North Hollywood

Day 26: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

Boxing, ClassPass Challenge, Fitness, Group Class, KickboxingSkyler Vallo1 Comment

World Champion Cardio Boxing 

10500 Magnolia Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 91601 

Unfortunately I won't have any photos for this blog today. The photo police came after me. 

Class was going quite a bit overtime today. I was getting a bit antsy because I have to be at work today at noon, the class was supposed to end at 10. It was 10:08 and we were still getting instructions to keep going. With no end in sight, I really had to jet. I kind of got a weird vibe when I said I had to leave, even though class was running quite a bit over. I asked to take a photo before I left but I was told no photos while class was still in session. Which I respect, but the way it was handled was a little weird. She told me I had to schedule a session to take photos....OK.

The word "cardio" is the name of the game for this class. It was more like Cardio Bootcamp with punches thrown in. I was a little disappointed because we did not do one kick throughout the entire class. I cannot help but compare World Champion Cardio Boxing to my experience with Brick and it was quite different.  

This workout WILL make you sweat. If you are trying to get cardio in or if you are trying to lose weight, this is the place to come. You will be jumping, squatting, doing sit ups, burpees, push ups, jumping jacks, ect. You will take few breaks. You're heart rate will sky rocket.  But again, it reminded me more of a bootcamp workout than a true boxing workout. Because I am a boxing expert mind you. ha!

At Brick Boxing we were learning combinations. We were sparring with partners. We were incorporating kicks, blocks, bobbing, knee strikes. We did none of that today. We hit the bag a lot. It was all punching the bag as fast as possible. No combinations. No technique. It was pure hit the shit out of that bag. 

On a positive note- I was motivated. If I ever stopped for a second I had a trainer on my butt telling me to push through. I always felt like I had to keep going. On that note, there were three trainers instructing us today. It was a little confusing to be honest. The class began with an instructor, who I really liked a lot and then mid-way through the owner, Norris, joined in. He is the World Champion of the group. Then another 10 minutes in and Tanya (I believe) joined in too! It's like, whoa. Lots of hands in kettle here. I actually can't remember how that saying goes. 

World Champion Cardio Boxing, I really wanted to like you! If I had not taken my first boxing at Brick, I think that I would like you. But I cannot help but compare. If you want a cardio bootcamp, with a good sweat, by all means had to Cardio Boxing but if you want to learn to BOX then go to Brick.  

And don't ask to take any photos ;) 



Day 16: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

aerial, barre, Fitness, ClassPass Challenge, pilatesSkyler Vallo1 Comment


Womack and Bowman- The Loft- 5355 Cartwright Ave #104, LA, CA 91601


Trapeze bars! 

Trapeze bars! 

I had zero clues about what the class I signed up for today was going to be all about. The class, entitled, Silkstreme (FKA FLYBODY), was described as "merging the beauty of Aerial Arts, the core power of Pilates, and the body sculpting of Ballet Barre. Unqiuely, the Silkstreme experience focuses on a holistic approach to fitness as a revolutionary workout for the body and spirit." - huh? I don't typically like "spirit" workouts so I was a little apprensive. 

I was imagining this was going to be mostly an Aerial workout when I first signed up. It had elements of that for sure. But it also had a lot of pilates, streching, and yoga. It had a very small ballet element, but I am talking maybe 5 minutes worth. I am going to try to describe this workout to you but it was by far, the most unique work out experience I have ever had. It was kind of bizarre. But in a good way.  Much like the name of the class itself, it's hard to pinpoint. 

The space is truly beautiful. High ceilings, rustic, brick-covered walls. I loved it. I have been to this space before, it's also where Forever Young Pilates is held (but in a different loft). Parking is a little tricky. There is a small covered lot, but only a couple spaces. The street is a highly residential apartment street, so I would give yourself some extra time when traveling to either one of these studios.  

The instructors name was Kerry and I liked her energy a lot. We had a little trouble with the lighting situation- a.k.a she didn't know how to turn on the lights- but I get it. Electricity can be complicated. The class sizes are small- max of 6. We were supposed to have 4 today. Only 3 of us showed up. We started a few minutes late because we were waiting on another student to arrive. I don't really like starting late because someone else is late. Let the late person figure it out and jump in. The three of us arrived on time so let's start on time. Also- did I mention I am a STICKLER for time? Lateness is probably my biggest pet peeve of anything on this planet so sorry if I sound a little on edge. 

