, particularly Caroline, Lillian, and Julianna. I do most of their classes and feel pushed in every class because of their amazing playlists and passion for the job. I finish each class feeling much better about my day and stronger about life in general.”
-Joe Morelli, Cyc Buckhead rider

“At my first ride, my goal was just to make it through class! A month later, I did two classes back-to-back and made it through both of them. (You can bet I didn’t drop those weights!) My reason for even going to my first ride was to regain the self esteem I had lost. It’s been a process but I’m gaining it back. My body is stronger and healthier, and my energy is higher than it’s been in years. Cyc has helped me reach my goals in a healthy and exciting way.”
-Fiona Wakefield, Cyc Madison rider

And many, many more…

Thank you, Cyc family, for your dedication and constant inspiration!

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Spring into Change Q+A with Caroline Reed

When Atlanta-based Cycologist Caroline Reed asked herself a few years ago what she would do if time and money weren’t a factor, the answer was obvious: be a fitness instructor. In our third Spring into Change Q+A, Caroline shares some very personal struggles, as well as how these obstacles led her to a renewed strength and belief in herself.

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Cyc Fitness: Despite your current dedication to healthy living, rumor has it that you were once a party girl! When did you make a change, and what are some tips you can share with others who want to make positive changes in their lives?

Caroline Reed: One of the biggest misconceptions that I had about people who were fit or ate really well was that it mean adopting a lifestyle devoid of fun. I like to think I’ve proven myself wrong by seeking out healthy, high-energy activities that I genuinely enjoy. Not everyone’s made to be a runner, and for that matter, a lot of runners aren’t made to be cyclists, or zumba fanatics. You’ve really got to try all kinds of classes, and who knows, you may be surprised about what becomes your go-to workout! I also learned that healthy eating doesn’t have to be torturous. If you do it right, it’s actually delicious. Once I changed my diet to include wholesome and nutritious ingredients, everything from my sleep to my energy levels improved! But don’t get me wrong, I’m also a wholehearted advocate for two cheat meals a week. I love a few guilty pleasures (chili cheese fries, burgers and a cold beer, anyone?)!

CF: You said your first real workout, a long run, was a rough experience. What motivated you to keep pursuing fitness?

CR: Something I like to tell my riders is “change occurs when the pain of remaining the same is greater than the pain of changing”. At that time, I was working through a few obstacles. I was an overwhelmed college student with no real direction or solid support system. I didn’t set out on that first jog with any big goals, I just wanted to clear my head. I’ll never forget how difficult it was; the entire time I thought I was going to pass out from heat stroke and with every step I felt my excess body weight bouncing up and down! But I also remember getting home and feeling really proud of myself just for finishing. So I stuck with it and before I knew it I was seeing results, both physically and mentally. I guess I’d found my groove.

CF: Being confident about your body is so important, but it’s easy to feel pressure to achieve an idealized ‘perfect figure’. For you, you’ve said that this became a fixation which eventually spiraled into an eating disorder. What changes did you have to make to recover, and to ultimately learn how to love yourself again?

CR: This is such a sensitive topic for me, one that I debated sharing publicly. It’s hard to pinpoint all of the things I had to work on to overcome my disorder. The first thing that propelled me to change was the realization that someday I would have a family, and I started thinking about how my behaviors–both good and bad–would affect them. Through therapy, self-help books and a ton of prayer, I eventually got to a place where I was mentally strong enough to refuse to compare myself to others. Now I firmly believe in my own intrinsic value, and I know that I really do feel my best, mentally, when I’m dancing, teaching classes at Cyc and eating well!

CF: Tell us more about your work at Cyc, and what inspires you.

CR: Our studio has only been open for a couple of months, but we’ve already cultivated so much trust among our community of Cycologists and riders. It’s really rewarding to check in with my regular riders and meet new riders every week. I strive to take our riders far beyond what they think they’re capable of achieving, even if at the time they doubt themselves (and me!). Honestly, the sense of accomplishment they exude after class is as validating for me as it is them.

CF: What does ‘Spring Into Change’ mean to you?

CR: Spring Into Change has given us all an opportunity to stop looking around and to start looking within, for what it is that’s going to propel them to a better place. Every day contains a series of choices to create positive change. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s to not be afraid of change, it’s leading you to a new beginning!

-Compiled by Leslie Steinberg

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Nutrition Tips from Sports Dietitian Rebecca Scritchfield: Fueling Your Ride

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Developed in partnership with the Spring into Change Challenge, sponsored by the makers of Vitafusion, the #1 gummy vitamin brand.

We talked to sports dietitian and health expert Rebecca Scritchfield about the most enjoyable ways to fulfill your nutrient needs when you’re spinning 3-4 times per week. Follow these tips on what to eat before and after a workout to fuel up the right way.

