How to Stack Classes Like a Peloton Instructor
Steal these pro tips to customize your next workout and get the results you want.
By Colleen Travers•
We know it can be difficult to carve out time to sweat. Whether you have 20 minutes or 45, you don’t want to waste precious minutes figuring out which workouts to build upon. But trying different types of classes is important, says Peloton instructor Denis Morton. “You need to cross-train for so many reasons,” he explains. “It helps overcome fitness plateaus, avoids repetitive stress on your muscles, adapts your mind and body to new movements and spices up your fitness routine.”
That’s where stacked classes become an essential part of your training. “Stacking classes gives you the benefit of variety, be it instructors, music or workout type,” says Peloton instructor Selena Samuela. “It gives you options and an opportunity to create an à la carte workout.”
(Psst, if you help figuring out the Stacked Classes feature, we've got you covered.)
Here, Denis and Selena share their tips to create a solid stack. Keep these in mind to perfect your next workout.
Aim for 2-3 Classes in Each Stack
How long your stack will be depends on how much time you have to exercise, but in general, Denis recommends making two to three classes the core of your stack. “Start with a style of class you already love, then add a class that will complement that or will give you something new to try,” he says. “If you love cycling or running, begin with that and stack some strength or yoga. You’ll already be warmed up, and that will make it easier to try something new or different.”
Don’t Forget to Stretch
In addition, a warm-up and post-workout stretch should always be part of your stack. “This is the most crucial part of stacking,” Selena says. “This could be anything from a walk, run, strength or ride warm up, based on your workout. In between your warm up and stretch is where you’d stack your two to three classes.” To add these, navigate to your chosen class type and simply use the filters to find 5- or 10-minute classes to start and cap off your stack.
By building a warm up and cool down into your workouts, you won’t even have to think about them as you move from one class to the next. And that’s essential, because this is not the area you want to skip in your stack, according to Denis. “I can’t stress enough the importance of flexibility and range of motion for the long-term health of muscles and joints, as well as injury prevention,” he says.
Try These Sample Stacks
Stuck on how to start a stack? Build off these examples from Denis and Selena:
Denis’ Favorite Stack
5-minute Warm Up
30- to 45-minute Ride or Outdoor Audio Run
30- to 45-minute Yoga class (he counts this as his cool down/stretch)
“The duration of my workout will vary depending on my mood and the week’s training volume, but this is the formula for my standard progression,” he says. If a long workout isn’t in the cards for you, modify the times of each class but aim to keep the cardio-strength-stretch circuit.
Selena’s Favorite Stack
5-minute Warm Up
20-minute Country Run or Ride
20-minute Glutes & Legs Strength
“This is what I consider my ‘fun workout’ stack,” Selena says. “The cardio class lets me sing along and have a karaoke session, while the strength training focuses on my posterior chain (calf muscles, hamstrings and butt) which are important for all athletes to get stronger and faster.”