Pilates and Chill: Meet The New Seattle Studio Bringing Pilates To The People

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Salutations, internet people!

Not so long ago I sat down to write this post and I had to stop. I had to stop, because my body was slowly rebelling against me. When I say rebellion I should clarify- this shit was full on mutiny guys. My inner thighs were whisper screaming at me. I think that they could've been screaming louder, but honestly they were so tired that they don’t have much fight left in them. I shut my laptop and resigned myself to sleep. When I woke up the next morning I initially thought I had been hit with the stomach bug, but quickly realized that the pain in my stomach was just my abs being sorer than they had been in months. What happened to me? Seattle Pilates Collective happened to me.

Seattle Pilates Collective is a glistening jewel in the heart of cozy Green Lake. For those of you reading this and also going what the fuck is Green Lake??? It's a neighborhood in Seattle. Honestly one of my favorite ones, despite the fact that I was attacked there once by a rabid goose as a young child. I digress.

Because typing is hard, let's call it SPC for now, shall we? SPC is a haven of fitness. It is a sanctuary of exercise. It is a really fucking cool community. It's a place full of friendly, knowledgeable people who are working their really toned butts off to make Pilates more accessible to the masses. And guess what? I'm totally obsessed with them.

I've written at great lengths about the car accident I was in earlier this year. I know, I know, shut up about it, right? This car accident turned me in a moment of seconds from one of those looney-tune fitness weirdos that worked out for 3 hours a day (to be fair, it was my job) to the kind of pathetic puddle that would burst into tears if I picked something up the wrong way. I got so discouraged- and then so out of shape- that I stopped going to fitness classes. I couldn't do anything without being in pain, so I stopped trying. I contemplated changing the name of my blog to Donuts + Also More Donuts because I was doing literally no yoga. None. Zip. Zero. Nada. But I was enjoying sugar glazed carbs, so I had that going from me. 

When the owners of SPC invited me to check our their (beautiful!) new studio I was both honored to be invited and terrified to go to the studio. I contemplated politely turning them down. I had never been on a Reformer (aka the Pilates machine) and was crazy anxious about learning how to use it. I was also in so much pain that my workout routine pretty much consisted at the time of long walks (not on a beach) and stretching, so I was very much not in the shape I like to present myself in. Most things didn't feel good- would this be any different? Besides, I was a goddamn yoga teacher. I knew movement. I was like really in touch with the happenings of my body. NAMASTE. But, because I believe in trying new things and meeting new people, I signed my ass up for a class. 

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My first class at SPC was a beginners class with a lovely human named Rachel. Rachel let me borrow her socks (honestly what a goddess) and showed me how to use the Reformer without judgement. I was the least experienced in my class, but nobody made me feel bad about it. I think this is important to point out, because we have all been in a beginners fitness class where somebody there made you feel like shit. I have walked into studios before and been laughed at for not knowing where to sign up, have walked out of studios because nobody would help me and I was nervous, and have not returned to studios because there was no beginners system in place and the whole thing was too discouraging. SPC is delightfully not like this. The other students in class giggled through the workout together. We all sat and chatted at the end of class. Rachel (I feel like I'm starting to sound like I'm her stalker at this point) knew us all by name. I kept holding my breath for my neck and back to start hurting but... it never happened! In fact my injuries felt... better! I wanted to cry and hug somebody and also to quit my job and move into SPC permanently.  When class was done... I didn't want to leave. I also almost couldn't physically leave because somehow, over the course of making new besties with all the other fun ladies in class, I had gotten an insanely good workout.

I should add that I am somebody who likes being physically challenged to the point of deep soreness. I am, after all, a rower. Rowing is pretty much a pain party that never ends. It took me days to stop feeling sore after my first SPC class. I looked at the schedule. Would it be weird if I signed up for every class, every day? I am the kind of person who goes all-in when I find a new fitness style that I like. I was eager for more, so I decided that I needed to take class from the founders- Jake and Nathalia.

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SPC has some really solid instruction and, as such, only has room for a few students in class. Because of this, the teachers always know your name, which is particularly wonderful when coming off of a shitty day. The first time I met the owners they both greeted me with hugs (we were Instagram friends) and asked me about my day.  We talked about the struggles and rewards of working in the fitness industry in a booming city like Seattle. We bonded over wanting to make things like Pilates and Yoga accessible to people, not scary. They told me their vision for the studio, and I could see how much they really believe in the community they're creating in this cozy corner of the country.

Oh, and they both also completely kicked my ass. Both Jake and Nathalia took the bodies in class into account when guiding us, explained the movements in a way that made perfect sense, and demonstrated appropriate technique. Even though we were doing some weird shit with our bodies, the instruction at SPC is always so good that I've never felt confused about what I should be doing or how I should be doing it. The SPC workouts hurt so good that I always wake up the next morning convinced that I'll be able to see a six pack. I mean, how can your abs hurt that much without showing, right? They play the kind of music in class that makes you want to shout out what's this song?! every four minutes. They have created a space so welcoming at SPC that I'm not surprised to see that their classes are selling out. This place is just that good.

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Also if you ever want to go on a fitness date to SPC, give me a shout. I am always down to die a slow Reformer death with those wonderful humans.

Love, donuts, and puppy snuggles!

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