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3 Ways to Mimic Your Spin Class at Home

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While the motivating instructors and energy in indoor-cycling class are definite pluses, the popularity of boutique fitness studios can make it tough to score a seat. And, even if you're lucky enough to get one, it comes at a pretty penny. But thanks to the latest apps, at-home fitness has never been better. So if you find yourself wait-listed, or just want to avoid going out in the cold, here are three ways you can still get sweaty in the saddle. (Check out 18 other free apps to make life easier.)

Take a live class. One of the biggest differences between riding by yourself and heading to indoor-cycling class is soaking up the energy of the other riders. While you can't get the exact same feeling at home (unless they figure out how to transmit those vibes through your phone), you can get pretty darn close thanks to Peloton's new app. Just choose a plan (14-day free trial; 1-week pass for $5.99; monthly membership for $12.99/month) before you ride as many times as you want. You can opt into any of the 10 live rides that happen daily or choose from over 3,000 on-demand choices that range from 10 to 90 minutes in length. (Peloton Cycle; free to download)

Monitor how hard you work. Keeping an eye on your heart rate is the go-to way to know how hard you're actually working, but you don't usually get that kind of info in a class unless you remember to wear your watch. But thanks to CycleCast, you can you take 20-, 45-, or 60-minute audio interval workouts and track helpful stats like calorie burn, workout performance, and that all-important heart rate. The app integrates with Apple Health and even MyFitnessPal so you'll never have to worry about not getting credit for a workout again. After all, if it's not on social media, does it really count? (CycleCast, free to download)

Personalize your progress. When you only have 10 minutes to squeeze in a workout, there's no way you have time to do a full class. Download Global Cycle Coach and you can squeeze in a 10-minute training session, whether it's on a Spin bike at the local gym or on your own bike you've put on an indoor trainer. Plus, the app offers yoga classes and body-weight-based sessions so you have plenty of cross-training options. And while it's important to regularly mix up your routine to keep your body guessing, sometimes you fall in love with a class that you want to take over and over. Global Cycle Coach solves that problem: Once you purchase a class through the app (prices average $9.99 per class), you've got it forever. #winning (Global Cycle Coach, free to download)