Actor Reno Wilson and wife Coco Fausone-Wilson will lead Spinning Nation, an indoor cycling event scheduled Saturday to benefit the American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women movement.

Along with the Wilsons, thousands of cyclists will raise money by pedaling through extended two- to four-hour Spinning classes hosted by local facilities to help spread the word about preventing and treating heart disease in women.

Reno is no stranger to cycling. In addition to playing Officer Carl McMillan on the TV series Mike & Molly, he’s a certified Spinning instructor who teaches classes on the Warner Brothers lot when he’s not taping the show. His wife introduced him to Spinning and is also a certified instructor. Both understand the value of physical activity.

“Coco and I made a commitment to health and fitness early on in our relationship,” said Reno Wilson. “We are passionate about living a healthy lifestyle, and helping others in doing so.”

Spinning classes are led by an instructor and set to heart-pumping music for about 50 minutes, including a warm-up and cool-down. Each person can adjust the intensity of their workout during class by adjusting the resistance of their bike or deciding how much effort they’re able to put into it.

“It’s your ride,” said Michaela Morales, social media and community manager of Mad Dogg Athletics, Inc., parent company of Spinning and other fitness brands. “You can crank it up as hard as you want or lay off. The instructor guides you, but if you’ve met your max you can stop.”

In addition to the cardiovascular benefits, Spinning increases levels of feel-good chemicals in the brain, promotes teamwork and helps participants make friends and feel part of a cycling community, Morales said.

“The extended class will offer an exciting, fundraising challenge and serve as a reminder of what a healthy heart can accomplish in endurance, compassion and philanthropy,” said John Baudhuin, CEO of Mad Dogg Athletics.

Spinning Nation is the first national cycling event benefiting Go Red For Women. It joins association-led fundraisers like Heart Walk, Jump Rope for Heart and Hoops for Heart that all encourage physical activity.

Since Spinning Nation began six years ago, it has raised $200,000. With its new affiliation with the AHA, this year’s goal is to raise $250,000 for Go Red For Women. Participants collect donations from family, friends, and coworkers who sponsor their ride, and give 100 percent of their donations to the AHA. Another Spinning Nation event will take place in February, Morales said.

Spinning class photo courtesy of Mad Dogg Athletics, Inc.

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