4 Workout Classes in Downtown Charleston

4 Workout Classes in Downtown Charleston That You Have To Experience

If you hate the gym, these classes are for you.

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The gym can be many things, but most of the words that come to peoples mind when asked about the gym are not exactly pleasant ones. It can be intimidating if you are just starting out and don't know how to use machines or weights. I can not tell you how long it took me to gather the courage to even step foot in the squat rack section. I was clueless about weight lifting, and I didn't want to embarrass myself in front of the extremely fit guys and girls who seemingly owned the area.

It also can be awkward to run into your peers or people you have been trying to avoid around campus. Take it from me, you can't hide very well behind a leg press machine. But most of all, it can be boring. For example, Monday: treadmill warm up and leg workout, Tuesday treadmill warmup and arm workout, Wednesday... well, you get it. So after a friend convinced me to attend what was my very first exercise class, my perspective on working out completely shifted. Having a fun, upbeat instructor who tells you what to do takes away a lot of stress, allowing you to just enjoy the workout.

Also, most classes incorporate phenomenal music playlists that are tailored to each section of the workout. And lastly, there is something very empowering about working out with a group of people. All of the participants motivate each other to complete the workout. Also, all of the studios I mention are in a walking distance of campus, making early morning sessions easier to attend. I encourage you to consider taking one of the classes so that you can have a blast while doing something to benefit yourself.

1. CHS Revolution: REV Ride

Let me begin by saying this cycling class is addictive and my favorite workout class in Charleston so far. I have gone back many times for the exciting atmosphere and amazing music remixes that make you feel like you're dancing your way through the spin session. The first time I went here I was nervous about the whole stationary bike situation. However, an instructor helped me set the bike for my height and arm length. One even stopped her workout momentarily to help me get my foot locked back in the pedal when it came unlatched during an intense segment. It is the perfect class if you're looking for a challenge and to have legs so sore you have to hobble to class the next day.

2. Pivotal Fitness: RedZone

When first signing up for a RedZone class one Sunday with a friend, we did not know what we were getting ourselves into. We clicked the "reserve" button for a 6am class the following day, completely underestimating how intense their HIIT circuit would actually be for an early Monday morning workout. It was one of the most challenging group classes that I've done, but we got through it and felt amazing afterwards. Beginning at one of the three sections, you cycle through weights, short sprint sessions, and rowing machines. You can attend this class even if you feel as though you have no idea what you're doing. The instructor is very attentive and makes sure everyone gets the help they need to make the workout effective. I would recommend this class if you're looking for a fun challenge.

3. Charleston Power Yoga: Hot Hip Hop Happy Hour

If you think that yoga can only be for the most serene of people or that it's a requirement to listen to nature sounds while holding poses for 15 minutes, then think again. This is a fast pace hot yoga class where hip hop remixes are the music of choice and the calm truly doesn't come until after the storm. The quaint studio located on upper King Street is a welcoming and accessible environment. By the end of this class you will have gotten in a good stretch, a good sweat, and some muscle work.

4. Still Soul Studio: Yin Yoga and Meditation

If you're in the mood to become more centered and participate in some more traditional yoga, Still Soul's Yin Yoga and Meditation class is the epitome of stress free. When I walked in to the studio, it was spa-like due to how soft everyone spoke and because it smelled like a mix of lavender and other calming scents. The room the class was held in was very dim, lit only by candles, and the instructor began by telling us how she had just gotten back from a Bali yoga retreat. That's how I knew I was in for the "zen" experience of a lifetime. While we did practice longer pose holds and the upbeat music was replaced with soft bells and chimes, I walked out of the class with my mind feeling more open and like some weight was lifted off of my shoulders. I would recommend this class to help you unwind at the end of a long day and stretch out your sore muscles from the previous class suggestions!

Remember, working out should not be the worst part of your day. You can find a way to exercise that you truly enjoy and want to keep coming back to... maybe it ends up being one of these classes!

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8 Female Fitness YouTubers you Should Know

If you want to gain strength AND look and feel amazing, follow these powerful females!
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Ladies! How many times have you heard that women who lift weights are "too bulky" or "masculine" or "look like a man?" Well.... that's false. If you don't believe me, check out these fitness YouTubers who will tell you themselves!

