CLASSPASS Month In Review: December and January

ClassPass reviews

As you may remember, four months ago Bo and I decided to give ClassPass a try after hearing wonderful things about it, realizing the two of us could leverage it together and a positive month long trial back in July.  It’s crazy how much can change in such a short period of time. Back in July I tried it for the first time and now, just a few months later, I’m an official ClassPass ambassador!  I’ve taken 78 classes through ClassPass and am one of their largest advocates! Don’t believe me? Try for yourself! Use this link to get $25 off your first month!

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As promised, each month I will provide a brief recap of our experience including the number of classes taken, average cost per class and a brief recap of the studios where we sweat that month. In addition, if you’re on CLASSPASS feel free to follow my fitness schedule here. I love meeting readers so if you see me in a class, please say hello! If you want to check out my previous monthly recaps, click herehere and here.

Month 4: December 20 – January 20th

Number of classes taken: 18

Number of studios visited: 10

Number of classes missed or late cancelled: 0

Number of cities: 1 (NYC)

Average cost per workout based on NYC rate of $125 per month: $6.94

Wow, even with the week that we spent in Savannah over Christmas, I was still able to squeeze 18 classes into this month. I think that the cold, winter weather motivated me to workout inside versus run outside, hence the continued increase in classes. Bo and I have kept up our trend of working out together as much as possible, often at least one weekend class and two early morning classes per week. I was able to achieve my goal of taking four yoga classes during the month as well as keeping up with my half marathon training and high intensity training to ensure I keep getting stronger.

Last Month’s Classes

High 45 at Mile High Run Club (1)

I’ve professed my love of Mile High multiple times (full review here). Their High 45 class is a great class for runners of all abilities. As you can guess from the class name, the workout includes 45-minutes of running. The running includes a five minute warm-up and five minute cooldown. In between that you’ll sweat through 35 minutes of tempo work. A typical class includes half hills and half speed with most intervals ranging from three to six minutes! My favorite teachers are Jes Woods and Deborah Woods!

Row House Full Body 45 at Row House Chelsea (3)

Rowing is a wonderful, low-impact workout which can supplement any workout plan. While I’ve taken classes at CityRow, Row House is the first rowing workout in NYC that truly reminded me of the rowing practices Bo and I sweat through in high school. The Full Body 45 class is a 45-minute class which includes a 5 minutes of rowing drills to warm-up, 15 minutes of rowing intervals and sprints, 5-10 minutes of strength work, another 15 minutes of rowing intervals and sprints, followed by a short cooldown. The class is perfect for people of all abilities as each person controls the speed or intensity at which they row. Scott and Caley are our favorite instructors, constantly motivating students while correcting form and ensuring that everyone is pushing themselves. For those who need to sweat and then dash to work, the Row House Chelsea location includes a small, but nice locker room featuring two showers, blow dryers and toiletries where you can get ready for work or date night.

 

 

Signature Fhix at Fhitting Room (3)

Bo and I love the 50-minute high intensity classes which pair two instructors with a class of 20-25 students for a sweat inducing good time. The music is always perfectly on point, motivating and pushing us while the instructors lead the group through functional movements such as lunges, burpees and squats followed by strength training with kettle bells and finally high intensity exercises including rowing machines, ski-ergs and box jumps. The atmosphere is one of the most supportive I’ve felt and it is a great starting place for people who want to learn more about functional training and using items like boxes and kettlebells as the instructors adjust students during class. The dual instructor model means that there is always someone watching you! The studio offers showers, lockers, towels and water. But, consider yourself warned, if you want to shower, I highly recommend you skip the stretch cool-down and snag a shower instead. There are only three showers and in the mornings the line can get pretty long. If you’re a NYC reader who finds it impossible to snag a spot in Fhitting Room, my biggest tip is to look 24 and 12-hours in advance of class. We were able to get in each of these classes around the 18-hour mark.  Our favorite instuctors are Eric, Ben, Dara, Emily and Carlos.

 

HIIT 45 at HIIT Box

You know those studios and classes you just WANT to love? For us, this is one of those. I wish we loved it but unfortunately, this studio was a once and done for us even though it’s just a five minute walk from our apartment. The owner Maryam was also the teacher and while she was very supportive, Bo nor I loved her vibe. The space is small, allowing only 5 to 7 students which is good for adjustments and form but can be negative for motivation. There were only four students in our class, including us, so it was hard to feel inspired and motivated by those around us. The workout itself was a typical HIIT workout which included stations ranging from rower, box, kettlebless and body weight work which we rotated through four times for one minute each. I think repeating the moves four times also made the class a bit boring and repetitive.

