Avid spinners have begun to take on the very first Le Tour de Hood challenge at Abrams Physical Fitness Center.

Le Tour de Hood is a spinning challenge that calls for participants to complete the seven mountain stages of the Tour de France. Each phase is around 80 miles and participants receive a prize each time they complete 100 miles.

Spin instructor Patricia Brown is passionate about spinning and has been an instructor for about two years.

Though spinning may look easy, it’s actually tougher than it seems, Brown said. Her favorite part is seeing people being surprised by spinning and the physical stamina it requires.

“I like when people come in that have never taken a spin class or think it won’t be that bad and they walk out like, ‘I’m dying, Lord please help me,’” Brown said. “I really like that because that meant you came in one way, but you’re leaving another way.”

For Tanya North, who recently moved to Fort Hood with her husband, spinning is a way for her to cycle and feel safe.

“I just started this and it seemed like a fun thing to do. I’m also hearing-impaired. Riding a bike on the road is really scary for me, so a spin class works out for me,” North said.

Jimmie Surles has already surpassed the first 100 miles in Le Tour de Hood and doesn’t intend to stop there. He’s planning to go all the way to the top.

“I don’t know where the top is, but wherever the top is, 1,000 miles, I want to get there,” Surles said. “If it’s 5,000, I want to get there. That’s my goal is to reach the top.”  

Surles encourages Soldiers to participate in spinning to better themselves physically and avoid health issues down the road, like heart disease and high blood pressure.

“In the military, it’s challenging because you’ve got PT every day. If you’re struggling with PT, this is where you need to be,” Surles said. “You’ll be able to build your leg muscles up, build your stamina up, so you can go the distance.”

Le Tour de Hood is an ongoing event through Dec. 20. The cost is $3 for walk-ins and $45 for a 16-visit pass. Classes are 8-9 a.m. and 5:30-6:30 p.m. on Monday and Wednesday, noon-1 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and 9-10 a.m., the second and fourth Saturday of each month. For more information, call 254-285-5459.