Rider Story / Kylie Schalz

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Has Peloton helped you work through challenges?

In 2011 I suffered a spinal cord injury during a routine back surgery. I woke up paralyzed from the chest down and the first words I remember hearing from my surgeon were that I would never move, feel or walk again. I never believed these words, but instead pushed hard in physical therapy with my primary goal being to walk again. I fell in love with an adaptive spin bike while at the hospital. It had the power to spin my legs when they could not move in order to train the muscles and nervous system to eventually move again. After several weeks I was moving the pedals on my own and four months later I walked out of the hospital with the use of crutches. I now walk with the use of the cane, living and working in one of the toughest cities in the world, NYC.

Prior to paralysis I was entering my final season as a student-athlete at Oakland University in Michigan. Going from a Division 1 athlete to completely paralyzed can be incredibly defeating. I lost my identity as an athlete and searched for competition. I worked very hard to prove the medical professionals wrong and walk again, but I still found it difficult to find that athletic outlet. When I found Peloton that void was filled. I was finally able to compete on the same playing field as everyone else again. When I am on the bike my disability becomes ability and for 45 minutes I am my old self again. I can compete on the same leaderboard as the rest of the Peloton community and push past the limitations I face off the bike.

In addition to the competition, Peloton provides quite a bit of medical benefits as well. My legs get stronger every ride and the metrics Peloton provides every workout are a direct indication of my progression. Before I rode my first ride with Peloton, I believed that I had plateaued in my recovery. I would never get any stronger or be able to regain anything more. I thought I would walk with a cane for the rest of my life. Since then, I have seen an exponential progression in my Peloton metrics which has been directly reflected in my walking, balance and overall health. I jumped and jogged for the first time in 6 years just a few weeks ago and I only use a cane when walking around the streets of NYC. Peloton has given me a new boost of rehabilitation and shown me that there are no limits and proves that there is no such thing as a “plateau” in this recovery.

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How were you first introduced to Peloton?

My mom, Robin, first told me about the Peloton. She bought the bike and was immediately addicted to it. It was all she could talk about. When I went home she had me try it out. I was skeptical because every cardio I had tried to this point required significant adaptation. My spinal cord injury prevented me from being able to hop on the treadmill without someone there to watch me or jump on a bike without taping my shoes to the pedals. I had yet to find a cardio workout that I could perform at high intensity, safely and on my own. When I hopped on her Peloton bike I was incredibly surprised. This was a piece of cardio equipment that I could do. For one of the first times since paralysis I felt like my old athletic self again. Robin Arzon was spitting out some crazy one-liners of inspiration, I was competing on the leaderboard, pushing past my limitations and suddenly for 45 minutes I forgot that I had a disability. My girlfriend, Alaina, tried a ride after me and was hooked. Our first rides were all that we needed to get one for ourselves.

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What is your favorite part of the workout?

My favorite part of the workout is getting lost in the ride. For 45-60 minutes every day I, move my body and push past limits that so many said I could never overcome, forgetting completely that I have a disability. I look at every ride as an opportunity to turn ‘I can’t’ into ‘I CAN’. And when the music stops and the workout is over I cannot help but have this overwhelming feeling of pride for what I have just accomplished. Every ride I finish is a miracle. Every ride is proof that impossible is nothing. Every pedal stroke is a choice to disable my limits and leave my struggles behind. I was told I would never walk again and now I am conquering massive climbs and high intensity sprints every single day. I was told I would never feel my body again and now I can feel the burn in my quads and hamstrings every day and let me tell you it feels great!

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Who is your favorite instructor and why?

My favorite instructor varies day to day based on how I am feeling. That’s the beauty of Peloton. There are so many different personalities and coaching styles that you have the luxury of fulfilling whatever it is you are looking for on any given day. On days when I am feeling in need of a pick me up or some genuine inspiration I prefer to take Christine’s classes because she provides more inspiration with her mantra #iamicaniwillido than I think she really knows. She reminds me to turn “I can’t” into “I can” every single ride and always manages to make me crack a smile during some of the toughest climbs. On days that I am feeling like a boss I take Robin’s rides to get some serious swagger in my life. I honestly do not understand where she pulls some of her phrases from, but they are incredible. I also really enjoy Steven Little’s #HRTribe. This has been a great learning tool for me in understanding how my body and heart work and how to use them in the most efficient ways. Honestly, it is so difficult to choose. All of the instructors are fantastic at what they do!

