SKYLER VALLO

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Day 27: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

barre, ClassPass Challenge, Dance, Fitness, pilates, reformer pilatesSkyler ValloComment

I Heart Fitness Xo 

11440 Ventura Blvd, ste, 107, Los Angeles, CA 91604 

 

Reformer Side

Reformer Side

Spring Board side

Spring Board side

I was very curious about what I Heart Fitness XO was all about. It is a very broad name for a fitness place, no? It could very literally mean anything! But then I found out...Half Reformer, Half Barre class you say? Has there ever been a more perfect pairing? 

Side note- it's not actually a lot of barre. When you are on the floor, you are using the springboard for most of your moves. The springboard adds a crazy amount of resistance. It's much more difficult than using handweights.

Carly was my instructor today and she looks like if Malibu Barbie had long perfectly flowing red hair. And of course, it's her natural color. So jeal. She's super sweet and a very understanding instructor. I have taken class for Carly a couple of times and the one vice I have with Carly's class is that she doesn't typically use the reformer machine as much as the other instructors. Today was no exception. We spent a good 40 minutes on the floor. Because I really love reformers pilates, I wish that we used them more- but others may like the floor better so that is just a personal preference. 

My friend, Alexis, whom I was a video vixen with (holla Dierks Bentley!) took class with me today. She posts lots of photos on instragram of her perfect bod so if this class works for her than it should work for almost everyone.

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I need to note that I took the "Basic" level class today. They also have an "Open" class which is the more advanced class. I always try to take the open class, but needed to get into an earlier spot today. Therefore I must judge today's class based on the fact that it was supposed to be easier. I can't let myself forget that! 

Typically, you begin class with a deep leg stretch on the reformer. It felt pretty swell. Carly then instructed us to move to the springboards. We did a lot of yoga moves today! Lot's of downdogs and "yogi abs". We also used the springboard for most of our arm work. It doesn't take long for you to start feeling your triceps burning. Carly said that triceps are the only muscle you can work till exhaustion and they will still function. So, we worked them till exhaustion, of course.

Xo loves mountain climbers. Expect to insert mountain climbers throughout the entire class to keep the heart rate up. Holding planks are also a favorite!

We then moved to the reformer and did more arms! We stood on the back of the reformer and worked triceps and back yet again by using the arm handles. Carly let us know that we could use the hand weights if it got to be too much. They usually give different options for you here. But I am here to work, so let's do this! As I write this review, my upper back between my shoulder blades is QUITE sore. 

 

 

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I love the variety that i heart fitness offers. No class will ever be the same. The instructors teaching styles also vary quite a lot. Some other barre classes can get monotonous so it's refreshing to know that you will never get the same workout twice. I like that you get a little bit of everything here- barre, reformer, and spring broad and it's sure to whip you into shape. 

Day 25: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

Pure Barre, Barre, Group Class, Dance, ClassPass Challenge, FitnessSkyler ValloComment

Pure Barre: Sherman Oaks 

13559 Ventura Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 91423 

www.purebarre.com

 

Doesn't look like a lot. But it's more than enough to make you burn. 

Doesn't look like a lot. But it's more than enough to make you burn. 

Regardless of the 30 Day Challenge, I have to have a Barre class in my life at least once a week. Besides Reformer Pilates, it is by far my favorite way to tone. I have learned to like a lot of different workouts over the past couple of weeks but it also just reinforced that I totally love Barre. Call me a Barre Addict if you must.

The one thing I do not love is that little red stretchy band sitting beneath the red ball. The ball can stay. The ball I do not mind so much. Just don't ask me to throw it in an athletic way. 

Those cords shouldn't even really be called stretchy. They have hardly any give what so ever. In my humble opinion, they are what make Pure Barre difficult. The moves you will do in this class are quite similar to all barre studios, but those bands. DAMN do they add another layer.  

 

Smiling because the band kept popping off my foot not because it's fun. 

Smiling because the band kept popping off my foot not because it's fun. 

Of course we used the bands a lot today. Boy, does it burn by the time you get to the second side. It tingles. OMG my leg might fall off.

 My leg was aching so much that towards the end of the set on the second leg I threw that bungee cord off in an angry, super dramatic way. Seriously, I had to finish the moves without the cord. I couldn't take anymore. My leg was on FIRE. Just call me a quitter I guess. I'm a quitter Mom. 

