This month saw the launch of ClassPass in London, a membership that gives you access to unlimited fitness classes at loads of cool studios, gyms and locations around London. You can pick any classes you like, from yoga, cycling or Pilates to dance, strength training and bootcamp.
I was lucky enough to get a one month trial to test it out and I must say that I’ve fallen in love! I’m such a fan of the gym and am so comfortable with my workout routine that I didn’t really think I’d enjoy ClassPass much, let alone write a blog post about it, but here we are.
Here’s a little about my first week of using ClassPass and some of the fun classes that I’ve attended so far. I’m excited to try out some more around London, as well as returning to a couple of the below too!
A little more about ClassPass
Firstly, I’ve been impressed by the ClassPass website. It’s really modern and user friendly, making booking classes super easy to do. You can search by area, studios, activities, starting times or dates and all the information you need is readily available – how early to arrive, whether there’s shower facilities, what you need to bring with you and all other class details including the instructor’s name and full timetables.
Once you book a class you get a confirmation email, a google calendar invite and the class goes into your ClassPass timetable, where you can also cancel the class from if needed and you can share your timetable with friends, so you literally can’t use the excuse of not going because you forgot 😉 Once you’ve completed your class, you can leave a review on how it went.
You have unlimited amount of classes to book for the month but the one key restraint is that you can’t book more than 3 classes from the same studio/gym per month, so you have to keep mixing things up which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but I’m a woman of routine.
A full membership costs £89 per month and has no commitment, so it’s pretty on par with a decent gym membership (like Fitness First or Virgin) and studio classes.
Now, let’s get to the classes that I’ve sweated my butt off in over the past week…
David Lloyds Orangetheory
I booked in my first ‘Power’ class at David Lloyds Studio in Islington not really knowing anything about it other than it was close to home, so naturally I had no idea what to expect when I showed up at 8am for a Saturday morning class (that’s commitment right there!).
The super friendly staff made me fill out forms with basic information including my age, weight and height, and gave me a heart rate monitor to strap under my chest. Orangetheory is a structured, high-intensity interval training group class with the aim of making you workout in the optimum ‘fat burning’ heart rate zone, or the “orange zone”. Your ideal zones are calculated before the class and your heart rate progress is displayed live as you work out, on screens planted around the high-tech, modern studio.
I was in a group of around 15 people and we were split into two groups. My group focused on interval cardio for the first half, then on more gym-style workouts that I’m used to like burpees, push-ups and jump squats for the second half. What I found most motivating was that whenever I found a spare few seconds, I’d glance up to the screens to find my name and see if I was in the ‘orange zone’ and if I had dropped to the green zone, I’d pick up my pace and push even harder.
At the end of the class I was a sweaty, exhausted mess but my happy endorphins had flooded over me in such a glorious way that I hadn’t felt so good since I first started going to the gym almost a year ago! It was a tough workout but I had a total ball and working out in such a structured way with so much personal attention from the instructor, as well as having others around me going through the same thing, it was all so motivating and pushed me harder than I ever push myself at the gym!
At the end of the class you get an email with a summary of your workout including your heart rate stats, which is pretty cool! Here’s what mine looked like –
The staff and instructor were all so friendly, everyone was chatty and the class itself was really challenging. I walked out of there thinking I would definitely want to sign up but the only drawback is the cost. If I just wanted to do one-off classes it’d set me back £20 per class (cost per class gets cheaper when you buy them in bulk or get an unlimited membership), making the ClassPass offer seem much more enticing.
Zumba – Jubilee Hall Trust, Covent Garden
Ok, I know Zumba aint exactly one of the cool kids. In fact, if Zumba were a person, it would be a middle-aged woman who loves to ‘groove and shake’, but that doesn’t mean it’s not absolutely amazing fun at the same time!
What I love most about Zumba class is that you really leave behind any reservations at the door and just go for it! There is no judgement, no competition, it’s not Pineapple dancing studios down the road, everyone is there to just have a good time and work up a massive sweat. I don’t think a class has ever gone by faster.
I did a 7pm class after work at the Jubilee Hall Trust gym in Covent Garden. I had to arrive 15 minutes early and fill in a quick form before heading straight to the studio to get started and the energetic instructor didn’t waste any time in getting up dancing up a storm (a very uncoordinated one at that).
Definitely a great class for a bit of a laugh and to dance away the stresses of the day.
Tuesday morning, 7:15am, Holborn, it was on!
I prepared by things the night before and double checked that Boom Cycle had showers (they do, phew) and caught a 6:30am tube to arrive 15 minutes early, ready to sign some forms and set up on the bike. They provide towers so you just need to bring yourself and a lot of energy!
Boom cycle pumps out some serious tunes and has a great ‘we’re all in it together’ vibe. I liked that it wasn’t all super fit people only and anyone could get into it. You can also go at your own pace, though with the lights turned low, music pumped up and everyone around you smashing it, it’s pretty motivating to give it your all!
A great way to start a morning and have that smug ‘I’ve already worked out’ feeling for the rest of the day.
If classes aren’t quite your thing, you can also check out my London Gym Membership Guide here.
Disclaimer: ClassPass gave me a month’s free membership to trial. All thoughts are completely my own.