This month, we’re featuring Marielena Mullings of our Fort Lee, New Jersey studio. Marielena recently took on 34 classes in 31 days(!) and lived to tell about it. Check out her inspiring story:
What drives you to Rock Your Ride?
In 1993, I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. In 2000, I was very close to being in a wheelchair. My doctor advised me to strengthen my legs. I started cycling and became addicted.
We hear that you have experience teaching. Tell us more!
I wanted to educate myself about indoor cycling so I went to WSSC in Miami and took the instructor course. I became certified, not intending to teach. The day I got back from Miami, I went to my regular indoor cycling class, and the instructor did not show up. I happened to have a CD with me, and I ended up teaching the class! I started teaching regularly at my gym, and began instructing at other studios as well.
How does having MS affect your ability to teach?
I never shared with anyone at the gyms I worked for of my MS. This was not because I was ashamed of my MS, but because I didn’t want anyone feeling sorry for me. I wanted to demonstrate to myself that I was capable. I may have MS, but MS did not have me. In 2015, I decided to share my story, hoping to inspire others. I am the poster child for MS.
You’re quite a spokesperson for MS. Are there any other ways that you give back or help raise awareness?
Since I had a full-time job, I decided to donate all the money I made from teaching to MS research. Over the years I’ve donated over $12,000. This was my little way of giving back.
What words to of advice do you have to offer our riders?
My accomplishments at CycleBar reconfirms for me how powerful the mind is. We are our thoughts, so why not choose the good ones? I can! I will! I’m doing it!