Power Flow 60 at Tangerine Hot Power Yoga

There is a reason this studios classes quickly sell out, especially evening and weekends when Brooklyn locals and Manattanites flock to Tangerine Yoga. The 60-minute class isn’t for the weak as it is a heated strong, power yoga class. But, don’t fear, instructors provide lots of adjustments and guidance to ensure everyone has the best session possible. The studio provides complimentary yoga mats and towels as well as selling juices and coconut water in the small boutique and lounge area. I’ve now taken five classes at this studio and grow more in love with it each class. They develop a great sense of community and each instructor is more supportive than the next. So far, my favorite instructors are Emily and Tamara.

Sunrise Flow and Bend+Bloom Yoga

This Park Slope yoga studio has two large, bright, beautiful studios and offers more than 65 classes per week.  The Sunrise Flow which is offered on Friday mornings, is taught by the lovely Christine, a fellow blogger and runner. Her class is 60 minutes of flow which often includes lots of twists, stretches and restorative poses along with a fewer higher energy poses to wake the body. I love starting my Friday with this class as it puts me in the best mood and is a great way to release tension and stress from the body as well as shake out my hips and legs before my weekend long run.  While there aren’t showers, the studio’s private bathroom is spacious and would allow for a quick wet wipe bath and dry shampoo spritz before work.

Flow Yoga Open at Exhale Central Park South 

It’s rare that I head uptown for classes since moving to Brooklyn but when two friends rave about the same teacher for weeks upon end, you finally head up for an early morning yoga session. I forgot how incredibly gorgeous the Exhale Central Park South location is until I walked through the door and felt as if I’d immediately been transported to a spa. Since the space is part spa and part fitness studio you get all the benefits of the zen like atmosphere, large locker rooms, tea, snacks and plenty of relaxation space along with the yoga class. Taught by Isaac Pena, this class was a perfect mix of Vinyasa flow with fluid movements as well as lots of adjustments to help students move deeper into the poses. When I finished the class, feeling completely relaxed and zen yet in a puddle of sweat, I understood the hype around Isaac’s classes.

B/X Brick Brooklyn

Brick New York features multiple types of workouts in their space ranging from CrossFit to yoga. In between is their hybrid workout, B/X.  A high intensity, functional training class it is very similar to Fhitting Room. After a short warm-up we spent the next 45 minutes moving through circuits which included rowers, treadmills, wall balls, med balls, kettlebells and box jumps.  There are no breaks so you will be dripping sweat in no time but the energy of those around you will keep you moving and motivated. I love that the instructor constantly walks the class, helping ensure everyone has the proper form. In addition, if they notice that a move comes to easy, they are quick to provide a recommended adjustment to make it harder. There are locations at Grand Central, Chelsea and Brooklyn so this workout is convenient for just about anyone. There are plenty of lockers and showers so you can get ready here before work if you need without rushing out of class early.

Overthrow Underground Boxing

This 45-minute workout is gritty, tough and empowering! The class begins with ten minutes of calesthenic warmups which will make you sweat. Think lots of burpees, jumping jacks, squats and pushups. After the “warmup” you’ll start focusing on the boxing technique through shadowboxing and then finally bag work. The classes fly by and the music and instructors are motivating and high energy. The studio has a very small, single shower bathroom so I wouldn’t recommend getting ready for work here but it’s the perfect way to burn off steam after a long day. They provide gloves but wraps must be brought or bought at the studio.

Your turn: If you’re a NYC local, what are your favorite studios? Where should I sweat next? 

This post is not compensated nor requested of me via CLASSPASS. While it does contain affiliate links, as a CLASSPASS affiliate, I only receive a small compensation if you choose to purchase a CLASSPASS membership.

