SKYLER VALLO

ACTRESS | MODEL | WRITER

Pilates

Day 30: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

ClassPass Challenge, Fitness, pilates, reformer pilatesSkyler ValloComment
  • Club Pilates: Hollywood
  • 730 N La Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038
  • http://clubpilatesstudio.com/locations/hollywood
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I have to start this post by saying YAY! I COMPLETED MY 30 DAY CHALLENGE! I will post a wrap up of my experience soon: TBD. Right now I am covering Club Pilates: Hollywood. 

I had an audition around La Brea today at 12:15. I tried to sign up for a class at Crunch which was flying pilates. I hadn't visited any flying yoga or pilates for the challenge so I thought it would be a different way to wrap the challenge up. I tried to sign up, but the time to sign up had expired. I quickly scanned on. Then I saw Club Pilates was holding their Cardio Pilates at 1:00. I had ten minutes.

I made the decision to leave my car in a residential one hour space. A risky move since I had already been there for 40 minutes. If I moved my car and had to find parking again, I might not make the class. On foot would be the only way.

It paid off. No ticket AND made it to class with 3 minutes to spare. I got a little uptight mid walk because I realized I had left my grippy socks in the car. If I went back, I would surely be tardy. I hate being late. I decided I would purchase new socks because I needed some to add to the collection regardless. But it must be my lucky day or something because this seemed to be a no sock studio. Wow, I should play the lottery today. 

Jessica, the instructor, helping set up jump boards for students     

Jessica, the instructor, helping set up jump boards for students  

 

Guys: I have posted multiple times that there are no friendly pilates studios in Los Angeles. BUT I FOUND IT ON MY LAST DAY. I have found friendly pilates studios before, but the classes at said studios were never challenging enough. This studio has friendly humans who work there and it was hard as shizzzz.

Like I stated, today's class was a Cardio Pilates Class. I got my hair highlighted this morning so I wasn't trying to get REAL sweaty if you know what I mean. I had been wanting to try Club Pilates for a long time, so I took the risk. I got sweaty. Back dripping sweaty. Dammit, CP.

The class is supposed to be 25 minutes on the jump board and 25 minutes on the reformer doing classic reformer moves. WELL...it was more like 40 minutes of jumping. I love jump board because it's the only way to get a cardio work out while lying on your back. (...mostly the only way...) 

The board attaches to the bottom of the reformer machine. You literally jump in first, second, pilates V, one foot, two foot, every way possible. You lay on your side and then jump with one leg in the air. It must be a comical site. The mailman seemed to enjoy it. You have to keep your core extremely stabilized and your back planted firmly on the reformer. There's a lot to keep in mind. 

Mid jump! 

Mid jump! 

My feet and calves were cramping so so so so hard. I had to stop multiple times and rub it out. I can only imagine what my calves are going to feel and look like tomorrow. I imagine that I'll probably resemble a soccer player. 

The instructors name was Jessica. I loved her vibe. Going on a different level here, but she just had a good energy about her. She was so inviting and friendly. She introduced herself to me, and shook my hand. She asked me if I had ever jump boarded before. I have (but only once). She offered to put the board on the machine for me. Which I was thankful for, those nobs on the machine can be tricky. She came around me and the others the whole class and corrected feet and leg positions. Instruction goes a long way in my book. 

When we weren't jumping, we did spend a bit of the time working our arms and core. We did one move where we held the wood part and pulled the rest of our body by curling into a small ball and rolling up through our back (like a cat/cow). I was doing this wrong, but when corrected, boy did I feel the difference.

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I am satisfied that my original class today didn't pan out- Club Pilates: Hollywood is a studio that I will be returning to whenever I have auditions or take classes with friends in the West Hollywood area. I'm excited to have another reformer studio where I can get the challenge I crave and also where I like the instructor. I have heard wonderful recommendations from friends about CP and they weren't wrong. Looking forward to trying out all the instructors as I continue on my fitness journey.

Check back tomorrow for my month in review!

