“Girl, you saw this Peloton x Beyoncé series? You, me, 6 a.m.”
That’s a text I got from my 53 year-old-mom, Allison, last Thursday night while I was working.
From Oct.19 - 21, Peloton released 17 classes of cycling, yoga, meditations and more all featuring Beyoncè’s music in a new Peloton Artist Series called Source Your Power. The series is part of a bigger collaboration with the singer sensation, which included donating 10 HBCUs with Peloton Bikes, giving thousands of students memberships this fall and a new collection with her fashion line, Ivy Park.
My mom was a part of the thousands of Americans who ordered their bikes when the COVID-19 pandemic shut the doors of gyms and fitness centers across the country. Peloton became insanely popular, but I really didn’t get the hype. I never had the passion for working out that my mom had, much preferring the perfect bicep curl that’s required for eating snacks.
If you let her (and the other millions of subscribers) tell it, Peloton has singlehandedly helped her keep off the COVID-19 pounds that our newly built pandemic pantry and Uber Eats have conspired for her to gain.
It’s also become the latest way for her to bond and get to know the adult version of her daughter, me, who recently moved back home after graduating from grad school into a pandemic and collapsed job market.
“I’m only taking a class if Afro Cliff and Baby Hair Hannah are teaching,” I responded. If you’re a part of the Black Girl Magic: Peloton Edition or Black Peloton Riders groups on Facebook, then you know just how beloved Black Pelo-riders Cliff Dwenger and Hannah Frankson are.
My mom, however, was more focused on taking the 10-minute warm up ride with Alex Toussaint (a.k.a Pelo-Bae).
Between us both working two jobs, taking care of my grandparents and our other countless responsibilities, the two of us have been operating like two college roommates during finals. We only speak if we pass by each other in the kitchen, whenever we remember to eat. I didn’t think I had the time to work out, but it’s hard to say no to my mom.
So hours after my mom’s text, I begrudgingly sent back, “Sure.”
To my surprise, the next morning my mom cued up one of the meditations from the series, led by Dr. Chelsea Jackson Roberts, someone I’ve been following on social media for years. She said she remembered me talking about Roberts after taking my first ever yoga class in college. Something that I forgot I ever told her.
“I’m so happy you did that meditation with me,” she texted. Again I was at work, but this time I responded quickly. Those 10 minutes of affirmations to an instrumental for Beyoncè’s song Spirit had given me one of the most peaceful Fridays I’d had in months.
I told her that I would do more classes with her over the weekend, but I was still thinking about work when I asked if we could take pictures while doing them. I figured my editors at The Root would love a review of the series.
That weekend I set up the tripod and timed a few photos at the beginning of each class. On Saturday, we made comments on the amazing work out sets Tunde Oyeneyin and Robin Arzón wore for their Peloton rides. On Sunday, we laughed as we broke out of our sun salutations during Aditi Shah’s yoga class to dance to Get Me Bodied.
When I woke up Monday morning, I texted my mom first, “When are we doing the next class?”
If you stuck around this long, you deserve to see some photos of my mom and I doing a marathon of classes for her badge in the Source Your Power Challenge. It requires a user to finish 6 of the classes in a week, but my mom really should have gotten a reward for killing them in two days with me as her biggest cheerleader and water bottle passer.