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Bar Method Soho Review: Pain with a Smile

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Tonight I had the great opportunity to check out the newest Lotte Berk kid on the block in NYC thanks to Jes free class she set up for her readers. I’ve enjoyed classes inspired by the Lotte Berk method previously at Core Fusion and Physique 57.
In preparation for class, I reviewed the basics of The Bar Method.
The Bar Method™workout creates a uniquely lean, firm, sculpted body by combining the muscle-shaping principles of isometrics, the body-elongating practice of dance conditioning, the science of physical therapy and the intense pace of interval training into a powerful exercise format that quickly and safely reshapes and elongates muscles.

I’ve found from previous experience that taking a bar class 2x per week results in definite body changes. When I was taking Physique 57 classes last year 2x per week I noticed arm definition and my thighs were more slender. It has similar results as swimming.
The Bar Method Soho location is located on the second floor of 155 Spring Street right in the heart of Soho. Upon entering the space this evening I immediately noticed the warm, bright lighting and clean lines. This environment is definitely refreshing after walking through the Subway station grime.


The reception was warm and attentive as each reader entered. Everyone was smiling and more than happy to give us a tour of the space so we could make it our own. First up, the necessary water and treats in their kitchen area. I’ve never seen this before in a studio!


They offer filtered water to refill your water bottle or sell bottled water for $1.25. In addition they offer herbal teas for post class refreshment.

As you can see above, the lobby area features a plethora of lockers and benches which students may use to store their belongings. The lockers have key locks which remove and hang in the rooms during class which makes it easy to know your things are safe and sound.
Next stop on our tour was the ladies locker room. Once again there are plenty of lockers in the locker room along with changing space, bathroom stalls, towels, and a small shower area featuring a few stalls.


This locker room was definitely easier to navigate than both Physique 57 and Core Fusion. There was plenty of space even when 10 of us were in there changing. In addition, the new space has been kept up very well and is still spotless!
After meeting some of the other attendees, many of whom I’d met previously at other events, we were ready for a great class.


The class itself was very, very similar to both Core Fusion and Physique 57. The class is an hour long and best practiced while wearing socks or special grip socks which are sold at the front desk. I wore my Core Fusion socks and they worked perfectly.

I would really like to enjoy more Bar Method Soho classes but right now it doesn’t fit into my monthly gym budget since I already enjoy an Equinox membership. However, I think this is a great class to enjoy with friends every now and then. It forces me to focus on the difficult, small movements. If you are interested in learning more, their website is very thorough! In addition, a few other ladies have reviewed the classes: Jes, Dori, and Missy. Thank you Jes and Bar Method Soho for an amazing evening and workout! Hopefully I’ll be back soon to receive more pain with a smile.
Here are some of my favorite aspects of tonight’s class:

                                         Amy, one of the founders, led our class and had an amazing knack for learning names. She complimented and critiqued each of us throughout the class while addressing us by our names. This made me focus more since I knew I wasn’t “invisible”

    • Everything was done with a smile. The instructors and all staff must have been extensively trained on service and it shows!
    • The music was awesome! I’ve found in other classes that the music is dull at times and rarely actual music, especially during my experiences at Core Fusion. Tonight’s music was a great mix and really helped me stay with the beat.
    • I enjoyed tonight’s thigh sequence at the bar. It wasn’t necessarily as long as Physique or Core Fusion’s but I felt it very effective.
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Fit and Flow: The Missing Component to my NYC Workout Schedule

Before moving to NYC, I lived in the suburbs of Philadelphia for three glorious years. I made some amazing friends while there, enjoying exploring Philadelphia, and also kicked my ass into the best shape of my life! This was due to many factors including but not limited to the following:

Main Line Bootcamp For Women

-I didn’t live with Bo. This meant that there was never any food in the house that I didn’t buy nor were there the common “boy foods” which would lead me to temptation. I also had more freedom in the kitchen since I was cooking for my taste buds alone.

I worked from home. This meant that I could go to the gym, a class, or run whenever the urge struck since I owned my schedule for the most part and had very flexible hours. In addition, I was able to fix my breakfast and lunch at home which meant tasty egg white omelets and veggies, huge salads, and anything else my stomach craved.

I participated in multiple outdoor workout groups such as the Bryn Mawr Women running club and boot camp multiple times a week.

This last point is one that I am able to influence in my current life stage. I love my new job even though it is office based and that isn’t going to change. I love Bo even though he comes with random takeout or delivery dinner cravings and doesn’t love some of my healthy, odd creations. Since I’m married to him our living situation isn’t going to change either. :) Therefore, over the past few weeks I’ve made it a goal to focus on the third point as I strive to return to my previous fitness level and shed a few of the “married bliss”/stressful job pounds. Thanks to Lululemon, I’ve built Wednesday night Run Club into my weekly routine which has helped me kick my running plateau to the curb. 