Kerry was a patient instructor, describing and demonstrating every move. She is an Aerialist, so clearly, she is pretty well versed. She understood that this was a first time for all of us though and never got flustered.  We started with an incredible stretching warm up with the straps. It felt so good I wanted to take a nap. After about 7 minutes of that, we began the "work-out". 




I loved the "flying plank". We kept our feet suspended in the air, and our arms on blocks so everything was unstable, and thus, even more difficult than a normal plank is. We kept our feet suspended in these little straps for a while, doing sit ups. General moves you would do while in a pilates class, but a part of your body was suspended. It added an extra challenge. 

We then began the ballet porition of class. We did a coupe with our foot in one strap while our other foot stayed on solid ground. The strap on the moving leg gave it more resistance. My stable leg was definitely shaking by the end of the series. I have taken a couple years of ballet so I knew the terms she was calling out, but she was also doing all of the movements, so it was easy to follow along.  


Doesn't it look like something out of 50 Shades of Grey? 

Doesn't it look like something out of 50 Shades of Grey? 

After the ballet barre (more like rope) section we began the aerial section. This was your hanging upside down porition. We did splits in the air! I am a gymnast!  Weeeeee!


Nothing like a little blood rush to the head at 8:30 on a Saturday  

Nothing like a little blood rush to the head at 8:30 on a Saturday  

We did this one section where the spun upside down. That didn't work out too swell for me. See, I get really motion sick. Still can't ride in the backseat of car for 5 minutes motion sick. I tried spinning once and yep- turns out, I am still allergic to motion. While the other two members of class twirled their hearts out, I did everything stationary. Still I love a good blood rush to the face. 

I have completed one aerial yoga class before. I found it to be kind of a bore to be honest. This was a blend of an aerial class while still getting the benefits of stretch and inversion. I wish I could remember everything we did today! I would need to take class again to even begin to describe it to you. The studio has 6-7 instructors and I would be so curious to see if all of the classes follow the same foremat or if different instructors mix and max up the class a bit. 

Kerry described the class as a blend of cardio barre and pilates. I'm not sure that's how I would describe it. There isn't a ton of cardio. It's more like pilates and bar method (to me). Kerry said that this studio has a lot of upper level aerialists taking class at the studio. Eventually, the owners decided to do a more aerobic class and open it up to the general public. This class blends aerial with a workout that pretty much anyone can do. I would say this is a beginner to intermediate level class. I will for sure take at the studio again. It would be neat to see them have a beginner level and an advanced level like cardio barre does. The advanced class might have less breaks. Not that I am AT an advanced level yet but the option for when I get better might be neat.  

Again, I wish I could describe this class better to you. It is SO different, unique, and FUN. You have to try it if you are in the North Hollywood area. They have tons of class times, so it's easy to catch a class.  

I'll be hanging right there with you! 


Day 14: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

Dance, ClassPass Challenge, Zumba, FitnessSkyler ValloComment


5101 Lankershim Blvd, 2nd Floor, Los Angeles, CA 91607 


My face was surprisingly red from shaking what my momma gave me

My face was surprisingly red from shaking what my momma gave me

Oh, Sandy Campy Fitness- I wanted to hate on you so bad. Your name is very silly. Zumba in general is pretty silly, too. But Sandy, you surprised me. You were a real hoot.  

Last night I was planning on taking World Champion Cardio Boxing, but I figured that I would wait until the morning to sign up. I won't be doing that again, because by the morning, the boxing class was no longer an option. Because I took a barre class yesterday, that was out. I have to be at work at noon, so I also couldn't go too far from home. And both yoga classes close to me were an hour and half and I didn't have time for that today. That left one option-  Zumba and Tone at Sandy Campy Fitness.  

 The one classroom studio sits on top of a larger Boxing gym (I think it's above where I actually wanted to box today!) There is all this paraphenalia, shirts and towels that have a some kind of font that can only be described as Comic Sans "BOW DOWN TO YOUR INNER SELF" Oh boy, what in tarnation have I gotten myself into. What does that even mean?

I love a good dance sweat. When I was young, my mom would always make me go to Jazzercise with her. I love it because the class is almost always all women and you can just dance your little heart out and guess what, it doesn't matter how stupid you look. And you will look stupid. 


I always liked jazzercise a bit more than Zumba. I think mainly because I enjoy the contemporary music that jazzercise is set to. If there is a jazzercise class near me, Los Angeles, let me know because I will jazz my ass right over to your class.  

