Cycling is one of the most popular workouts out there right now. Rightfully so, there are so many benefits of indoor cycling! And with most of us working out from home, it’s a great way to get your cardio in, have fun, and not make a lot of ruckus doing so.
If you’ve been around here for a while, then you may have seen that I bought a MYX Fitness bike for my home gym. I did a ton of research into the various bikes and their corresponding apps and instruction styles before making my decision.
But I will say that there seemed to be very little information out there about what you can expect from the classes. I could do all the research I wanted on the bike’s specs and aesthetics, but I found limited information about what I would find inside the app.
I’m happy to report that I love my MYXfitness Bike as well as the classes and instructors, but this style isn’t for everyone, so I think it’s important that you know what you can expect before you make your purchasing decision.
July 2021 Update: On the heels of the MYX+Beachbody merger, the team announced the launch of the MYX II and the MYX II Plus bikes and the content collaboration with Openfit (a Beachbody subsidiary) and BODi (Beachbody's brand new interactive streaming platform). With this latest launch, MYX is poised to change the home cycling game in a major way.
The purpose of this article is to answer your questions regarding what to expect from MYX+Openfit classes and instructors as well as give you an exclusive, in-depth look into the app and how it works. Ready? Let’s take a look at the MYX app!
Exploring the MYX App: How and where to download
First things first, where do you download the app? Here’s the deal, as soon as you click purchase on your new MYX II Fitness bike, you’ll be given instant access to the complete app for free while you wait for your bike to arrive. Why is this beneficial? Because they have tons of amazing content within the app that doesn’t require the use of the bike.
Once you’ve purchased your bike, you’ll be sent an email with instructions for how to download the MYX app on your smartphone or another device - it’s as simple as downloading any other app from the app store or Google Play. From there, you can create your profile by entering a few details and creating a username and password, and get started using the app. Of course, once the bike arrives, you’ll also sign into the app on the included screen.
The ability to use the app on any device comes in handy for times when you’re traveling or are away from your bike but still want to get a great workout on the go.
Interface and useability
MYX’s app interface is quite organized. It’s bright, beautiful, and clear. You’re immediately greeted with bright colors, smiling faces, and easy to understand categories and calls to action on both the mobile app and on the MYX screen.
On the bike’s screen, you’ll be greeted by five options access the top navigation bar:
- MYX Media
Clicking on one of these will allow you to filter your search by the following criteria:
Features of the App
Inside the MYX app, several features add value and convenience to your experience. For starters, in the upper left-hand corner, there’s a box that displays your complete workout history. You’ll see stats like how many workouts you’ve taken, average heart rate, calories burned, and any badges that you’ve earned. It’s a nice place to see a quick-hit of all your data for the week.
From there, you’ll see sections for areas like featured workouts, your recent workouts, trending, new, and tutorials all displayed on the home screen where you can access them quickly. Keep in mind that there’s always that static menu bar at the top of the screen that allows you to narrow down and filter your workouts by several criteria.
Personalized heart rate zone tracking
MYX uses science to support their workouts, not fads. Where most brands and training programs rely on pace and/or time to measure the success of a workout, MYX uses their proprietary algorithm which calibrates your individual heart rate zones based on your MYX Zone Calibration Ride.Using the American College of Sports Medicine’s (ACSM) guidance, they calibrate your unique heart rate zones and use those as a guidepost throughout every workout. Per the ACSM, the most effective way to train is to do so across varying intensities, which is exactly what you get when you incorporate heart rate training zones.
Filtering and Classes
Speaking of choosing classes, finding the right class to take couldn’t be easier. There are plenty of opportunities to check out available classes either on the home screen or by using the navigation bar at the top.
When I fire up my MYX screen, I usually have an idea of what kind of workout and duration I’m looking for that day and I’ll utilize the navigation bar and filtering options to zero in on my choices. I also like to hop on and check out the new releases as they’re constantly adding new content and it’s always fun to take a fresh, new ride!
Does MYX have live classes?
No, there are no live classes or leaderboards. Instead of focussing on competition, MYX uses their proprietary heart rate tracking system to encourage you to strive for your best, most efficient output on your own schedule.
