Ever since I can remember, exercise for me has been about large movements. Long runs, steep hills, intense stair climbs…if it was intense, I was doing it. Of course, this meant with time, I was always overdoing it, always tired and almost always in pain.
On one of my many beach runs I had parked by this adorable workout studio tucked into the Marina. I saw a super fit instructor yelling at a group of people in a pink room full of contraptions that honestly, before I knew what they were, looked like medieval torture devices used to stretch people to death. I kept hearing people talk about how great the workout was, and when a deal came up to try a few classes, I decided to jump onboard. I cannot even begin to tell you how much that decision changed the way I look at fitness forever.
So a little more about this place…The Studio MDR is a boutique Pilates studio with two locations. One is in Marina Del Rey a few short blocks from the water on Washington Boulevard. The second one is on the other side of Lincoln going east on Washington and is considered in Culver City.
The outside of the studio is wall to wall window, with the logo imprinted over the building, so it is not too difficult to find. The inside of the studio…what can I say? It is adorable! It is very girly and unique, filled with the latest in trendy workout gear, water bottles and toe socks (socks you wear when using the Pilates reformers). The room is saturated in bright pink, white and silver hues. They keep it super clean and smelling fresh, which is a definite bonus. The staff are very friendly and attentive. The music is always great…upbeat and fun.
So you see, this Pilates class is not exactly traditional. This machine is what we call a Megaformer. Basically, that is a 10 foot long, 250 pound Pilates machine on steroids. So if you think Pilates classes are easy, this class will make you and ANYONE you know, think again. The workout targets many different smaller muscles from various angles. It is designed to develop core strength and muscular endurance, burning calories and working smaller muscles to fatigue with higher repetitions. Each movement lasts about 60 seconds and there are typically close to 60 movements in a class. This is a high energy class atmosphere so prepare to work and feel the burn…for days after…SERIOUSLY!!
I would recommend this workout only to people with at least a baseline level of fitness. I don’t think a fitness newbie would be quite ready for this. I would say to start out with a regular Pilates class with the regular machines first a few times.
I now see how a slower, small muscle focused workout can produce even greater results than some of the longer, faster more intense workouts. I still get very sweaty and out of breath taking this class, but don’t experience the joint and muscle pain I often do from long runs. It is a great way to switch it up and get different physical and mental results.
There is a bathroom and water fountain, but no showers. There is metered parking in front and free street parking all along Glencoe, just be sure to read the signs!
THE STUDIO MDR EAST
13357 W. Washington Boulevard
Venice, CA 90066