From couch potatoes to seasoned runners, everyone can learn something at TheRUN studio in NYC.

I have recently realized that I will almost always be the least athletic person in every exercise class that I take. I’ve embraced it. I now consider myself the confidence booster. Everyone can look at me and feel better about themselves while thinking, “at least I am not struggling as hard as that girl is.” You’re welcome, fitness fanatics of New York City.

While reading about my various fitness endeavors, you probably imagine that I am some 50 year old woman who hasn’t moved from her couch in 15 years. Nope. I am a 23-year-old girl who coasted through most of her life with a metabolism faster than someone suffering from a tape worm and the amazing ability to eat whatever I wanted whenever I wanted without gaining a single pound. Working out was never a necessity to me, so why would I do it? I was living the American dream. That is, until recently.

My metabolism has slowed down and I have become much more of a “regular” person. I can’t eat pizza every night of the week and throw on a size zero like I used to. The longer I wait, the worse it gets, and now that I really need to work out to fight off fat and stay healthy, I have to start at square one. My muscles are weak, my lungs are feeble, my heart speeds up on a casual walk. Basically, I am frail. I am much less active than most people my age, who worked out diligently throughout their college careers to fight off the inevitable freshman 15. Every exercise adventure that I embark on is a serious, heart-pounding, limb-shaking, lungs fighting for air struggle.

No Pressure!

Recently, I discovered TheRUN, one of the few fitness studios where I have actually felt completely comfortable despite my lacking athletic abilities. As much as I try to own the fact that I am everyone else’s self-esteem enhancer, I still prefer to lay low and unseen. At this studio, once everyone is on their treadmills they immediately go into their own little zones, mostly staring at their large display screens, tracking their progress, and adjusting their speeds. Even though everyone else was on a run/jog sequence, I felt like no one even noticed, or cared, that I went on a jog/fast walk sequence. My stamina was not up to the cailber of the woman seemingly sprinting for her life in front of me, but I didn’t feel like the same lazy chump that everyone usually looks at like a sad wounded puppy gasping for air. I could still get a great workout in without any judgement of my abilities, and this is huge.

therun studio in nyc

The Atmosphere

You can’t trick yourself into feeling enthused for a workout if the facilities are less than wonderful. When you walk into a sweat-smelling room that’s illuminated with florescent bulbs and filled with outdated equipment, excitement just isn’t there. But, when engulfed into the futuristic vibe at TheRUN, you immediately feel like you’ve entered the set of Tron Legacy. When I arrived, I was in awe of the state-of-the-art treadmills positioned in “lanes” marked by lights running from the floor all the way across the ceiling. It looked incredible, and I was about to look for the DeLorean because I was definitely in the future.

Once I was situated at my fancy middle row machine I began to get nervous. This place looked legit, and I was such an amatuer. I looked at the cute guys next to me with the most genuine “Hi I’m Leah, I really wish you weren’t here to see me like this,” smile that I could muster, and started tapping away on my machine.

The Instructors

Our instructor, and, personally, my new favorite human, Natalia, recognized the look of fear on my face and kindly showed me how to slow down the treadmill and decrease the incline if need be. Let me just tell you, this woman was a treat. Throughout the entire class she called out words of encouragement to each runner by name. I didn’t just feel like she was just an instructor to get free workouts and pay her rent. No, Natalia was there to change people lives and make them healthier and stronger.

The Workout

During the class, the treadmills sped up, slowed down, and changed incline for different intervals based on my abilities. You don’t have to worry about how long your intervals should be, because that is already covered for you. All you have to do is truck along while rocking out to an awesome Rihanna remix, all the way from warm-ups to finishing up with stretching on and off of the treadmill.

So now, you ask, Was the class hard? Yes. Did I have to push myself? Yes. But, I felt amazing during and after the workout and never felt like I was going overboard. This personalized group workout was nothing like I had ever experienced before. Yes, you can technically peddle slower or add less resistance during your spinning class, but with fellow participants mere feet away on either side of you, people are bound to notice and judge you for throwing off the rhythm. At TheRUN there was still a serious teamwork camaraderie feeling, all while issuing a judgement-free workout made specifically for my abilities, and I loved it.

Above is a photo of me after my first class at TheRUN. Look at that red, sweaty little face. Look at that iron grip on my new BFF, AKA a bottle of water that I bought at Wendy’s before class because I almost forgot that hydration was a necessary thing. But, most of all, look at that genuine smile. I had just proved to myself that I could complete a 45 minute treadmill class without dying or quitting. I am a champion.

To book an awesome sweat session at TheRUN, click here!

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