SmartMYX is a feature that allows you to create a customized plan within the MYX system. To do this, you’ll enter in some information about yourself regarding your goals and desired time spent working out, and MYX will create a customized playlist of workouts and a recommended workout sequence to help you reach your goals as quickly and efficiently as possible.
As you progress through your workouts, the machine learning-based AI technology will get more intelligent, making even more customized recommendations that will grow with you as you get stronger or as your fitness goals change.
You can edit your goal at any time, and they don’t stick you with a rigid schedule or playlist, you have a ton of options to choose from. For example, I entered in that I wanted to lose weight and do 5 workouts per week. As a result, they gave me the following recommended workout sequence:
With that sequence in mind, I can then choose from any of the recommended workouts from each category. I love that I have the power to choose my workout based on what I’m feeling that day, not based on what I’m being told to do. Fitness is more fun when you have the freedom to choose what works for you on any given day.
I already mentioned that the home screen features a box that displays all of your stats for the week, but you also get real-time stats within each workout. This is where your heart rate monitor comes in handy, so always be sure to have it charged up and ready to go for your workouts because it’s a critical component to your success.
Once you’re in a workout and your heart rate monitor is connected, you’ll immediately start seeing your stats tracked on the left hand side of the screen. You’ll see things like heart rate, heart rate zone (based on your heart rate calibration), calories burned, and time. While all this data is super important, if it interferes with your workout, you can easily choose to take it off the screen during your workout.
At the end of the workout, you’ll see a box that highlights your time, calories burned, and heart rate as well as a display of how long you were in each zone during the workout. Additionally, you’ll be able to rate the ride and the instructor, giving your feedback so that MYX can continue to provide you with the best possible content.
If you’re on-the-go and using your MYX app on your phone or tablet and the mobile app, you have the option to share your workout once it’s completed. This is a fun way to compete with others or share with your accountability partner or on social media!
Loved a workout and want to come back to it? Easy! You can “favorite” a workout and very easily access it from your mobile app’s screen.
Using your mobile app, you can schedule your entire week of workouts and keep yourself accountable all week long. I love this feature! I feel that planning my week out not only keeps me on track but also helps make sure I’m being as efficient as possible, not wasting any time searching for which class to take each day.
Pre and Post-natal workouts
One of my favorite parts about MYX is the fact that they include a complete prenatal and postnatal program. While I am done having babies at this point, I can relate to pregnant and new moms who want to exercise but aren’t sure how to do so safely.
MYX sets itself apart from the pack by offering dedicated workouts for pregnant and new moms that are safe, efficient, and designed to help women enjoy a healthy pregnancy and a safe return to exercise afterward.
The classes are led by a certified pre and postnatal fitness instructor whose mission is to empower women to feel their best during every stage of pregnancy and motherhood. The workouts are suitable for all levels, with modifications available for women at varying fitness levels.
Again, this is another inclusion with the MYX app that you can’t find everywhere else. If you’re looking to do your own thing on the bike, taking things as fast or as slow as you wish, then the scenic rides are perfect for doing just that. You can explore some of the most exotic locations in the world right from your living room!
Exploring MYX Coaches: What’s the experience like?
Aside from the app’s interface and the types of classes available, we all want to know what it’s going to be like inside the class, right? The truth is that not every system is the same and certainly not every instructor is the same, so we want to know what to expect from the instruction before we commit.
My initial thoughts on the instructors was that they felt like very real, relatable people. MYX instructors aren’t fitness models with flawless bodies; they’re real people like you and me who love what they do and enjoy sharing their joy with others.
MYX takes a very different approach to instruction than say Peloton. Both approaches are great, but it’s important to know how they differ so that you can make sure you’re getting the best experience.
With MYX there is a deep focus on the mind/body connection and an overall holistic approach to health and wellness. There’s less ra-ra, hype, and intensity, and more grounded connective work. But don’t worry, your MYX coaches are still going to encourage, push, and motivate you, but they do so in a more centered way with their on-on-one coaching approach that values feeling just as good on the inside as you’re going to look on the outside.
