Power Pick: ClassPass Membership

It’s completely changed my approach to exercise.

power pick classpass
(Image credit: Future)

Welcome to Power Picks, a monthly series on the things that help us navigate our lives, step into our personal power, or simply get us through our day-to-day. Our hope is that by sharing what makes us feel great, we can help you feel great, too.

I have a deep-rooted hatred for working out—always have. I strongly dislike getting ready for a workout (it’s a whole production), I actively despise sweating (RIP blowout), and quite frankly, I feel just fine, albeit in need of a shower, after the fact. It’s always been a chore that I would gladly neglect for weeks or even months at a time. Sure, I went through a SoulCycle phase in college, and I credit Melissa Wood Health exclusively for my sanity during the height of the pandemic. But overall I’ve never really been a fitness devotee or stuck to any form of a regimen. I maintain a healthy diet and walk everywhere, but getting my heart rate up has quite frankly just happened when it's happened. Am I proud of that? Absolutely not, but I’m writing this under the premise that honesty is the best policy—so don’t judge.  

But we’re here because my outlook on working out changed. The question you’re asking: How? Why? Allow me to take you back in time. January 2023 to be exact. All of my friends decided to get on the New Year’s resolution bandwagon and hand over $89 a month for ClassPass, a platform that partners with workout classes and studios to offer subscribers a discounted monthly membership in their area. 

Personally, I thought they were going through a ~phase~ and I was willing to die on the hill that paying to exercise was, excuse my language, a load of crap. YouTube has videos! MWH is $10 a month! Go for a run! Still, their ~phase~ persisted. They went to classes together and discussed ad nauseam how they planned to allocate their 43 monthly credits. (The primary subscription offers 43 credits per month, with most of the coveted classes between seven to 14 credits.)

Eventually, I caved. Chalk it up to jealousy or the momentary dedication to get toned for summer, but I signed myself up for ClassPass. I could be cheesy and say that I never looked back. But in reality? I eased into it—one class a weekend. I went to BK Pilates with my friends on a random Saturday afternoon. I begged my ClassPass friends to accompany me to a Taylor Swift Reputation X Lover SoulCycle ride (Eras Tour, here I come). I  somehow even let my old college roommate swindle me into doing a dance cardio class. For the record: I have negative rhythm and/or coordination. I reached a point where doing a class was more of a social interaction than an actual workout. 

As time went on, I found myself scrolling through the depths of the ClassPass app—exploring niche offerings. To my surprise, I was able to book massages (shout out Body Roll Studio), could get a manicure at Glosslab (just four credits, you guys!), or even book a personal training session. The opportunities? Endless. I slowly but surely got more daring with my selections. A solo Sunday evening acupuncture became my weekly reset ritual. I went rogue and signed myself up for whole body cryotherapy, aka standing in a freezing cold chamber. I embraced the credit allotment game.

I also decided to sign up for a boxing-meets-self-defense class. I took karate for years when I was younger (green belt at your service), and have always regretted giving it up. My flying front kick is by no means what it used to be, but something about exercising that skill, that once upon a time I loved so much, allowed a flip to switch in my head. I realized that these classes, treatments, whatever they may be, were actually just time set aside for me, myself, and I. They weren’t related to work, weren't social obligations I secretly dreaded, and, perhaps most notably, they doubled as a nice 45-minute slot of phone-free time. 

It was at this point that I started viewing my subscription differently. Putting time on my calendar for a class is now my top priority for the week—I schedule my life around it. It doesn't matter if I’m breaking a sweat or laying down like a bum during a massage, ClassPass has become my built-in excuse to just take a beat and a breather from everyday life. It’s become my back-to-center, pressure-free, me time. I’ve circled back on old hobbies, seen my friends more on weekdays than I ever thought possible, and, from a more literal perspective, am stronger than I’ve been in a long time. I'm able to approach my other responsibilities with a clearer head and am more thoughtful in how I spend my time. But most importantly, I no longer look at working out as a chore. I’ve actually come to cherish the time I dedicate to exercise—even if it messes with my hair washing schedule. 

Samantha Holender
Beauty Editor

Samantha Holender is the Beauty Editor at Marie Claire, where she reports on the best new launches, dives into the science behind skincare, and keeps up with the latest trends in the beauty space. She has previously written for Us Weekly, Popsugar, Makeup.com, Skincare.com, and Philadelphia Wedding. Follow her on Instagram @samholender.