 

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How has Peloton changed working out for you?

Working out has always been a passion of mine, but since my injury, I have struggled to find a way to push beyond my limits…until Peloton. I have found my competitive and tenacious self again. I have gone from being told I would never walk again to riding Peloton every day. My confidence has sky rocketed and I have pushed myself in so many other areas of fitness as a result. In November 2016 I climbed 103 flights of stairs to the top of the Willis (previously Sears) Tower in Chicago to raise money for the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, where I spent several months learning to walk again. I am also training for the Paralympics in cycling and wheelchair racing. I had always found myself saying “I wish I could…” or “someday I will be able to…” but Peloton has torn apart my fear of failure and pushed me to stop wishing and start doing.

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How would you describe the Peloton community?

When we bought the bike we knew we were getting a world-class spin bike with excellent instructors and classes. What we did not know we would also be getting was a second family. The Peloton community is unlike anything I have ever seen. It is such a safe place of positivity, motivation, and inspiration without judgment.

There is nothing better than seeing how this bike has changed so many lives across the world. Peloton means a group of riders racing together and that is exactly what this community embodies.

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Rider Story / Michael Savino

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How were you first introduced to Peloton?

I was introduced to the Peloton community through one of the original TV commercials. Every time I saw the commercial all I could think was, “wow that is so awesome!”. I have taken a few cycling classes in the past and absolutely loved them although the problem that most people encounter is getting a spot (if you’re lucky to get out of work on time)! The ability to have live and on-demand classes in my home everyday was a huge selling point for me especially since I work very untraditional hours, take care of two kids, and support my wife who has recently become ill.

What’s your favorite part of the workout?

Working out has always been very important for me personally and a huge stress relief. My favorite part of the Peloton workout is a combination of the physical effort, connecting with my new friends on the leaderboard, and then after the workout, seeing how the Official Peloton Rider Page comes to life as riders cheer each other on. Having a place to be able to rely on for support and to keep you accountable for hitting your goals is an amazing feeling.

How has the Peloton community supported you?

Over the past few years my family has lost our home in a flood, multiple family members due to cancer, job losses and on top of that, my wife has faced some major medical conditions. I’m very open about the struggles my family has endured because I hope by talking about it that I will help others facing the same challenges. I want to help them realize that there’s always hope and good people in this world who will go out of there way to help complete strangers.

My wife has been dealing with her main issue, EDS (Ehlers Danlo Syndrome). This genetic issue has also led to her having CSF leaks (cerebral spinal fluid leaks), which causes a number of mental issues ranging from memory loss, passing out, confusion, and extreme exhaustion. For most people, one medical issue would be enough, but this disorder has also led to her getting semicircular canal dehiscence and an autonomic blood flow disorder called POTS. With her treatment plan in place, she is progressing although due to all of these complications, she’s now been out of work and disabled for two years.

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Honestly every day is a struggle for my wife but she is one of the strongest people I know and I am so proud to be her husband. The issues we have gone through as a family has created a lot of stress; that’s where the Peloton bike has made it’s mark. I have always been into cycling my entire life but unfortunately the past couple of years life got in the way. When I saw the first commercial for Peloton, I fell in love with the idea of it right away. I thought it was genius and with everything going on, I needed an outlet! I quickly purchased one in November, and started my journey but little did I know how much this bike would change our lives.

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Two days after Christmas this year we received a letter from the disability insurance company that they were dropping my wife’s disability benefits. It was a huge shock to us. I quickly went into survival mode and tried to figure out how we were going to be able to take care of all of the bills, put food on the table, provide for our children, while trying to pay for my wife’s medical treatments only on my salary. This is where the power of the Peloton community changed our lives and gave us an amazing amount of hope.

I put a quick post together on the Official Peloton Rider Page briefly mentioning that I was looking to sell my bike to help pay for some of my wife’s medical bills. Within 15 minutes, an extremely kind woman reached out and offered to pay for my membership fee for a month to help out so I could keep the bike. I kindly declined, thinking how nice people were in response to my post but little did I know what was going to happen over night.

