The ‘Winona Riders’ are made of 11 riders who all meet at Flywheel in West Hollywood including Flywheel instructor Graham Labass. I caught up with Graham to learn more about their week long intensive ride from San Fransisco to Los Angeles which raises money for the AIDS/LifeCycle 2016 (Donations accepted HERE).
1. How have you been preparing for the AIDS/LifeCycle 2016 that starts in San Fransisco and ends in Los Angeles?
Most of us are spinners are Flywheel, which is how we all met. A lot of us spin consistently throughout the year. On top of that, it is important to be fit for it, and you also have the other side where you need to be able to spend a large amount of time in the saddle, pretty much being able to become one with your bike. You are on your bike for so long during the ride, that you become part of your bike.
2. Since you spend a whole week on your bike during the AIDS/LifeCycle 2016, how do you mentally prepare yourself?
You have those moments on your ride that you have so much time to think and we are talking hours upon hours, where you start to contemplate things. It can bring out serious emotions where you realize what you really need in your life and things that you could do without. I definitely have had my emotional moments on previous rides and I am looking forward to them this year.
3. We’ve heard so much about your class on Wednesday nights at Flywheel, How did it come about?
I started this class because my ex-husband had a big demographic for theatre, so I tapped into that and started making showtune playlists of broadway musical and tv musicals including Mama Mia and Empire. It gives everyone a chance to sing along, be goofy and be themselves. Everyone is in their own world and it is nice to be able to let go where no one is going to judge you.
4. What are your planning to do on actual Pride this year?
On Pride, We ride in on Saturday into Fairfax High School which is just a few blocks from Pride Central around 2 pm. We are planning on spending time together as if we havn’t spent enough time together for the past 10 days. Watching the parade, celebrating our happiness. Being straight or whatever you are, its not just for gays but for anybody. Thats why it is the rainbow flag because its every color of the spectrum.
5. Is there anything that you would like to add?
The first time I did the AIDS/LifeCycle, I had a few friends that I knew were dealing with HIV either personally or someone in their family or their group of friends. I’ve had so many people come up to me to thank me for doing this, and it opened my mind on how impactful this ride is. There is one part of the ride called the QuadBuster, it is one of the hardest hills during the ride. They say when you do it to think of someone that you know that this is helping. You see many people have emotional breakdowns and actually do this hill a couple of times. It is an overall great feeling to be part of this cause.
Check the Winona Riders this year after completing the Quadbuster below
Tags: AIDS/LifeCycle 2016, Flywheel, Flywheel Weho, Graham Labass, LA Guestlist, Los Angeles, Pride, Pride 2016, QuadBuster, Weho, west hollywood, Winona Riders
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