Today's music was mostly Latin and international beats, one or two contemporary and oldies. My class was pretty full today. I would say there were about 15 people. The woman beside me- I don't know if she was an instructor there or just really LOVES Zumba because she seemed to know every move even before our instructor knew what was happening. The instructors name was Fran and was a super fun Latin woman. When we got to the "tone" portion of class, she corrected my form a couple of times. And we all know that I love that. No, if you read my blog, I really do love it.                  

I couldn't take a lot of photos today because when you are waving your arms around like a mad woman it's really difficult to get a shot to come out. Also, when women are dancing and don't give an F, they get a little uncomfortable when randos start snapping random pics.  

I would recommend this class for anyone who wants to get their cardio on and let it all lose. I will tell you what- zumba sure beats running or the eleptical for cardio. It really is a blast. I was so skeptical of this place. I thought it would be all old women and really simple dance routines. I probably was the youngest student in class, but the ages varied from early mid 20's to early 40's. And there wasn't even that one token student who had no rhythm. Everyone kept up quite impressively. 

All in all, I had a BLAST. I would return again but I would probably only go to the pure Zumba only class. The toning part was a little old school for my taste. If I want to tone, I will continue with pilates and barre classes for that. But the next time I just want to DANCE I will shimmer my way back to Sandy Campy Fitness. 



I think investing in a better sign might be a solid option.  

I think investing in a better sign might be a solid option.  

Day 10: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

ClassPass Challenge, Fitness, SpinSkyler ValloComment

The Sweat Shoppe 


A picture says a thousand words. 

A picture says a thousand words. 

"I just don't understand the appeal. It was like I was clubbing in a terrible hot sweaty club and I couldn't get out because I was strapped down." -Emily

Emily, I apologize I posted this photo for the world to see (and by world, I mean maybe 50 people who read my blog) but seriously.. I signed up for this class because of you so I really felt like I owed you one. We have been texting the past couple of hours since the class and we don't even know what happened to us. I think I have already blocked it out of my mind, like a painful memory I am trying to repress. 

I feel bad for The Sweat Shoppe because I feel like no matter what, this is going to be an unfair review. I am sure this was indeed an amazing class for people who like to cycle in 90 degrees. I know people who are obsessed with this place. Spin places in general get a lot of love. The music was expertly choosen and I did enjoy that portion of hell, er, class. And thank you to the instructor, Briana , who took time out to strap me into the little foot holders on the bike because I really had no freaking clue how to do that.   


I was of course assigned the front row

I was of course assigned the front row

I am typically an early bird, but I showed up to class as it was about to begin today. There was pesky street cleaning all around the building today. Side note- there is no free parking close, so be prepared to have to park at a meter. I had to fill out the new student form saying I wouldn't sue them if I died, which I am sure this is an important step because I could certainly see how someone could easily keel over. I was already assigned a bike, and lucky me, that happened to be in the dead center of the front row right in front of the instructor. Cool. Not like it's my very first spin class ever or anything.

The class was about to start, so I did not have a lot of time to ask questions.  The maddness begins. Briana is telling me to go "up a notch!" And I seriously have no idea how to do that. I see the little nob on the bike but every time I try to turn it nothing happens. I sit down on my bike for a few seconds and twist it around (I think it was a little loose? or maybe it's supposed to be like that? Again I HAVE NO IDEA because I have nothing to compare it to) I finally got little nob to cooperate. 

Another "goodish" thing I would like to say, you really forget any kind of problem going on in your real life at the time of the ride. I was so focused on how freaking hard it was and how unbelievably sweaty I was, there were no moments to think of anything else- so a perfect mind cleanser if you will.   

We were riding in almost pitch black. The one window had those super thick window covers pulled down. The multi-colored strobe lights were on. The music was pumping. I was in a club.  I couldn't really understand Briana too much becaue of the music but I just followed her along when she sat on the bike and would spin really fast and then lift her butt (third position?) and then spin hard again. I have no earthly idea if my nob was on the right number, ever. When I couldn't stand anymore, I just stopped moving nobber guy.

About half way through- someone left class. At first I thought this meant I was getting lucky and class was almost over, but no such luck. We had many more songs of torture to go. It made me feel a little better that someone else couldn't hack it. They probably just had to go to work, but I tell myself they couldn't take it either to make myself feel better. 

