Peloton Mastering The Basics (Tips and what to do after)


I recently went through the peloton master the basics cycling program and in this review, I want to share with you my thoughts and to expect from this program.

As a whole, the peloton mastering the basics teaches everything you need to know about the bike like correct form, cycling positions, and different intensities. It also shows and explains how to combine other classes into your weekly training plan.

I did the whole 6-week thingy because I work with several clients that also use peloton and before I can recommend any program, I have to try them myself.

Peloton Mastering The Basics Program

Peloton mastering the basics is a 6-week program that includes 28 classes, as well as introduces you to over 21 instructors. It is structured in a methodological way that slowly familiarizes you not only with the bike features but also the workouts.

This means you will learn everything from how to use your bike, all the way to planning your own workouts that includes classes off the bike.

One thing I like about this program is it’s geared towards beginners in a way that everyone can learn how to cycle at home, without having to spend time and resources for personal trainers (more on that later).

Why is peloton mastering the basics good for beginners? As a whole, this program is good for beginners because it introduces you to all different types of rides like interval training, endurance rides, and even bootcamp classes. It also teaches you how to pace yourself and apply recovery classes like stretch and yoga.

In other words, peloton mastering the basics is the program that you should do first on the peloton. This is the most comprehensive cycling program for beginners because it teaches you all the basics in an organized and easy-to-digest way.

How Does Peloton Mastering The Basics Work?

The peloton mastering the basics works by gradually implementing progressive overload into your workout schedule. Every week you increase the total training volume by either increasing the class duration, intensity or by adding more classes.

Is progressive overload important? As a whole, progressive overload is important because it allows the body to continue seeing positive changes in performance and body composition, as well as helps to avoid workout plateau. It ensures that over time you’re getting better.

See the graph below.

In terms of peloton rides and strength training, it means you have to seek out more challenging workouts over time to continue making progress.

On the other hand, if you do the same class over and over without planning to progress, the body gets more efficient at doing the work and won’t see any changes.

A great example is when you see people in the gym using treadmills and ellipticals doing the same workouts at the same intensity for years and wonder why they don’t see the results.

Is peloton mastering the basics effective? As a whole, peloton mastering the basics is effective because it not only guides you on different training types like intervals, climbs, or recovery rides, but also gives you the basic idea of how to add more effort so that you can continue to see results.

One thing you need to keep in mind is this program is mainly for people who don’t have previous experience with indoor cycling. If you’re already familiar with spin classes, you may find this program boring.

Who Is Mastering The Basics Good For?

In general, the peloton mastering the basics program is good for people who’re:

  • Hesitant to exercise – A lot of the classes include music from the 80s, 90s, Rock or Pop. Those music genres makes it easy to feel the beat while riding the bike. People may not enjoy training hard, but they can enjoy exercise to the music.

Plus, studies have shown that “listening to a favorite piece of music might decrease the influence of stress caused by fatigue, thus increasing the ”comfort” level of performing the exercise.” (Yamashita et al. 2006).

Not only that.

Another study from The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness has shown that “Listening to faster music during exercise can increase self-paced intensity without altering perceived exertion levels while listening to slow music after exercise can accelerate the recovery rate back to resting levels” (Lee, & Kimmerly, 2016)

  • New to exercise – Mastering the basics helps not only to build the good habits right of the gate, but also teaches you about the different modalities of exercise like resistance training, aerobic, and stretching. It also explains in-depth the importance of correct technique and form on and off the bike.

The First 2 weeks of this program are like having a personal coach that gives you in-depth guidance on every class. This helps to get started, especially for people who are completely new to any form of exercise.

Normally, every spin class in the gym has a trainer that is there to guide and show you everything. However, when you’re at home, there is nobody to help.

Peloton mastering the basics is like having a step-by-step tutorial that helps you get past this beginner’s phase.

  • Recovering from injury – This program is created with progression in mind, but most of the classes have low-intensity, which is good for people who haven’t been active due to injury.

