Every time we walk into this studio there’s a sort of “recess mode” that overtakes us. We get a little excited and jittery all at the same time – what games are we going to play? Are we going to beat the other kids? Is there going to be a schoolyard bully out there or is everyone going to get along in joint “love for the game”? The workout itself certainly has an adult playground vibe with a healthy dose of competition peppered in … you know, for flavor. For those of us who love strength training and don’t mind the head to head challenge, it really is a ball. But if fast-paced strength training drills aren’t your jam, you may equate it to a trip to the dentist: necessary, but painful. The cool thing about prepping for a Fhitting Room class? There aren’t just instructor bios, but also videos on each one, so girl, you can get that research on. Please, it’s not that weird, we all know you already stalk these people on insta…
There is a LOT going on in each of these workouts. Sure, it’s all written on the board and explained prior to starting, but you could easily miss a beat here – especially when it comes time to break out into the different partner stations. There are also about a zillion different pieces of equipment that you could potentially encounter in here (bands, kettlebells, rowers, dumbbells, medicine balls, ab mats…..and on and on and on). So, don’t go into cruise control here. This is as much of a test of your listening skills and mental retention as it is a sweaty trek.
Each class starts with you finding your spot on the floor for your first assignment: the warm up. The numbers are on the ceiling and not the floor, and they pack the studio, so being off by too many inches in the wrong direction could mean a kettlebell to the face. Things get going quickly with moves that include jumping jacks, jump squats, or lunges to get that heart rate up. From there, it’s on to about 10 minutes of individual strength work with some type of hand weight. Keeping on theme, it was all kettlebell all the time with overhead presses, curls, rows and weighted toe touches. The majority of the rest of class is dominated by partner work, where you rotate through four to five different stations. For example, while you row 10 meters, your partner will play wall ball with a medicine ball until you’re done, and then you switch. The most dreaded setup in the class? Deadlifts until your partner completes 10 burpees, then switch and switch and switch. You are at each station for about four minutes so that’s a LOT of time where you’re internally praying for your partner to take their time with their own burpees. Your reward is a beautiful dimly lit stretch session, which actually does the trick.
Two instructors … Is that going to be confusing or distracting? All signs point to yes, but there’s something beautiful about the way that Fhitting Room pairs their trainers. Yes, we do mean beautiful because the synchronicity between Dennys and Ben is like an incredible dance. They perfectly timed who was going to speak when, and who was going to demonstrate when, and even their counting was completely in synch. Sooooo: no, deff not awkward in the slightest. In fact, we felt that we received twice the attention for modifications and improvements – um, huge bonus, especially since none of their comments were naggy or intrusive. We did end up leaning our favor more toward Dennys, who was always close by with a pump up or a good job high five. He is a bit of the jokester to Ben’s strong, silent, beautiful male model vibe. But I guess that’s the magic of Fhitting Room: two personalities means that the likelihood of you finding a trainer you think “gets you” is higher.
Their workout structure left more than a few students leaving a little red-faced. We love this kind of challenge, but we overheard at least three regulars complaining about the difficulty on their way out. Guess we aren’t surprised, because they start classes promptly, don’t suffer any fools, and come in hard on each and every single section of the workout. No matter how much you want to hate them, you will end up cracking at least one smile.
A small but mighty mouse of a studio – cute imagery, right? The space itself isn’t huge but the quality of the equipment, locker rooms, check-in desk, and even the merch is quite posh. This is a brand spanking new studio and it shows, because everything is immaculately clean and sleek with that new studio smell. No need to bring your lock or towels here: there are self-locking showers and fun green towels (we simply love a studio that stays on theme!). The locker room shower situation, however, does make us feel a little oh so so scandalous. It’s one room for changing and primping, with several individual shower stalls for both sexes. To be clear, they close with doors not curtains, which is VERY important for that extra layer of privacy. Not a huge deal in our 2017 lives, but definitely makes us rethink our more free or rushed getting ready habits aka sloppy towel fastening or hair drying in our undies. Speaking of, they have all the bobby pins, hair ties, cotton balls, etc. that you likely forgot on your way out the door for the day – they’ve got you, girl.
