Anatomy of the Ride: Real Ride

Our Riders know we like to keep it real. Revolve Senior Master Instructor Kristin Kenney keeps it so real that her Real Rides are actually outdoor routes adapted to the indoor cycling experience. Kristin gave us the inside scoop on the Real Ride and how our Riders (like Mara Berde, featured below) can use it to improve their ride indoors AND outdoors.

Revolve Senior Master Instructor Kristin Kenney

Revolve NYC Senior Master Instructor Kristin Kenney

Q: How has your experience as a competitive road cyclist helped shape Revolve’s Real Ride?

KK: Training for competition involves countless hours on different types of road. I always bring my riding experience into the studio, with the route, terrain, length of hills, flats and so on.

I’ve learned from years of bad mistakes and races gone awry. Great form, being relaxed and focused, and the willingness to let everything that doesn’t matter, GO, are all crucial. Winning is not always the goal, but doing your best is important to the whole group!

Q: How is Revolve’s Real Ride different from other indoor cycling classes?

KK: We communicate a clear, focused ride plan in each class by drawing the route on our wall of mirrors to demonstrate terrain and engage our Riders in a deeply compelling way. Our instructors coach Riders one-on-one and as a group, and motivate the entire “team” to stay together as a pack and slay every part of it. We invite you to be a part of the team atmosphere and put what doesn’t matter aside.

Q: How should Riders approach body awareness and form during the Real Ride?

KK: Relax on the bike, keep movement out of the upper body and torso, and simply ride with what cyclists call a “fluid” pedal stroke. There is no “push” or “pull”. Rather, the pedal stroke is executed by the gluteal muscles, quadriceps and hamstrings. There is no bend in the wrists and the elbows are soft. The whole body works only on pedal stroke and that moment’s goal.

Q: What are your tips for improving our Real Ride? What mistakes do you often see Riders make?

KKWorking out with friends makes the experience great. Everyone who comes to Revolve is welcoming and warm, so it’s also easy to make friends in class.

As far as mistakes go: making up your own positions on the bike, especially with your grip on the handlebars, is a common slip-up and easily corrected. Not letting us set up the bike or not listening to coaching would be a mistake, but very few of our Riders do that! :)

Q: How does the indoor Real Ride translate to the outdoor cycling experience?
KK: Our Riders are often suprised at how strong they are when they return to the outdoor road experience. Don’t forget, I’m delivering a REAL outdoor ride that cyclists around the world repeat again and again for its challenges and rewards, so Riders get incredible workouts curated for them multiple times a day at Revolve. Our Riders are therefore strong, confident and great when they ride outdoors.

But you don’t have to just take Kristin’s word for it. We asked Mara, a Revolve Rider and competitive cyclist, how Revolve’s Real Ride has improved her performance outdoors.

MB: As an avid outdoor cyclist looking to take my cycling to the next level, I started riding at Revolve last winter. Craving the intensity of a day-long road biking adventure, I took one of Kristin’s Real Rides and knew instantly that riding at Revolve would improve my conditioning for the upcoming spring season. When I got back on my bike and started training for my first century (100 mile ride), I was in better shape for riding than I’d ever been.

All of Revolve’s rides offer a perfect combination of hills and intervals that enabled me to reach a level of fitness and strength that I never thought possible from an indoor cycling class. Revolve classes mimic outdoor riding in terms of cadence (RPMs), but actually allow you to push yourself further than training outdoors because there are distractions.  The intervals and intensity of Revolve rides offer something unparalleled and I urge every outdoor cyclist to try a Revolve class.

KK: We have many Riders, like Mara, who race in cycling, many who have started cycling outdoors because they love the Real Ride and still others who use the Real Ride as cross-training for their existing sports. So much of the Real Ride is about letting go of everything in an all-out effort to do your best, and that translates to nearly everyone’s lifestyle.

Ready for a Real Ride? Book your bike now in DC and NYC.  And if you’re ready to take your Real Ride outdoors, Kristin is hosting our first Real Riding 101 Workshop at Revolve NYC this Saturday, July 20 at 2PM.


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