You guys. I am so sore. Like, cannot even move my arms and my inner thighs are slowly realizing they’re going to face the same fate and maybe I’ll have to sit down on a bench while waiting for the subway sore. Shit’s getting real with my muscles, and it’s all thanks to Fhitting Room.
I first read about Fhitting Room on one of the many local health and fitness blogs I follow (there a lot) and thought it sounded right up my alley. I loooooove high intensity interval classes, mainly because they remind me of boxing. For those of you who haven’t had the pleasure of getting your ass kicked during a HIT session, basically you go balls out (to borrow a phrase from dance days) and push it like crazy for as long as the interval lasts, recover briefly, then do it again. I like to think of it like Crossfit’s WODs, but without the pesky weightlifting, which I hated. The focus is on functional movements and utilizing your bodyweight and not dying, basically.
I always get a little hesitant showing up to a new workout, because I never know what to expect. Will they explain what the moves are? Will they laugh at me because I don’t know what I’m doing? Will I become red-faced and flustered based on this belief that everyone is judging me and never want to come back or show my face near the studio again? Luckily, the dude who greeted me before my Sunday session at the Fhitting Room was very approachable while I was filling out my waiver (always a good sign), and promised I “probably wouldn’t die. The people who push too hard their first class are the ones who usually end up having a hard time.” Bad sign: I am usually that person.
I filed into the small room and joined my classmates, who were kind enough to lie to me when I asked how badly I was going to struggle. The class sizes are kept pretty small through virtue of the size of the room, which also appeared to have springy floors. It was awesome. And then it was no longer awesome. I raised my hand to indicate I was a newbie when my instructor Daury asked, and then we were off and jumping jacking away. Fine, cool, I can do this. We did a combination of warm-up exercises I’d run through before in boxing, and then did a few circuits of chest presses, plank rows, squats, and jackknife crunches. Still doing alright, but definitely sweating. Secretly thinking I was going to make it through class without failing miserably.
Then came the tabata workout. I knew enough about tabata to know it was going to suck. Four minutes of burpees, 20 seconds on and 10 seconds off. I decided to completely forget the advice front desk guy shared and went nuts on the first set off burpees. By the end I was actually peeling the lower half of my body off the floor and averaging less than five burpees per 20 seconds. It was embarrassing. And it only got worse.
We ended up doing another circuit, this time with kettlebell swings, plank walkouts with legs strapped into these hanging straps, and hanging crunches. Kettlebells are fine. I’ll do them. I don’t even mind them. Same with hanging crunches. They suck, but I’m physically capable. But dear god, the walkouts. I think I did like two each time, and then the “modification” of an elbow plank with legs in the air for like 10 seconds, stopping to drag in breaths in between each attempt. I was terrible. I started cursing at the station, and then laughing at how terrible I was at it because you seriously can’t do anything else. But I made it through. We did one final blowout of class with jacks and jump squats and pushups and crunches, and then I was done. I had finished. I had survived…kinda. And I absolutely loved it.
I know none of the above sounds like a very convincing argument to take a class at the Fhitting Room, but it was one of the most fun workouts I’ve done in ages. I love getting my ass kicked. The masochist in me—probably developed when I was being yelled at by a tiny black woman during high school dance practice—thrives on the physical exhaustion and struggle to eke out one more rep. It hurt, it was hard, and I loved every minute of it. I cannot recommend Fhitting Room enough, and I cannot wait to use up my second class next weekend. This soreness, though? That I could definitely do without…
What: Fhitting Room
Where: 1166 Lexington Ave. (at 80th St.), New York City
Cost: $35/class, but with the intro offer your second class is free.
Difficulty: Extreme. I mean, the movements are simple enough to pick up and they say the workout can be tailored to any fitness level, but I would not have wanted to show up to this class without a solid foundation in weight lifting and explosive movements.
Soreness: Extreme, although I’m told the second day is really when shit hits the fan.
Worth it: Yes. A million times yes.