Sarah Milios is not afraid to make a move. Last spring, she was teaching Marshall Elementary School students online. This fall, she was hosting a ribbon-cutting ceremony for her new business at Aspen Place at the Sawmill, while on a sabbatical from teaching. As the owner of CycleBar Flagstaff, Milios says she is thrilled to be able to create a positive environment where people can have a high-intensity, low-impact workout.
However, this new venture is not something she was planning. In fact, it was an unfortunate move that sent her mind spinning. Milios was training for a marathon in London in 2002 when she hurt her ankle while taking a tumble on a long run. Upon learning the injury was permanent, she realized distance running was out. To maintain her fitness, she tried swimming but wasn’t getting the same physical impact from her workout. She also tried riding a stationary bike in other gyms but felt like she was off in a corner away from everybody else.
It wasn’t until she took a class at a CycleBar in Phoenix that she had her “A-ha!” moment. “It was a totally different experience to have that community feel and an in-person instructor to hold you accountable,” she said.
CycleBar is a franchise that offers indoor cycling experiences for all ages, fitness levels and body types. Riders wear special shoes, provided at the gym, that clip into the pedals. High-energy instructors lead rhythm-based spin classes through hills and drills, plus a workout for the arms.
“I can walk the neighborhood, but a spin class is a more efficient use of time,” said Milios. “For me to burn 300 calories walking, it would take two hours, but I can do that at the CycleBar in 45 minutes.”
Milios says the CycleBar name was inspired by the television program, “Cheers,” and the setting of a neighborhood bar “where everybody knows your name.”
“That’s the vibe,” she said. “It’s very friendly, inclusive and has that community feel. We even have happy hour rides!”
“I love the vibe and classes/instructors here! Such a fun experience! Definitely recommend trying for a workout that burns but feels like you’re on an endorphin high after!” wrote customer Rachelle P. in her review.
Milios and her CycleBar co-owner/husband, Greg, an anesthesiologist at Flagstaff Medical Center, moved to Flagstaff four years ago from San Antonio, Texas. Greg, a bio-medical engineer, decided to go to medical school at age 40. As he changed careers, the couple was looking for a change of scenery and lifestyle.
“We wanted a smaller town with mountains for snowboarding, skiing, camping and hiking,” said Sarah.
The couple also needed a city with a major hospital, where Greg could work. With FMC as a Level 1 Trauma Center, Flagstaff seemed to be the perfect fit.
“Flagstaff has been great,” said Sarah. “Everything is so close. And we just meshed right in.”
Their active sons, ages 10 and 12, got involved in Prime Time Athletics Flagstaff, which provides sports year-round.
For a family focused on staying active, Milios, 47, says her spin studio is a great indoor option for staying in shape, especially during the winter or inclement weather. The classes are also easy on the joints. “It’s revolutionary for anyone with a bad hip or knees,” she said.
With CycleBar Flagstaff’s October grand opening, the studio at 319 S. Regent St., Suite 206, operates at 50% capacity with bikes spaced for social distancing, considering public safety concerns during the pandemic. CycleBar offers memberships and drop-in rates. The first ride is complimentary. For more information, visit cyclebar.com/location/flagstaff or call 928-551-6385. FBN
By Bonnie Stevens, FBN