I woke up to around 400 messages, not from people wanting to buy the bike, but messages from complete strangers wanting to help my family. I started speaking with two of the women and they wanted to setup a page to help my wife with her medical bills. Over the next 48 hours, donations for my wife came in from the community totaling $25,000. On top of this, the instructors at Peloton held classes to show support for my wife and our family, and Peloton’s entire company reached out to contribute as well.

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The generosity of everyone has allowed us to continue medical treatments and therapy for my wife. I am a 33 year old guy that was sobbing when this happened. I could not believe that a group of people, that didn’t know me or my family, would come together in a way like they did. The Peloton community has changed our lives in ways I cannot truly express in words. You have given us hope, shown us love and inspired us to keep going. Thank you Peloton-ians; you are all considered family to us now.

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RIDER STORY / SARAH FOLEY

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How were you first introduced to Peloton?

My introduction to the bike was love at first cycle. All of a sudden working out was fun, competitive, stimulating, interactive, fully immersive and…addictive! It blew me away. I was hooked right from the get-go. When I first got my bike, my youngest was a baby, and I was in full blown mommy lockdown mode (aka house arrest) with no chance of escaping to the gym. Since then, a lot has changed but not my shortage of free time or my relationship with my bike. I am now a busy, single working mom with kids in school, still not able to escape to the gym. The bike solved my exercise dilemma and also sparked a transformation in the way I think about and experience fitness.

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What’s your favorite part of the workout?

I feed off the energy of the instructors, so I tend to be drawn to the live DJ rides, especially with Robin and DJ John Michael. Their chemistry as friends is on fire. She actually is the coffee in my veins and she’s right about not being able to buy swagger at the local 7-eleven. But I’m also partial to Alex Toussaint’s sweet and charming seductiveness. He gives shout outs to his mom during class sometimes and then I shift into maternal mode and think, “I hope my three boys grow up and think of their mom as often as Alex does!”

While I actually do enjoy most of the arduous journey of a powerful workout, there is nothing better than the “final stretch.” When the instructor looks up at you and says something like “Be proud, you just did that” or “You just worked out harder than most people did in a whole year,” which is astonishing, but I guess true. Getting off the bike and enjoying “the high you just can’t buy”…that’s always the best part of any workout.

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Has Peloton helped you to work through challenges? 

We’re all fighting battles most of us know nothing about, right? For me, Peloton saved me from depression and isolation. When you’re a single parent with small children, you’re confined to the home most of the time. You can’t run off to the gym. You can’t go out with your friends on a whim. Your prospects for exercise are dim.

Peloton solved all that, real quick. All of a sudden, there were no excuses. I had everything I needed to be happier, healthier and more connected, without ever leaving the home. I get off that bike and I feel fully alive. I am more focused, more energized, and I’m pretty sure I am a better mom. It’s my therapy, my release, my anti-depressant. I liken it to putting the oxygen mask on yourself first if a plane’s going down. Save yourself first, then help others.

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How does Peloton keep you committed?

I stay committed by remembering how good it feels to complete each ride. By thinking of the awesome classes I’m missing and all the people who woke up and showed up. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t ride every day. But those thoughts keep me coming back every time.

How has Peloton changed working out for you? 

Peloton makes working out so convenient, I can’t imagine driving anywhere for what I can get so satisfyingly right here at home.

How would you describe the Peloton community?

Passionate, compassionate, supportive, diverse, committed, motivated, loyal and above all, human.

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Rider Story / Andy Runge

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Has Peloton changed your perspective on working out?  

Peloton has completely changed the way I approach exercising. In the past I have used personal trainers, group classes, gym memberships and none of those exercise methods kept me engaged enough. I love the fact that I have a high quality bike and can access world class instructors whenever I want.

What keeps you committed?

I made a promise to myself that after surgery I would work hard to improve my health. For me, a routine is critical so I have built a schedule where I workout 6 days a week, 3 days on, 1 day off. Whenever I feel tired or lack motivation, I think back on how far I have come and that typically that gives me the boost I need to keep up the effort.

What would you tell someone who was in the same position you were before Peloton?

You have more control over you health than you think you do. You have to put a whole lot of trust in the doctors and nurses but you do have control over what and how much you eat and how much you exercise. I now feel that I have gained even more control over my health.

How would explain how Peloton has helped you rehab after such a major surgery?

Being able to keep a healthy routine with quick access to a high quality bike and amazing instructors from my home, on my schedule, is key.