I have already tackled a bunch of barre classes, and so unfortunitely for Pure Barre I am giving you the super quick run down of class. You start with the Barre march. You move to the floor for push ups, tricep dips, planks, and sit ups. Then you move to the two pounders (or three if you're a beast or something) for arms. Stretch time. Move to the bar for thighs. Place ball between legs. Squat. Up and inch, down an inch. Stretch. Move onto buns of steel. Lots of stretchy cord involved. Do some butt work at the barre then move to the floor which I demonstrate in photo. Abs (they do the weird abs aganist the back of the barre here. don't love this). Abs on mat in center. Back work. Finish off with buns yet again. Whew. Done, over and out. Give me a freshly squeezed $12 juice STAT, I deserve it.  

 

We don't actually face each other in class like this. That would be weird.  

We don't actually face each other in class like this. That would be weird.  

That's my friend Emily, you may remember her from our horrific hot cycle experience.  

Everyone is very friendly at this Studio. There were two people after class who actually WANTED to take my photos. I usually have to painfully ask someone who looks at me like a weirdo who is super into Instagram. The owner, Jamie, is almost always around if she is not teaching, and she is usually in class. She was there today, making us all look bad, of course! The instructor's name is Anna and she's tough. I have taken her class a few times before. She doesn't demonstrate all the moves like some instructors will do, but there is always someone in class you can peep around and stare at if you don't know what's going on (I do it often-sorry peeps!) I like Anna's classes though because I know she isn't going to go easy on us. I'm a glutton for punishment.

I cheated a little and have come to this studio multiple times before my ClassPass Challenge and I will continue to do so. It's my neighborhood barre studio and it feels that way. I like places that feel like home. Maybe I will see you squatting there sometime soon? 

 

Day 22: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

bootcamp, ClassPass Challenge, Fitness, pilates, reformer pilatesSkyler ValloComment

Fitmix Studio  (The Mashup)

601 N La Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036 

http://www.yelp.com/biz/fitmix-studio-los-angeles-3

Located just off Melrose and La Brea

Located just off Melrose and La Brea

 

Yet another Los Angeles hybrid workout- The MashUp at FitMix- features a class of half treadmill and half mega-pilates reformer.

I spent a lot of the week doing shorter workouts (30 minutes); a very tiny part of me was "wanting" to do Barry's Bootcamp, simply for the reason of getting a good ass kicking. I remembered that it was a Holiday weekend and I could drive to West Hollywood with barely any traffic at all. THEN I remembered I had been wanting to try Fitmix since it opened several years ago. 

 

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I was intimidated by the amount of running I would be doing. The thing I like about Barry's Bootcamp is that you trade off every 10-15 minutes from the floor to the treadmill. At Fitmix, you spend 30 minutes on the treadmill and 30 minutes on the reformer. It would be difficult to trade off every 15 minutes with the reformer- so I get why it's done that way. But a full 30 minute run time frightened me. 

And with good reason. It was just as difficult as I was expecting. I spent my Friday evening out with friends, and yes, I drank a little too much. Luckily, I scheduled my workout for 11 am, so I was somewhat recovered by that time. However, not fully recovered. Not running a marathon recovered.

The run was tough. The instructor, Katherine was shouting out some really high numbers to be keeping up with, I'm talking 8,9,10 sprints while having inclines of 4-10. We spent pretty much the whole time doing 90, 60, 30 sprints. During the 90 second sprint we would spend one minute of it on a high incline (8). Then we would get a 30 second rest- let me tell you by the time you get your speed down to a walk it's damn time to run again. During the 60 second sprint we would incline 30 seconds of it at an incline of 4. The 30 second run was all flat, but she expected a speed of 8-10. We did this combo about 7 times. I thought it would never end. 

This was me after the run portion was over. 

Nearly dead.  

Nearly dead.  

The run was about as little fun as a person can have. I think you can tell from the photo how much I had. At least there was a lot of Jay-Z to keep my ears company.  

We then moved to the reformer which I was a little more excited about. We spent the first few mintues with a good leg stretch. We laid on our backs and put the legs in the straps and did a few rounds of circles. This felt so very nice. 

