I’m on a mission to mix up my fitness routine by making the most out of ClassPass and wanted to give you the scoop on some of the new workouts I’m trying and would love to hear about some of your favorites as well. Expect the full rundown on my latest sweat-fests with information on what to expect, what to wear and what you might feel like afterward.
// All photos via Barry’s Bootcamp
The Workout: Barry’s Bootcamp ($30)
Barry’s Bootcamp is a hour-long workout that combines intense bursts of cardio with strength training using weights, resistance bands and bodyweight and calls itself “the best workout in the world” (rumor has it you can burn 1,000 calories a class!). The class alternates between interval runs on a treadmill that mix things up with hills and sprints, and strength training exercises on the floor. During the week Barry’s classes focus on certain body areas: arms + abs, butt + legs (which is what I did), chest, back + abs and hardcore abs, with weekend workouts covering full body exercises.
What To Expect: First off, tread or floor… choose wisely. It seems like most people prefer to start on tread, and I definitely agree – it’s nice to start the class with a burst of cardio to get your heart rate up (and get one of your several tread sections out of the way right away). Once class begins the lights will drop in the studio and you’ll get a dose of the signature red glow and bumping music that the workout is known for. During treadmill sections, your instructor will shout out instructions ranging from speed to incline to different types of running to do (i.e. high knees, butt kicks, side steps) – listen closely! He’ll also give you a heads up on how long that particular exercise will last, which is nice so you can really push yourself right to the final second.
When it comes time to switch to floor, you’ll swap to your assigned floor space (you’ll be on the same number tread + floor area) and grab free weights. The exercises here will vary but you’ll be doing lots of different things with a moderate amount of reps on each. And then it’ll be back to tread once again! Classes tend to vary but expect to do 2-3 treadmill runs and 2-3 floor sections – this makes the class go by really quickly and you’re able to target a lot of different muscles in one class, which is awesome.
Barry’s Bootcamp is definitely an intense workout, but you’re in control of just how hard you push yourself. Expect your instructor to push the class to really go beyond what’s comfortable and take things to the next level because that’s where the change truly happens.
What To Wear: Cropped leggings, a supportive sports bra, running sneakers and a sweat wicking tank. You are going to sweat, a lot. And run, a lot. So be prepared with your fabric choices and make sure your girls have enough support so they’re not bouncing around everywhere. Definitely wear running sneakers vs. training shoes – I always like a little more support in my shoe when I’m running on a treadmill and this was no exception. Bring a water bottle because you’re going to want to stay hydrated during class. Barry’s will have towels right near the entrance to the studio, so be sure to grab one to keep sweat from running in your eyes, especially during the tread portions of class.
Final Verdict: I will fully admit that I was terrified of Barry’s Bootcamp for a long time – it was one of those classes where I was kind of excited, but mostly dreading it being that I loathe treadmill running and I had envisioned a really intense, competitive environment. But I surprised myself and genuinely LOVED my first Barry’s class. The dark lights and loud music create a similar vibe to my beloved Flywheel and the interval-style workout makes the hour long class fly by. I’m not one to typically enjoy lifting weights (cardio is more of my jam) and I really liked alternating between cardio, which I tend to be more comfortable with, and weight training to both tone + burn a ton of calories.
I’m really looking forward to going back to Barry’s and think that this miiiiight be my new “thing” given that Flywheel isn’t in SF at the moment (womp womp). If you’re on the fence about Barry’s or are nervous, just go for it! Although the trainer has suggestions for your speed, incline and weight amounts, you can always adjust based on your fitness and comfort levels. No one will even know! And I promise it’ll be awesome.
And in case you haven’t tried ClassPass yet, it’s amazing. For $99 a month you’re able to take unlimited fitness classes at a huge variety of studios across the country (they’ve been expanding like crazy so if ClassPass isn’t in your city yet, hang tight!), the only big catch is that you can’t visit the same studio more than 3x in one month. It’s a really cost effective way to add variety to your fitness routine without paying the $25 per class you’d spend if you were to do drop in classes. PLUS they just launched a pretty rad iPhone app so you’re able to sign up for classes and view your schedule anywhere, anytime. Sign up and give it a go!