Self proclaimed Cardio Junkie Christy Riccardi takes on the topic of whether a hardcore Pilates class can fit the bill for the people who ride high on runner’s endorphins.
If you are like me, working out consists of working up a good sweat. Nothing says a fine workout like really getting the heart rate rockin’ and rollin’. The bigger the pool of sweat on the floor, the better! Whatever it takes to get the burn: Running, cardio machines, Richard Simmons Sweatin’ to the Oldies, Bob Harper’s Bootcamp, jet fuel…take your pick!
An avid runner and Cardio Junkie, I hear the chatter, read the advice columns: CROSS TRAIN! It is important to your training, to your health, to any balanced work out regime to diversify your workout routines. As a Cardio Junkie, I naturally turned to other exercises that make the heart go round. Cycling, boot camp classes, kettlebell drills, a full gambit of cardio crazy. With all the running (and elevated heart rates), I got tired! And around that time, I found Fuse Pilates in DC.
A Cardio Junkie skeptic, I tried my first class, fully prepared to leave with an hour spent stretching and meditating, but not really achieving a quality workout. I started with Tori’s Fuse for Runner’s and convinced a friend to join – just so I had a witness when I was correct that Pilates was no match for the Cardio Junkie. The assumptions quickly unraveled when my friend recognized Tori from another class. He made it clear that our next hour ahead would not only be a workout, it would be a hard one. Sure, sure, says the Cardio Junkie.
As with every Fuse class, we start by picking three body parts. Triceps, lower abs and inner thighs were ordered this day. Phiff, Cardio Junkie thinks. That’s not even a total body anything, let alone a workout!
Fifteen long minutes into this so-called-workout, not only am I sweating (Can we turn up the AC PLEASE?!!), I am now reacquainted with every muscle in the body as I am feeling a burn hotter than fireworks on the 4th of July. This torture (er, workout) continues for another 45 minutes. Sure there was stretching. Sure we did some reflecting (while holding a plank for 2 minutes) but by all measures, this was as hard core as workouts come.
Never one to be wrong, this Cardio Junkie was still not convinced. Sure a shower was in order and I was feeling taller and tighter from the morning routine but seriously, this was nothing like a Zumba class! Nothing!
Until the next day.
It would seem based on the hurts-so-good feeling running through every muscle fiber, that Pilates had, in fact, killed the Cardio Junkie.
Well, maybe not to that extreme but certainly proved itself to be an amazing workout, pools of sweat and heart rates aside. Several months later, I am still hooked and find the Fuse workouts to stack up to any cardio session. Moreover, turns out the workouts are the perfect cross-training compliment to other high-intensity workouts. Shucks, I hate to be wrong, says the Cardio Junkie.
Still not convinced?
Well then I double dog dare ya (that’s really serious) to take Fuse’s version of cardio classes – Jump and Fuse Blast (http://www.fusepilates.com/classes/) and then let’s reevaluate the position of Pilates vs the Cardio Junkie. A masterful combination of all things Pilates put to a beat and a high repetition rhythm, you will get that heart rate up AND work the core…hard core.