Tag Archives: Workout

Raving about YogaWorks

29 Mar


Every so often, don’t we need to mix things up and make things interesting when it comes to working out? When YogaWorks opened a location in Pasadena, I signed up immediately. Prior to then, I hadn’t found a studio or an instructor since moving to Southern California that inspired me to continue with consistent classes. I was taking Pilates with an instructor on a reformer, but the instructors were always changing, my schedule always conflicting with class times, and the semi-private or private lessons were an added expense in addition to the gym membership dues; so when I received a flyer in the mail advertising a gym that offered a variety of yoga classes, Pilates classes, and more, I headed to the studio with my friend, Ro, and we signed up. After a few months of taking classes at this gym, I have nothing but rave reviews about it. Sonya, who teaches Vinyasa Flow, is one of the best yoga instructors I’ve come across. She inspires me to want to develop my regular yoga practice, which in the last few years became irregular (although I did begin practicing Bikram yoga during this time). Sonya also has such a calm demeanor, soothing voice, and communicates concise instructions that make the hour and a half class fly by. I always look forward to her classes. I was also introduced to TRX, Total body Resistance eXercise, which is a suspension training class that incorporates circuit exercises and rotating through different exercise stations in timed intervals. Demian, who also teaches at Cardio Barre (also Rave worthy, as I have previously mentioned) is also an excellent TRX instructor. Speaking of Cardio Barre instructors, Micki also teaches YogawWorks Cardio Flow, and she is just insane. I have nothing but great things to say about Micki, she is amazing. In my opinion, instructors always make a class or studio worth investing time and money. I’d have to say that the three I’ve mentioned have so far made my decision to join this new studio one of the best moves I’ve made in regards to incorporating new workouts into my routine.

Raving about Cardio Barre

26 Feb


Don’t dancers have some of the best looking bodies on the planet? Cardio Barre is a workout studio that offers classes, which integrates ballet movements, cardio, and weights. We don’t have to be dancers or have any formal dance training to participate in class, but we do have to channel our inner ballerinas. The low impact, high energy, and core-focused movements and the exercises with lots of reps and light weights to 8-counts on the beat of music that plays during class helps us sculpt long leans muscles, burn fat, and tone the body to look like a dancer’s. The class starts out with a warm-up, then to other parts: a ballet section, floor section, cardio section, barre section, weights section, then we’re on our mats or towels for abs, inner/out thighs, glutes and the class ends with a cool down. The hour class flies by since we’re constantly moving and every part of the body is worked. Fortunately, the Cardio Barre in Eagle Rock is 5 minutes away from my office and 15 minutes away from my home, making it easy to find a reason to make a class. After several years of taking exercise classes at Cardio Barre, it hasn’t gotten old or boring for me. The best part of the class; however, are the incredible instructors. My favorites are Demian, Byron, and Micki, who are all always motivating and inspire us get stronger and go beyond our comfort zones while still keeping good form. While each instructor is great, Micki’s classes are definitely the most challenging in my opinion and not to mention her body is amazing, not just it’s appearance but what it can do in terms of strength and flexibility.

Our bodies allow us to do and experience so many great things, it’s only right that we do things that keep us healthy and fit. If Cardio Barre contributes to doing that, it’s something to rave about it my book.

Raving About Bikram Yoga

9 Jan



Have you ever felt like you were swimming, but you weren’t in water? I only really felt that way while in a Bikram yoga class, sweating so profusely that I felt as if I could drown. Initially, this didn’t sound like my cup of tea, especially when I was new to the practice. Bikram yoga is totally different from my other yoga experiences. The amount of sweat flinging around the room, the close proximity to the persons next to me in a packed room, the positions that look almost impossible to get into (or out of), and the instructor pointing out when anyone takes a water break out of turn had me wondering, is this really for me? After completing my first class; however, I felt completely renewed, which led me to keep going back for more. I took a late class tonight with my boyfriend at the Bikram yoga studio in Pasadena on Colorado. This studio is actually undergoing an expansion and face-lift, which I am excited about, but I didn’t want to wait until renovations were complete to attempt to maintain a regular practice there. With a regular practice, I am increasing circulation and flexibility, firming and strengthening muscles, reducing stress, and generally restoring body system to healthy working order. Bikram yoga, also called hot yoga, was founded by Bikram Choudhury and is a system of 26 postures (or asanas) with 2 breathing exercises, one at the beginning and one at the end of class, done in a 105 + degrees room in 90 minutes (Be prepared, my first class I thought was only an hour, and every minute after the 60th was spent staring at the clock, giving it the meanest stink eye). In those 90 minutes; however, I’m not thinking about any of the benefits I mentioned. Actually, I’m not even sure I am thinking about anything at all other than the instructions coming from the yogi telling us to stretch longer, or go deeper, or kick harder. The temperature in the room and intensity of the postures requires complete concentration and focus. My mind is known to wander and think about what’s next on the agenda, but in this class, I am forced to be in the moment and focus on myself. I am not only improving my physical strength, but also my mental strength. This class also makes me appreciative of the smallest things, which could be a gust of air from the door opening. I’m literally praising life itself when the instructor is kind enough to turn on the fan for 2 seconds. It’s a very humbling and amazing experience, one I recommend to every one. As the only way I see fit to properly end this post, I say Namaste.