 

Day 21: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

ClassPass Challenge, Dance, Fitness, Barre, Pop PhysiqueSkyler ValloComment

Barre Lab 

1947 N Cahuenga Blvd, Suite 101, Los Angeles, CA 90068 

http://www.barrelab.com

Rather regal looking, isn't it? 

Rather regal looking, isn't it? 

 

Barre Lab, located right off the 101 Freeway at the Cahuenga exit is located where Pop Physique Hollywood used to be! I only noticed the change a few weeks ago. I am always down to try a new Barre workout (they are my second favorite type after Reformers Pilates) so I was looking forward to the chance to try it.

This morning I had a meeting at 10 am in Hollywood. I let out just in time to fit in an 11:00 class if I booked it. Luckily, Barre Lab was right down the street. The stars aligned for us today Barre Lab.

Parking here can be a bit raunchy. Luckily, I found a one hour spot two blocks away. During street cleaning, I can imagine hair pulling could be involved if you're in a rush. 

I walked in and filled out the paperwork (the worst part about ClassPass is filling out new forms everywhere you go (ok, I'll suck it up, it's a small price to pay). I found out that the studio offers pure cardio dance days as well as a Hula Hoop class. I have heard of a lot of unique classes in LA- but Hula Hoop is something I had never heard of before and would be so down to try. Unfortunately, the instructor is in India learning how to perfect her Hoola but I hope she returns soon so I can get my inner 8 year old on. 

The Space (I see the HULA HOOPS!) 

The Space (I see the HULA HOOPS!) 

The essentals  

The essentals  

What I noticed first is that the items provided are a cross between Pop Physique (the ball, but this one isn't pink) and the cords (Pure Barre). Those stretchy cords are where thighs go to die. I was hoping we wouldn't be engaging in too much of that today.

This class is so similar to Pop Physique that if I had taken the class blind folded and asked me what Barre class I was in- I would have picked Pop in an instant. However, it was about 10% harder than most Pop classes. Same type of loud music, similar moves, same flow of class. Which is A O-K by me because Pop is one of my favorite of the bunch. 

The arms were harder than usual because we spent most of it laying on our stomach with our legs lifted slightly and our arms also lifted behind our backs with the baby weights. It's like when you are doing back crunches but worse because you have weights. This was more difficult than usual arms because of the added element of laying on your stomach. Ooph. I was werking it already.

Then we moved onto the bar for stretches and thighs. Of course we began with the stretchy cords. I will say, they had a little more "give" than the ones at Pure Barre, so that was a relief.  

Then we moved onto my least favorite bar exercise in this whole barre world. THE PRETZEL. 

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Pretzel is the worst. It never gets easier no matter how you do it. My inner thighs are OH so very tight so this is extremely difficult for me. I was pulling down on that bar for support something fierce today. I almost wished I had a prop to set under my bum because it truly is difficult for me. It tones that ass unlike anything else though.  

The instructors name was Cat. That's a cool name. She was really great about correcting form and I always felt like I was going to be getting the most out of every exercise because if I didn't Cat was going to come adjust me. I love form adjustments even if I look mean when you tell me, it's just because I am in a lot pain at the time. I like it, I swear it.  

Now I cannot speak for every class at Barre Lab, but the ab's section was really hard. We didn't put half our mat up the wall and half down the wall and do that half ass ab rountine that all the Barre studios try to pull off. I hardly ever feel ANYTHING during this type of ab routine and I am SO HAPPY we did not do that today. We did everything on the floor and I felt it so much more. So keep that up Barre Lab! 

 

 

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I sweated today! I like sweating. It makes my work out feel purposeful. This photo was taken before class, so I don't look sweaty. 

I am already feeling the results of today's class so I know it got me. If Barre Lab was closer to my apartment, I would be returning more often. Because there is a Pop less than a mile from my home, I will probably still be attending that on a more regular basis. That being said, if I have meetings around Hollywood I will drop in for sure. And I am already planning on the cardio dance and Hula Hoop classes. Bring Hula Hoop lady back from India ASAP! 

