This is a great time of year to peer pressure friends and family to join you for that local Jingle Bell Jog or spin class. The weather isn’t too cold yet and people are looking for an excuse to burn off holiday party over-indulgences. Plus, they can save their money for presents - most of the below is **FREE**
There are two new studios opening up in NoVA that are offering free classes. Since they are both franchises, they are also a great way to support a local business owner!
Cyclebar Falls Church is offering free classes through December 10th. There’s ample *free* parking under the Harris Teeter, so you don’t even need to go outside to get to the studio. Once the free classes end, use promotion code “201” in order to take advantage of the special opening rates.
Barre3 Clarendon is offering free classes in a “pop up” location in Arlington. There is street parking right outside of the location, and it is across from a Whole Foods and Starbucks (which saved me after their early morning class).
In addition, Lululemon Mosaic is hosting free yoga classes at 9:30 AM on Sundays in December.
Fitbit Local has two events coming up in DC, including Burpees & Beer on December 10th.
Barry’s Bootcamp is opening in Washington DC on December 9th, but alas I do not have a free class code for you…yet. I’ll try to get one for you!
DC Road Runners hosts many races throughout the year, most of which are free to members ($25 for the year). Not sure you want to commit to the annual membership? You can pay as little as $10 to participate in a race.
Potomac River Running hosts many inexpensive races throughout the season. They also have a really fun promotion right now, just in time for the holidays – 4 race entries for $110! It's good one to put on your wish list.
Altis Endurance Sports hosts several races in Virginia and Maryland. I recently ran the C&O Canal Towpath Path Half Marathon. Packet pickup was a breeze, parking was ample (and free!), and the fee included a t-shirt and finisher medal. I also won first female so I was awarded at pint glass too :) Use code “altisrunner15” for 15% off any race – which are all very affordable to begin with!
Running will always be my main squeeze. However, my body can’t take more than a few days of pounding the pavement (or trail) each week. My love affair with indoor cycling began when I joined Healthworks in Cambridge, MA. At the time, boutique fitness wasn’t a thing. This was a traditional cycling class, which mirrored the outdoor cycling experience. The instructors were amazing – one even guided you through “real” outdoor trails – and the sun would rise through the windows as the class progressed. So yeah, I fell hard and fast.
Since then, I’ve gone to many classes taught at gyms and boutique fitness studios. I love it because it’s really accessible and if the teacher rocks (and so many do nowadays), the class flies by. It’s a great option for people who are nervous about taking a group class – the lights are typically dim and you can sit in the back corner – and those who want some cardio but don’t love running or swimming. Although I love riding outdoors, the durable bikes don’t come cheap and the weather is not always your friend.
Much has changed since I started riding 10ish (eek!) years ago. Here are a few new concepts I love.
Lastly, I’m super pumped because Cyclebar Falls Church is opening next week! If you live close and haven’t tried it yet, they hosting free classes starting November 20th and will have amazing deals on memberships and classes (there will literally be discounts on discounts). Why do I love them? They have tons of free perks - cycling shoes! towels! happy hours! - use metrics (Cyclestats), and have great instructors (Cyclestars). Message below or email me if you want to try it and I will hook you up.
Happy riding friends.
Kate Scott is an avid runner, who has completed three marathons and numerous half marathons. She travels frequently, most recently to Toulouse and Bordeaux in France. She currently lives in Northern Virginia and is a certified public accountant.