How to Decide Which Group Fitness Class Is Right For You

Msnazzy

I am often asked about which fitness studios in Dallas I like the most, how I choose where to workout, and all of the details in between. I am here to break it down.

Let me start with that I am from Topeka, Kansas and moved to Dallas about 3 years ago. When I lived in Kansas I was not as involved or nearly as dedicated to fitness as I have been since moving to Dallas. One of the biggest reasons was the lack of group fitness options – I spent time running, occasionally hitting up the recreational center on campus (by occasionally, I mean once), and attending classes at Jazzercise.

Not to be dramatic, but don’t sleep on Jazzercise. I think that was the first group fitness class I ever attended and the first time I saw noticeable changes in my physical and mental health. I am forever grateful for experience of attending those classes with my mom and younger sister.

Anyway, when I moved to Dallas, I knew I loved running, and I knew that I loved the endorphins from exercise. I was much more of someone who liked to workout/run by myself and I honestly didn’t know how I would like group fitness classes in the Dallas scene. I was intimated, anxious, and I honestly didn’t think that I would fit in.

Fast forward to now, where I will go to any class by myself and consciously choose to be in the front row. I have found that the energy from others in the room has only fueled my passion for showing up to group classes.

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One of the most vital things I have learned is to not knock it until I have tried it. It is so easy to not show up to a class if you have already convinced yourself that you are not going to enjoy it. You are not going to find the classes that you love until you have tried ones that you may not like as much. It is really all about trial and error.

That being said, let’s say that you tried a cycle class and did not like something about the format, facility, the instructor – whatever it was. In a city like Dallas, there are so many cycle studios to try, and coming from an avid cycler, you’re absolutely not going to like them all. If you try one and realize it isn’t for you, then pick a new studio (or instructor) and try again. You’ve got options.

Obviously, a key component to group fitness classes is the instructor. From personal experience, a good or bad instructor can make or break one’s overall thought of the studio. It may come from my deep-rooted attachment issues, but if I had a dollar for every instructor that has made me fall even further in love with myself and fitness, I would be a rich bitch. That said, I have also had instructors that have infuriated me so much I have the studio in literal tears.

It is important to figure out and understand what motivates you and what type of teaching is going to make you excited to roll out of bed at 5am. It is also important to understand what does the exact opposite, so that you can make choices that will empower you. Exercise should not feel like a chore, and if it does, then you should maybe look at why you are exercising. Is it for you? Or for someone else? Is it to meet some bullshit standard set by society?

That is not to say that there are not going to be days that you pick coffee on the couch instead of lacing up your shoes. Honor what you need, what feels good to you, and what your body needs in that moment. There have been so many times where I have signed up for a class and then I wake up and I KNOW the best thing for my body is to rest, so I choose rest.

Among all else, in today’s climate, it is extremely important to me to know what safety precautions and protocols are being taken by the studio or gym. I want to know that the studios are following the CDC guidelines to ensure the safety of their employees and clients. I hope that all businesses can survive, but not at the expense of any other human’s well-being.

So, what does comfortable look like? Shit, I have no idea. It makes me feel more comfortable when studios have and continue to actively share what they are doing to limit spread while creating a safe environment. The consistent reminders after class for everyone to put masks back on when going to the common areas. One handy trick if you are unsure about a studio is read recent reviews and see if anyone has taken note of the precautions or honestly, even reach out to the studio and ask.

Coming from a city that did not have such a developed fitness scene, I was also unaware of what a fitness class would cost. I mean, there is no way around it, this shit is expensive. However, I have noticed that a lot of studios either offer a free or discounted first time class.

The power among this community is like something I have never had the opportunity to experience before. It is the connections with instructors, gym owners, and random friends from the internet that has blown me away. I have formed so many friendships through the Instagram fitness world and the random conversations with the person working out next to me.

As I have immersed myself into this fitness community, and I have grown to crave the energy that can be created between strangers in a dark room. It really is something that is hard to explain, but once you feel it, I promise you are going to be hooked.

P.S. feel free to hit me up if you ever need someone to go to a class with you.

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A Dallas Fitness Influencer trying to crush the stigma around living alcohol-free, putting your mental health first, and letting go of anything that doesn't serve you.

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