Calling the non-committers, the easily bored, and the treadmill dreaders. I found the perfect workout solution that’ll keep you motivated to sweat. Skeptical? Well, welcome to ClassPass. This once New York-only concept has spread across the country and is most likely in your city. When you join ClassPass, you get unlimited classes to fitness studios in the ClassPass network. The fitness studios range from Pilates to cycling to CrossFit, and the list goes on. In the Minneapolis/St. Paul area right now (my city!), there are over 70 ClassPass studios and growing, so I can only image how many studios are in New York or Chicago. You can take as many classes per month as you’d like (you could take four a day if so inclined), but you can only visit the same studio up to three times per monthly membership cycle. With that many classes, the cost has to be an insane amount, right? Nope. The price ranges from $79 to $99 per month depending on your city. Minneapolis/St. Paul is $79. (Pretty good deal if you think about how the majority of the individual studio’s monthly memberships are over $100). And the membership is month-to-month so no yearlong commitment and long contract!
Still not sure what to expect? Good thing you have a guinea pig. When I heard ClassPass finally hit Minnesota, I quickly signed up for a $10 one-week trial. I went to five different classes in seven days. This is my sweaty experience!
Class: INSANITY! @ The Shed
I started out my ClassPass journey on a Saturday morning at The Shed, a group fitness studio offering everything from spinning to TRX to yoga. Funny story. The Shed was unknowingly two blocks up from apartment. So I was quite surprised when I put the address in my GPS, drove 15 seconds, and ending up parking on my same street. While the location was unexpected, the workout was not. INSANITY! is based off of Shaun T’s well-known INSANITY workout DVD. I did the program three years ago, so I knew the basics but was curious how the virtual workout was going to transfer to a gym. Jaysen (The Shed’s version of Shaun T) did not disappoint. The bodyweight cardio intervals were the same as the DVD (two minute blocks of work with breaks only long enough to gulp in some air), but my performance definitely improved. No doubt I worked harder with an instructor in my face and other people in the room (that I was secretly trying to beat) versus sweating solo in my basement.
Class: Fusion Sculpt @ Fusion Yoga
Bright and early on a Sunday morning, I kindly dragged my boyfriend, also a holder of the ClassPass week-trial, to his first ever yoga class. I got him in the car by saying it was yoga mixed with weights mixed with dance party music mixed with a you’re-coming-with-me-get-in-the-car. The heated class included typical Vinyasa elements along with sculpting moves with free weights, cardio intervals (i.e. lots of burpees), and a killer three-minute long wall sit. At the end of the 60-minute class, we were both dripping and both wanting to come back. I would even go as far as to say it was my favorite yoga class I’ve ever taken.
One downside (or possible upside) of ClassPass is that you end up in fun new areas of the city that you have never been before and thus want to go to the fun new fusion cupcake/brunch restaurant down the block from the studio. We ended/canceled out our yoga experience with a well-deserved red velvet cupcake and a Bloody Mary.
Class: Surge Sculpt @ Surge Cycling
Full-disclosure: my relationship with spin is a rocky one. Some might even call it hatred. So I had no plans of attending any spin classes until a very convincing friend invited me to a Tuesday night workout at Surge Cycling, a studio that happened to be included in my ClassPass. Free over hatred always wins. We started the class in the dark and as we road, the lights flashed from orange to red to purple, and I swear there was a disco ball at one point. The music was fantastic, the instructor was awesome, and we broke out hand weights every other song. My aching arms helped distract me from my burning quads. To cap off the 45-minute class, a woman appeared out of nowhere and handed me a eucalyptus-scented wet towel to wipe the sweat off my face and body. That’s what I call service, and that’s what I call my first enjoyable spin experience.
On Wednesday morning, I headed to a strength class in a warehouse-y looking building in the ‘burbs. I love warehouses (I do CrossFit in one), so I was stoked. In 60 minutes, I was sucking wind hard and touched about every piece of exercise equipment in existence: medicine balls, stability balls, BOSU balls, battle ropes, dumbbells, weight racks, pull-up bars, and a treadmill. The owner of Pellicano, Coach D, is a former professional soccer player who knows her stuff and sufficiently kicked my butt. For example, we did circuits of sprints on the treadmill and explosive leaps on two wobbly BOSU balls. The workout was fast, furious, and I’m officially a fan. I’ll be back.
My ClassPass adventure ended on a high note. Literally. On Thursday night, I found myself suspended from the ceiling in a red ribbon (the official name is a “low hammock”) with my boyfriend hanging next to me. He was the only male in the class at Studio TimeOut and deserves a good sport award. We did a full hour of stretches and familiar yoga poses but never let go of the hammock. Sometimes I was standing on the hammock, sometimes my feet were on the floor, and sometimes my entire body was wrapped up inside the hammock hanging from the ceiling like a red blob. They called this move the cocoon. I call it “The Nap” because I fell asleep for 10 minutes mid-cocooning. The class is supposed to help decompress the spine, release tight muscles, and relax the body, and I would thoroughly agree that all things happened. My body felt energized yet completely stress-free and knot-free. Both me and the boy want to go back. Now, that’s saying a lot.
So, will I be extending my ClassPass membership past the trial week? Yep, already signed-up. I loved the freedom of having 70 studios available to me. This means I can always find a class that fits my schedule, and I can change up my routine whenever I want. Plus, I felt more motivated to workout because new studios and new workouts are exciting. Oh, and I’ve never tried TRX, Barre, or a Pilates reformer before, but after next month I can cross them all off the list!
(Check out ClassPass’s FAQ page to learn if your city offers a one-week trial if you’re not ready to dive into a full month.)
If you love group fitness classes but also love working out home, use our Exercise Library to plan a workout with our 300+ exercises!
Make sure that you subscribe to our newsletter, so that you don’t miss out on all things Get Healthy U.
We’d love to hear what you think of this post, or what you’d like to see on our site. Leave us a comment in the section below.