Who raised the bar in October?

Andrew Ruggiero!

As one of our most loyal HBers and an avid Summer Share rider, Andrew always exudes positivity and determination. Whether he is riding solo or with his wife, Melissa, Andrew motivates everyone in the pack. His passion for finding a cure for ALS brought him to The Handle Bar – every year he rides a 270-mile bike ride for the cause. We are proud to call Andrew one of our own!

So, Andrew…

Everyone has their own unique fitness journey. What has your experience/journey been like with indoor cycling? In short, it’s been great!  Most importantly, indoor cycling enabled me to train for a 3-day, 270-mile bike ride I do annually to raise $$ for ALS-TDI with TEAM FRATETRAIN and their research to find an effective treatment for ALS.

Fitness was much easier in my younger years.  Playing college football, 2 hours+ in the gym 5 days a week to train in the off-season was a no-brainer.  Now, as an aging 29 year old, I don’t have the time or the drive to stay with a consistent strength training regimen.  Spinning at the Handle Bar has been the solution.  I know that I’ll be in and out within 45 minutes and makes it much easier to schedule my workout in to my week.

Besides cycling, what other activities do you do to keep fit? Pick-up/Men’s League Hockey, the occasional free-weight session, outdoor cycling.

Tell us an unknown fact about yourself.
Hmmmm…. If it is “unknown” do I know it?  I’m not a man of many secrets…. I guess it might be unknown that I have a goal in life to master the sweet sweet dance moves from Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” music video…. Especially the knee spin!

What’s your “big kid” job? How do you schedule a ride into your daily routine?  I am the Director of Business Development at a financial services firm for the Northeast.  The app allows me to schedule my rides around my varying daily schedule.  Having the multiple class options works well for me.

Why do you come to ride at the Handle Bar? I originally came to train for the ALS-TDI Tri-State Trek.  I keep coming because it fits my schedule and lets me be active without feeling the need to train like a football player.  My fiancé loves to spin to, so we can go together.  She’s persistently asked that I run with her for years…. I don’t run…. We can do this together and both enjoy it.

Do you have any advice for other guys looking to get started with indoor cycling?  It’s a no-brainer.  It’s annoying at first when you’re panting and exhausted and there’s some 110lb girl crusing along without breaking a sweat…. or you can’t possibly understand how the instructors legs move that fast… but you get over it quickly and then it’s awesome!

What did you do for fitness prior to joining the studio? I haven’t abandoned anything I did in the past.  I relied on the gym a lot more before getting in to spin.  At spin class, i never need to wait for the guy/girl using the squat rack to finish doing some exercise they have no business doing in a squat rack (ie. curls) when i’m trying to do cleans!

What goals has The Handle Bar helped you achieve? Prepare for the ALS-TDI Tri-State Trek first and foremost.  Shedding a few lbs before our wedding has also been a big bonus.  Those photographers are pricey! Can’t spend all that money to look like a beach ball in all those pics!

What drives you more – working out solo or with a friend? Solo.  I have always disliked having a “partner” to workout.  A go-to spotter or group setting works.  As far as having a gym buddy, not even remotely a possibility.

What’s your favorite way to end a long ? Steak and Beer

Rihanna or Beyoncé? Who?  Which one does the Na na nnnaaa song?

If there was one obscure artist whose music you wish you could ride to, who would it be and why? Well, Jess worked the “Cranberries” in to her 90’s playlist… so I don’t know if there is room to be more obscure.  I want some good, ole fashion drums for a hill climb.  Get up to a level 9+, and do the marching drum beats from marching soldiers in old movies.

What motivates you? The desire to always be better.  If you are going to put the time and energy in to something, whatever it may be, you owe it to yourself to put forth the best possible effort.

What words do you live by? No Regrets – Learn from your mistakes and move on.

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