I’m excited that I actually it to 10 classes in a month cycle of ClassPass. (So the last class below is part of my February cycle.)
It’s safe to say this is one of my favorite workouts right now. I find megaformer to be a more intense version of pilates or barre. Every class targets multiple muscle groups (core, quads/hips/glutes, shoulders/back/arms, etc) to the point of muscle fatigue. The first few classes can seem overwhelming as they are talking you through all the moves, but the instructors are always great at clarifying or demonstrating moves that are confusing and offering modifications to moves that feel impossible.
If you go: Bring grip socks or purchase a pair at the studio. They provide small towels. The Lincoln Park location has a shower (I have not used it), River North does not.
Mindful Flow 1-2 at Moksha Yoga – Riverwest
This class wasn’t so much flow as it was poses for stretching and strengthening. Which was fine, but not what I expected. But I love the space at Moksha – it’s very warm and inviting, with very spacious practice rooms, and they provide all equipment (mats, blocks, bolsters, straps, blankets) at no charge.
If you go: No need to bring a mat, although of course you can if you prefer. They sell some snacks (bars) as well as some yoga apparel and things like smudge sticks and other products. They have some changing stalls and single-person bathrooms.
Absolute Strength at On Your Mark Coaching & Training – West Loop
We focused on 4 different strength moves – 2 each for upper and lower body, in 8-minute intervals at a time, with a 1-minute plank in-between. I think. I did want a bit more variety in moves, but I felt really strong and I like this studio space.
If you go: The entrance is in the back (not on Monroe). They have one communal changing/locker room and I think that’s where the showers are, and a single-person restroom.
Restorative Yoga at Spa at the JW Marriott Chicago
This ended up being a private class for me as I was the only student to show up. It was a slow class full of stretching, which is what I needed that day. The instructor was very friendly and personable.
If you go: All equipment, including mats, is provided. Enter the JW Marriott lobby, head to the right to find the elevator bank, and take it down to the spa. You have full access to the locker room (there are keypad locks), including showers, cucumber water, ample sink and mirror space, hair dryers, etc, and I think maybe a sauna/stream room? I should have taken advantage.
GO ROW at GO Row
For some reason, I always push myself really hard during classes at Go Row and find myself with little to give during the last set. I’m not sure why. Well, no, I know why, it’s because I feel like everyone else around me is a faster rower and if we’re doing distance-based intervals (instead of time-based), I don’t want to be the last one to finish. Which is silly, because 1) no one else cares and 2) would anyone else really know if I cut a set short if I needed to? Anyway, the classes are intervals of alternating rowing on water rowers and lifting weights or doing body weight exercises. I feel like I also always overestimate the weight I can lift throughout the entire class. So, that is all to say you can get a butt-kicking workout at this place.
If you go: They provide everything you need, including small towels. They have single-person bathrooms, and communal changing/shower/locker rooms for men and women. BYO lock if you want. The cycling and rowing classes recently switched rooms, so rowing is now upstairs, with windows looking out onto North Ave. If you’re self-conscious, pick a rower closer to the door to the studio.
Total Body Strength at CrossTown Fitness – West Loop
A buddy workout date at one of my favorite classes at one of my favorite studios … with one of my favorite trainers, Kailee! Needless to say, this was a highlight workout 🙂 It included a strength move I’ve never done – pulling up kettlebells tied to the end of a rope that was over a chin up bar. I felt pretty badass doing it. During this class, I think we did intervals of 8 different strength moves plus a set on the treadmill.
If you go: The studio’s restroom/changing/shower rooms are all single-person rooms, and it can get crowded right before a workout starts, so I always change into my workout clothes before heading over. They sell snacks (like RX bars and a few other brands), smoothies and prepared meals.
B/X at BRICK Chicago
Normally B/X is a class that leaves me feeling like I gave everything just to keep up, but maybe I’m getting fitter because I didn’t feel like death at the end. For this class we did intervals of cardio/weights at three stations – rowing, stationary bike, trueform treadmills.
If you go: There are communal shower/locker/changing rooms with restrooms, separate for men and women. Lockers are available, BYO lock if you’d like. They provide small towels. They also sell protein shakes/smoothies and I think you can purchase mixes to take home. Keep in mind BRICK is also a CrossFit gym, but the B/X classes have their own room.
Flow at OhmCulture Studio
So, interesting case of worlds colliding. My teacher for this class was a burlesque performer who I don’t know personally but have seen perform. (I didn’t say anything because I know I would feel weird if a stranger approached me while I was at work and called me Kitten Von Purr or something.) BUT, she’s known as a quite flexible performer, so I was curious how class would go. It was mostly stretching and a few challenging poses, and the opportunity to do handstands if we wanted (that’s not in my practice).
If you go: The only way to get up to the studio is up a flight of stairs. They provide mats and all other equipment at no charge. They have a shower, changing rooms and single-person restrooms.
AIR Core at AIR Aerial Fitness – River North
I enjoy the idea of AIR Aerial Fitness, but I will admit that the actual workouts make me a little nervous and uncomfortable, which I why I appreciate the quote above that is on the wall of their waiting area – “Great things never come from comfort zones.” Anywho, I needed a short workout so I could get to a Windy City Blogger Collective event, and AIR Core was only 30 minutes long. But holy moly was it a challenging 30 minutes. Thankfully, we didn’t do a ton of crazy moves in the silks, but we really wailed on our core. I would definitely come back for this workout.
If you go: Workouts are done in bare feet. Be prepared to be upside down at some point during the workout. Also, while the silks look pretty, they can be uncomfortable. Mats and equipment are provided. No showers. The changing rooms are single-person restrooms.
- Have you tried out any new classes or workouts recently?
- Have you tried an aerial class? Yoga or silks or something? Do you find the silks uncomfortable? Do you hate being upside as much as I do? Sometimes I get nauseous if I’m upside down for too long. Even during chair dancing. That does not feel very sexy.
- Do you make workout dates? It’s one of my favorite things. Something extra to look forward to.
- If you use ClassPass, let’s make a workout date!