CLASS PASS SERIES- CrossFit Elements With A Cardio Kick

You probably wouldn’t ever know it was there if you didn’t a)take a walking tour of the neighborhood and casually stroll by on your way to Brick and Mortar or b) look it up on ClassPass, but located in the back corner of the Edgemar building on Main Street in Venice is CrossFit Santa Monica. It looks boutique-ish, but be warned, your a** is about to get kicked.

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I stumbled upon this place when I was working an event in the area and wanted somewhere to workout around 430pm. Believe it or not, depending on where you are, there are not a lot of open classes last minute near that time…but this one was, and they were doing a class called Cardio-Fit, which is supposed to be more about repetition and less about super heavy weights.

The first thing I have to say about this gym is although it is small, everything is stacked in its place, which is nice. Most of these boutique spots do pride themselves on having the members put away whatever they use after class. Secondly…the men are hot in this class (sorry guys who read this, just being honest). And many of them take their shirts off, so at least you get some eye candy while you are dying on the pull-up bar.

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Most importantly is the workout, and I have to say, this is not for everybody. The workout for our Cardio-fit class consisted of a short warm up and stretch period followed by 5 different exercises. The first (and I cannot remember the exact name for it) was a push press type of movement with a barbell. The second was getting on the rowing machine. The third was box jumps, where you jump and land with both feet on the top of a box that is is a few feet tall, many times. The fourth was wall balls, where you take a ball that is anywhere from 10-20 pounds and squat and throw it up against the wall, then catch it. The fifth movement was a sumo style squat with a kettle bell in your hand. Now here was the catch…this was timed, and the first round started with 42 REPS of each exercise. YES. 42. The second round was 30 and the third round was 18…if you made it there, as this was a timed event, about 35 minutes. In your mind, you think, yea, that is enough time to get throughout the whole thing…yea…no. If you are a seasoned cross fitter, perhaps this is nothing to you, but to me, while I consider myself somewhat of an athlete, I only made it to the first exercise on the sets of 18 reps round. Phew!

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I highly recommend this place to people who enjoy Cross Fit, or just high intense shorter workouts. The people are all super nice and happy to make modifications on exercises if, say you need to kneel during pushups or just step up and down on box jumps because you have a bad knee, etc.

They have bathrooms and a shower. You can park in the Edgemar parking lot and they will validate your car for 2 hours, which is a nice perk, given the area is right by Urth Cafe and gets extremely crowded.

CROSSFIT SANTA MONICA

2433 Main Street

Santa Monica, CA 90405

CLASS PASS SERIES: Revolutionizing Fitness Brick By Brick!!

I consider myself a versatile athlete. I enjoy all different types of workouts. Although I will admit crossfit is not my favorite, I find there are more cross fit gyms nowadays that offer classes that are also cardio and interval weight training combinations. Brick Los Angeles is one of these gyms.

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Brick is located off one of the busiest intersections of Santa Monica Boulevard (near Fairfax) and thankfully they have their own parking lot! Otherwise I might have turned around and left because the parking and traffic in that area is horrific.

This gym is focused on crossfit, but they also have endurance classes, barbell training, muay thai boxing and a class I took called B/X. If you want to try this gym on ClassPass, pretty much the only classes offered are the B/X classes, which is fine with me. These classes are 60 minutes, focusing on a high energy cardio workout with interval weight training. It is similar to a boot camp.

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We started the class with a few laps around the parking lot, which isn’t all that big. I can tell you right now the cardio focus is minimal at this gym…in fact the receptionist who showed me around actually shuddered when I said the word cardio. Your heart will get pumping from the high intensity interval exercises more than anything else.

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After the warm-up, there were 5 different stations. We spent 6 minutes at each one. The first ones were those huge battle ropes and a few sets of burpees. The second station was this Assault bike, which is a spin bike with rower handles, kettle bell swings and a push and press move with dumbbells. The third station were those old school rowers and then a kettle bell squat where you hold the kettle bell to your chest and get up and down on each knee 20 times ( harder than it sounds!). The fourth station was leg lifts with an elastic band tied from weights on the floor to your waist and then thrusters, which is a front squat with a push press with a barbell. The fifth station was a weighted bent over row done on a platform. If you aren’t out of breath from just reading this I don’t know what to tell you…NOT EASY. AT ALL.

This is the kind of workout I would not want to do all the time, but it definitely tests my strength and challenges me because it is not as cardio centric as spin classes or running.

The gym has three rooms. The two bigger rooms are dedicated to crossfit and I assume the kickboxing when it is in session. All the usual crossfit gym equipment is here. There are bathrooms and showers. I am sure if you came often enough you could get to know people, but the only person who spoke to me today other than the instructor was a girl visiting from Texas.

If you are in the area and want your backside handed to you…it’s definitely a worthwhile challenge.

BRICK LOS ANGELES

7811 Santa Monica Blvd.

West Hollywood, CA 90046