Ever take a class for the very first time where your only thoughts are “This is awesome. What’s next?”
I’m guessing no. At least for me, it usually takes at least one or two tries to realize I love a workout. As much as I absolutely adore Core Fusion Cardio now and make it a point to get there at least once a week, the very first time I tried it, I was in a state of shock the entire time. That is the type of class that gets better once you know exactly what to expect.
Exhale Spa’s newest offering in the Core Fusion family, on the other hand, was unbelievably awesome from the very beginning. I have found a new love in Core Fusion Boot Camp.
The name is misleading – this is no boot camp in the way we think of it. I actually wonder what a better name would be, but I have yet to think of anything aside from the accurate yet silly “Core Fusion Fusion.” This is because the hour consists of, well, a fusion of Core Fusion Yoga, Core Fusion Sport and Core Fusion Cardio. Oh, and did I mention the 15-minute abdominal curl section?
While this class might seem like three separate classes haphazardly thrown together, it actually feels seamless. After a dynamic stretching warm-up, class begins with the yoga portion. The flow is fast-paced, and incorporates one heavy weight to add an extra -strength push. I love working muscle groups in tandem, and the arm exercises combined with the thigh-burning chair pose adds a unique challenge to the already-challenging yoga.
The next portion of class resembles Core Fusion Sport, using a special weighted medicine ball with handles called a Core Ball. Holding the core ball, we do my favorite exercise in this class – the jump-back – a six-part series that involves holding the ball, squatting and jumping back into a plank. The most demanding part of this class, in my opinion, are the push-ups performed with one hand resting on top of the ball. Certain teachers will only have 10 ball push-ups per set. Others will have up to 20.
The final section (before the curl) is borrowed from my favorite exhale offering, Core Fusion Cardio. Holding a set of lighter weights, we performed a punching series and a gluteal/tricep series, ending with a whopping 64 mountain climbers.
And then it was time for the curl. The famous Core Fusion abdominal curl normally takes about five grueling minutes. In Boot Camp, it takes 15. Rest assured, the sections are broken up well, with mini-breaks between. The 15 minutes speed by.
While the class is generally formulaic, the teacher can really make a difference. If you don’t like it the first time, I encourage you to try it again with a different teacher.
What I loved about Core Fusion Boot Camp, aside from truly enjoying each exercise, was the fact that I was very sweaty and clearly working hard – but I was never out of breath. My heart was beating fast, but it was not racing. I felt like I was being pushed but not uncomfortable. It was a steady yet difficult hour – one I could not wait to get back to again. Because at the end of the hour, my earlier thought: “This is awesome. What’s next?” was replaced with: “This was awesome. I need more.”
Dori Manela is a writer, content manager and social media consultant. Raised in Queens, Dori now lives in Manhattan, taking as many exercise classes in NYC as possible in search of the perfect workout. She started Dori's Shiny Blog in November 2007. As her passion for fitness grew, DSB turned into a health & fitness blog. With the help of her favorite social networking site Twitter, Dori has connected with other bloggers, boutique fitness studios, companies and readers to share her love of working out.