What have you learned about yourself through riding?

I have learned that with perseverance you can accomplish a lot. I have come far over the past year and I know that I will be even healthier a year from now.

How would you describe the process of making such a major lifestyle change? Was it challenging and how did you power through it?  

Actually, that was the easy part. Going through major surgery makes you focus on the things that are important, like health, and it becomes easier to become more dedicated to making a change.

Can you describe how you feel after each Peloton class?

After each class I have a huge sense of accomplishment. I will admit that there are times I would like to quit mid-class but the instructors do an outstanding job making you feel accountable to push through and not to give up! While I have never met them in person (specifically Hannah, Jennifer and Steven), I cannot thank the instructors enough. They have always kept me engaged and motivated!

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Rider Story / Kelly Snavely

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How were you first introduced to Peloton?

An advertisement for Peloton showed up on my Facebook feed in the fall of 2014. At the time I was downloading spin classes through a podcast and riding my road bike on a trainer in my basement during the wee hours of the morning. Reluctantly, I was taking a break from running and rehabilitating a foot injury. Running had been my first love but after having four children and I was finding it harder and harder to get away for runs. It was also taking a toll on my body. My husband, an avid road cyclist, bought me a road bike and I started by giving it a try in the basement.

My husband and I occasionally take trips to New York City to catch a show or an opera. Before living in rural Ohio, we lived in Chicago, Honolulu, San Francisco and Oakland. We still need a city “fix” occasionally. In December of 2014 we made one of those trips and I convinced him to go to the Peloton studio with me to try out a class. I made our accounts and leaderboard names (#momof4 and #dadof4) and we picked a lovely coach named Robin. That’s all it took. One class and we were hooked! We walked the twenty-three blocks back to our hotel talking about how fast we could bring one of those bikes home; our first bike arrived in January of 2015.

How did you feel after your first class?

I was thrilled, but I knew I would be. My husband was going to be a harder sell. He was reluctant to go to the studio at all and he couldn’t imagine it would be as good of a workout as riding outside. Well, it turns out he couldn’t resist the siren coaching of Robin Arzon.

What’s your favorite part of the workout?

My favorite part is the last 15 minutes of class. I’m warm, my legs are in attack mode and I can see the end in sight. The endorphins are flowing and I’ve picked someone on the leaderboard to catch – I’m in high gear.

What keeps you committed?

I’ve always been a bit of a self-starter and I love to sweat. I played both high school and collegiate sports and then trained for marathons in grad school but I also love community and working out in groups. Having kids and moving to the country meant less community fitness options. In fact, I exercised completely alone for the first four years after moving here. The Peloton community sucked me in immediately. Even before there was a Facebook page, we would use twitter and messenger to communicate. Some of us have been coordinating rides together, from our homes all over the country, for almost 2 years. We have also met for weekends in the city to ride, run and celebrate together. They keep me committed. The accountability of this group is fierce. Would they come looking for me if I was absent from the leaderboard for a while? Absolutely.

Who’s your go-to instructor? 

Christine, Robin, or Jenn – it depends on my mood, my training needs and who’s available when I can ride live. I’ve used the bike to train for cycling and running races, which means some days I need long, heavy resistance and other days I need quicker cadences or more recovery. I love the live rides, therefore, if at all possible, I will pick the instructor who is live and whose ride is the intensity or style I’m looking for that day.

How would you describe this community?

Fierce. Lovely. Committed. Inspiring.

The #morethanabike hashtag is where you will find these qualities. It turns out that life happens to all of us. ALL of us. Through life challenges of every kind, this community has proven to be fiercely committed to encouragement and support. Why do so many people, who ride a bike that goes nowhere and has no cash prizes, care so deeply about each other? That’s the magic of Peloton. I believe that this piece of the Peloton puzzle is one that no one saw coming in the original concept of the company and product. Nonetheless, it is growing friendships and commitments that go far beyond the bike.

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How has Peloton improved your overall lifestyle?