I was a little surprised that we spent the whole time on the reformer working on arms and abs. We did not do one leg exercise besides the stretching. I wondered if this was because our legs were already worked on the treadmill? And by worked, I mean SHREDDED. I wonder if all the instructors focus mainly on arms and abs during the mash up classes. I would have to come back to get a better feel for how all the classes are run.

P.S.-This studio also features Endurance pilates classes. 

One slightly negative thing I have to say- and this is kind of a general statement about pilates places in general. They aren't the most friendly environments. The instructor, held a very challenging and tough class. If this is all you care about, then Fitmix is the spot for you. However, this is not the place to be coddled. We got right into the workout, and it was business the entire time. I wished that Katherine had introduced herself to the new students. I think it's a nice touch that makes first-timers feel welcome. I spoke with Katherine at the end of class and she was really nice! I liked that she wasn't super annoyingly peppy during the class either. That can be a workout buzzkill for me. But again, an introduction at the beginning of class or to the class in general would have been appreciated.

We did a KILLER move on the reformer today. It's called the "Angel" and it's truly anything but angelic. 

 

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When doing the angel you are leaning slightly back with the straps at a fairly heavy weight. When you bring your arms out you also lift your legs at a 45 degree angle. I am fairly advanced at Pilates at this move kicked my booty. It challenges every part of your body and I was wobbly trying to keep my feet in the air. This move should be incorporated into every class and I can't believe this was one of the first times I had done it! 

This studio would be difficult for me to get to on a normal workday with the traffic pattern but if you live in the West Hollywood area I would recommend that you check it out if you are looking for an intense work out. This is not for the faint of heart. I would rank it in the top 5 most difficult classes I have taken thus far. I got my wish- I got the kick ass workout I wanted today. That alcohol is way out of my system after my class at Fitmix! 

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 18: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

pilates, Fitness, ClassPass Challenge, Spin, reformer pilatesSkyler ValloComment

Circuit Pilates

6223 Franklin Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90028

 

Where am I?

Where am I?

I pulled up to Circuit Pilates VERY confused. I could have sworn I had driven by it before? I parked in the small lot and was close to driving away. There was no sign on the building. Only a Real Ryder decal in a window. It kind of looks like a Motorcycle shop, no? A thousand thoughts go through my mind like "ughh there was a lot of traffic getting here and now I'm lost" and "I am going to have to contact ClassPass because Circuit Pilates went out of business!" 

I got out and trepidatiously opened the door to real ryder. There is a cycle class going on. Oh, but then I see a familiar face. Patrick Leslie- one of my favorite instructors at WundaBar Pilates  (oh how I long for the day WundaBar gets put on Classpass). He is the instructor today, and to be honest, the reason I signed up for Circuit Pilates in the first place. Thank God I saw him. I was starting to worry. Real Ryder is Circuit Pilates. Please Circuit Pilates, get a sign. 

 

I walked in on the Cycle class still going

I walked in on the Cycle class still going

Circuit Pilates it a big room that is split into half cycle and half reformer. There are 11 reformers and I am gonna take a wild guess and say there are also 11 bikes.  

 

Reformer Side

Reformer Side

On Saturdays and Sundays I believe they offer a half cycle/half pilates hybrid class. I most likely won't ever be participating in that because cycle is something that I avoid at all costs. Especially after my hot cycle experience. But if this interests you- come here!

Patrick Leslie is by far one of my favorite pilates instructors. I thought that he only taught at WundaBar so when I saw his name on the Circuit Pilates class I signed up a few days in advance because I wanted to snag a spot. He isn't on the schedule too much at Circuit- or if he is- than his classes must fill up quickly because this is the first time I had seen his name on there. He is encouraging and talks your way through the whole class- but not in an annoying, like please shut up and let me concentrate on how badly my core hurts way. He's funny but also knows his shit. I will follow him anywhere.  

All reformers are different. This is like a cross between a megaformer that you would find at Pilates Plus or WundaBar and the basic method found at more Classical Pilates spots. It worked for me.  

Another reason I like Partick- I always feel like a get a full body work out with him. While some instructors are heavy on core or legs- we got a little bit of everything in today.  

 

one of my fav moves

one of my fav moves

I love this fancy move I am doing above. It gets the core REAL good. Your arms start shaking. Your legs get a good stretch too. To me, this move stands for everything I love about pilates. It is working everything at the same time. You put on springs to match how strong you are. Any level can do it and you can tailor it to your individual body. See in the background? There is an older lady getting her pilates on in the same class as me. Point proven- any level can be in the same class together. I hope I am that ambitious at that age!