584 Columbus Ave, New York, NY 10024 Upper West Side HIIT $$$$
Fhitting Room Upper West Side
Upper West Side HIIT, $$$$
584 Columbus Ave, New York, NY 10024
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When we leave the Fhitting Room quivering because our muscles have been put through the ringer, we feel a sense of pride. The workout moved quickly so class flew by, but Lacee and Mark put us through a grueling workout – one worthy of a mid-afternoon nap.
Our workout had four main blocks – warmup, strength, circuit, and the final FHIX. It looked like a tame class when it was written out on the whiteboard, but looks can be deceiving.
The strength series felt like an extended warm up – it was two ab exercises and lunges with kettlebells. The circuit block is when we started to feel the hard work creeping in. There were three moves in each circuit; we did each for one minute before rotating to the next. We did the first three moves twice before swapping to the other circuit, which had three different moves. In this 18 minutes of work, we hit a full body workout: dumbbell rows, dumbbell snatches, rows on the jungle gym straps, ski erg, battle ropes, and abmat sit ups.
The final FHIX was the most misleading part of the workout. It was a partner FHIX, where one person started with kettlebells and had to complete six single arm thrusters on the right and six single arm thrusters on left while their partner did burpees. Once the person doing thrusters finished, we swapped. However, the fact that it was an AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) for six minutes is what did us in – it was an absolute killer.
Lacee and Mark were an energetic duo and we loved their dynamic. We did a little social media stalking (their handles were on the whiteboard) and they seem to workout together when they have some time. We loved watching some of their workout videos.
Lacee and Mark were always canvassing the room to be sure we were going through the workout with proper form. They emphasized form during all of the demos so we knew they were going to be sticklers, which we love btw. They were attentive and encouraging throughout class, and congratulated us when we finished class, which we loved! A lot of the time we get to the end of the class with a sense of relief but we should celebrate our ability, too! We like that Lacee and Mark did that with/for us.
Side note: It isn’t every day that you go to a Fhitting Room in the morning and watch one of your instructors on American Ninja Warrior that same night! It was a real treat to watch Mark compete on a televised episode of American Ninja Warrior – what a badass!
The beauty of the Fhitting Room is that you never know what you’re getting into when you walk in. The structure of the workout is generally the same but if you’re a regular, you’re guaranteed to have varied workouts. Our class with Jess and Carlos was the Fhitting Room on steroids. We did a classic circuit but focused on endurance rather than speed, strength, or reps. Just when you think you’ve had the hardest class you have ever had at the Fhitting Room, they seem to out do themselves.
If there’s little writing on the workout whiteboard when you enter class, that means you’re probably in for a killer endurance workout. The workout we did was called “6 FHIX FRIDAY”, There were only six stations total but we were at each station for four and half minutes! This was a first for us.
The circuit was made up of classic Fhitting Room moves but the duration proved to be a true test of endurance and mental strength. The stations were a mix between cardio and strength moves. We did jungle gym push ups to kettlebell figure 8’s, burpees to abmat sit ups, and kettlebell curl and press to hurdle hops. For our cardio-only stations, we rowed with a goal of 900 – 1,000 meters, got on the ski erg for conventional and cardo skiing (jump lunges with your ski pulldown,) and rode the assault bike coupled with box jumps. In our opinion, the assault bike paired with box jumps was straight up cruel, and that was before we got to the cardio ski erg!
Jess and Carlos took us through the warm up and got right into the demo for the circuit – there wasn’t time for much else. Due to the structure of class, they did a lot of timing, roaming the room to check form, and cheerleading. The longer duration was a struggle and they did their best to keep us going until the end of class.
Jess and Carlos had a great playlist which made a real difference as we pushed through such a challenging workout. Jess was spunky and wasn’t afraid to do the Macarena on top of one of the boxes which definitely made us smile through the pain. She had a ton of energy and was calling people out for doing a great job during class. Carlos was attentive to the class and had great form and technique tips for each exercise. He was genuinely interested in addressing everyone’s injuries and how he could help modify the exercises.
Jess and Carlos made a great team and they got us through a very hard class. We would love to take another class with them in the near future!