Day 20: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

Pilates Studio City, Dance, Fitness, Barre, BodyBoardSkyler ValloComment

DAVINCI BODYBOARD CLASS (PILATES STUDIO CITY) 

11650 Riverside Drive, Suite 1 & 2, Los Angeles, CA 91602 

 

Resistance Band to the Extreme

Resistance Band to the Extreme

Adding yet another unique workout to the books- DaVinci BodyBoard Class! ClassPass adds new studios to its line up every week. It's like a Christmas Present finding out that a new studio you like is added. Last week, they added Pilates Studio City.  I have been wanting to check out this place forever because it's a walk, skip, and jump from my place. No driving in Los Angeles is a rare jewel to be treasured.

Davinci BodyBoard is described as a group equipment class and like taking Pilates, Barre, and Zumba all at once. The BodyBoard System is based on high intensity intreval training that is time-efficient and extremely effective. The use of resistance bands allows for more varied movement and engages smaller muscle groups which creates "full body integrity." That's what my ClassPass description said anyways. Pilates, Barre, and Zumba are pretty much my penultimate work-outs so ALL THREE IN ONE? Where have you been all my life.

Today was another super sonic one workout. 25 minutes! A full body workout in 25 minutes? Again, I was curious to see if I could get a good butt-kickin in as little as 25 minutes. Wednesdays are my longest days of work and it seemed like the perfect day to take advantge of a short class. 

 

Only 4 to 5 students per class  

Only 4 to 5 students per class  

This simple machine is highly deceving  

This simple machine is highly deceving  

The instructors name was Keiko and she was all business. We began class two minutes early. Here's a woman after my own heart- I love starting early! Especially when you only have a 25 minute class, I was ready to squeeze in a few extra minutes. 

We began with a few minutes of Cardio. We picked up the pink bungees on the side with our arms and began lifting our legs in the air- like a march. Much like you would do at Pure Barre or Bar Method. Because we had the bungee's, this added more of a challenge than you would find at the barre studios. I was surprised at how fast my heart rate picked up. We also did a series of squats and dips on each leg 

 

 

Boogie with the bungees  

Boogie with the bungees  

 

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I actually have a video of me doing a little dance with the bungees. I am not going to lie- I look pretty ridiculous and hilarious, so if you want to see that- you are going to have to follow me on Instagram. That's a shameless plug. In all honesty- I cannot figure out how to upload a video onto this website with my Ipad. That's the only reason you do not get to see me shaking my hips like Shakira. (okay, not even close to Shakira's hips)

I liked the intreval aspect of the class. We used only the board for "weight-lifting" and the resistance was killer. We would dance in between the sets to keep our heart rate up.  

All in all- the class is probably aimed at women slightly older than myself. The two ladies in class with me were in their 50's but that being said- I was surprised that it was as difficult as it was. I asked Keiko if there was an advanced level. I would be all over that. She said, not yet. I am pretty good at reading in between the lines and I am assuming means that there could possibly be an advanced class in the future.  

Ooo the part that really killed was the ab section. Both your arms and legs are attached the the bungees. You are strapped in. Unable to escape! Can you imagine doing a minute of this attached to bungee cords?? I can tell you from experience. It's HARD.                                                

 

Keiko giving me intense pointers about keeping my stomach to the floor while twisting. I'm TRYING Keiko! 

Keiko was a solid coach

Keiko was a solid coach

I am a surprisingly a little bit obsessed with this class. There are a few reasons, and I would be lying if some of that didn't have to do with the distance to my apartment. I love that if you are having a really busy day, you can still squeeze in a decent work out, that gets your heart rate up AND tones in only 25 minutes. I would love for it to be 45 minutes. 

I will be returning to Pilates Studio City- and can I put in a request that Level Two Pilates please be added on the ClassPass schedule soon :)  

Day 19: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

power plate, Barre, ClassPass Challenge, FitnessSkyler ValloComment

Xcceration Station (Harmony Studios) 8440 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069 

 

What have I gotten myself into? 

What have I gotten myself into? 

I signed up for my class today, yet again, with zero clues about what I was signing up for. I googled Xcceration Station and it had no reviews on Yelp. Scary. Angelinos do nothing without a Yelp review.

