London was super quiet on the Saturday morning I ventured down to try out GymClass in Holland Park with my fiance Mo. We booked in for the Full Body Signature class taken by Helle Hammonds herself. I was excited, but, I’m not gonna lie – I was also frikking nervous…. I’ve been seeing some pretty hardcore looking instagrams, so I entered with trepidation. Here’s what went down…
We arrived and were greeted by Helle on the reception desk, she gave us literally the most friendly welcome you can imagine. She quickly explained everything we needed to know, showed us around the studio, where everything is and also recommended a protein shake to order… (I went for a Cocoberry) My nerves were fading already as Helle was just so great at making us feel comfortable – although when you look at her you do know this is going to be a tough 55 minutes… you don’t get a body like hers by taking shortcuts! Workout towels are provided, there is a shower onsite, although it is a small studio so personally to avoid waiting I would choose to go home for a shower, but the place is spotless and lovely – so for you gym shower-phobes out there – you would have no worries here.
Right so the studio is like a playground! There is a bright Orange frame with TRX and all sorts that attach on and off it and at the beginning Helle explained to myself and couple of other girls how to do assisted pull-ups with bands so we were prepared for later on in the class. The other side of the studio has bikes and there are kettle bells and weights all around. It is lovely, clean and all the equipment is excellent. Then we started…. Helle donned a microphone and proceeded to take us seamlessly through what was a super tough but fun and varied class. To break it down it was basically a circuits class, we were split into 2 sections for some of it (ie one half doing bikes and one half on the floor) and then later on we rotated around stations in pairs. It was always very clear what we had to do and some of Helle’s regulars were machines!! We did a bit of everything from being on the bikes, to floor work using your body weight, kettlebells, TRX, assisted pull ups, punch bags and at one stage I did my first legs-up-the-wall-handstand-plank (probably not the official term)! One of the regulars also demonstrated mountain climbers up-the-wall which I really want to be able to do now! At the end, when I had nothing left in me and I thought it was all over Helle sent us for a run around the block. Its not far at all – but I was done in! It felt like that final 1k in a 10k race when you want to go faster and your body will just not listen to your brain!
I LOVED this workout! The energy in the class was great and it was so fun and varied – for someone like me who gets bored very easily this was perfect! I also loved that it is somewhere very man friendly. Mo is a boxing/rugby/crossfit kind of man and so doesn’t always feel comfortable or challenged at some of the classes I have taken him to in the past, but this is definitely as equally challenging for strong fit men as it is for the ladies. I love working out with Mo and he has said that he would definitely return with me so that is a massive win for GymClass in my book, it isn’t easy to cater to men and women equally well so this is a testament to how well these classes are put together and the expertise of the trainers.
I could not have been happier to I have my protein shake waiting for me! ‘Cocoberry’ is definitely recommended – its coconut water, chocolate protein and blueberries. I have never made a shake with coconut water, usually opting for the oat milk or unsweetened almond milk options at home but this was really yummy so is going straight into the repertoire!
I will definitely be returning to GymClass – it is expensive so not sure I can afford to go super regularly but I will definitely enjoy booking in now and again and knowing I’m going to have a completely kick-ass workout. I would advise anyone to have a go – forget being nervous – you never know if you don’t try and my anxiety about it certainly turned out to be unfounded. They have also just launched a ‘Fight Club’ which I am so excited to try soon too!
Find out more: www.gym-class.co.uk
How much? First class is £20 (usually £29) Also 10/20/50 class packages are available.
Where is it? 5 minute walk from Holland Park or Shepherd’s Bush tube station. 168 Holland Park Avenue, London, W11 4UH
Who’s it for? If you are not afraid of getting sweaty and serious about getting fit and want something fun as well as effective then this is your place!