As most of you know, I am in serious money conservation mode. After getting into my doctoral program (and needing to pay for it), my priorities shifted. All extra money goes to a “school fund”. This means I can’t be as…flexible…with my fitness spending. In fact, I no longer have any flexibility. I have to be strategic.
I take a lot of classes. And yes, I pay for many of them (spoiler: I’m not a blogger that takes a lot for free; I personally don’t think it’s right). This said, Classpass (CP) has been both a friend and a foe over the years. My first dabble with CP was in 2015, while I was working at Women’s Health magazine. Because of my work schedule, I was paying more in cancellation fees than I was for my actual class package. So, after a year, I cancelled. I didn’t come back to CP until they switched to the new-found “credit” system, which I found so intriguing I had to give it a go (for all of you, duh).
What is Classpass?
I could give you the website jargon (but I won’t). In short, CP is a member-based workout service where you buy a package of “credits” for your geographic area, and those credits can be used for either a variety of fitness classes or “wellness” activities (like massages, cryofuel, or even blowouts). The credit system didn’t always exist. CP revised to this business model in January 2018 (note: before, it was a certain number of classes per month depending on your package). The current credit programs for purchase are $135 for 90 credits, $75 for 45 credits, and $45 for 27 credits (all costs are per month). CP Live (an online subscription program) is also available for purchase. According to the website, you can (approximately) get 6-10 classes a month on the $135 package; 3-5 classes on the $75 package, and 2-3 classes on the $45 package.
K, stay with me here. While choosing and booking your classes, you can narrow it down by cities/towns/neighborhoods in your geographic area. Once you do that, you’ll be offered all the available classes for that specific day, up until one week out (you can not book further than that. Slightly annoying). Each class option has a credit number “cost” associated, as well as any caveats such as “you can visit this studio twice per month for more credits” (some studios only let you visit one time per month) or “first time only”. Depending on the studio (how “fancy” it is, or exclusive, or #bizzy), your allocated credit “cost” will differ. Usually, credit costs are between 6-12 per class, with some being higher or lower depending on the time of day, how many times you’ve already visited, or how “boutique” the studio is (who want their members to get first dibs on the class, and you get the leftovers).
At the start of my CP rebirth, I kicked off with 45 credits, because I wasn’t sure if 27 was too few for this (what I hoped) would be a solid three-month study. I quickly realized after a month, I was not wealthy and needed to cut down to 27. I will say, for the one-month I was on the 45 credits, I stayed away from anything super boutique, and took 5-6 classes between 6-9 credits. Some of the classes were good; others, not so much. So, I didn’t love it yet. I didn’t hate it yet. I was neutral.
Once I dropped to 27 credits, my frustrated began to grow. I felt like I could do NOTHING with this package. At one point, I was like, k, this entire package is a freaking bag of tricks just to get people to buy the bigger package. I took three classes at 9 credits and called it a day.
By the next month, I remembered how much I loved challenges and was going to work the shiz out of this for not only my benefit, but all of yours.
By the end of this little “study”, I realized CP is basically the same as online dating. If you put in the time and effort, eventually, you’ll find the perfect match of classes and credits (as well as the tricks to weed out the lame; ya know what I mean?). It CAN be totally worth it, but you need to have both patience and determination to win the damn game (and tbh, it is just that: A game). Fast forward to the end of May, as this bish came out victorious with nine classes for 27 credits. Now, this can’t happen every month for reasons to be revealed shortly. What it does prove, however, is that CP hopes you’ll get lazy and not maximize your credits to the fullest extent. And I’m here to prove you can absolutely live your best #fitlife.
Tip 1: Budget your credits.
No matter what credit level you’re on, budget out how many classes, and for how many credits each, you’re striving for. This will prevent you from simply “scrolling” and taking any class that looks good. For example, for 27 credits, if I want to make sure I use them all before the end of the month and have a goal of five classes, my budget may look like this:
1 six-credit class, 2 five-credit classes, 2 four-credit classes, and 1 three-credit class.
Or, maybe you want to check out a wellness option, which are usually more credits than classes and need to budget 20 for that. You’ll choose a 20-credit wellness option and then have seven left over for a class.
Tip 2: Don’t be picky.
The beauty of CP is variety. Yet, it’s curious why people who have CP like to go to the same studios every month. When you go outside your comfort zone, you have more opportunities to use your class credits at different allocations at different studios (which means, more workouts).
Tip 3: Get up early or stay out late.
Any classes between 7 a.m. – 9 a.m.; 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. are more credits because they are prime time (the most popular). Also, the more well-known studios cost more credits. Anything before 7 a.m. and after 8 p.m. gives you a credit break, so keep that in mind. If your work schedule is a bit flexible, lunchtime sweat sessions are awesome and super cost effective, as well. Also, give unknown studios a try. Sometimes you can snag an intro class for zero credits (one-time)! Finally, outside early and late studio classes, gym time slots are my absolute fav. I can head to a gym for two hours for lower than a day rate, versus getting a membership. Hollaaaaa.
Tip 4: Use filters.
Don’t feel like scrolling? I don’t blame you. Plus, you’re more inclined to get frustrated and just “pick” something that way (and you’re trying to be strategic, remember?). The CP filter feature is pretty kick ass. Right next to the “map” icon at the top right of the app, click to choose how many credits you want a class for (along with geographic area, etc.) and see what’s available.
Tip 5: Videos are your friend.
Sure, CP has a subscription-based “Live” feature (that’s super cool), but if you don’t feel like paying the $10 up charge for it, head to the “videos” icon in the bottom center of the app. You can get your workout on for FREE with some of them from like, the hottest studios. All you need is to be a CP member. I’ve gotta be honest, I never liked at-home workouts until my injury, but now I’m totally into the quality and convenience (and cost savings).
Have CP questions for me? Or comments on this post? Leave a comment or message me on Instagram @kerryleeinthecityfit.