SKYLER VALLO

ACTRESS | MODEL | WRITER

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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 27: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

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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 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 6: 30 Day ClassPass Blog

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Sometimes your dog looks up at your with those eyes and they just beg you to take them on a hike. I typically take my dog, Toby, hiking at least twice a week and then to the local dog park twice a week. He is spoiled rotten.  

He has been getting a little neglected this past week with all of the ClassPass action. He doesn't love ClassPass like me.

While I did do 5 classes this week, I decided my pup needed a little TLC and I also wanted to give my elbow one more day of recovery before I hit one of the hardest Pilates spots tomorrow, Pilates Plus Studio City. Lisa is killer, yo!

 

Toby isn't quite sure about the steep incline

Toby isn't quite sure about the steep incline

One of my favorite spots to go hiking is Fryman Canyon, located at the bottom of Laurel Canyon on the Studio City side. While parking can be tricky at the peak hours, there is a small parking lot that you can sometimes snag a space in, or street parking- just carefully read signs. You walk through a ritzy neighborhood at the end (or beginning depending on how you start) and they really don't want any old hiker joe just clogging up their streets with cars.  

This hike is an easy to medium difficulty. My dog likes it because there aren't too many steep steps like there are at Runyon Canyon in Hollywood. He has short legs so I end up having to pick him up there once in a while. A lot of the Fryman Hike is paved, however, a few months ago I found a "secret" way which is mostly all dirt, and then opens to fields and a spectacular view. Most people do not know about this way, I usually only pass one, maybe two other people this way. It's very peaceful, and easy on the joints too. 

 

Empty and Free! That's Tyler, my man. Also, this used to be green. Los Angeles drought!

Empty and Free! That's Tyler, my man. Also, this used to be green. Los Angeles drought!

To find this special way, when you enter (parking lot) way, just look to your left and almost immediately you will see a clearing that leads to a dirt path. This is the steepest incline of the whole hike, it's quite tough and a little slipery but it will really get the heart rate pumping. Then you will come again to the main path. Walk a little longer on this and then look to your left once again and you will find another dirt path. This will take you the detour that I am mostly speaking about.  You won't regret it! 

Eventually you will meet up on the main path, this is where there are some benches and water fountains for humans and dogs. Then we head down the mountain and the rest of the hike is pretty easy peasy. Once you hit the neighborhood- the first house to the right is George Clooneys! Also, I should note- I have seen more "celebs" on this hike than at Runyon Canyon. If you're into that kind of thing.  

 

me and my little goober face

me and my little goober face

Again, I will reiterate, this is not the toughest of all hikes but it's extremely enjoyable without all of the weirdos and showoffs that seem to take over Runyon Canyon. I think the views are spectacular here as well. If you enjoy a more solitary spot then check out Fryman. I have included a snap of the Fitbit so you can see about the distance and level of difficulty of the hike.  

 

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I hadn't ever FitBitted this hike before, and was a little surprised that it was only 2.2 miles. I parked in the parking lot today and sometimes you have to treck a little bit so that is one of the reasons why.  Oh, also, be careful of rattlesnakes! I did not thankfully see one today, but I have seen them before. Just be safe and get the hell out of their way. 

I have a happy pup and it felt great to get outside. Bummed that I did not also make it to a ClassPass today as well but sometimes you just need a little fresh air. 

Day 2: 30 Day ClassPass Challenge

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I look happy to be there, but inside I am dying.

I look happy to be there, but inside I am dying.

I got extremely ambitious with my second day of the challenge and attempted Crossfit. Now, I have tried Crossfit many moons ago and it was an awful experience originally. I also believe that I barfed after that first class about three years ago. The first time, I did not get a lot of explanation about how to do the moves properly and I ended up not being able to work out for about two weeks after.  Obviously, I went to the wrong spot and most crossfit classes are NOT like this.   But, because of this experience I was extremely hesitant to try crossfit.  

Today I decided to try out Crossfit Horsepower Studio City,CA.  This is one of the biggest buildings I have seen for a crossfit place. I often see the poor souls running on the sidewalk and think to myself, thank God I am not doing that right now.  Don't these people know it's 100 degrees outside!  Lunatics. Today, I was going to be one of these crazy people.

I decided that my first class should be the cardio flex class which is described as having a "boot camp approach of group fitness classes with the functional feel of Crossfit. No heavy weights! But no sitting around! Your muscle tone, flexibility, heart and lungs will never forget it!"  There were a lot of exclamations in this description so I was already hesitant. But the no heavy weights thing appealed to me. You might not be able to tell from looking at me, but I'm not the strongest girl who ever lived.  

The instructors name was Jen. She was extremely pretty and also one of the most fit women I had ever laid eyes on. Also she had nice hair. When I walked in she was coaching the class before mine started which looked super intense. Lots of very fit dudes jumping on extremely tall boxes. Ugh, I hate jumping. I really hate jumping. Please don't let there be jumping in my class. Back to Jen, I talked to some cross fitters after class and they pointed out that she is a celebrity trainer on The Biggest Loser, it was Jen Widerstrom.  Neat! By the way, she was extremely open and approachable. She explained proper form to me and also explained how I could do a pull up. I hadn't done a pull up since the second grade.  Jen commanded a strong presence. I want to be her friend.

Obviously, I survived class. But there were some moments that I wanted to keel over and die.  We started out with a 800 meter run, it was only 80 degrees outside so basically it was like winter in LA.  Then we partnered up and tossed medicine balls back and forth really fast! I was extremely nervous about this part because catching a ball has never been my strong suit. Then we did sit ups and passed the balls.  Then we did leg lifts and passed the balls. I was really hoping that there was no more ball tossing after this because I got really lucky and caught it every time! Warm up complete!

Then we got to the good stuff. We began with a 500 meter row. Then we did a 10,9,8 section where each time we did it 10 times then once completed we started over and did it 9 times. You get the picture.  I have included a photo to show the reps. The hardest part was clearly the pull ups. Pull ups! I can't even do one. Luckily, they have these elastic bands you put your foot in and it helps you cheat a lot. But it was still like, the hardest thing I have ever done.

I would like to point out that all of the women in this class were BAD ASS. They were completing every rep so fast! Beating all the dudes. It was really impressive. I mean, I wasn't one of these women but yay, girl power for them!

I talked with some of the other attendees after class and they agreed that this was probably one of the most difficult cardio flex classes and that it was pretty much a regular crossfit class but only slightly less weight.  I am so relieved that other people thought it was hard.  I didn't feel like such a wiener. 

Again, I was dreading this class all morning. But afterwards, and now, I still feel really electric and alive! I was so inspired that I went to the grocery store and bought a chicken that I could eat for lunch! Protein, rarr! I also bought carrots.  I wonder how much weight I lost today after being so healthy?

I think I would take this class again, someday, but I hope Jen is the teacher again so I can work on solidifying our budding friendship. 

I DID IT!

Day 1: 30 day ClassPass Challenge

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classpass

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.