DALLAS -- It was just after 7 a.m. on a Tuesday morning when I left my home in Fort Worth bound for Terlingo Cycle in Dallas. I was on a mission to discover what all the buzz was about on this indoor cycling haven that opened last year on Labor Day weekend and is now so popular that it has spawned a cult-like following among those who have experienced the ride.
After being pleasantly surprised to learn that the place had its own parking lot, something I rarely encounter when I venture over to Dallas, I entered the small building with an interior that resembled an upscale art gallery. I have participated in plenty of spin classes over the years, but they have all been at larger gyms, not boutique-style locales that are designed to enhance the overall experience.
Where some of the other classes I have taken have been competitive in nature, this instantly had the atmosphere of inclusion and no pretension. Since this was my first foray into the Terlingo Cycle world, I intentionally signed up for a class taught by the owner John Terlingo to witness firsthand why he came so highly recommended and attracted people in from Uptown, Highland Park, Preston Hollow and, of course, yours truly from the 817.
Terlingo is originally from Dallas, having moved to Los Angeles in the early 90s to pursue a career as a model/actor. While in the City of Angels, he picked up spinning, became a certified instructor and his classes were always filled with celebrities including Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman, Emmy Rossum and Jodie Foster.
He decided to return to Dallas and bring his style of "body, mind and soul choreography" with him to his new indoor cycling studio. The studio is the product of well-known designer Gonzalo Bueno with an inspiration from the 1976 film Logan's Run, which included scenes that were filmed in Fort Worth at the Water Gardens.
One of the stars of the sci-fi thriller, Farrah Fawcett, is featured prevalently throughout the studio, specifically on the front of the shirts that are for sale. Terlingo had become friends with Fawcett in Los Angeles through spinning and as a tribute to the late actress, he donates the proceeds from the sale of the shirts to the Farrah Fawcett Foundation.
The 45-minute class that is perhaps better described as a journey begins with the lights going down with the LED candles providing light and the pulse-pounding music kicking in. When the class began promptly at 8:30 a.m., there were people actually waiting out by the front desk in hopes that someone would not show or cancel and they could take their place on one of the 35 bikes.
The music playlist is never repeated and is selected by Terlingo to maximize the experience for each individual class and on my day to be there, the selection began with rap and through several songs transitioned its way to the opposite end of the spectrum with the Pet Shop Boys What Have I Done to Deserve This? Ironically, that was exactly what I was thinking as my entire body was sore by virtue of standing and pedaling while holding hand weights and attempting to keep up with the specific choreography that combines for an exhilarating mental and physical workout.
Just as my body was telling me to slow down and coast through to the finish line, as if on cue, Terlingo calmly said, "Everyone in this room has been through something hard and each one of you survived it. We made it through and we are here today."
For some reason unknown to me, those words had a spiritual effect and suddenly, the pain was not so intense. I was feeling the music and the energy in the room powered me through to the pinnacle of the ride. I was mentally and physically exhausted, but in a such a manner that I could not wait to return and do it all over again.
The cost is $25 per class -- the initial class is $20 -- with packages available that go all the way up to 30 classes. For further information and to book a class, call (214) 520-RIDE.
TERLINGO CYCLE 3105 REAGAN ST. DALLAS, TX 75219 214-520-7433
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