Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post, but I did get the chance to try Core Fitness classes at no cost. I was not compensated for my time and opinions are my own.
After running my first marathon back in November, I was ready for a change. I didn’t feel physically terrible after that race (although, I did feel physically terrible during that race…which you can read about in my race recap) but I knew my body still needed a chance to recover. After about four days of absolutely nothing – AKA my pre-Thanksgiving hibernation – I eased back into some body weight circuits, core work, and gentle movement like long walks with Wrigley and romps at the dog park.
I realized that as much as I love running, it definitely leads to some imbalances. My flexibility during this training block went out the window. I didn’t feel as strong or explosive even on shorter runs. And I did notice a little extra lethargic feeling on rest days that seemed tougher to snap out of. So when Pilates of Kansas City approached me with an offer to try their Core Fitness classes, I knew it would be a good opportunity to rebalance and recover!
Although they are first and foremost a pilates studio, they also offer some really diverse (and FUN!) cross training classes. You can find anything from a high intensity spin class or TRX strength training class to a more restorative yoga flow or pilates mat class. After trying most of their classes, it became clear that spinning is where it’s at for me. I had taken spin classes at a few other places, mostly when I was living in St. Louis before moving back to Kansas City. Since that time I had tried to find a location or instructor who could replicate that experience. Some came close, but I wasn’t sold.
BUT….the new Reformed Ride class at PKC is totally different. I liked that you’re on the bike and back off again in just 35 minutes. That’s long enough to break a good sweat, get my HR up, get my legs pumping, but I never get bored or catch myself glancing at the clock wondering, “OK, how much longer until class is over?”
OK, I kind of take that back. Sometimes I do glance at the clock but it’s more like, “Courtney (instructor), for the love of all things good, how much longer until this sprint is over?!!”
The other aspect of Reformed Ride that was totally new to me were the pilates arm springs they’ve fitted to the front of each bike. If you’ve tried pilates before you know what these look like but I was a total newbie. They’re basically a heavily coiled spring with handles attached, so the longer they stretch, the heavier the resistance becomes. At the same time, they bounce and move and shake constantly so you’re always challenged to hold them steady. The first few times I picked them up I felt awkward, like I’d never been able to get them to stop shaking. Turns out, that was just my cue to really focus on stabilizing through my core and being really mindful in the moment. No distractions in Reformed Ride!
Overall, these Core Fitness classes have helped me work back up to my usual activity level and I think my body is thanking me for it. In working with runners, I often hear about folks who try to jump right back into high mileage or high impact workouts and end up either burnt out or injured (or worst case scenario: both). I had a lot of fun and met some new faces in the Kansas City area, too. It’s always fun to see who else is out there celebrating all the fun ways there are to move!
If you’re in the KC area and feel curious about checking out Pilates of Kansas City, here are a few specials they’re currently offering to give you a chance to try:
- 1st class is free – AKA, super low commitment! Try it, see if you like, and if it’s not for you it’s no big deal!
- Try 3 Core Fitness classes for $25 (or check out the pilates side of the studio with a separate or combination deal, available online)
- New Year Special: 5 Core Fitness classes for $50 – this one won’t last very long, but is one of the best deals to make the most out of Core Fitness classes!
The studio space is big enough to offer a lot of variety, but the classes are never very big. I liked that the instructors were open, friendly, and after popping in just a couple of times they knew me by name and I started to feel a sense of community. Each instructor brings her own personality to the classes, which is another way to prevent boredom from too much routine. The playlists are upbeat and fun, the environment is supportive, and the studio is always clean and spotless. What more could I really ask for, right?