I would love to say that class flew by. But I felt every unbearable minute. There was no clock which was also a mild form of torture because I had no idea how much longer I could stand. 

A lot of this is my fault. I knew that taking spin was going to be extremely tough for me, so why I decided to take a HOT spin class was not genius. I also didn't  know what I was doing, I should have gotten to class earlier to learn the bike more. I don't like cardio. I don't even like bikes. Hell, if we are being honest, I don't even know how to ride a real bike. I take full responsibility for my actions.  


Too sweaty to even try to put on my shirt at the end of class

Too sweaty to even try to put on my shirt at the end of class

I POURED sweat. I actually feel hungover right now because I sweated so much. My ass hurts, I have blisters on my hands from gripping the handles so hard. I am a bloody hot mess.  

I ended up knowing one of the other riders today and she asked me "so, when will you be coming back?!" 

 Nope. Never. Ever. In a Million Years....Would I do that to myself again.  

Day 3: ClassPass 30 Day Challenge

ClassPass Challenge, FitnessSkyler ValloComment

The good news is: I have full use of my arms again. CrossFit killed. I couldn't sleep on my usual sleep side because my left shoulder was VERY angry at me. I also couldn't pick up my dog, Toby. He is a little on the obese side, but no doggie snuggles yesterday was sad. I sat down on the floor to eat dinner (because yes, I am super fancy and eat at a coffee table on the floor in front of the tv) I actually do own a kitchen table but have used it a total of two times. I digress- I had to have my boyfriend legit pull me up from the ground from my coffee table dinner.  

Again- Why, oh why, do these super-humans put themselves through crossfit? 

I wasn't planning on taking Wednesday off, but I couldn't sit down on the toilet, much less have a work out.

So today, I treated myself to something I know. Something I love. Reformers pilates. Back in my element! 

I signed up for Forever Young Pilates, in North Hollywood taught by Rachel Rankin.  I actually know Rachel from other classes around town.  It appears we enjoy the same work-outs.  Also, she's a babe.   

I signed up for a "semi-private" class.  Most reformers classes are small, 6-10 people, so that is what I was expecting from FYP.  I was shocked when it appeared as if there would only be one other student in class besides myself. There were only two reformers. "Sem-private" turned out to be more like my own private little lesson- just another chick was along for my ride.  I was super pysched because I would get a lot of individual attention but also kind of terrified because I could still hardly move from my previous workout. Please go easy on me Rachel. 

The semi-private class only has two reformers

The semi-private class only has two reformers

What I really liked about Rachel is that she understood that I was almost immobile and didn't put too much weigh on the machines. With other pilates places, I sometimes feel like they stack on too much weight. FYP is classical pilates. I'm not exactly sure what that means, but to me, it means that it isn't like Pilates Plus or WundaBar, which is like pilates on crack, the classes are super fast classes and include cardio, like jumping on a jump board. Classical pilates is a much slower burn. It was just what the doctor ordered.   

The woman who was working out beside me was talking about how she just took Soul Cycle yesterday and how it was TOO EASY.  Dear Lord.  For those of you who do not know, Soul Cycle is the super hot, celeb, sort of heated, cult like, spin workout right now.  Workout partner lady said that this pilates class was way harder. It's so funny, because I have a feeling I would think the opposite.  Not that I will ever know, because Soul Cycle is like one trillion dollars a class, and is not on ClassPass so I won't be experiencing it.  However, the day for a cycle class IS creeping up on me.  I will have to give in sooner than later.  Expect some major complaining, like crossfit style complaining. Sorry folks. Can anyone recomend a "fun" cycle class in Los Angeles to me?

I really like Rachel and we have fun chatting about all of the class options available on ClassPass.  She says she keeps canceling her own classes so she can take classes everywhere else and so it is dangerous to her. I wish I was that ambitious. She corrects my form whenever I pop my hip up, or do something funky with my leg. She knows what she's talking about. Also, I read on some pamphlet that she used to be a figure skater. That's my goal in life, to become a figure skater (I'll be a late bloomer) so I am hoping that someday she can teach me how to do a double axel in addition to fixing my knee placement on a reformer.

Tomorrow I am signed up for something really different!  It's a stationary surfboard set in the sand. I cannot surfboard in the water so let's hope I am better at it on the ground.  Hang ten. 

Leg circles on the reformer

Leg circles on the reformer