I later realized that "Xcceration Staton" is a small part of a larger studio, called Harmony Studios which features reformers pilates, TRX, and regular pilates. Harmony Studios is also on ClassPass, but it doesn't have as many class times as the Plate classes, which is what I took part in today.

 

 

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I couldn't snap a photo of the reformer class because there was a class that was going on the entire time and it's weird to take a photo of a class you aren't participating in. But here is the other cute room with pulling thingies on the walls.  

There are only three Power Plate machines, so three will be the total amount of people you will ever have in your "class". I say class in annoying quotation marks like that because it really felt like more of a private. Especially since I randomly knew the other class participants today! They used to work at the same bar I worked at. SMALL WORLD. Heyoooo Cynthia.  

The class is only 25 minutes long. Again, a little strange, because I definitely feel like classes should be at least 45 minutes to get any real work done. I asked the instructor, Caroline, if any of the Plate classes were longer and she said that they were considering adding an advanced 45 minute class and also a Barre on the Plate class. I was very intrigued by that second one, but then Caroline had to go and ruin it by telling me it was only going to be at 6:30 am. Nope.  

Now on to the work out. This was a weird one. You basically hold long poses for sets of 30, 45, or 60 seconds while vibrating at an exremely fast pace. I laughed out loud when I first stepped on because it was unlike anything I had ever stepped on before. It made my nose and ears tingle. In fact, sometimes my whole face tingled so much that I had to sneeze! I can't imagine what it's actually doing the muscles and blood flow in my body if it's making me tingle that much. I imagine that is why they have these machines in the first place. Something pretty good must be happening in there.  

Come here if you need your sinuses cleared! 

 

 

My stationary foot was a'buzzin! 

My stationary foot was a'buzzin! 

 

A lot of the moves had a barre feel to them. You were often lifting one leg in the air while your other leg was getting the benefits of the pulses. I almost wish that we had held some of the poses longer even though it started to burn! 

 

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We planked on each side of our arm and then a plank on both arms. I really felt the pulses on these babies. My arms and face were vibrating so much! My ears were ringing. But it felt cool. 

This is not a "sweat" work out. This is a unique type of toning work out. I would be very interested to see if doing this a couple of times a week would achieve anything. I imagine it's incredible for circulation and blood flow but I would be very curious to see if it toned when completed on a regular basis.  

Caroline mentioned we should eat very soon after class, because it's easy to get light-headed. I felt that a tad bit. I also felt super weird when I started walking on solid ground in my tennis shoes. I tend to get extremely motion sick, so I was worried about that going into class today, but luckily that wasn't an issue at all. The reason the classes are so short is because your body is experiencing something so different and they don't want you to pass out. Obviously. That would be a terrible work out!

If you are looking for a fun little 25 minute way to spend your time, then I recommend The Xcceration Station. I took the Power Lunch hour and if I worked near by it would be convenient to stop by on my lunch hour, get a quick little buzz on, then head back to work. Like I said before, you don't get too sweaty so this is a perfect lunch option work out. 

I look foward to checking out the other classes at Harmony Studios. It's ecclectic, cute, and homey. It's super sweet and almost like it belongs in somewhere other than LA- but I think that is what makes it to endearing.  

P.S.- They have a studio doggy! And anyplace that allows cute little pups to roam around is OK by me! 

Day 16: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

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

SILKSTREME (FKA FLYBODY) 

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". 

 

 

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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 9: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

Barre, ClassPass Challenge, Fitness, Pop PhysiqueSkyler ValloComment

Pop Physique  

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Who here has been personally victimized by the Pop Physique perfect butt poster? 

Raises hand. 

hate to break it to you readers...That's my butt. 

LOLs times a million. Just kidding. If you live in Los Angeles you have probably seen the perfect little ass posters around. For a really long time, I had no idea why there were butts plastered everywhere. Then one day I saw online that I actually really do know who owns that butt. I am Facebook friends with her. LA is a weird place.

Upon seeing her butt I then realized that it belonged to a fitness place called Pop Physique. Today I took at the Studio City location on Ventura Blvd.  