If you are looking for somewhere super fancy to work out, then try another studio- because this spot is definitely no frills. The floor is concrete and, well, you saw the outside of the building. There are no showers, no fancy soaps, and no locker rooms. There aren't even any cubbies- you have to set your purse on the floor. It kind of looks like there are trash bags stapled to the ceiling. It could use a slight make-over- or a woman's touch. One or the other.

If you don't care about the asthetics of your work-out, but want an excellent pilates class- then this place is for you. It wasn't the prettiest place I ever saw. But I'll be back. LYLAS PATRICK.  

 

Day 17: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

ClassPass Challenge, The Bar Method, Fitness, BarreSkyler ValloComment

The Bar Method-Studio City 

11239 Ventura Blvd, Suite 214, Los Angeles, CA 91604 

 

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Let me begin by saying that this is one of the nicest studios I have ever attended. It is brand new- in fact, it has only been open a couple of months. I used to get my hair zapped off in this exact office space a few months ago and I will tell you they did an incredble job with the reno. They have free coffee and tea available. A cute and cozy little couch area for lounging before or after class. They have free lockers that come with keys that you can hang up inside the workout room. They have sparkling showers, changing areas, free shampoo and soap. They even have hair driers and straighteners (I don't know about sharing a straightener but if you wish it is there for you). Major bonus- LOADS of free parking. Free parking is key to any workout in Los Angeles. If you're paying hundreds in a gym membership you don't want to be paying two dollars for parking every day too. 

 

I'll take the sports bra with the bright pink straps please. Just kidding, I'm poor.  

I'll take the sports bra with the bright pink straps please. Just kidding, I'm poor.  

Skip the Starbucks and grab a free coffee before you go! 

Skip the Starbucks and grab a free coffee before you go! 

I am very glad that I gave this studio a second chance. Not that my first class was BAD it was just...easy. I have tried hundreds of bar studios but Bar Method is one of the last studios in town I visited. I believe you tend to compare everything to your first barre experience (mine was cardio barre so I base everything on that). One of my girlfriends put it like this "Bar Method is a place where too many modely types go to try and not sweat"  

FYI- I did not sweat today.  

One thing I appreciated about today's workout. It was 90% different from my first Bar Method class. Other classes- including Cardio Barre stick very similarly to the same workout every class. It still had the same format- arms first, followed by thigh, then glute, abs, and more glute. But I think every exercise we did varied from the first time I took it.  

One thing that killed today, we did a ton of inner thigh. I am really tight in this area and we hammered that OUT. I feel like every leg exercise we did covered that muscle group. We faced the center of the room and did leg raises about a zillion times. My leg was shaky for sure (I love to shake. This means it's working!) 

Second thing that was very difficult was the pretzel. OMG. I think this is one of their signature moves. I heard slight groans when our instructor, Caroline mentioned it. I love pretzels (eating them obvs) but this puts a whole new meaning on the word. Here I am pretzeling. 

 

Feeling muscles in my thighs I've never felt before. 

Feeling muscles in my thighs I've never felt before. 

The Bar Method- like any other workout has its very devoted followers. I overheard one woman speaking to her fellow classmate "Ugh I am going to Michigan for two weeks but there is NO BAR METHOD. There are other bar studios that TRY to be Bar Method but it's not the same." They have this May special going on right now- it was $100 for unlimited classes. But I think you may have had to say how many classes you could make (say 20) for you to get the special price? I am a little fuzzy on the whole deal. All I know is there were two girls in my class today who were doing like three classes back to back so they could hit their "number". Intense.  

 

The May promotion

The May promotion

Women were crowding this sticker board like it was candy or something. I could barely snap a pic. My class was very crowded today. I counted 19 and I heard them say there was 24 in the 8:30 am class before mine. Legit. Clearly, people believe in this workout. 

Another thing I appreciate about Bar Method- they make it a point to remember your name. They call out your name all throughout class to give you pointers or to correct your form. I'm baffled by how they can remember over 60 people's names a day. I don't know what you pay Caroline but that's enough for a raise right there. By the way- Caroline was an excellent instructor. She was on her correction game and I knew that if I was ever doing anything wrong she was going to spot it. She was like a tiger jumping on prey. 