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Rebecca Scritchfield

  • Don’t ride on “empty”: If you think you perform better on an empty stomach, think again. I’m forever amazed at how many people “exercise to eat” rather than “eat to exercise”. Pre-exercise fuel should hydrate your body, fuel your muscles and settle your stomach. Choose foods with high carbohydrates and moderate protein that are lower in fat and fiber. Try this: a bagel with a dollop of nut butter or a yogurt and granola parfait with banana or berries.
  • Start off on the right foot: Have a hard time waking up for your morning ride? Before you go to bed, place a piece of whole fruit—like a banana, apple or pear—and an English muffin topped with almond butter on your nightstand. Set it beside some great-tasting Vitafusion MultiVites for a wake-up call that will feel more delicious than dreaded.
  • Put Omega-3s on the menu: When you think about protein, consider if it also contains omega-3 fatty acids (healthy fats), which may alleviate muscle soreness, reduce inflammation and improve joint health. These healthy fats can be eaten anytime of day. My favorite options include tuna, salmon, anchovies and lamb.
  • Choose healthy on-the-go options: There are lots of on-the-go fitness bars out there, but not all are healthy. Always look at the nutrition label before making your selection, and choose something with wholesome ingredients like nuts, dried fruit and honey, which give athletes the energy they need. You can also try my 2-Minute Peanut Butter Rice Squares, which have just three ingredients and require no refrigeration– just prep and go!
  • Get your “nutrient C”: Usually with endurance athletes, the nutrient most lacking is carbohydrates. I’m constantly asking my athletes to increase “nutrient C”. Eating too much high-protein and high-fat food shortly before exercise can cause an upset stomach and delay glycogen uptake in your muscles. Healthy carbohydrates like whole grains, fruits and vegetables, on the other hand, keep your body going. Pre-fuel 60-90 minutes before a workout and refuel within 60 minutes of exercising. Try a recovery bowl with two scrambled eggs, vegetables, half an avocado and brown rice or beans.

-Compiled by Leslie Steinberg

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Spring Into Change Q+A With Jess Clark

Austin’s healthy girl-about-town, Jess Clark, knows a thing or two about making change happen. A few years ago, this fearless Cycologist chose to leave her role as Marketing Director for a large firm to start her own health and wellness business. What she has learned can’t be taught behind a desk. It took a ton of work and even more courage to get to where Jess is today: founder of Pump & Shred, and one of Austin’s hottest Cycologists! We talked with Jess about how she made her dreams a reality:

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Cyc Fitness: What does being a Cycologist mean to you?

Jess Clark: Teaching classes at Cyc gives me an outlet for coaching that is just as much about having fun as it is about getting a great workout. I love that Cyc encourages balance and places a great deal of importance on the social aspect of fitness. Cyc is a place where we can come as we are, and dance, sing, sweat, and leave feeling like the best version of ourselves. No judgement, no competition, just good vibes.

CF: What are you hoping to get out of the Spring into Change Challenge?

JC: I am hoping to get to know more of our riders and help them achieve their health and fitness goals throughout the challenge. I want to provide more support to our tribe in Austin and guide them through change and overcoming obstacles. In return, I hope to gain a new group of fit friends to help me reach my personal fitness goals. By going at it together we can increase our chance for success exponentially. Accountability is what this challenge is all about.

CF: One of your biggest life changes was to leave a safe corporate job to pursue your dream career in health and wellness. How was this challenging for you?

JC: The decision to pursue my dream career in health and wellness was super challenging. First of all, it was tough explaining my feelings to family and friends who were more traditional in their beliefs about career and life. I got the vibe that everyone thought I was crazy but deep down I trusted my gut and decided to take the plunge with or without their support. I think the hardest part was learning not to second guess myself. Learning how to trust my instincts and not rely too much on what other people think has been transformative. And best of all is that I wake up every day knowing that I’m doing what I love and helping others improve their health and wellness!

CF: You said that once you started teaching group fitness your outlook on life improved, as if you were happy for the first time; your physical and emotional self was in harmony. Can you explain that a bit?

JC: When I started coaching group fitness I didn’t know if I’d be any good at it. But I learned that mentoring and coaching come naturally to me, and I really get so much out of it. I love seeing my clients get the results they’re looking for. Whether it’s a big or small change, I’m helping transform people’s lives for the better. Once I started helping my clients I noticed that I developed a greater appreciation of others. Seeing vulnerability in my clients revealed to me my own weaknesses and the more I help other’s the more accepting and kind I become to myself.

CF: Starting over professionally couldn’t have been easy. What were some of the most difficult things starting out?

JC: I think the most difficult part of starting anything new is the fear of failure. Risk is scary because you’re afraid of what will happen to you if it doesn’t work out. And most of the time settling for ‘good enough’ is easy, comforting and familiar, but there’s nothing exciting or great about it! I also feared being judged by my peers; I used to think that people would think less of me if my business didn’t work out. There are setbacks, for sure, but you learn so much from these experiences. What I’ve learned is to keep believing in myself, to continue working hard and to never give up on the things that matter to me. Be fearless.

