Having moved from Turkey to Germany, and then eventually, migrating to the United States, Certified Group Cycling Instructor and Personal Trainer, Arlet Cicek, is no stranger to stepping into unfamiliar territory. The Los Angeles fitness professional grew up playing sports, like soccer, track, and swimming, until a struggle with drugs and alcohol in her early 20s took ahold of her life. Arlet quickly hit rock bottom, and it was at that time that she tried her first indoor cycling class. For two consecutive years, cycling became her daily addiction. She loved the challenge, the focused effort, the “party in the morning” to release all of her stress and energy, the spark of endorphins and the overall, feeling of health and positivity that indoor cycling classes left her with. For nine years, she went on to teach indoor cycling at various health clubs throughout Los Angeles. “Teaching cycling kept me on the right track for quite a while. It’s an incredible feeling. When I touch those handlebars and start pedaling, I go somewhere else. For me, fitness saved my life and specifically, indoor cycling saved my life.”
Then about 2 years ago, while teaching stationary cycling classes at LA Fitness, she walked into the new health club across the street and discovered they were launching the Valley’s first RealRyder® Indoor Cycling Classes. Timing was everything, as Arlet was seeking a new challenge, something that would take her out of her cycling-comfort zone. She became the first instructor to get hired and recalls her initial experience with the bikes. “The first time I tried it, I thought, oh shoot! What did I do? But after the third time, the strength that I felt in my core got me hooked.” Guiding members to try the new dynamic cycling platform raised another challenge that intrigued Arlet. “I remember early on hearing some members say that the bike wasn’t comfortable or it was intimidating. I would simply hold their hands and say, ‘Let’s just try it together, Ok? We can do this together’.”
Fast forward to today, Arlet’s RealRyder Classes are consistently packed. Members who were once intimidated have mastered the ride, and the experience has opened new doors for many, including one member who pursued becoming a RealRyder Instructor herself.
“I find that gyms do not give enough credit to their members. People might be anxious about the RealRyder Bikes to begin with, but when you teach them and explain it and stick with them, after about the third time, they fall in love with the bike, and the results. I wish all the gyms would have RealRyder Bikes,” Arlet shares. “I want to tell gym owners, please put me on a bike in that room and let me show you. I’ll make a huge hit. Let me show you what this bike can do.”
One of the main benefits that Arlet has enjoyed about cycling on the RealRyder is the greater core integration. “The feeling in my obliques as I go into turns and stabilize...it has taken my workout to whole different level.” Appreciating her more toned physique, last Fall, Arlet decided to step outside of her comfort zone yet again by entering her first Figure Competition. As someone who is fearful of being on stage, a Figure Competition would bring a new set of obstacles for her to overcome. With only eight weeks to prepare and laden with stage fright, Arlet took home 3rd place at the NFC/IFBB 2015 Iron Games Competition. She plans to enter a second figure competition this summer and you can bet, the RealRyder Bike will continue to play an integral role in her training regimen.
Arlet shares, “When I go back to stationary bikes, its like ‘wow,’ this is nothing! The RealRyder Bikes are just something else. It’s entirely different and I just get a rush every time I start my class."