This week, Daily Candy helped me with the other part of the third point- outdoor bootcamp. As soon as I saw the subject line of Tuesday’s Daily Candy I was ecstatic.  As I read the snippet regarding Leanne and her blossoming fitness business I knew I’d found my missing component. The email described her as a trainer who is passionate about helping others find their optimal state through personalizing workouts, keeping things fun, and doing all of this with a smile. The Daily Candy email was primarily advertising her outdoor workout class  Fit & Flow. For $25, This class combines the rigors of a bootcamp with the restoring qualities of a yoga class. Participants complete 45 minutes of heart pumping and sweat inducing moves in the beautiful surroundings of Central Park before engaging in 45 minutes of stress releasing and muscle lengthening yoga taught by her fitness partner Jill.

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At 6:50pm last night I met the group outside Central Park at 59th and 6th Avenue right near the statues. I was greeted by the energetic and bubbly Leanne who quickly introduced me to Jill and the other ladies. By 7pm there were around 25 women of all shapes and sizes chatting while also discussing their fears in hopes of finding confidence from others.

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“I hope this doesn’t include running because I’m more into yoga. “ “What if I die of exhaustion?” “I’ve never done a boot camp before, have you?” “Umm, the other girls look like they’re in great shape but this is my first time.”

These were just a few of the many comments uttered before Leanne and Jill put everyone to rest. The class would be heart pumping but fun as she promised to keep everything fresh by changing it up and would also provide modifications if anyone needed it. In addition, it was clear that this was not a boot camp intended r o intimidate, fear, or upset anyone. In fact, we all made fun of the hard core, screaming boot camp leader nearby who thought it more fun to scream his heart out at his poor participants rather than participating and encourage them as Leanne and Kim did. Oh well, to each their own but I was glad to be a part of the supportive group!

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Class started on a grassy knoll about a quarter of a mile from the park entrance. We lined up and started with some warm-ups including two minutes of jumping jacks and then a minute of high knees. During the warmups Leanne informed us that throughout the class she wanted us to take a note from yoga’s book and do everything with intention. This meant that whether you were doing a jumping jack or a lunch, every muscle should be engaged- no flailing arms or listless squats.

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After the warm up we quickly began the real workout. This consisted of lunges, burpees, pushups, more lunges, abs, and a quick jog down to the waterfall area for dips and incline pushups. The abs section was one of my favorites as we were able to partner with another participant for the exercise. Working with others always makes the time pass quicker!

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We ended the “fit” session with a relay race between two teams. Everyone was very supportive, team oriented, and focused on winning so they didn’t have to do more pushups. Unfortunately, one of the participants fell and hurt her ankle. Everyone immediately stopped and focused on her health. No one was upset that her injury forced the one team to come in last. Instead everyone was concerned about how she was feeling and also ensuring that she felt like she was still part of the team and loved. This was amazing. I’ve been part of many bootcamps before and normally there is a lack of team spirit and support. I believe this all comes from the leader. In the end we all did the pushups because we’re all one team!

After a short break, Jill moved the group into the “flow” section of the class. I honestly can’t remember all of it but can tell you that it was very similar to a flow vinyasa class. The movements were not held very long but flowed from one into another. We went through the warrior poses but also focused on many traditional “yoga for runners” movements to stretch us out after the great workout.

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I thoroughly enjoyed this workout and would highly recommend it for almost any person. Here are a few pointers:

-Be open to hard work. The more you put in the more you get out. Some of the strongest women there were older than me and they were all smiles!

Bring your own yoga mat, towel, and water. Many people, including myself, forgot yoga mats. While the Central Park lawn is nice it isn’t exactly soft or comfortable for planks or yoga. –

Give yourself plenty of time to arrive. I really enjoyed getting to know the other participants before the class as it made partner sections less awkward. In addition, since the class doesn’t take place at the meeting point it’d stink to get there late and then be lost.

If you’re interested in joining the next Fit and Flow class in Central Park contact Leanne Shear at

leanne@leanneshear.com

or follow her on Twitter (leanne_shear)

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