Of course the incredible workout, it’s efficiency and convenience are what lured me to Peloton but the lifestyle piece that has made the biggest impact on me is being able to share the experience with anyone who will listen. Within six months of buying our first Peloton bike, we purchased a second one so my husband and I could ride together. Such a treat! But it got better. My kids started to ride… together! And then I asked a friend or two if they would want to come ride with me and try it out. It turns out riding with someone, in my basement, is my favorite thing to do! It’s grown from my immediate family to my extended family (my mom rides from South Carolina, my brother and sister-in-law ride from Hawaii), to my friends both in my geographic vicinity and on both coasts. That, hands down, is my favorite part of this experience.

Why would you suggest Peloton to someone?

Almost anyone can ride this bike and be better for it. All fitness levels are welcome and can be challenged at the same time. Add to that the diverse group of coaches and the different types of rides and workouts available, it would be hard to find anyone who was couldn’t benefit from the Peloton experience. I love this part: my mom can ride with her grandchildren and both can get an incredible custom workout – amazing.

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What’s something positive that you didn’t expect to gain from the Peloton experience?

Becoming a better athlete at age 43 (with 4 children!) than I was in my 20’s when I was running marathons and going to the gym! I’ve recently discovered duathlons, my new favorite race. I’ve been doing these for about 2 years and winning my age group for the first time in my life! Even better, I’ve convinced some Peloton friends to train and race with me. That takes me back to the community part. The physical fitness gained with the richness of community and relationships have made the Peloton bike so much #morethanabike.


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Rider Story / Allie Moss

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Why did you start taking classes with Peloton? 
I began indoor cycling classes at a local New Jersey studio about 5 months ago. It was so challenging, but I fell in love with how it made me feel and the results I was seeing. With two months of touring approaching, I was seeking out how I could keep spinning while on the road and randomly saw an Instagram post by Ali Maffucci; that’s when I discovered Peloton!
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How has Peloton helped you feel better in your every day life? 

I get to break a sweat, burn calories and clear my mind without fear of hurting myself. I’m 3 years post-surgery for a hip labral tear. I used to be a competitive runner and I loved group runs. When I’m using the app I feel like I’m riding with a team!

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What is your favorite part about taking class? 

My favorite part is definitely having an instructor motivate me to push me harder than I would go on my own. Bonus is that I’ve lost about 5 lbs and gained a lot of strength and cardiovascular fitness back that I lost when I couldn’t run anymore.

Who is your favorite instructor to take and why?

I’m enjoying new instructor Ally Love, and not just because we share a name and she has awesome hair. I love her energy!

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We know that the Peloton app helps you get a sweat in while on the road. How has this made staying fit while traveling so much easier? 

Even if I find a cycling studio in a city, much of the time the timing of classes don’t work within my show schedule. The on-demand rides make it so that as long as I can find a bike, I can get a ride in! I’m also into the Beyond the Ride cool down classes because they’re a good reminder for me to stretch after a hard ride and I am psyched to try the yoga!


Listen in: Find Allie’s brand-new EP here or see her on the road with Ingrid Michaelson here.

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Photo Credit: Grace Brown Photography

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Rider Story / Abigail Wagle

We’re proud to say that the Peloton community is comprised of riders all with unique stories that include challenges, determination and a lot of inspiration. Home rider Abigail Wagle’s story is no different. After being diagnosed with Juvenile Idiopathic Scoliosis when she was just six years old, Abigail needed to wear a brace for 23 hours out of the day for 6 1/2 years and has undergone two back surgeries. Even though she’s faced with challenges, Abigail, now 15, doesn’t let them get in her way. She still stays active and continues to build strength (sometimes hitting around 450 output numbers) using the Peloton bike. We’re so honored to have her as part of this community and we’re excited to share her incredible take on staying committed and the power of believing in yourself. 

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Why did you start taking classes with Peloton?

I started taking classes with Peloton because my mom noticed how stressed I was getting before my second spine surgery for scoliosis. We had owned the bike for a while, but I had never really gotten on it. She showed me how to clip in and set everything up and then put me on a 45 minute metrics class with Nicole. I barely finished, but I was hooked. I continued to do on-demand rides and scenic rides to relieve tension and stress. After my surgery, I took classes to build strength and confidence again.

What is your favorite part about taking class?

My favorite part about taking a class is being able to leave all the craziness of the world behind and focus only on the metrics, my body, and the music. School (and life) can get pretty overwhelming at times, but taking a class helps me to focus and ground myself. Not to mention that endorphins always feel great!

How has Peloton helped you feel better in your everyday life?

