class review: bfx studio burn + flow
guys. okay. i’m really excited about today’s class reviews for a few reasons. first, i can’t say that i ever thought i would find myself actually enjoying the type of class that i’m about to rave about, but i’ve become obsessed. seriously, i’m going to miss not having this as an option now that i’m no longer living in new york! second [and most importantly] my good friend melissa is the instructor and she’s pretty much the sh*t [i promise i’ll try to be as unbiased as possible].
so, bfx studio is a fairly new studio in new york with a location in chelsea and an even newer location in thefinancial district. it’s a luxury gym with options for personal training sessions and a variety of group classes, but today, we’re specifically going to talk about their new burn + flow class, exclusively taught by my friend melissa!
i can best describe this class as a boot camp style class with a twist. you start off with a little warm up and then get right to it, performing eight sets of different exercises for 50 minutes, getting a full body workout and sweating like crazy. within the eight sets, the exercises range anywhere from tabatas to plyometrics… a lot of plyometrics…. to simple toning and weight training. i’m talking squats, push-ups, ab bikes, tuck jumps, bicep curls… you should probably just show up to class prepared for anything. melissa bumps the music, which i personally love during a fitness class, because it keeps me going when things start getting difficult.
for the last 10 minutes of class, you cool down with a little yoga flow to stretch, relax and let your body settle after a really intense workout. [this is definitely my favorite part of class.]
i have to mention that melissa is an amazing instructor. she knows what she’s talking about and gets you working hard right away. most importantly, she keeps you motivated without being annoying about it. she’s energetic, positive, friendly, super approachable and obviously loves what she does… and she’s like… really pretty [sorry, i just can’t resist the opportunity to reference mean girls when it’s presented to me].
it’s also worth noting that bfx’s fi.di location is brand new and gorgeous, which i’m not ashamed to admit really helps to keep me motivated during an intense workout.
so, if you haven’t already guessed which way this was going…
5/5 bananas for bfx burn + flow!
like I mentioned before, melissa is currently the only instructor teaching the burn + flow class, but their signature class, bfx burn, is also worth checking out if you can’t fit burn + flow into your schedule. they are also currently on classpass, so if that’s your kinda thing, definitely look into it!
class review: 305 fitness
if you listen to nothing else that I say, do yourself a favor and just try this one thing: take a class at 305 fitness... a$ap. i went to my first class back in january with a group of girlfriends and was instantly hooked… obviously… i mean just look at the stairs leading down to the studio…
305 fitness is essentially zumba meets south beach nightclub. we’re talking fun dance moves taught by upbeat, positive instructors, a live dj, flashing lights and lots, i mean lots, of bass. seriously, i think my favorite thing about these classes is how loud they bump the music.
oh, and did i mention that you’ll sweat your ass off?
everything about the studio and the classes is amazing. they really have channeled the whole south beach vibe and there are positive messages and cool art plastered just about everywhere to keep you focused and motivated, even when the class becomes challenging. it’s mostly cardio, but they alternate between arm and leg days to work on toning up, as well. latoya and sadie are my favorite instructors… they basically both define #badbitchalert.
The verdict? …. I mean… DUH…
5/5 bananas for 305 fitness!
if you like dancing, loud music, positive energy and are looking for a serious sweat session, grab your friends and run to 305 fitness immediately [the cost is worth it].
class review: peloton cycle
let me just start this post, a review of a spinning studio, by being 100% honest with you: i absolutely hate spinning. like, seriously, hate it like i hate no other form of working out. my friends and i still joke about the first time i ever tried soulcycle because i was just that miserable. i don’t know what it is, but i just can’t seem to get down with spinning.
now, with that being said, since my first trip to soulcycle, i have, oh, i don’t know, come to terms with the idea of spinning in the sense that a] i sweat a sh*t load, b] it’s challenging [both physically and mentally, at least for myself] and c] it’s a good way to switch my workout routine up here and there. i’ve pushed myself to attend a handful of spin classes at various studios and i’m at a point where i can handle it in small doses.
about a month or so ago, my roommate invited me to check out a beyoncé ride with her at peloton cycle here in nw york. as you know from my first class review, i’ll sign up for any workout that is beyoncé themed and i figured that even though i’m not into spinning, the music would get me through the ride.