1) Robin Gallant


Though originally from Canada, Gallant is taking over the world one day at a time. Her videos are filled with content that is not only informative and super helpful but also completely backed by science and research so you have no choice BUT to believe her every word.

Instagram: @robingallantt

Youtube: Robin Gallant

2) Amanda Bucci

Originally a bikini competitor who recently switched over to powerlifting, Bucci shares with her viewers all the ups and downs of competition life: bulking, dieting, effective training tips, and so much more.

Instagram: @amandabuccifit

YouTube: Amanda Bucci

3) Emily Duncan

More commonly known as Em Dunc, Duncan is a young college student who loves the sport of bodybuilding. As a kinesiology major, she uploads videos that are valuable to both new and experienced lifters by discussing topics such as biomechanics, recovery tips, and more.

Instagram: @em_dunc

YouTube: Em Dunc

4) Heidi Somers

Known as buffbunny in the fitness industry, Heidi is a goofy, charming girl from San Antonio, Texas. She posts videos that include full workout routines, meal prep ideas, and fun vlogs.

Instagram: @buffbunny

YouTube: Heidi Somers

5) Megan Gallagher

Gallagher is famously known as megsquats in the industry. She is a strong powerlifter whose videos are filled with her awesome lifts and effective techniques to improve your own strength.

Instagram: @megsquats

YouTube: megsquats

6) Emily Hayden


Emily Hayden is constantly posting motivational videos on her channel. She is all about dedication to the sport and improving you. Through her videos, you will instantly feel motivated to go to the gym and kill your workout.

Instagram: @emilyhaydenfitness

YouTube: Emily Hayden

7) Whitney Simmons

Whitney Simmons, who refers to herself as "Whit," is easily one of the most relatable girls on YouTube. In her videos, she often takes you through her intense workouts, gives details on how to perform each exercise and the number of sets and reps to complete so that you can easily follow along with her!

Instagram: @whitneyysimmons

YouTube: Whitney Simmons

8) Chelsea Karabin

ChelseaLifts is a girl who not only insanely strong but also really cool and chill. Her videos show you all about the world of powerlifting and teach you how to be the strongest you can be.

Instagram: @chelsealifts

YouTube: ChelseaLifts

Cover Image Credit: Google

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The Relaxing Physical Activity For The Person Who Loves Competition

How rock climbing changed my view on what it means to challenge yourself.

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I recently went rock climbing with my friends and walked away excited, proud, and craving more. In high school, I participated in competitive activities like tennis or tryouts to make the band. While I love these activities and don't see them leaving my life anytime soon, rock climbing changed my perspective on what accomplishment can feel like.

In sports, especially when competing in tournaments or for a spot, the fun of the game can be overshadowed by not-too-friendly competitors. It makes sense because everyone is fighting to win and prove that they deserve to be on the team. However, the relationship between everyone becomes more invested in maintaining a position than having fun and creating a family. Don't get me wrong, I love this highly-competitive arena, but rock climbing was the first time I had done something where I did not feel the need to compete with those around me.

One of my best friends coaxed me into going to a place about an hour away from my home. I was nervous to climb in front of others since it was my first time in years, however, my friend assured me it would be fine. It turns out she was 100% correct! We went with two other girls who were both very experienced and belayed us up and down walls. They were extremely supportive, and my best friend and I found ourselves attempting to defeat walls we never would have dreamed of climbing alone.

Climbing can definitely be competitive, but when surrounded by the right people, it gives you a chance to grow. It taught me that my biggest competition is with myself. My nervousness to embarrass myself in front of others was holding me back. When I truly started feeling comfortable, the main competitor was the wall. I found myself feeling like I was on a team that did not need to compete with each other but wanted everyone to succeed at their own rates. It was a great experience to feel fully supported and encouraged without the side order of having to constantly maintain rank.

I would recommend rock climbing to any overly competitive person like myself! It helps you challenge your own boundaries instead of other's and will help you to reflect on what it means to challenge yourself, mind and body, and how you work to overcome obstacles.

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