This past Saturday, I went to the Be Well Philly Boot Camp that was put on by the folks over at the Philadelphia Magazine’s wellness blog, Be Well Philly (which, in my opinion, is an awesome blog with a ton of helpful, funny, and interesting information!)
The tickets were $25, which I thought were TOTALLY worth it! I seriously had an awesome time. The earlier you bought the tickets the better, since some of the sessions that took place in the exercise studios required advance sign up. Other workout sessions were outside under a huge tent with a nicely padded type of mobile flooring. There was a stage with chairs and a separate classroom for cooking demos and nutrition talks.
I arrived around 9:30, walking from my Center City apartment with my sister, Jess, over to the new Drexel Rec Center. We checked in, signed our waivers, got a bag from United Healthcare to put our swag into, and headed upstairs to the gymnasium area where all of the vendor tables were set up. I had already examined the schedule and determined that I wanted to do like 4 of the 40 minute workout sessions. Crazy? Maybe. If you look at the schedule at the link above, you’ll see that there were also nutritionists, cooking demos, sessions with doctors, and all types of other informational sessions. I just really like to work out.
We headed right to the food table to get some yogurt, Kind granola, a mini muffin from Pure Fare, some fruit, and water. My sister and I ate outside on the steps while waiting for the first session we wanted to attend to begin. The first session was from 10:00-10:40, and Jess and I set our mats up under the tent near the middle for Pilates with Christina from Ploome, a Pilates/dance studio in Northern Liberties. Christina was fun, and the class was surprisingly difficult. My core is significantly stronger than it used to be, but still not strong enough to master all of those moves! I don’t have a ton of experience with traditional Pilates, but recognized most of the moves from all of the other classes that I take/have taken over the years. I would totally take another class with Christina. It was challenging and fun, and Christina definitely knows how to command your attention!
We weren’t scheduled for anything at 11:00 since we wanted to check out the vendors, including the Philadelphia Runner running analysis and shoe advice and the running clinic booth as well, that provided stretches and exercises to help injured runners. While my sister waited in the running clinic line, I jumped on a treadmill where a guy watched me run. I was told that my left knee turns in when I run, which causes my left foot to kick out to the side and not straight back. He said it is due to tightness or weakness in my left hip and told me to do weighted lunges, stretches, squats, etc in order to help balance them out. He also advised me to get stability shoes also which will help support my arches.
Around this time, it was lunch time. All of the food was included in the $25 ticket price, so we grabbed a box lunch and another water (I think I had like 6 bottles in total). The lunch was from Harvest, in University City. Jess got a box with a turkey sandwich, and I picked up a tuna sandwich. We cut them in half and shared. It came with apple slices and a little cup of couscous salad. I should have taken a picture, because it was seriously delicious. Most of the items on the menu are fewer than 500 calories, and the menu changes seasonally. I really enjoyed the lunch and am planning on going out to try the actual restaurant also!
Next thing we knew, 12:00 rolled around. We were scheduled for WonderTrek Bootcamp with Holly Waters. (Here is a review of this version of the class at that Holly teaches at Sweat Fitness reviewed by Jenna Bergen over at Be Well Philly.) We started by taking a short out and back run up an incline through Drexel’s campus – about 2 blocks total. We then did nonstop exercises, cardio, abs, lunges, speed skaters, frog jumps, burpees, pushups, etc sandwiched in between several more runs. One of the runs was shuffling up and down the incline. It was very fast paced and challenging, which I loved! She was very hardcore and wouldn’t let you slack off (even with like 50 people taking the class), yet stayed very motivating and positive.
At 1:00, I was signed up for Pure Barre. I have been to the studio previously, so I knew what the class was about and what to expect. It’s a barre based class that is a tough lower body workout! You start with some ab work, move into some weight work for arms, and then get started on thigh and seat work. You work 3 different exercises for thighs and 2 for seat (on each side). We ended with some more ab work and stretching. In between arms, thighs, and seat, you also do some light stretches. We did mostly mat based work due to a lack of bar space, but believe me – your legs are BURNING during the various segments in this class.
Jess didn’t register early enough to sign up for these classes, so she went to a hip hop dance class with Ploome, which she said was really fun. I was signed up for Lithe Method at 2:00, and even though she wasn’t signed up – there were no shows, so she was able to come take the class with me. I am a client at Lithe, so I already knew I love the classes there.
This workout is very different than anything else I’ve ever taken. It’s called Cardio-Cheer-Sculpting® (CCS).
Lithe classes use bands hanging from the ceiling, the mat, the barre and other props for a variety of cardio and sculpting classes. Each class is different, which always keeps you guessing. This particular class started with a cardio cheer sequence and moved into some lunge work, ab work, and arm work. Then, we repeated the cardio sequence and did the other side, ending with the cheer sequence. We certainly worked up a sweat and class flew by. It was instructed by Melissa, who was super motivating, peppy, and great at describing the moves.
Needless to say, after the Lithe class was over, I was ready to go home and shower! I had a super successful workout day! I didn’t make it to the cooking demos or nutrition talks, but the Be Well Philly Blog has some recaps and recipes!
I cannot wait until next year. I wish they did this twice a year!!