YourZone45 – The Full Lowdown

They say that you need to take time off in between exercising in order to give your body a chance to recover. I have a feeling though, that the experts probably mean a day or two – not a year. :/

Just kidding, but god, the battle is relentless, isn’t it? A little too much food or drink over a long time really builds up, and suddenly you’re thundering down the road, vibrating the manholes and scaring away small mammals. Legs rubbing together, squeaking like a pair of balloons being made into a toy dog.

My new year’s resolution was to move more. I definitely did, but I also ate and drank more. (Well, this blog ain’t called ‘a life of more’ for nothing!). I also hit 31 and my metabolism has taken the opportunity to go through the floor.

Anyway, enough of that. Life rattles on and we all have to find a way to enjoy exercise. For me, team sports suck, but I can’t bear the monotony of the gym. I’m a lazy bitch if I don’t have anyone to motivate me but put me in front of a personal trainer and all I can think about is how much they must be grossed out by my lava-lamp-esque wobble. I guess I’m pretty niche.

SO…. I wanted to tell you about my new favourite thing. YourZone45 classes.

What’s YourZone45?

It’s a cross between a gym and an exercise class, with 45 minute sessions, working every muscle group with about half cardio and half weights. Classes are up to 16 people (although I find the average to be more like 6 to 8), and accompanied by a trainer.

Who’s it good for?

Have you ever headed to the gym, spent 20 minutes on the cross trainer and then gone home, convincing yourself that you’ve ‘been to the gym’? Yeah me too. (Actually, I once ‘went to the gym’ by swiping my membership card and turning back through the turnstiles, straight out the door, but don’t tell anyone, K?)

YourZone45 classes are for anyone who finds it hard to get motivated at the gym, but doesn’t have the budget or the inclination to hire a personal trainer. I mean, who has £50 a session, anyway?

It’s also good for people who find it hard working out alone, but hate big classes where you can get overlooked by the trainer.

How are the classes different?

Based on your age and sex, you’ll get given a target heart rate when you join. Then the really cool thing about these classes is that you wear a heart rate monitor throughout your session, and work within your own personal boundaries to hit a certain percentage of your maximum heart rate.

Each session is a bit different, but for example you may be working to hit 84% of your maximum heart rate for as long as possible, or stay above 80% for most of your session and above 90% for the last minute of each cardio session.

The heart rates are displayed on a monitor whilst you work out so you can see your progress along with how many calories you’re burning. You also collect ‘effort points’, known as MEPs, so you can track how much you’re putting into the sessions easily.

It sounds more complicated than it is, but the main thing is that the only person you’re competing against is yourself, as you try to better your performance from previous sessions. You can also join optional monthly competitions and set yourself against other members too.

The whole thing is wrapped up in a handy app so you can dive into the data at any time. You can also book and cancel classes through the app and earn loyalty points.

What’s the damage?

Prices can vary depending on how long you sign up for and which location you’re training in. They have locations in Braintree, Colchester, Colliers Wood and Chelmsford, and are soon opening up in West Yorkshire, Sutton and Bromley.

I signed up on a rolling monthly contract as I know I can be skittish and I wanted to see if I liked it first. The cost for this in Colliers Wood is £89.95 per month, but if you sign up for 6 or 12 months then the price can go down to around £69 a month.

Is it a lot of money? Yeah, it’s not the cheapest option out there for sure. But I know that if I paid £50 a month for gym membership I wouldn’t be as motivated to go, and to actually work out properly. My inner geek just loves ‘working out by numbers’!

Would I recommend it? Absolutely! Worth every penny. It’s only 45 minutes out of my day a few times a week, and I’m feeling fitter and more confident. But most of all, I actually enjoy it. I love the workouts and I particularly like the sense of community as I get to know my fellow YourZone45 workout buddies!

Let me know if you have any other questions about working out at YourZone45, I’d be happy to answer them! 

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Hayley is the author behind A Life of More, a travel and lifestyle blog with the goal of helping you to live a happier and more fulfilled life, whether you're currently travelling or happily settled.

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