A new year brings new opportunities, so it’s only fitting that I kicked 2018 off with Athleta’s #UpForAnything challenge.
All too often I find that people are so stuck in their comfort zones that they refuse to try anything new in fear they won’t like it. And why is this? Humans are generally creatures of habit. The majority of us stick to a similar routine day after day, going through the motions that determine what time we get up, the food we ingest, the workouts we try, the places we go, the entertainment we consume, and the people we spend our time with. For the most part, establishing a routine is incredibly important to maintaining a healthy, balanced lifestyle. However in some cases this very same routine can become restricting.
Stepping out of your comfort zone is crucial to growth, whether this be in your relationship, fitness regimen, career, or day to day habits. When we consistently stick with what we know there’s no opportunity to develop a new perspective, and in return, no chance to further learn.
So when Athleta challenged me to step out of my own comfort zone and be #UpForAnything with a workout I’ve never tried, I was very excited. I also loved that they let me nominate my friend Gillian (who you may recognize from my Girlboss Squad series) to join the challenge with me!
In preparation of our workout, Athleta sent over everything we needed to sweat in style.
If you missed my unboxing post on Insta, here’s what they sent:
All In Bra in White
Up For Anything Tight in Exotic Fuchsia
Essence Tie Back Tank in Constellation Blue and White
I have to say the #UpForAnything Tight and All In Bra are both amazing! The combination of high rise and light compression (on the tights) helped ensure that I could be focused on the workout and not constantly pulling at my clothes. The bra is SO cute and since it’s made from the same Sculptek technology as the pants, provides just the right amount of coverage + compression.
Now that I had my outfit all that was left was picking the right workout.
Most of you know yoga is my primary form of exercise. Occasionally I’ll go for a spin class at Soul Cycle or Flywheel and I’ll throw in the random barre or dance class. I’ve even taken a few Pilates classes but stuck with studios that didn’t have a reputation for being too challenging.
This brings me to the one studio on my list that I had been “meaning to try” for the past two years but never seemed to get around to…
Dubbed one of the hardest workout classes in NYC, SLT (which stands for Strengthen, Lengthen, Tone) offers up a type of intensity that you won’t find anywhere else. Here’s a little blurb from POPSUGAR Fitness that I believe sums up the class quite nicely:
“If cardio, strength training, and Pilates had a baby, it would be SLT. It’s a total-body, 50-minute workout offering a heart-pumping, muscle-quivering experience. Often described as ‘Pilates on steroids,’ the workout is performed slowly to activate the slow-twitch muscle fibers, leading to long, lean, toned results.” ~ SLT’s CEO Amanda Freeman.
Gillian and I signed up for a weekend class at SLT’s Cobble Hill location and here’s what I thought…
In short, all the reviews were right. Put me on a yoga mat and I feel like a graceful swan. Put me on a megaformer and suddenly I’m more like an awkward duck. The super slow movements combined with isometric holds was crazy intense! I shook, I sweat… and the consistent pikes and lunges made me discover muscles I didn’t even know existed.
It’s been 5 days since Gillian and I took the class and my abs are still pretty sore. Yes, it was that effective and I highly recommend it to anyone looking to really challenge themselves. I don’t care how fit you are. SLT is going to kick your ass.
Since I found so many of the moves to be super complimentary to my regular yoga practice I want to make a point to go back. If you’re in the city and want be #UpForAnything let me know! We can go be awkward ducks together. 😉
In the meantime, stay tuned for more studio reviews and new workouts to come. Athleta’s challenge has me totally inspired to continue stepping out of my comfort zone and incorporate workouts I haven’t dared to try!
Maybe a boxing class will be next…
This post is sponsored by Athleta. As always, all opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands I care about! (All photos by Falcon Griffith Photography)