Checkin’-in: 10 days out of 100

I’m ten days into my 100 days of classes.

The good news: I’ve lost 3 pounds! (Wasn’t even my main goal.) I’m also sleeping better (according to my FitBit I’m averaging 8 hours a night). I feel more energetic and happy. It’s sometimes hard to squeeze in the classes, but mostly I find that I’m using my time more efficiently. That said, I think it’s a pace that I won’t be able to continue after the intial 100 days.

The bad news: I have shin splints. I’m not sure how I got them, but probably it was sprinting in my EVF 360 class because I’m not that used to running fast. Then again, it could be a lot of walking around in my snow boots. Either way, they hurt like an explicative. I’m icing my shin as I write. And from what I can see on-line, there’s not much I can do except avoid running for a while. No Barry’s Bootcamp next week.

Here’s a list of the classes I’ve taken so far (almost all through Class Pass) with a quick overview of my thoughts:

1. Cyc Fitness Indoor Cycling Class with Lauren, non-ClassPass price: $25

Located at the Astor Place David Barton Gym, this was my favorite of all the cycling classes I’ve tried so far. It was a thorough workout, fun music, awesome space, and nice amenities.

2. Gyrotonics at the Living Room SoHo with Paula, non-ClassPass price: $35

Meh. Too much strange equipment for my liking, but probably great for people with injuries, or a day when you feel the need to work on your posture.

3. Barry’s Bootcamp Abs, Chest and Back with Alycia, non-ClassPass price: $34

Not for beginners, this is a super intense workout that includes both cardio and strength. They push you hard, and the instructors do very little explaining, correcting or coddling, and the classes are big. But the space and the music are great; the workout feels very efficient. (Just go at your own pace!)

4. Exhale Spa Power Yoga with Lauren, non-ClassPass price: $26

Very solid yoga class with a fun, engaging instructor. Super posh place. I’d go back, but so far my favorite yoga place in NYC is Upper West Side Yoga and Wellness.

5. Harlem Yoga Studio Family Yoga with Rena, non-ClassPass price: $5 w/coupon for 1st class, then $14

Fun kids class; clean inviting space. I’m going back this Sunday to do adult yoga and paying for my son to go to the drop-off kids yoga.

6. RIP Ride at Revolve with Jonathan, non-ClassPass price: $29 

Basic ride with good music and clip-in shoes ($2 rental). I liked that there were 2 upper body segments and the ride was a full hour. Otherwise, it wasn’t as impressive as places like Peloton, FlyWheel, Monster, and Cyc.

7. EVF 360 at EVF Performance with Farouk, non-ClassPass price: $20 first visit, then $35.

I really love this gym, or box as the regulars probably call it since they do a lot of Cross-Fit. Very positive vibe and personal feeling. The workouts feel intense, efficient, but also safe. One of my all time favs.

8. Headspace On-line Meditation with Andy, price: Free for 10 minute meditations, $8-12/month

I cannot say enough wonderful things about this site. I have wanted to throw my iPod out the window during guided meditations I’ve tried in the past, but this one is phenomenal. I have learned to still my mind and be in the moment for up to 20 minutes at a time so far. One day I will write a full post about this.

9. Flow at Yoga Vida with Zander, non-ClassPass price: $18 (30% discount for students, teachers and seniors)

Faster paced than many open level classes I’ve experienced. I’d say it’s definitely not for beginners. In all fairness though, I was very distracted by the teacher (see post) and my own thoughts during this class. Very nice studio space.

10. Core Fusion Barre at Exhale Spa with Kevin (on UES), non-ClassPass price: $38

I plan to do more research on these Barre classes. It was definitely hard, but very different than high-intensity workouts like EVF or Barry’s Bootcamp that are designed to efficiently burn fat and grow muscle. This class felt more like Jane Fonda meets ballet and Pilates. There was a burn, but not a lot of sweat. I’m not sold on the method, but I enjoyed showering there, using the sauna, and wearing the complimentary robe and flip-flops even though I was surrounded by Uptown Abbey blue-bloods dabbing their dewey faces with handkerchiefs.

Tonight I’m icing my shins because tomorrow I’m trying out Row-House! And stay-tuned, because I hope to give this blog a bit of a face-lift over the weekend.

Day 2: Gyrotonics at Living Room SoHo

No, that’s not a medieval4991518713_23f0272b20_z torture bed you see. Nor is it a Steampunk contraption. It’s specialized equipment designed by Juliu Horvath, the founder of the Gyrotonic Method.

I had never heard of this until, on a whim, I signed up for a class called First Time Movers in Gyrotonics at Living Room SoHo through ClassPass. I picked it because it was a convenient time, and it claimed to help lengthen and strengthen, and was good for those who move in other modalities. I figured it might be a nice compliment to all the cycling I’ve been doing lately.

The studio itself was lovely, mostly white and soft with vases of fresh flowers and complimentary chocolate truffles on theliving room coffee table. The teacher was equally warm and graceful, walking us through the basics of the Gyrotonic Method. She adjusted dials, strapped our feet to the contraption of pulleys and weights, and had us move our spines into various C curves in all directions. It felt nice, but I’m not sure what the point was. Granted she had a lot of technical and breath work to talk us through, but she never once explained what the real purpose of each movement was. She did say at one point that we were working our hamstrings or our arms, but I wasn’t sure if I was or not. I’m assuming at a regular rather than intro class, I might get a workout that’s similar to Pilates on the Reformer.

In fact the two methods, Gyrotonics and Pilates were both founded by men who were in search of ways to work the body through either illness or injury. Both, (Gyrotonics more so), feel dance-inspired with fluid movements and particular attention to alignment and posture. For more on the similarities and differences of the two methods, click here. Personally, I’m more partial to Pilates. I took many classes both mat and Reformer when I lived in Argentina, and the Reformer is much less complicated than the Gyrotonics equipment seemed. I also didn’t like that so much of the Gyrotonics class was done in a seated position on the bench. For instance, we started with curving our spines back and forth in the same way you do with Cat and Cow in Yoga, but we were sitting on our bottoms, which I think we all do enough of these days.

It was a beautiful studio though with cubbies and coatracks just outside the door, one bathroom (that had a shower, but I don’t think it’s really ever used), complimentary water and snacks, and a cozy couch to rest on. And just because of those yummy truffles, I may go back to try it out one more time.

living room 2