Lithe Passport. 61 days. 32 classes. My trip has already begun.
What you need: Just yourself.
Props: 3 or 5 pound weights and a blue ball.
Clothing Considerations: Whatever you’re comfortable in.
Sweat Factor: You’ll look like you were sitting front row at a Gallagher show. (Yeah, I pulled out Gallagher. Times are tough in the sweat factor section these days!)
I feel like I went to bed a few nights ago and woke up with autumn upon me. When I left for work, there was such a chill in the air, that I considered running back upstairs to grab a scarf. While taking Walk Star yesterday, I couldn’t believe all the leaves littering the ground.
And although summer’s over, and fall is a harbinger of frigid temperatures to come, I have to admit, I love it. Coming from Texas, we don’t have much of a fall or spring. We go from really hot to pretty cold (seriously), and there’s never much time in between, so I really enjoy Philly’s 4 seasons.
And for my past 3 years here, I always tell myself that I’m going to get into the fall spirit, but somehow it always seems to pass me by before I get the chance. So this fall I’m making a list and sticking to it!
1. Carve pumpkins – something I’m absolutely terrible at, but love to do. (Every time I do this, I say I’m going to bake something delicious with all those pumpkin guts – a pie or some pumpkiny spicy cupcakes. And I don’t know why I say this because I don’t bake and have no clue how to make any of the above. Perhaps this year, I’ll just aim for toasting the seeds!)
2. Apple picking! (Another activity that spurs a desire to bake, but my oven has yet to see the likes of an apple pie.)
3. I want to go to an outdoor festival, walk around in a cozy hoodie, ride a ferris wheel, drink warm cider and eat funnel cake.
4. Make chili! Texas-style chili is no joke and I’m bringing it to Philadelphia this year!
My list continues with things like mulled wine (I love that dangerous stuff!) and soups and stews and tons of other fall related food stuffs--because that’s just how my mind works--but I’ve noticed that in the northeast something else is more fall than pumpkins and apples.
Skinny jeans and Uggs.
The weather drops below 70 degrees, and women everywhere are pulling those bad boys out of the mothballs with the quickness. It’s the same in Dallas with hats and scarves. People are so excited to wear beanies and don their Burberry neck gear that the whole town looks like it’s in the midst of a blizzard when it’s sunny and 68 degrees!
I have to say, I don’t own Uggs. Not because I’m too cool or because I hate them, but because I just never got any. But, I DO get down with some skinny jeans and boots as my go-to fall uniform. And this year, after taking more Skinny Jeans classes than I can count, I’m ready for the trend!
Skinny Jeans is a Lithe staple that’s been around for a long time. It’s a strenuous class which includes the reliable series which make up the foundation of the Method. After 20 minutes of ab work using the weights on the mat, Skinny Jeans spends the remaining 40 minutes at the barre. That means you will be pouring sweat and doing every single leg series you’ve ever done in any Lithe class. Ever.
You’ll be folded over, doing seat work. You’ll be doing Lithe's signature sequence lunges, sumos, curtsies, and the list goes on and on. And just when you think your leg is going to give out from underneath you, you get to do the other side! It’s a killer. But like with everything else Lithe, it works! Throw this into your rotation and you’ll be ready for fall in no time.
So, I may have to be realistic with myself. I may not get to all of those things on my list. The most fall I get might be going to Starbucks for a Pumpkin Spice latte, or ordering pumpkin beer somewhere. But at least I’ll feel good in my skinny jeans and boots (and maybe Uggs, if I can’t resist).
Step Rally ( aka, Step Really??)
What you need: Gloves!
Props: Step (like the kind from step aerobics classes); Higher Power band system.
Clothing Considerations: Cropped pants or shorts, so you don’t get tangled or slip on the step.
Sweat Factor: Go straight home. Talk to no one. Take a shower.
I know full well that I am probably one of only five R. Kelly fans at Lithe Method. His reputation precedes him, so I won’t subject you to two Kelz videos in a row this week, but I must make note that the entire time I was in this class “Step in the Name of Love” was in my head.
Step Rally is certainly another class that will get you in shape for the tight jeans and leggings of fall. It’s not your mom’s step aerobic class to be absolutely sure. There is no grapevining left or right. Although I kinda wish we could wear Reeboks and tube socks.
The Step Rally I took with Melissa was a) nonstop and b) two parts cardio, with an intense sculpting sesh sandwiched in between. This class gets going from the second it begins. You grab onto the blue bands and do a long series of jumping up and down off the step, running over it like you’re walking on hot coals, doing jumping jacks onto it and much more.
The moment you think you might pass out, you take it down a notch and bring your seat to the box. Still holding onto the bands, you do ab and quad-busting moves, while trying to get your heart rate under control.
As soon as you think your tummy can take no more, you’re back on your feet to finish the class with more grueling cardio. Jane Fonda would have a tough time keeping up, but you’ll walk out feeling like you burned some serious calories – which is good because I really do plan on drinking a ton of pumpkin lattes!
Next Up? Higher Power and Sleeveless!
See you in class!
Images of Lithe Instructor Liz Galbally via Dom.