Peloton has helped me to feel more confident and strong in my everyday life. After I get off the bike I feel like I can take on the world. Doing Peloton classes made me feel inspired enough to compete in the June 2016 Dirty Kanza, a 50-mile gravel grinder bike race.

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Who is your favorite instructor to take and why?

My favorite instructor really depends on what mood I’m in! I like Robin when I’m stressed and I need a pick me up, Nicole when I’m feeling peppy, Christine when I need some inspiration, and Steven when I just want to work on getting stronger.

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We know that you’ve done amazing work by powering through physical challenges with Peloton (so inspiring!), what is your advice to other people working through the same challenges?

When I was six I was diagnosed with Juvenile Idiopathic Scoliosis and had to wear a brace 23-hours per day to try and correct the two 40 degree curves in my spine. However, even after six years of bracing, my curves had still progressed to two 60 degree curves. So at age twelve I had my first spine surgery, a new process called spinal tethering (not a fusion), on the thoracic portion of my spine. Afterwards, I didn’t have to wear a brace, which was so amazing! But two years later my doctor was not seeing the results he wanted and decided to also operate on the lumbar spine. My advice to people working through similar challenges is to never give up on yourself. If I had given up on myself after my surgeries, I would have never gotten to where I am now, both mentally and physically. I learned that you need to pick yourself up and keep trying until you find something that works for you.

What keeps you committed?

The instructors, for sure! I love going on a live ride and hearing “awagle in Wichita, I see you!”. Setting goals also helped me to stay committed. This year my goal was to break 450 output on a 45 minute ride. I had to change that goal a bit to 465 because I broke 450 this August!

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If you could describe a Peloton class in 3 words what would they be?

That’s really hard! But if I had to choose they would be energetic, inspiring, and unique! I’ve taken spin classes at other studios and I’ve never experienced anything quite like a Peloton class.

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Rider Story / Krissy Blackwood

Home rider Krissy Blackwood has always loved the intense, endorphin-filled workouts on her Peloton bike; although the feeling of the strongly connected community is now a close rival. Before purchasing her bike, Krissy had no idea how much Peloton would change her world, in every way. She anticipated improved health, and ended up with an overall improved life.

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How were you first introduced to Peloton?

I first saw Peloton in an advertisement over a year ago. As someone who is very into fitness and cool new technology, I was immediately drawn to the bike and the whole concept of streaming live rides into my home. I finally bought the bike in January just two hours after learning of my promotion at work. I celebrated with fitness; this changed everything.

How did you feel after your first class?

I got this bike, and while nervous, I hopped onboard looking forward to pushing myself to my limit. My first class was a beginner on demand ride with Robin. I was terrified, but took comfort in being somewhat anonymous being on demand. When I was done, I was in love. Two days later, I started my live rides at 6am every day. I saw the same names on the leaderboard every single day. They were stronger than me and inspired me, yet I didn’t know who they were. I found the Facebook page, and then soon enough, real names were associated with leaderboard names. What happened over the course of the next 6 months and 200 rides was unimaginable.

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What’s your favorite part of the workout?

I adore the sweat. I long to push my body to it’s limits. I love feeling myself get stronger and watching my output grow. I love the thrill of chasing people on the leaderboard. I love watching friends crush personal records.

All aspects of my physical health have improved, from cardio conditioning to physical strength. While my heart pounds on the ride, it is also fully immersed into the friendships that have been formed from this bike. We communicate every day. Every single day we support each other, cheer each other on and push each other to achieve greatness. These relationships have brought so much more to the workouts.

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What keeps you committed?

The instructors, friends and the community. They inspire me in so many ways. They have made me a better athlete, better friend, better person. The endorphin rushes aren’t bad either.

How would you describe this community?

The most wonderful, inspiring, motivating, supportive, compassionate, selfless, people imaginable. Peloton is no longer a piece of fitness equipment for me, it is a lifestyle.  

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How has Peloton improved other aspects of your life?