-Compiled by Leslie Steinberg

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Spring Into Change Q+A With Keoni Hudoba

In our first Spring Into Change Q&A, we talk with Cyc Method creator Keoni Hudoba to learn more about his extensive career, his personal motivation, and what he eats on his “off” days:

Cyc Fitness: A lot of people may not know this, but you actually started your professional career as an opera singer. How did you end up becoming a fitness professional?
Keoni Hudoba: Fitness is what ultimately changed me. I was living an unhealthy life of emotional eating when I was dealing with my sexuality. I found peace when I started taking classes at the gym. One day, an instructor that I’d become friendly with asked me to sub a class for him and I tried it out and loved it. I felt such a rush during that first class, and all the sudden I discovered I had this insatiable appetite for teaching fitness (that still exists to this day).

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CF: When did you move to NYC? Was it difficult leaving your home in Hawaii for the concrete jungle?
KH: It honestly wasn’t so difficult making the transition to New York, because I’d already studied Vocal Performance at Shenandoah Conservatory in Virginia for a few years, so I was used to being away from home. Though I’m definitely still an island boy at heart. Whenever I’m not leading classes or flying around the world for work, you can always find me at the beach somewhere!

CF: You workout 4 hours a day and teach on top of that. What else do you do to stay healthy (as if that’s not enough!)?
KH: I try to eat as healthy as possible, but with my travel schedule I find myself eating out a lot. I get my nutrition kick every day with Vitafusion men’s gummy vitamins. (They taste like candy!) I love sweets so if I hit a weekly goal I allow myself a treat from my favorite spot: City Cakes in NYC.

CF: What’s your philosophy on food and eating? Do you like to cook, and if so, what’s your favorite dish to make?
KH: How you fuel your body is just as important as your workout. I try to focus on eating whole grains, lean proteins, lots of fruit and veggies, and I eat organic whenever possible. I monitor my intake by the way I feel, look and how much sleep I’m getting. It’s crazy how much our bodies tell us about our health. I do love to cook, but I so rarely have a kitchen while I’m traveling, so it happens much less often than I’d like!

CF: You’ve had incredible success as a trainer and now as one of the founders of Cyc. Any setbacks or times that didn’t work out the way you planned?
KH: Of course there are always things that happen in life that we can’t control… But that’s life. I just try my best to be as prepared as possible for whatever comes my way.

CF: You must wake up some mornings not wanting to work out. What do you do?
KH: Working out is my therapy. I’m lucky that it just so happens to be my job too.

CF: What’s your favorite song to ride to?
KH: This is a hard one… I have a huge list. But my favorite song to ride to at this moment is Hyper Love by Ferry Corsten.

CF: What’s one piece of advice you would give to a new rider?
KH: Even if you’re hesitant at first, let your instructor know you’re new, and have them help you set up your bike. Once class gets going, don’t be afraid to get a little uncomfortable and push past your boundaries.

CF: Any personal goals for you in the “Spring into Change” challenge?
KH: I’d like to assist every single challenger in reaching their own personal goals over the next few months.

CF: Gotta ask, do you still sing opera (maybe in the shower)?
KH: Haha, I sing at every single show I put on at Cyc!

-Leslie Steinberg

#springintochange

Cyc Shout-Out: 30 Top Fitness Instagrammers

Fitness platform DailyBurn highlighted the 30 Top Fitness Instagrammers and their megawatt list — with Gisele Bündchen, The Rock and Lindsey Vonn — includes Cyc’s very own Keoni Hudoba!

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Here’s what they had to say:
“Sweaty inspiration via smartphone is just a tap away, thanks to the hundreds of thousands of professional athletes and trainers on Instagram, straight flexin’. With fit, active people from all walks of life posting impressive fitness feats to social media, we’re constantly hit with fresh doses of motivation to get bendy on our yoga mats, crush our next Crossfit WOD, try a new bodyweight movement or hit the ground running instead of hitting the snooze button.”

Check out the rest of DailyBurn’s post for more Instagram inspiration >>

And stay posted on Cyc motivation, events and Cycologists’ tips @cycfitness >>

Cyc Shout-Out: SELF’s Fitness Hashtag to Watch

Check out what SELF Magazine is calling the new Fitness Hashtag to Watch, featuring trainer Natalie Uhling and Cyc’s Keoni Hudoba and Steph Dietz!

…One of our favorite things has got to be the #PartnerLikeABoss hashtag, the brainchild of trainers Natalie Uhling and her “partner in sweat” Keoni Hudoba, who are also both Under Armour ambassadors and Radius Fitness trainers. The two teamed up for a series of awesome partner poses and workouts while attending the conference together, like this bananas video of them below doing something called a “reverse wheelbarrow push-up.” 

Here’s one example, where Keoni and Steph paired up on their push-ups at the Forum Athletic Club (the home of Cyc Buckhead):

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Keoni Hudoba and Steph Dietz partnering like a boss at The Forum Athletic Club in Buckhead, Atlanta.

For the full Instagram video, more images, and more on this inspiring new fitness trend, click here >>