Who are the coaches?
The MYX coaches are certified heart rate performance specialists who specialize in the fields of health and fitness. Currently, there are about 14 different coaches, each one bringing to the table their own special skill sets, knowledge, and passions.
So far, my favorite coaches are Shaun Tubbs, Christina Lagrega, and Dyan Tsiumis, but I haven’t found anyone that I don’t like yet!
I alluded to the one-on-one instruction model earlier in the article, but I’ll go into a little more detail here. When you sit down on your bike or head to your mat, you’ll feel as though you’re working one-on-one with your coach.
There are no other riders to compete with, no audience to distract you, and no leaderboard to contend with. It’s you, your MYX instructor, and your personalized heart rate zones. This type of instruction is very motivating for many. When compared to other similar options that use leaderboards and competition, MYX is a much more personal approach to fitness and your overall health than their competitors.
Motivation: Mind-body connection
Rather than being motivated by your output and your position on the leaderboard, you’re motivated to keep both your mind and your body in its healthiest state, all while pushing yourself to new levels of fitness.
MYX’s programming is diverse. They offer intense classes that are meant to get your heart pumping and your legs burning and then recommend that you recover with yoga, mediation, or a foam rolling workout.
Their understanding of health and fitness goes far beyond the physical. They know that a healthy body starts with a healthy mind, which is why they have cultivated a culture of connecting the mind and body for optimal health and wellness.
Yet another unique feature of MYX and one that further develops the mind-body connection is their mat chats. These are short video clips and series that discuss common topics like women’s health, body image, diets, and more.
These mat chats are an opportunity for you to get to know your MYX coaches better and to learn as well as develop your mind. During these chats, they encourage you to pair up your HR monitor and move your body in any way you choose.
During every workout, there’s a choreographed playlist playing in the background. You can skip songs if you’d like. But the best part is that there are dual volume controls, which means that the music volume and the volume of the coach can be controlled separately.
Want to vibe out to some music and ignore the coach’s cues? Great! Just turn down your instructor’s volume. Want to lock in with your coach and tune out everything else? Super! Turn down the volume on the music.
With most other apps, you’re left to deal with the standard volume of the music and instructor, so this is a refreshing feature that many people enjoy, myself included!
Who are MYX fitness classes for?
After all of that, what we really want to do is find out if the MYX Fitness system is right for you. Here’s how I see it:
MYX classes are right for you if…
- You want to have a complete home workout system that includes cardio + cross-training for a well-rounded workout experience.
- You like the idea of one-on-one coaching, not leaderboards, and competition.
- You want a safe, effective way to track your progress and output using a proven scientific system (heart rate).
- You want programming that will work for you in any life stage (including pregnancy and post-partum).
- You value mind-body connection and taking a holistic approach to fitness.
MYX classes may NOT be right for you if…
- You want to compete with others and strive for PRs.
- You like the high-energy vibes and spirit that is commonly associated with in-studio cycling classes.
- You want to workout live with others. UPDATE: Live classes through BODi are now available.
- You want to see an average star-rating of a workout before trying it for yourself.
- You want to be guided by your cadence and resistance. UPDATE: Cadence and resistance tracking is available on the MYX II bike.
Bottom Line: Will the MYXfitness app live up to your expectations?
By now, you probably have a good idea of what to expect from the MYX app and MYX classes. Hopefully, this article has given you a deeper understanding of the training style as well as the usability and features of the app and bike.
For reference, I’ve been using my MYX bike for about 7 months now and have also used the Peloton app. I can tell you that there are certain things that I enjoy about both, however, I chose the MYX Fitness system because I felt as though it was a much more comprehensive solution and one that I would enjoy for years to come. Plus, it’s a lot cheaper!
With the announcement of MYX+Openfit and MYX+BODi, users can expect to find even more value in the content and more compelling evidence to choose the MYX II in the heated battle between Peloton and MYX. Previously, the biggest pitfall for MYX users was the lack of live, interactive classes. With BODi, that has changed, positioning MYX to take the lead in the cycling market.