I’ll admit it— I love working out.
But that hasn’t always been the case. When I was in college, there was a beautiful, brand new wellness center available and I probably went there a total of five times.
Then in law school, I started working out regularly and it improved my life in so many ways: my clothes fit again, I had a great mood post-workout, and I had something to look forward to each day.
More recently, smaller workout gyms or studios, known as “boutique fitness” have been popping up all over the place, and I am here for it.
These studios usually focus on one workout, have smaller class sizes, and provide a fitness experience that is a bit more upscale than the average gym (think free hair ties and cute bathrooms).
I know going to a new studio can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be!
Here’s an overview of different types of boutique fitness studios in our area and what to expect.
Boutique Fitness Studios in the Fargo-Moorhead Area
Indoor cycling is incredibly popular right now.
Cycling studios generally require shoes that clip onto the bike and really help you make efficient use of your power (being able to use leg muscles more when your foot is attached to the pedal). At every cycling studio I have been to, they have had cycling shoes available for use and usually for free.
If it’s your first time, show up a few minutes early so you can have an instructor help you get set up on your bike. If it takes you awhile to clip your shoes in on the bike, know that it’s normal. It took me probably 20 attempts on my first few tries!
Indoor cycling boutique fitness classes are usually taught in a fairly dark room and the music is generally pretty loud. I like this, but some people wear earplugs (most studios have these for you to use).
And I love a cycling class in a dark room because if I’m not feeling especially chatty (introverted person problems!), I can just clip my shoes in and block everything out.
Cycling Studios in Fargo-Moorhead: Cyclebar, Fly Fitness.
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) classes are a great way to get sweaty and get an incredibly efficient workout. HIIT generally alternates between intense and less intense intervals, such as running and/or speed walking, and circuit training.
And I like to wear tennis shoes that I would wear for running in a HIIT class. I am prone to knee pain, so when that’s acting up, I like to get to class a few minutes early to talk to the instructor and ask for modifications.
If you aren’t comfortable with jumping, or any other move, ask for a modification! Know that the instructors want you to succeed, have a good time, and get a good workout in.
HIIT studios in Fargo-Moorhead: Orangetheory, Fly Fitness.
Low impact exercise involves workouts that are effective, but minimize the amount of stress or impact that your joints are under.
Pilates, barre classes, and yoga are three kinds of low impact workouts.
My favorite type of Pilates classes are done on a reformer, which is a frame that has a platform and a moving carriage. You can get a great full-body workout as you use various parts of the machine to work out your arms, legs, and core.
I like to do these classes barefoot, but some people prefer to wear grippy socks. And you can wear anything you want to work out, but I prefer to wear something more form-fitting, such as leggings and a tank top. You will move around quickly on the machine and won’t want to worry about your outfit getting in the way!
Barre classes are another great way to get in a low impact workout. These classes focus on small movements which don’t seem like much at first, but your muscles will be shaking before you know it.
Many barre studios require you to wear grippy socks, and if you don’t have a pair, you can purchase them at the studio. I love purchasing new grippy socks when I take a barre class, because they are great to wear around the house on chilly days!
And most boutique fitness studios that offer yoga will have both heated and non-heated classes.
I love hot yoga, especially during North Dakota winters. But be prepared — hot yoga is intense! The studio can generally get to be over 100 degrees, and you will be completely drenched in sweat. I promise you will feel great after, but drink lots of water, and know that you can leave the room if you do feel lightheaded.
Most yoga studios offer a sculpt class as well, that consists of yoga flows along with strengthening exercises.
You are barefoot for most yoga classes, and will need a yoga mat. Most studios have mats available to rent.
Low Impact studios in Fargo-Moorhead: Solidcore, West Fargo; Solidcore, Fargo, Pure Barre, Fly Fitness, Haute Yogis, Mojo Fit Studios.
There are so many boutique fitness studios in the area— challenge yourself to try something new! You might just find a fun new workout.