Finding a Fitness Routine in Seattle
Holy smokes. It’s been a whirlwind of a month. Where do I even start?!
Well, I now live in Seattle. Say what?! Yep, K. and I shipped our belongings, hopped on a plane and are embarking on a brand new adventure in a totally unfamiliar city. Leggo.
I quit my advertising job in Chicago and recently started a new gig at an agency in downtown Seattle. K. and I terminated our Chicago leases and signed a new lease - together, wowza - in a pretty fab new apartment building in Seattle. K. bought a car! Geee. Can you say, cha-cha-changes?! All good things, I must say :)
I had a weeklong lull in-between the time we landed in Seattle to when I started my new job. Obviously the majority of that time was used to unpack our things and organize the new apartment. But, in an effort to also explore the amazing new city we’ve living in, I thought I’d pop around to different workout studios and get a taste of the Seattle fit life!
For a little context, my Flywheel membership would not carry over from Chicago to Seattle and I had to cancel it [such a bummer]. The silver lining?! It created an excuse to sign up for a month of Classpass to get a feel for the city's various workout studios and, in the process, explore Seattle. win-win.
I figured I’d give a lil debrief of the various studios I visited so far and the classes I took. If you’re new to a city or just looking to experiment with different types of workouts, I’d definitely recommend Classpass. It’s an affordable means to visit a number of different boutique fitness studios. While most studios do offer a free or discounted first time trial, it can get expensive pretty quickly when you’re buying single drop-in classes.
If you’re not familiar with Classpass, it works on a credit based system. They offer 3 plans which each have different credit allotments associated with a fee. They also offer a two week free trial. I’ve used it before in Chicago, so sadly I was not eligible for that promo here in Seattle.
($119) 72 credits: 10 - 21 classes
($59) 33 credits: 4 - 10 classes
($39) 21 credits: 2 - 5 classes
Each workout class you book through Classpass is associated with a certain number of credits. The credit range is based on a number of variables - time of day, popularity of studio or the workout, location, etc. I’d say the classes I booked were all around 10-12 credits. I opted to start with the plan that allowed the highest number of credits and will scale back/cancel next month.
Okay, now onto the week of classes:
Flywheel (method ride); 45 minutes
I’ve taken over 1,000 Flywheel classes. No joke. Up until 2 weeks ago, I was a Chicago member since 2015 and went to class religiously. I was the stereotypical 6AM spinner who just could not get enough of riding a bike [that doesn’t move] in a dark room, bumping to beats and sweating my face off. Cute. What a picture that’ll paint for you.
I was so excited to see Flywheel on Seattle’s Classpass. Yes… something familiar in a completely foreign city.
I walked into the massive South Lake studio [like 10x the size of the Chicago Gold Coast studio] and was pleasantly surprised to see the new Fly bikes! These bikes are designed to provide a smoother, more consistent ride. But, along with a different design, comes a new set-up. For a gal who has taken many Flywheel classes you’d think I’d be able to set up that bike in a snap. Nope. No clue. But luckily a Fly team member was easily able to help me set-up quickly and I could get on with the ride. Class was great - as expected! Bumping beats and a challenging ride. I couldn’t have asked for more.
Pilates Proworks (Pro + Jumpboard); 50 minutes
This class was way out of my comfort zone. But heck, I’m in a new city and I know like 3 people, max. If I embarrass myself it’ll just be in front of a bunch of strangers that I’ll most likely never see again. ha. Basically, I figured just go for it, B.
The studio was small, but pristine and clean. For class we used the pilates pro reformer and a jumpboard attachment designed to allow exercises that can amp up your heart rate during class. Basically you push off the board, simulating a jumping motion like you’re on a trampoline [but laying on your side or back].
My teacher happily took the time before class to explain the flow of the workout and what I’d expect. This was immensely helpful. I highly recommend going early to any studio where you might be unfamiliar with the class. Yes, it’s good to leave time to fill out any paperwork, but it also leaves an opportunity to meet the teacher, get acquainted with the equipment and ask any questions.
Overall, it was a good workout and I’m glad that I pushed myself to try something different. Will I go back? Eh.. I am not sure pilates is the workout for me. I like a lil more beat bumpin' and a lil less zen.
Barry’s Bootcamp (full body, upper focus); 50 minutes
Disclaimer - Barry’s Bootcamp isn’t on Seattle’s Classpass, sorry [it is in other cities tho; Chicago, for example] - but I had to go during my week off, duh. It’s my jam. I used to go Saturday mornings in Chicago and am going to try to make that my routine here as well.
I was so excited to see a Barry’s studio in Seattle. They recently opened in March of this year… probably because they got wind we were moving here. Just jokes.
Everything I love about a workout is bundled up into a Barry’s class. It's fun and hella hard. You choose to either start on the treadmill [interval runs/sprints] or on the floor [weighted exercises]. The trainer simultaneously guides both the treds and floor through the first block of class, then you switch places. You best listen up because with those beats blasting and all that huffin' and puffin’, you need to keep tabs on what the instructor is cueing or you’ll fall behind.
Hands down, I always walk out of Barry’s knowing that I’ve just smashed a great workout and will probably be sore tomorrow.
This studio is also located in a fab section of South Lake Union… kitty corner to a massive Whole Foods. I dig it.
Way, way back in the early beezy days I wrote a post about the opening of the Barry’s studio in Chicago’s River North. For your reading pleasure: b’s bae, barry.
BurnCycle (full body); 45 minutes
I saved the best for last. This place is the ultimate trifecta: a killer workout, teachers with sass & personality, and a gorgeous studio/locker room. It definitely had a Soulcycle vibe, but felt a bit more inclusive. Don’t get me wrong, I love Soulcycle but it can often feel cliquey and judgy. I did not experience any of that here. The teacher was extremely helpful in setting up my bike before class and preparing me for what to expect. She cautioned that it might feel a tad crazy - especially for my first class - so if anything she instructed felt weird or uncomfortable, just peddle in the saddle and enjoy the ride.
Like I mentioned, I am no stranger to spinning, but this class was wayyy different than the kind of spin that I’m used to. Yes, it is beat-based so we cycled to the beat of the music, but we did tons and tons of drills [like sassy drills… body rolls on the bike?! whatttt], we were in third position the majority of the ride and overall, I’d say the beats are quicker which means fast legs, lesser resistance/hills.
During my first class I kinda had a what-the-heck-is-going-on moment… but also, holy-cow-I-love-this. Needless to say … I’ll be back … and might even purchase a class-pack deal at this specific studio. We’ll see!
I still have 15 Classpass credits left this month so if you have suggestions of studios or classes to try, let me know!