 

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I freaking love Barre studios. I'm good at it, and after my humiliation on the treadmill yesterday I needed a boost of confidence. Today, Ashley was teaching the class. She has really long pretty blonde hair, which could be her natural color. Jealous!  Ashley was really hands on, which I can totally get down with. I love being corrected on my form, because those tiny adjustments can make a world of difference in the type of work out you get. You can touch me anytime, Ashely!

 

I WANNA SWING FROM THE CHANDELIERRRRRR

I WANNA SWING FROM THE CHANDELIERRRRRR

I'll take the one pounders, please! 

I'll take the one pounders, please! 

You begin the workout by lifting your legs and moving your arms in a sort of 80's aerobic, Jane Fonda moves. After that, you begin the plank and push up series. Five minute plank series are the best. Then you hit the arms with the tiny little one pounders that seem much much heavier than a pound after you lift them 5000 times. When you finally get through the one pounders you realize that you still have your triceps to go and a heavier set of weights. Because I am on camera a couple of times a year, it's really important that I have skinny arms because the camera usually hits from the waist up so you can tiny movement the crap out of my arms Pop Physique. 

But then...come the legs.. 

 

smiling, but don't mean it

smiling, but don't mean it

Look at that pink ball between my legs. Looks so cute doesn't it? 

That pink ball is what nightmares are made of. You put the ball between your legs and you get up on your tippy toes and you squat. Then you move an inch. Then you go up an inch. Then down an inch. All while squeezing the little pink ball. Pretty soon, your legs are shaking something fierce. It's kind of like your legs are having a seizure.  

One of the things I like about Pop, in between most of all the exercises you are stretching. Many classes wait until the end 3 minutes of class to get some kind of half ass stretch in. Pop is like a mini-yoga class combo with a barre class. And it feels SO good.  

 

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I apologized to Ashley after class about taking so many photos, and she just told me she thought I was super into Instagram.  

 

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It is difficult to lift your leg up in the air and take a photo at the same time. I don't recommend it. But I wanted you guys to see some of the floor butt exercises! Get the picture?

My class today only had a couple of victims (I mean, participants) in it, but I have gone to class on the weekends and it's sold out and I have been turned away. 11 am seems like the ultimate time to go if you don't like crowds. Don't let my class number today fool you, sometimes it's packed.  

Shout out to the music played at Pop. It's really loud and they turn it up so you cannot hear your own thoughts telling you you cannot do something. I hate when you can barely hear the music and it's some lameo top 20's Bruno Mars song. They really mix the variety up here, a couple of remixes, EDM, Dance and pop tracks fill the air.  

Pretty much always, Pop never lets me down. I'm generally not extremely sweaty when I leave class, so if you have an errand to run or something you won't be embarrassed. I wouldn't go to Pop if you're trying to get cardio in, because there isn't TOO much of that happening here but it is good for toning. The class always goes by quickly and it's fun fun fun. I'll be back. 

 

Shout out to my girl, Jennifer for the sock hook up! LOVE.  

Shout out to my girl, Jennifer for the sock hook up! LOVE.  

Day 7: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

ClassPass Challenge, reformer pilates, pilates, FitnessSkyler ValloComment
Pilates Plus Studio City located on Ventura Blvd

Pilates Plus Studio City located on Ventura Blvd

Pilates Plus Studio City is what I like to refer to as pilates on acid. This place is not your momma's pilates place. Or actually it is, it's filled with extremely hot moms. This is one of my favorite pilates places because I get the workout that I enjoy doing the most (the time speeds by for me) but it is also extremely challenging and I see results.  The website claims that you can burn up to 700 calories per class. The reformers are special for some reason. I wish I could tell you exactly what that reason is, but again they basically just make pilates harder than it normally is. They call them the MEGAFORMER. Here is a photo of what makes them mega.

