Welcome to the inaugural post in our new Fit Date series, a cross between a blind date and a workout review! For each column, we send two intrepid strangers to get sweaty at a fun gym/studio in Toronto, then quiz each of them afterwards on their experience. Let’s meet our very first blind daters.
CHRISELLE, 30, is a PR consultant who describes herself as “adventurous, outgoing and intuitive.” When not at the gym (three times a week), she likes doing hot yoga, reading, writing, dancing and checking out new restaurants.
EVAN, 28, is a software product manager who considers himself “active, quirky and easy-going.” He’s “not a huge fan of gym workouts, with the exception of Olympic lifting,” but plays sports at least four times a week. He’s into rock climbing, cycling and music.
BOLO (short for BodyLove) is the cool, new boxing studio in downtown Toronto founded by Caleigh Rykiss, a former TV producer (eTalk, The Social), competitive boxer and personal trainer. You can find the pop-up location at 128 Peter Street, but stay tuned for BOLO’s big, permanent space, slated to open this June at 364 Richmond Street West.
We sent Chriselle and Evan to try HIIT Box, just one of the workout options at BOLO (check out the whole schedule here). In this one, people are paired off for a high-impact class that “combines technical boxing rounds with bootcamp-style moves for a serious full-body burn that will torch calories and stress at the same time.”
What was your first impression of your blind date? Cute and easy to talk to.
How would you describe your blind date in three adjectives? Energetic, adventurous, intelligent.
How would you describe the workout overall? Awesome. It was high tempo, challenging and technical.
How hard was the workout on a scale of 1 (stroll in the park) to 10 (still recovering)? 7. My shirt was drenched and I was more than just a little sore the next day.
What was the most challenging part of the workout? Rhythm. Boxing is like dance choreography and your brain works as hard as your body.
What was the most fun part of the workout? Combos on the heavy bag.
How did your workout partner do? Chriselle killed it. Didn’t slow down one bit.
What type of person would you recommend this class to? Anyone who likes to SWEAT.
Any awkward blind-date moments? Might have come close to punching each other in the face a few times.
Did you and your blind date HIIT it off? I think it went as well as it could. It can be a little weird going on a date with zero foresight, but a workout is a great way to break the ice.
Final verdict: would you be up for date #2? Yes.
What was your first impression of your blind date? A little shy.
How would you describe your blind date in three adjectives? Sporty, friendly, team player.
How would you describe the workout overall? Boxing was a full-body workout—equal parts physical and mental. It felt great to make contact with the heavy bag. The variation in “exercises” kept me moving. It was 60 minutes of high energy. The class left me wanting more.
How hard was the workout on a scale of 1 (stroll in the park) to 10 (still recovering)? I’d give it an 8, given it was my first time and the soreness set in 48 hours later.
What was the most challenging part of the workout? I never realized how much boxing is like a choreographed dance. It took me a bit to catch on to the combos. The pyramid pad work was exhausting but so worth every punch—and I felt pretty accomplished at the end. Being called out on incorrect form might seem intimidating, but every modification Caleigh made improved my workout and helped me punch stronger.
What was the most fun part of the workout? Putting on those gloves and hitting the bag. Also getting the combos right felt pretty good.
How did your workout partner do? Evan had boxed before, so was able to keep up with the class and helped me count through the combos.
What type of person would you recommend this class to? Someone who wants to get a HIIT workout that includes hitting the heavy bag. It’s a little intimidating for a first timer, as you have to pick up the combinations quickly, but the class will definitely get you interested in boxing more often.
Any awkward blind-date moments? No awkward moments, but our conversation got cut short when the restaurant we were at closed.
Did you and your blind date HIIT it off? Evan’s a good workout partner. He also keeps up an enjoyable conversation.
Final verdict: would you be up for date #2? Sure, I’d like to get to know him better.
Are you a Toronto single interested in being featured in an upcoming Fit Date? Click here and introduce yourself.