Triathlete Fredricka Holloway was in search of an indoor training space to maintain her cardio endurance during this year’s frigid winter when she decided to visit CYCMODE’s open house over the weekend.
“I haven’t been here before [but] I’ve been wanting to check it out,” said Holloway. “It was just a matter of time and opportunity so when I saw that they had an open house today, I said let me try and get there today.”
Located in the South Loop, CYCMODE, 1333 S. Wabash Ave., is an indoor cycling studio that offers an immersive riding experience for patrons with bikes that lean from one side to another. In the cycling space riders face a 40-foot-wide and 12-foot-high screen which displays anything from music videos to digitally created worlds. CYCMODE owner Latashia White said her place offers a “real life” cycling experience.
White’s journey to opening CYCMODE brings to bear a lifetime of experience. In White’s previous career, she worked in corporate America for 20 years for companies like Coca-Cola snf Boeing. In early 2016 she made a decision: to become an entrepreneur at 40-years-old. Neither fear nor trepidation crept into White’s mind as she transitioned into her new career, she said.
“What inspired me is just leveraging the experience I’ve gotten in corporate America and taken that to the fitness world,” said Holloway. “I fell in love with indoor cycling back in 2015, started learning more about the business model, and from there I did a bunch of research and said: if I was going to do it, I was going to do it differently… so when you see a lot of our competitors, you won’t see what you see here.”
A former track & field athlete at Grambling State University, White said she sought to launch a business in the fitness realm as a means to “getting back to my roots.” She connected with cycling shortly after learning she had plantar fasciitis, which limits her running. She said through cycling she’s able to stay in shape while trying something different.
White, a Phoenix native, fell in love with Chicago while in the city from 2003-2009 before relocating to Atlanta for Coca-Cola. She would later return to Chicago while employed with Boeing. She said she offered Boeing her letter of resignation in late May of 2017 before officially opening CYCMODE on July 29. She explained her desire to open her first location in the South Loop was based on her love for the area, proximity to downtown, and the lack of indoor cycling studios nearby.
“This is what we are considering our re-grand opening so this is an opportunity to celebrate all of the success we’ve had for the last four months,” said White. “We really understand what our secret sauce is so now we offer three different programs where before we offered primarily one.”
CYCMODE offers three distinct classes: The Trip, a 40-min instructor led session that sends riders through digitally created worlds; Sprint, a 30-min instructor led High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workout; and Freestyle, a 40-min instructor led session that incorporates music in a calorie burning workout.
White said while the South Loop location is her first, she intends to open more in the future.
“I really wanted to start something that was different that you would never, never see anywhere else; we have that here and it’s also fortunate that I’m a Black woman doing it so I’m really excited about leading the way there,” said White.
Holloway said supporting a Black-owned business played a role in her decision to visit CYCMODE. She said she’s been able to keep up with the latest from CYCMODE by following their Instagram page.
“Just to see a sista that’s created something new and something that’s exciting and health conscious, I think ‘why not,’ ” said Holloway. “We support Harold’s and all of these other things, let’s support something healthy and that’s good for our bodies as well as the fitness community.”
For more information about CYCMODE, visit https://cycmode.com/.