Spinco Ottawa - Nicole

Spinco Ottawa - Nicole

Spinco Ottawa


123 Slater St, Ottawa, ON K1P 5G4
Ottawa, Ontario
(613) 818-0413

Owner: Nicole Hilstob

Interview by Nikki Gillingham, Blue Whale Communications Photography: Marianne Rothbauer

Tell us a bit about yourself and how you got started. 

I tried my first spin class in Calgary and was hooked from the first song. I could not get enough of riding bikes to really loud music in the dark. It quickly became an addiction for me and everything just fell into place. From riding to instructing to deciding that I wanted to do this for the rest of my life was the coolest journey I have ever been on. Spin changed my life not only physically but mentally as well. I have never been so strong and capable of pushing to my limits and its all because of SPINCO.


How did you get into spin? 

I went to a studio that had both yoga AND spin. I did yoga every day and always walked by the spin room so intimidated and freaked out by the studio and the loud music and all of the people looking so fierce. The manager kept telling me that it's different and that I HAVE to try it. I said no for the first 10 times she asked and finally I decided to do it and have never looked back since.


What made you want to go from rider to studio owner? 

PASSION. Knowing in whole heart and soul that this was it. That I wanted to change people's lives through spin like I did and wanted to do it everyday for the rest of my life. 

What’s different about spin than other types of cardio?

Its not only a physically challenge its mental and emotional. You have to test your limits and find your edge daily. When you beat the voice in your head that says I can't, something crazy happens and you find yourself a little more. I've cried many times in class and I wouldn't be who I am without SPINCO.

Why is Ottawa the right city for a spin culture to take off?

Any city is the right culture for spin to take off. Everyone needs this in their lives.

What is your favourite part of owning a fitness studio in Ottawa?

I get to wake up and show up and level up every day doing what I love the most. BUT the best part is seeing all of these lives change right in front of my eyes. There is something magical about building a community who is obsessed with I am obsessed with :) 


What type of person can benefit from going to a spin class?

ANYONE. seriously. All levels, shapes, sizes, ages, personalities. That’s the beauty of it. 

We ride as one and lift each other up no matter where you are in your journey.

What’s something people get out of a SPINCO class that they don’t expect?

Mental toughness and emotional moments. Pushing further each and every ride is what keeps people coming back. Including myself. I've been teaching for 3 years and riding for 5 and I am still gassed every single ride because I am ALWAYS searching for my edge.

You seem to have a community of die-hard riders. What’s that like as a business owner?

It's everything. Seeing people grow and become obsessed with what I'm obsessed with is why I did this in the first place. Its an incredible community full of amazing people and I love each and every one who walks through those doors.

If you could have any famous Canadian to get on a bike for one of your classes, who would it be and why?

Oooo I love this question. Probably Drake or Justin Bieber only because everyone plays their music in the spin room and it would be fun to see them riding to it!


Tell us about the adorable pup we see all over social media! What’s it like having an ‘office dog’?

Tucker!!! He's incredible right? He's been with me since the beginning so he's fully a studio dog now. He greets everyone as they walk in and out and just loves all the hype and attention he gets. It's cute because he lays outside the studio doors with his face pushed under the glass when I'm teaching because he doesn't like when I'm out of his sight LOL.

You have a few tattoos – any stories behind any of them that you’d like to share?

Yes I do! I used to love the feeling of getting them but now its actually starting to hurt a lot! I asked my tattoo artist why this is and he had said because the adrenaline has started to wear off. A couple of them I got in Vegas just for fun and a couple of them are just extensions of who I am. My favourite is the hummingbird on my back with the quote "she flies with her own wings" Its an independence thing.


What’s something you’ve learned about yourself through starting and owning a business?

I am so much stronger than I think. I also learned that passion can take you FAR. Loving and believing what you are doing can help you overcome the HUGEST obstacles. It's incredible.

What’s next for you and SPINCO?

I want to open more studios! TBD of course but that’s the plan.

Is spin the next Hot Yoga? :)

ummm I'm not sure what that means but I am obsessed with both. I practice at Yogatown and its also changed my life and my body. Couldn't be more grateful for that community also.


What advice do you have for people who are afraid of the intensity of a spin class?

Fear is a liar. Its a story we create in our heads because we see videos of everyone moving in sync or we see so many people walking in the doors confidently looking like they know what they are doing. We all didn't know, we all started somewhere. The SPINCO community is so welcoming and we want everyone to know that once you walk in, you are immediately treated like family XO.

What else do you do to stay active when you’re not sweating it out in the studio?

Yoga at Yogatown. PT with Kenny at UVU fitness and also the Fitness Lab!

Other than the SPINCO studio, where is your favourite place to go in Ottawa?

Anywhere that serves up some good brunch and beers :) I like balance!

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