… and i was correct! the instructor, cody, was energetic, funny and kept it positive and light-hearted… and obviously the music was ***flawless. i even enjoyed myself enough to book another class the following week [it was also free soooo]. same instructor only this time nicki minaj themed. again, really fun and definitely a challenge.
i do need to mention that i did take one other class… a 7am-er with a different instructor last week… and let’s just say, even though the theme was jay-z vs. kanye… i still hated it. i’ll go ahead and behonest here: the instructor’s style was not doing it for me. she gave really confusing instructions, made strange noises and by the end of the class i was literally just making sh*t up and doing my own thing. after that class, i think it’s safe to say that it will be a few months before I’m setting foot in a spin class again.
so, what’s the verdict?
3/5 bananas for peloton cycle!
here’s the thing with peloton: if spinning is your thing, definitely get to a class. your first class is full price [$30] but when you check-in they will credit your account for one free ride, meaning that your first two classes are only $15 each. if you feel the way i do about spinning, make sure you take a class with a theme you’ll enjoy [and take a class with cody, you will love him].
another thing to note: the space is amazing and has a community feel. it’s super modern and fun, with a lounge, smoothie bar and really nice, clean locker rooms with all the amenities you could ask for [although the line for the showers after class is ridiculous].
finally, peloton could have earned a 4th banana [even from me] if they bumped the music a little louder during class… i like my music effing loud.
what class should i be heading to next?! i’ll be in l.a. next weekend celebrating my birthday and will definitely be trying out some classes there… any recommendations? share them in the comments below!
image courtesy of peloton
class review: banana skirt productions
lately, i’ve been making an effort to switch up my workout routine as much as possible. i’ve never been much of a gym rat and need variety in order to stay motivated. one thing that’s great about living in new york is that there is no shortage of gyms and studios offering soooo many different kinds of classes. i’ve been class hopping a lot lately and i thought i would start doing some class review posts so that you guys can get a glimpse of what some of these places are like. hopefully, i’ll be able to do this for other cities i travel to, so that the reviews won’t be strictly for the city i live in, as i know i have readers all over the place!
last week, a friend of mine invited me to check out a cardio dance class with her at banana skirt productions and it was so. much. fun. banana skirt offers a few different types of classes, but most importantly, they are most popular for the artist specific classes where an instructor teaches you the actual dance moves from the videos of some of your favorite songs, which is what we were dying to try. obviously we decided to attend a beyoncé class… because duh.
we went to the 7/11 class because this has kind of been my 2015 theme song. i definitely own the KALE sweatshirt she wears in the video and just felt like this was the class i had to take. if you’re not familiar with this video, get familiar with it asap. it was a full class of people of all different skill levels [oh, i should mention that i’m a terrible dancer and still had a great time] and the instructor really broke down the steps and made it accessible for everyone… and she was also really encouraging and made it a point to make everyone feel comfortable, since clearly we can’t all move like beyoncé [although it’s really fun to try]. they also will post a clip from your class to their instagram [you can check my class out here] which is super fun to see after the fact. so, what’s the verdict?
4/5 bananas for banana skirt productions!
i’m giving banana skirt 4/5 bananas only because i didn’t sweat as much as i would typically like to [it’s not really the nature of a class like this, since you’re stopping and learning the actual dance moves] but the $20 price point [so cheap for new york!], the atmosphere and the overall experience will definitely be bringing me back soon!
what other studios should i check out?!
wine pairing class with synesthesia
today i want to talk about putting the whole “balance” thing that i always talk about into practice. i mean, this blog is called “bananas + bellinis” for a reason. monday funday is definitely a thing, and it’s a thing i like to take part in on occasion. this week, monday funday came in the form of an intro to wine pairings class with synesthesia at bamboo 52 in new york. we weren’t sure what to expect, but had a great time learning all about the different types of wine and how to properly taste them, eating cheese and of course, getting a little tipsy.
there were six of us in the class and there was an abundant amount of wine, cheese, bread and fruit for all of us. amanda, the instructor and owner of synesthesia, was enthusiastic, warm and extremely well-versed in all things wine. she made everything easy to understand, made sure everyone felt included and kept things really fun. i plan on taking all of the things i learned from her and someday hosting amazing dinner parties with perfectly paired food and wine. the main things i took away from the class were:
- don’t be cheap [this can be applied to any aspect of life, but we’re talking wine right now]
- wines from coastal areas will be lighter, fruitier wines
- when you taste wine, swishing it around in your mouth allows it to hit all the areas of your tongue so that you can make sure you are tasting all of the flavors
- sauvignon blanc is the best cooking wine
- cabernet sauvignon can go with any of the cheeses
- pinot noir pairs well with pizza [clearly this was the most important thing for me to know about]
so, if you need something to do on a cold monday night this winter and you want to put the whole balance thing to work, definitely think about taking one of these classes. you’ll have fun, learn about alcohol, and get drunk. you can thank me later.
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