Wednesday, May 22, 2013

QuickFit: The Short But Sweet Workout

So many machines tackle in so little time!
Tabata taught me that quality workouts don’t have to mimic the long, enduring suffer fests of Ironman training. The strength training intensity at Hard Pressed (and its predecessor) showed me how to exhaust my muscles with weight—and a lot of it. But still, my Ironman-affected brain couldn't completely grasp the idea of a workout that was as long as a short pool swim but maybe as intense as the feeling that flows through my body on grueling bike days. That is, until I met QuickFit.

Thanks to a promotion between Lateral Fitness and lululemon, I tried QuickFit last week. It was a break away from my desk, it was the featured class of the week, it was free with a lululemon code and it was taught by Lateral’s co-owner Erik Marthaler. Erik had already kicked my butt once—the first 15 minutes of his Recruit class are no joke—so I figured I couldn’t go wrong with another one of his workouts. And if I didn’t like it (Me not like a workout? Not in Chicago.), it was only 30 minutes wasted.

What I got was 30 quality minutes of cardio and strength training that flew by so quickly it felt like 15. I was sweating. I was exhausting my muscles. I was moving my body more than I had in the last two weeks (which was why a 30-minute routine couldn’t have been more perfect as I bounced back from a back injury). I was basically getting personal training, or what I thought a training session would entail, without breaking my bank (it’s those small classes and exclusivity Lateral Fitness prides itself on, I tell ya). Oh yeah, and I was using weight machines that I usually shy away from at the gym or hadn’t touched since swim season 15 years ago (whoa!).

QuickFit alternates between reps of pushing and pulling weights and cardio drills. It’s like riding a roller coaster. Your heart rate spikes during 30 seconds of jumping jacks, power jacks and mountain climbers. Then it recovers while you’re pushing through 30 seconds on the chest press, lat pulldown and leg curl machines. You get a quick 10 seconds to move between machines and drills, which you’re ready to skip at the start (we get it: you want to work every one of those 30 minutes) but realize after a round of squat jump you need that breather.

After one round of the circuit Erik’s designed for the day, you run through it again, shooting for more reps or heavier weights, and trying not to cheat yourself out of those results that brought you there in the first place. OK, maybe that’s my reasoning for pushing through the second round when my legs started shaking and my shoulders burned from the shoulder presses, but it worked. I finished and felt like I had been through an hour’s worth of pain in far less time—and unlike a strength workout I vowed to never return to (a complete waste of time in my book), this cardio-strength combo was effective. There was the good-sore feeling the next day, the vain instance where I spotted some muscle definition, and the ah-ha moment that this injury-recovering girl’s range of motion, without pain, was improving (and even if I needed a modifier, Erik was always checking in with me). Win-win.

Whoever says you need an hour of daily exercise hasn’t met QuickFit. Those hours I used to spend on the elliptical are a joke compared to these 30 minutes!

Try it: QuickFit is offered Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 1:15 to 1:45 p.m. at Lateral Fitness, 314 W. Superior, Chicago. 

Photo courtesy of Lateral Fitness.

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...