What I like about this program is that most of the classes have low intensity and relatively short duration. This makes it easy for people who have limited mobility and are physically deconditioned.

Peloton Mastering The Basics Instructors

Before we go into dissecting this program into pieces, I want to mention about peloton instructors that appear there.

One thing I love about mastering the basics is that peloton instructors make you feel welcome and heard. Each class is designed to not only teach you on using the bike but also covers all types of questions about the training.

In each class you will see:

  • explanation of the correct form and technique
  • discussion about intensities and rest
  • motivate and inspire you

Another thing I love about this 6-week guide is that you will see almost half of the peloton team in one program. This means you will get plenty of different instructions, advice, and tips from all the people that are involved.

Peloton Mastering The Basics Schedule

Now let’s look at each of the weeks, which will help you understand the methodology used to design this program.

In general, the peloton mastering the basics schedule includes several classes from multiple fitness genres. This helps to build up your strength and aerobic endurance. It also includes multiple recovery and flexibility sessions where the instructors cover the importance of efficient rest.

Mastering The Basics Week 1

Mastering the basics in week 1 is all about familiarizing yourself with your bike. The training volume starts from 20-minute sessions as low intensity did 4 times in the week.

In this week you will learn about resistance, cadence, and the importance of sufficient recovery.

Here is the schedule plan for week 1.

DaysClass
Day 120 min Beginner Ride
Day 220 min Low Impact Ride
Day 3
Day 4
Day 520 min Beginner Ride
Day 6
Day 720 min Low Impact Ride
Peloton mastering the basics week 1

What I like about the peloton programs is that you cannot start in the middle of the week or jump from one class to another, without first completing day 1.

Each class unlocks only after you did the whole session. This is great for beginners because it builds good habits of consistency.

Where is mastering the basics on the Peloton app? You can find mastering the basics on the peloton app in the “programs” columns. After you select the program tab, then you have to look for “mastering the basics”.

Mastering The Basics Week 2

Week 2 is all about showing you different workouts intensities and bike positions. Here you get the introduction of music rides, which means you will practice and play around with being in and out of the saddle.

Also, in week 2 you will see my two favorite peloton instructors which are Matt and Robin.

Here is the workout plan for mastering the basics in week 2.

DaysClass
Day 120 min Beginner Ride
Day 215 min 80s Ride
Day 3
Day 4
Day 520 min Beginner Ride
Day 6
Day 720 min Pop Ride
Peloton mastering the basics week 2

I noticed that the intensity of peloton music rides is in between the climb rides and low-impact rides.

Climb rides are the sessions where you have low cadence and high resistance (which mimics the uphill ride outdoors). You can learn more about “peloton climb rides” and how to use them in my article here.

Mastering The Basics Week 3

Peloton mastering the basics in week 3 is more challenging because here not only do you increase the class duration, but also introduce basic arms training workout that is done back to back.

See the table below.

DaysClass
Day 130 min Advanced Beginner Ride
Day 220 min Hip Hop Ride
10 min Arms Toning
Day 3
Day 4
Day 520 min Low Impact Ride
Day 6
Day 720 min Rock Ride
Peloton mastering the basics week 3

This week you will transition from beginner rides into advanced beginner workouts.

What’s the difference? As a whole, the difference between peloton beginner and advanced beginner rides is the class duration and the intensity. The beginner rides are not longer than 20 minutes and maintain a steady pace for all workouts. The advanced beginner is 30 minutes long and requires slightly higher effort.

Mastering The Basics Week 4

Week 4 is another challenging step because here you not only increase the class duration but also begin to do strength ore and yoga flow.

What I like about the structure of mastering the basics is that the peloton adds classes on the same day (one after another), instead of asking you for another training day.

This way you can increase training volume, without actually doing more additional workouts. It helps to increase the intensity, but it doesn’t call for extra commitment.

