At XSport, we know the value of fitness routine that offers plenty of variety and challenge. We offer more than traditional workouts, with hopes you’ll try new things.
Still, some beginners aren’t comfortable trying fitness alternatives. So, meet Faith, our XSport blogger. Read her play-by-play of the special classes she’s sampling, starting with AthletiX.
Hello! I’m happy to be testing out a number of programs offered at XSport Fitness clubs. I’ll be reporting my first-hand experiences as someone new to the clubs and the classes.
If you’ve ever wondered what it might be like to be in a small group training class like AthletiX, read on. I’ll give you a thorough peek into our session to help you know what to expect when you try it for yourself.
I’m a middle aged female, mom of three grown kids. I’ve had a desk job for the last 6 years, and only manage a little bit of exercise on my own, mostly dumbbells, yoga and abs. I’d say I’m of average fitness level and average size – softer in the middle, a few pounds over where I’d like to be.
I have some limitations to work around, too. I’m being treated for rheumatoid arthritis, so my joints give me some trouble, especially wrists, hands, knees and ankles. Also I’m not big on cardio, and I do get short-winded at times.
Alright, that’s me. We figure I’m a lot like many of you! Now on to the review.
AthletiX is a conditioning workout—and it’s a challenging one. But it’s still suitable for newbies, because it’s very straightforward. There are no complicated sequences or choreographed moves. This makes it easier to focus on form.
AthletiX reminds me of sports drills, with movements like lifting, pushing, pulling, stepping, running and jumping. It’s done in intervals around a circuit of stations, few minutes working intensely at one station, and a short break before moving on.
There were eight of us in the class I took with trainer Chris James at the Schaumburg club. We were of various ages, experience levels, and fitness levels. I was the only first-timer, and a couple members were experienced and in good shape. For me, seeing people about my age able get through the drills with strength and stamina was inspiring.
Chris started us with simple warm-up of high knees and jumping jacks for 5 – 10 minutes. He described all the exercise stations giving us an overview around the room as we continued to stretch for our warm up.
That wasn’t our only instruction, though. He circulated around the room reminding us of what to do next and checking each of us for form, safety and exertion. He timed everything for us, too. My knee and ankle were a little wobbly, so I took his advice to work with good form at my own pace. It's nice that you have options and modifications for the exercises if necessary.
Chris had set up nine stations for this particular class. They won’t always be the exact same drills in every AthletiX class, but this list of exercises will show you an example of what you might encounter.
The first time around the circuit we worked 3 minutes on, 1 minute rest, until switching to the next station. Again, Chris was clear that form matters more than speed. You’re allowed to slow down, breathe deep, shorten your range of motion, etc. Everyone was able to go at their own pace regardless of fitness level.
Here’s how it went –
Once we made it all the way around, we went around again using half the time for the intervals – 90 seconds working, 30 seconds rest. The pace was quicker since we were more comfortable with the different exercises.
Best parts: Chris encouraged & motivated, but kept an eye on our form. This class FLEW by, it was so action-packed. No getting bored here.
Watch outs: Plyometric exercises are the explosive moves with impact. Ask for modifications if you’re like me and not a happy jumper. Also, I’d wear gloves next time, since the gripping of and the wrist pressure of planks gives me trouble. This was personal experience based on my needs - others may have other things they need to modify or adjust.
After effects: I felt so accomplished! I had sore hamstrings and shoulders 24 hours later. Was expecting worse… surely the warm Hydromassage I was able to try in the spa after my workout helped!
Recommendation: Try it! This isn’t a hard routine to follow or learn. Beginners will get a LOT out of this class. If you’re unfit, I predict it will take several weeks until you can hit each station at a strong intensity with good form and a faster pace. That’s ok! Also, very fit people can push their fitness to the next level.