Without a doubt, my best workouts come from group fitness classes. I feel so much more motivated to push my limits when I have an instructor to guide me and peers to sweat (and struggle) with. Lucky for me, one of the many perks of living in NYC is that there is a plethora of different classes available, from yoga to HIIT and everything in between. In the two years I’ve lived here, I’ve only managed to try out a handful of them, but I can honestly say I’ve enjoyed every experience so far. With that in mind, I’d like to share my top 3 favorite classes here in NYC.
Spinning is hands down my favorite cardio workout. And possibly my favorite workout, period. I’ve been to several cycling studios, including SoulCycle, Cyc, and Swerve, and enjoyed them all, but I’d like to give a special shoutout to Flywheel, where I had my latest and greatest spin experience. Flywheel is one of those companies that tracks your performance and gives you a score, which is projected on a leadership board (if you choose to opt in) at the front of the class. Now, I’m not a very competitive person so my score isn’t on that board, but I’m watching that board and I’m trying to keep up with and surpass those scores. This system doesn’t work for everyone, but I personally find it to be a great motivator.
I didn’t know barre class existed until my friend invited me to a class with her late last year. Ever since that first class at Physique 57, I’ve been hooked. As a former dancer of about 13 years, I expected the class to be… almost easy. I was sure in for a surprise. I would say barre is more similar to pilates than ballet, and the tiny, super-controlled movements are extremely challenging if you’re not used to them. Every class leaves me sore the next day, usually in my abs and/or buttocks. I also enjoy the classes at exhale, and I’m currently enrolled in 5 weeks of unlimited classes at Pure Barre, which has a studio right near my apartment in Brooklyn. I love my local studio, but so far my most fun and challenging classes have been at Physique 57.
East End Row
I’ve only taken one class at East End Row so far, but I have to mention it because I absolutely loved it. I had never rowed before, so I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I naively expected an intense upper body workout with some heavy quad work. What I got instead was an intense full body workout that incorporated both cardio and weight training. If you’re looking for a fun and well-rounded workout definitely give rowing a shot!
So many classes, so little time!
Up next on my list of classes to try are Barry’s Bootcamp and iLoveKickboxing. I’ve done kickboxing before so I already know that I like it, but I’ve never tried a bootcamp, which sounds intimidating. However, I’ve heard good things about both. What are your favorite group workouts? I would love to hear your recommendations in the comments below!