Within 2 months of receiving the bike my mother was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. The friends that I have made from this bike rallied around me and was with me every step of the way from diagnosis to death. The last few weeks of my Mother’s life were when the Peloton spirit broke new boundaries. While caring for her 300 miles away from my bike, these friends made me signs every single day. By 6am, I would have a text and hand made sign to cheer me up and start the day with a smile. Then the signs continued from Team Ohio and so many other riders I am now honored to call friends. As the days went on, the outpouring of love and support continued. I received flowers, food, dedicated rides, changed leaderboard locations, toys for my children…

These friends are so inspirational and powerful that they fueled my workouts off of the bike too. I decided to run each morning, at 6am and trespass with the #TuesdayTribe for a few weeks, streaming the live rides from the trail behind my Mother’s house. I needed my time with a team of champions even if I wasn’t on the leaderboard. I loved hearing the shout outs to my friends and it kept me going. At some point, the instructors learned about this and almost every run, they were calling me out to run faster, or would play a song for me, or just recognize that I was there. This was a game changer. I only bought a bike but I realized I had received so much more now that I was getting so much love and encouragement even when I was off of it.

Before my Mother died, some of the last few phone calls that I made were to Peloton friends. Friends who were experienced doctors, cancer practitioners, and/or who had lost a parent to dreaded cancer and could help me with their experiences. I never got a voicemail. Every call was answered on the spot. I learned so much from them and so incredibly grateful for the wisdom and help they provided.

As my Mother’s health continued to decline, we cancelled our upcoming vacations knowing that we would be away from work traveling to my Mother’s frequently. I cancelled all but one day; my birthday. I wanted to reserve one day to be happy and I knew I wanted it to be in the Peloton studio – My happy place. I asked my very first Peloton friend, if she would be interested in joining me for my birthday in the studio. We then determined we could make it a milestone ride for both of us. Then before we know it, 35 people travel in to have a mega milestone birthday party with me. Over a dozen different milestones were celebrated together in one big, in person, Peloton and joined by so many others at home! And not just was it an amazing ride, they also brought gifts, cake, champagne, pictures, but most importantly, brought bounds of love, hugs, laughs and pure selfless joy. They did this for me and many of them I had never met in person. This bike brings out limitless relationships.

My mother’s illness started 4 months ago. She passed away 2 weeks ago. One dear rider traveled to the services to give me a huge hug on behalf of our group. A ride was dedicated to my Mother where so many changed their locations to #InLovingMemoryofMargaret and Jennifer Jacobs filled my heart with love. I ran and cried my heart out streaming it live from my phone and could feel the Peloton spirit even off of the leaderboard. I really could not imagine going through this without my new network of friends, amazing instructors and cathartic workouts.

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Why would you suggest Peloton to someone?

It is a game changer. At a minimum, it will dramatically improve your health. But, it can also improve your life. The Peloton community has made me a better person physically, mentally and emotionally. Put forth the investment and the returns are immeasurable. Open your mind, body and soul and you will not be disappointed, I promise.

Inspired? Find more Peloton Rider Stories here.

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Rider Story / Mike King

As a home rider since the very early days, Mike King put faith in Peloton knowing that it would be something that had the potential to change his life. Today, he’s reaping the benefits from the goals he continues to set for himself every time he clips in for any of his, on-average, 250 annual rides. We’re honored to have Mike as part of our community from the start and excited to celebrate his story below.

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How were you first introduced to Peloton?

I had been living in downtown Seattle close to my regular spin studio and had been riding several times a week. We decided to move out of downtown when our daughter was born two years ago. At that point, I started looking for a replacement spin studio and found the recently funded Peloton page on Kickstarter. I was instantly sold on the metrics, leaderboard, on-demand classes and the fact that it fit seamlessly into my busy lifestyle.

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How did you feel after your first class?

I felt great. It truly replaced the in-studio experience and in many ways, it was better! I enjoy tracking the numbers and the ability to export the metrics from all my rides is very important to me. This was something I couldn’t get from an in-studio class.

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What’s your favorite part of the workout?

The start! I try to warm up before the ride and hit the start at full speed. It is the only chance I have to get my name at the top of the leaderboard. For the rest of the ride, I try to stay in the top 10% of everyone else on the ride. Many times I’ll be in an all-out sprint at the end of the ride just so I can rank 23rd out of 230 riders.

What keeps you committed?

This last fiscal year I posted a calendar next to my bike and wrote two goals at the top: “250 Rides” and “Top 10% Rank”. As soon as I completed a ride, I would write down the number of miles I rode, calories burned, and my rank among all the other riders. The calendar was a daily reminder of my goal and I was able to chalk up 250 rides last year.