That brings me to another point- they are sticklers about form here. You will get individual attention and you WILL be doing the moves correctly. 

Everyone at the studio is very friendly- including the other participants. There wasn't a snootiness that I feel at some other studios around town. I felt comfortable there. I also felt wealthy. It's fancy. 

I liked my class today. Not love, just liked. For me personally, it dosen't have enough cardio elements. I like to see little droplets of sweat. To me, sweat signals hard work. I know there are gonna be some die hard Bar Methoders out there who completely disagree with what I'm saying. I realize this works for some bodies, but if you are trying to loose weight- I would probably say you needed to hit somewhere else. If you are looking to tone only- this might be your jam. 

Day 13: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

Fitness, Barre, ClassPass ChallengeSkyler ValloComment

CARDIO BARRE  (advanced)

12350 Riverside Dr, Los Angeles, CA 91607 

 

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Cardio Barre, you were my first love affair with all things barre. This was the very first class I ever tried when I moved to Los Angeles. I was immediatly hooked. I was so enchanted that even after that first Groupon was used up, I bought class packages. That's really a measure of how much I actually liked it. Them classes ain't cheap, yo! 

I have taken classes at both the Studio City and Hollywood locations and both are excellent. They have many of the same instructors. I love Adair, my instructor today. I actually always use my 3 x's a month on her classes soley. She's always peppy, but she's tough. I find I sweat more in her classes. She doesn't give a lot of breaks, and today she gave none. But I love a good challenge. She also has the best music selection. I am not sure who does Cardio Barre's mixes but they are sooooo catchy. They are always up to date on current mixes too. I would love to get a copy because then I might actually have the motivation to go "for a run" at some point. The only thing that could get me to go for a casual run is bad ass music. 

 

Outside of the Studio City location 

Outside of the Studio City location 

 

A very important thing that sets Cardio Barre apart from other barre classes is in the name itself. There is cardio. A lot of it! Sometimes in other barre classes, I barely break a sweat. I typically leave cardio barre with a wet shirt and a soaked hairline. But you also get the toning aspects of it. To me, it's the best of both worlds.  

I also love that they use so many dance terms! I come from a dance background, and I really do feel like I get somewhat of ballet barre workout. Whereas other barre classes sprinkle the actual dance terms in, in cardio barre, it's best to have a dance background of some degree. They will be calling out Arabesque, Attitude, Frappe, Tendu, Coupe- just to name a few. No worries though, if you don't have your ballet dictionary handy you can follow the crowd. My first class at Cardio Barre, years ago, was an advanced class and I was able to keep up just fine after years away from dance.  

Warm up on Releve

Warm up on Releve

One thing that is crazy impressive to me, I always recognize the same faces. Even after years and years of attending, the same women are still there taking class every day. It's difficult to hold an Angelinos fitness attention span for a long period of time, so the fact that these women keep coming back year after year are a testiment that it must work. I was talking to the woman across from me at the barre, and obviously speaking about my love of ClassPass - and she was intrigued. I always see this woman here. But the other woman who was beside me was like "I ONLY TAKE CARDIO BARRE. PERIOD. EVER." It has it's fans. Clearly.

 

Battement

Battement

The lone man  

The lone man  

The room is carpetted which is a little weird. Most barre studios have wood. Also unlike other barre classes, you do not need grippy socks. You do however, need to bring your own towel for the floor exercises. I know what you are thinking- the carpet doesn't smell wonky. Thankfully.  

 

Bring a towel for the floor

Bring a towel for the floor

You spend a majority of the class on your feet doing dancery things and sweating but the last 10 minutes will be spent on the floor doing your ab's and some butt tonight. Thanks girl in the blue getup in front of me for a great demonstration! 

There are some fans of cardio barre that get a little annoyed with their policies. For one, they only offer deals to new clients only. This is why I hadn't taken in years, it got too expensive. While other studios will sometimes offer deals at Christmas time, or every 6 months, this place never does it. Kind of blows. Be kind to your loyal customers Cardio Barre! Also, the routine hasn't changed much in 3 years. I could have taken this very same workout years ago. It's difficult, but there are very minor adjustments to the general class.

Despite all this, I still love Cardio Barre, and will continue to come here. The workout flies by and it makes me feel a little creative too. Check it out to get back to your dancer roots! 

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.