The Studio, on the other side is a wall with TRX hanging from the ceiling

The Studio, on the other side is a wall with TRX hanging from the ceiling

 

I took from Pilates Plus Studio City last month on my ClassPass as well (the month that I barely went). However, you better believe that I used my 3 times a month for Pilates Plus. I actually used them all on the same instructor, Lisa Goldsman. Her class is really popular and always filled so I usually have to sign up at least a week in advance to snag a spot. My girlfriend was supposed to come to class today, but she couldn't get in. If you choose to go to PP make sure you sign up in advance, it's unlikely that classes are available the day of.  Also, shout out to the instructor Lacey. She is my fav, but her classes are never available on ClassPass because she is the shit so her classes are too full. Also, she always teaches at like 5 am. What's up with that? I can't work out when it's still dark outside. 

I always see Pilates Plus featured in magazines. It was also featured on this season of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. And according to their website the Kardashians work out at the Encino location. 

Now, on to the workout. We began our warm up with about a ten minute plank series. I wish I could remember all the terms that she yells out but mostly, I just copy the hot mom next to me. Basically the warm up is about a ten minute plank series. You're keeping your arms on the stationary part while your legs are on the carriage and you're doing all sorts of funky things with your legs. The snake is where you cross your legs on the cariage and then bring them up very slowly to the edge of the platforom. Slowly is the term you have to remember here. The slower you go, the tougher it is. 

After my abs and arms cannot possibly take anymore we move onto legs and butt. Pilates Plus seems to concentrate a lot on legs, which is fine by me because, although I hate legs, that is where I gain most of my weight. We do a Spider Lunge and side kick and then we put the bungie cord on each leg and straighten our leg for what seems like forever and ever. and ever. We then do some arms in between then do the other leg. 

I feel like my description of today's class is pretty lame but this class always keeps me on my toes and is super fast paced. Lisa is always timing us on her stopwatch to make sure we get the same equal time on both sides as well, so our muscles aren't lopsided. 

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This is actually a super terrible photo because my left hip is lagging down and I should be lifting it up even with my right. Ugh! I guess this is why we shouldn't take photos while on the machines. But I wanted to show you how you stand on the platform and move your opposite leg back on the slide-y part. Mission somewhat accomplished.  

My one, tiny little gripe about Lisa. Sometimes I feel like she puts a tad too much weight on the machines. She always gives little tips about how you can slide your foot out on the reformer, or sit on your butt if the arms are too heavy, but sometimes, it's still too damn heavy and I feel a little ashamed for taking the weight down. But if it's too heavy, by all means, lower the weight on that machine! I just don't want to disapoint Lisa.  

In the end, I love love love Pilates Plus Studio City. Currently, it is the only studio on reformers pilates in the Studio City area that is "mega" and is truly butt-kicking. Also, word of wisdom, maybe not for first timers on pilates machines. This is a FAST paced environment. 

Day 3: ClassPass 30 Day Challenge

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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

Day 1: 30 day ClassPass Challenge

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The ClassPass app is incredible. I am super addicted to it. I scroll through it like it's a Facebook feed of only the people I care about. You can type in the area you want to search with distance perimeters, types of classes, and times. You scroll until you find a class that really gets your goat.   Some of the more popular classes (such as reformer classes where there a limited amount of spots) fill up more quickly so you have to become a bit of planner with smaller classes.  However, if you want to take a Cardio Barre class for example, I have literally signed up while I was at the studio already and poof I am in the class.  

So easy and pretty. 

I typically like to take classes in Studio City because that is where I live but I'm always zipping around town for auditons.  If I have an audition and I am feeling ambitious, I take work-out gear along and search for a class around that area.  I love having the ability to take class when or wherever I happen to be at that very moment, any time of the day.  It could be an indecisive's person worst nightmare though, because there are literally so many options.  

I had an audition today at noon and I had to wash my hair before.  Therefore, I knew that I needed to take a class early in the day because it will be a cold day in hell before I wash my hair twice a day. I looked at the handy app and decided 8 am would be a time where I could still actually drag myself out of bed and just enough time to bathe afterwards.