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How has Peloton changed your lifestyle?

It has become a regular part of my routine. When work gets busy the best thing for me to do is to hop on my bike and ride. I love the fact that I can take a class at 4:00 am PST and have a coach in New York City calling me out on the live stream. Peloton keeps me motivated and has become a big part of my daily life.

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Rider Story / Brian Caisman

As an early Peloton rider, Brian Caisman has been able to experience the impact Peloton has made on his and his wife Jamie’s life for a while now. From an amazing physical workout taken in the convenience of their home, to the inclusive and supportive community, Brian has been loving every part of Peloton. Additionally, as a father, he’s been grateful to be able to see the overall positive message Peloton has been able to show his kid’s. “What I’m more proud of is the example the community sets for the kids. What brings us together is our similar interest in a bike and exercise, but what keeps us together are our differences. I have never seen such an inclusive, diverse and supportive group of people.” Today we’re sending a lot of thanks to all dads all over and are excited to celebrate Father’s Day with Brian’s story below.

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How were you introduced to Peloton?

It was somewhat a matter of being in the right place at the right time. Jaime and I had been searching for something to mix up our workouts a bit since we workout at home.  We used to do spin classes together every weekend before we had kids and before we lived overseas. We tried a few classes while overseas (in Finland) – taking a spin classes in Finnish when you don’t speak the language is, well, not the same as taking a Jenn Sherman class!  So we had been wanting to get back into it, but it was challenging to find the time to get to the gym (I work out early before work) or the classes at the gym were, well, brutal!  We came across a Facebook ad and for the next 24 hours could not stop thinking about it and researching it. We are both accountants so you can imagine the level of analysis.  At the time, there wasn’t a ton of information out there, so we went into the Short Hills store, saw the product and bought it!

When were you hooked? 

I’d say I was hooked on the concept, or idea of it, from the moment I saw the Facebook ad and I was hooked on the actual bike from literally my first class. What’s crazy to think is that was even before we were introduced to “the community”, which has all just been icing on the cake. It’s the actual product that gets people hooked, but it’s the community that keeps people hooked. That is what I believe, as John would say, differentiates Peloton from the fate of Nordictrac or something similar.

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How has Peloton improved your life? 

To be honest, BP (before Peloton) I’ve been blessed with a pretty great life…amazing wife, amazing kids and amazing opportunities.  Happy and healthy all around.  But, the biggest change in my life AP (after Peloton) are the friendships we have made and the inspiration this community, the people and their personal journeys provide. There are some incredible stories from this community…literally stories of survival, stories that don’t have a happy ending, stories of incredible determination, perseverance, generosity, support and inclusion. I’m humbled to be a part of it and have the opportunity to provide others the support they need through their personal journey, which, in turn, provides me incredible motivation and perspective.

What makes your proud to be a Peloton Dad?

There is the obvious example it sets for the kids in terms of living a healthy, balanced lifestyle but what I’m more proud of is the example the community sets for the kids. What brings us together is our similar interest in a bike and exercise. But what keeps us together are our differences. I have never seen such an inclusive, diverse and supportive group of people. The community is incredibly open and supportive and rally around those in a time of need. I’ve never seen anything like it. In the words of MLK, people here are truly judged by the content of their character, and nothing else.

Hoes does Peloton help you set a good example for your kids?

I asked my son the other day “What do you like most about Peloton?” and he said “What I like most is Jenn Sherman and taking Jenn’s classes!”  He’s 7. And, when Jaime and I went in to the studio for her 300th ride / 40th birthday, my 5 year old daughter told the babysitter she wanted to support mommy by surprising her and watching the ride live from home. I think those examples about sum it up!

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What are three words you would choose to describe Peloton and why?

Innovative, inclusive and loyal. Innovative is somewhat obvious given what John and the team have done with the product and technology, but even more so how, in my mind, it has flipped the social dynamic upside down. BP (before Peloton) you would meet someone and then get to know them. AP (after Peloton) you get to know someone and THEN meet them! Inclusive – because of the amazing community! In a world with so much conflict sometimes, we celebrate and support each other in our differences. And loyal – the incredible passion people have for this product and community make us extremely loyal to the company and to the brand. I for one, take pride in being a customer, and an early customer at that!

Ready for more motivation? Click here to find all of our Rider Stories.

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