JoyBuddies - Spotlight on Colleen Lynch and Georgia Needham

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"When we are in class, we sometimes look over at each other when we feel like we are dying! It helps knowing that, OK, she feels the same way I am feeling right now. But, at the end of each class, we both always say 'we did it!’” — Colleen Lynch

As “back-to-school” season approaches, we spotlight these two inspiring riders, who are also first grade teachers! In spite of their busy lives, commuting and teaching, they find motivation to get on the bike regularly as a team! Colleen and Georgia both report that in three years’ time, they have grown stronger, leaner, and they have even moved up to the front row!

Where are you both from?
Colleen: I live in Brookfield and have lived here for the last 11 years. Georgia also lives in Brookfield and moved into the same condo complex with her son a year after me. So, she has been here for 10 years. We both teach first grade in Weston.

How long have you been friends?
We met when I started teaching in Weston 14 years ago. We both taught kindergarten and now we both teach first grade. We became the best of friends over the years of teaching and living near each other.

When / how did you decide to exercise together?
We began indoor cycling when we both decided we needed to do some form of exercise. Georgia recommended cycling, but I was a little hesitant because I had tried it before and was not very good at it. She found a gym in New Milford that offered classes, so we went and tried it out. We worked out in this little room with about eight-10 bikes for about five-six months. However, then the gym moved and no longer offered the class.

Why at JoyRide?
One day Georgia found JoyRide on Groupon and asked if I wanted to try it. We decided we would try the Ridgefield studio because it was between our workplace in Weston and home in Brookfield. The first time we went, it was a Thursday night. We walked in and Cindy Tamburri was teaching the class. She started talking to us, and told us she knew us because her kids went to the Weston schools and Georgia actually taught one of her sons in kindergarten! Then we walked into the spin room and saw all of these rows of bikes. We went to our bikes in the back row (of course!) and had our first class.

It was the most amazing class because there were all these people there, the music was great and Cindy not only taught the class, but she was so encouraging and inspiring. We both felt like we went spinning and had a therapy class with it. When we were done with the class, Georgia and I looked at each other and said that we need to join JoyRide because is was just such a great experience for both of us. I think I can say this for Georgia too, but this has been the only exercise so far that I have stuck with in my life. We are now in our third year of cycling, thanks to the amazing instructors that have inspired us to want to keep going.

How does meeting up and riding together impact your workouts?
If it wasn't for Georgia, I would not have even tried cycling again. Since we both work at the same school, it helps to have each other and encourage each other to go after school, especially if it was a tough day. "When we are in class, we sometimes look over at each other when we feel like we are dying! It helps knowing, OK, she's feels the same way I am feeling right now. But, at the end of each class, we both always say 'we did it!’” We end up feeling good about it because it wasn't easy, but we did it!

lesley osborn