I chose to take CorePower Yoga Sculpt.  I tried a new studio that I had not visited before.  I went to the Studio City location, I've only been to the Sherman Oaks spot.  Like most Core Power studios, it was super clean, posh, and beautiful.  It also has really lovely natural light that comes in through the patio windows.   The negatives? Parking is absolutely terrible.  You either have to park at a meter or park in the underground structure which charges $1.50 every 20 minutes.  The meters did not start until 8, which means you cannot put money in them until the clock strikes 8 am which means I would be late for class.  I REFUSE to pay 4 bucks to park for an hour so I found street parking like 6 blocks away and hauled ass to class.  I'm very Los Angeles now, so parking even two blocks seems ridiculous to me even though I could count the "walk time" as part of my workout.   So I feel like I got extra points today for my efforts. 

Core Power Sculpt is no joke.  It's really hard, y'all.  When I go toCorePower I like to take the Level 2 or Fusion classes.  I like the fusion classes because when I am super hot after the first half hour I can just lay there and sweat and sweat and it still feels like I did something.  But sculpt is like half yoga class, half bootcamp class, in 102 degree temperature.  Our teacher today (I forgot her name, I will need to get better at this) was really into squats.  I must have did 100 squats.  It was not fun.   I liked this teacher yogi lady though.  CorePower is sometimes hit or miss for me with their teachers.  Sometimes they can be rather cookie cutter, and classes can get monotonus but this gal today really seemed to vary up the routine.  She also gave a lot of individual attention, there were only 6 people in my class.  By the way, this is the smallest class size I have ever had a CorePower, they tend to pack them in.  Sometimes I am sweating and touching the sweaty person next to me, which is generally less than ideal.  She also gave me a little back massage when I was stretching.  That was neat.  

In the end, I rated my class 5 stars.  Parking is a nightmare but the class was excellent and the studio is fancy and I feel very rich when I take class there.  

 

ClassPass 30 Day Challenge

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Okay, so I am cheating a little bit.  This is technically not my first month with ClassPass.  It is my second month, but my first month I was a little shall we say, lack luster with my class attendance.   For those of you who do not know what ClassPass is, it is a service where you pay $100 a month for unlimited fitness classes (maximum 3 times a studio per month). It has a super amazing choice of classes and they are continuing to add new classes every month. ClassPass has everything from Core Power Yoga, Barry's Bootcamp, ballet and bare classes, crossfit, and it even has aerial and trapeze classes!  Now, if you are aren't living in a big city, $100 may seem like a steep price to pay every month. And you would be correct! I am hanging in there as a C-List actress, I have lots of money one month and zero dollars the next. Therefore, it is a bit of commitment and gamble for me but when you live in Los Angeles it is a pretty fair price.  Take for example, my favorite reformers pilates classes- the studio I would love to afford costs $100 for 6 classes a month.  This body is not gonna stay fit taking one and a half classes a week.  Los Angeles is full of ridiculously attractive and fit humans and people pay a pretty penny to keep up their bods.  My point here, while $100 is a bit steep for my penny pincher ways, it is worth it considering you have unlimited classes and some of the best studios in LA.  Plus, working out here is more like a social event. I have had just as many "yoga" girlfriend dates as I have let's go out for happy hour dates. And the very best is when you can combine the two and go for yoga and then go for a margarita.  The two totally cancel each other out, right?

 

Now on to the challenge.  I decided for the month of May I would work out every day and cut out wine completely.  Just kidding, I could never cut out wine completely.  But my challenge IS to use my classpass at least 6 times a week.  Now, life gets busy occationally so working out 6 times a week is  not gonna be easy.  But challenges are challenging for a reason!  I am also going to try to take classes that I wouldn't normally gravitate towards, such as cycling (awful) or Barry's Bootcamp (death).  I tend to gravitate to the barre and pilates classes but again, this is a challenge!  

 

Every day...or...every other day...I plan to journal about my experiences.  How I liked the studio, teacher, work out.  This is completely my individual opinion and no one is paying me to say good stuff (but, I am open to that).  I feel like this journal will keep my accountable for my actions and actually make me get my lazy popcorn eating butt off the couch and get my $100 a month worth. 

Tomorrow, April 27th I begin my 30 day workout challenge.  Let the sweating commence.