Here is the schedule for mastering the basics in week 4.

DaysClass
Day 120 min 90s Ride
Day 230 min Advanced Beginner Ride
20 min Prince Core Strength
Day 3
Day 4
Day 520 min Yoga Flow: Hips
Day 6
Day 730 min 2000s Ride
Peloton mastering the basics week 4

As you can see, on day 5 you also have a 20-minute yoga class. I love doing yoga because it helps me to reduce muscle tension, improve my recovery, and also provides an active recovery day.

Also, yoga is a great modality to be used after you finish mastering the basics. You can learn more about the benefits of “peloton morning yoga” in my article here.

Mastering The Basics Week 5

Week 5 is another transition from advanced beginner to intermediate.

Every class week 5 is challenging because it consists of either longer endurance rides, full-body strength, or high-intensity interval training.

The peloton workout library has thousands of classes that give you endless possibilities to craft your training plan.

That’s what I love about peloton. You swap one ride with another to make your workout significantly harder, without necessarily adding extra time.

See the table below.

DaysClass
Day 130 min Low Impact Ride
Day 220 min 2000s Ride
20 min Resistance Bands Full Body
Day 3
Day 4
Day 520 min Recovery Ride
Day 6
Day 730 min Intervals and Arms Ride
Peloton mastering the basics week 5

Also, please remember to get a resistance band as this week you will need to use them for the 20-minute full-body class with Hannah Corbin.

What I like about the peloton resistance band workouts is you can do them every day because they don’t induce muscular fatigue, compared to free weights or machines.

Mastering The Basics Week 6

The last week of peloton mastering the basics is the crème de la crème because you will not only go hard for your first 45-minute ride, but also you get to do the first bootcamp class.

Plus, you get to do two cycling rides, back to back.

Here is the schedule plan for week 6.

DaysClass
Day 145 min Classic Rock Ride
Day 220 min 80s Ride
20 min Pop Ride
Day 3
Day 4
Day 530 min Bootcamp Bodyweight
Day 6
Day 720 min Recovery Ride
Peloton mastering the basics week 6

This week is intense but manageable because it still has 3 days of rest. However, you will hear multiple times from the instructors about doing something active on your days off.

Peloton Mastering The Basics What’s Next?

After you finish peloton mastering the basics, you can slowly get into grips with crafting your own training plan.

I always recommend having a self-assessment and rate on a scale of 1 to 10 (one being the lowest and ten being the highest) on how hard was this program for you?

If you find this program challenging, I recommend continuing with this path of training 4 days/week and having 3 days off. You can also use their temple to make your own schedule.

Here is the example.

DaysClass
Day 130 min Climb Ride
Day 220 min 80s Ride
20 min Bodyweight Strength
Day 3
Day 4
Day 530 min Bootcamp Bodyweight
Day 6
Day 720 min Recovery Ride
Peloton after mastering the basics

You can use that plan and modify, remembering about going one notch harder every week or two. Here are some basic guidelines on how to create your plan after mastering the basics.

Progress one class per week – Adding too much intensity to all classes at once can have diminishing returns. Instead, just choose one class you want to go harder and leave the rest without any changes.

Start from hardest classes – Keep your most challenging workouts at the beginning of the week (or when you feel the strongest). Having not enough recovery will lower your performance.

You can learn more about how to create your own “peloton workout plan” in my article here.

Conclusion

I can highly recommend doing peloton mastering the basics cycling program because it helps to not only get started and break the chain of inactivity but also gives the confidence of how to use and plan the bike workouts.

When you do indoor cycling classes in the local gym you have the advantage of trainers that work there and you can ask them anything.

This program is basically a course on using the bike most comprehensively.

Michal Sieroslawski

Michal is an exercise physiologist (MSc), nutrition coach, Ashtanga teacher, and fitness blogger. He shares his successes and failures to help busy men and women squash down 20, 50, or even 100 pounds of fat without leaving their home.

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