As you have read in my BTone Fitness – What is it and why do I love it?, I love Btone and the “Tone” class! However, I might have found a new found love-Tone ‘n Torch!
Although I try not to head into the city on the weekend so I can save commuting time, I made an exception a few weekends ago to attend my very first BTone Tone ‘n Torch class with Nicole from Pumps & Iron. And I was glad I did-in fact, this past weekend I attended my second class.
What is Tone ‘n Torch?
Tone ‘n Torch is a 50 minute class with the first half of class spent on the megaformer like in Tone classes and the second half off the megaformer doing High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT).
For my first class, we focused on arms and abs while on the megaformer. We did moves like newspaper, arm circles, side bear, French twist, plank to pike, one-legged bear, and a few other planking moves. I realize that if you haven’t been to BTone this terminology makes no sense but once you take a class, you will understand. All you need to know is that these moves are not only difficult on their own, but really difficult when put in a sequence together.
I could barely do the one-legged bear or the plank move where you had to keep your heads steady while holding a weight in one hand to do the “serve the platter”. I tried my hardest to get as much done as I could. I modified the plank/serve the platter move to be planking on my knees but even then it was really difficult. As you can tell in this picture, my hips are really uneven, which means I really need to work on this move!
My second class included moves mostly at the back of the reformer (slightly more difficult than at the front) like mermaid crunch, super crunch, modified bear, French twist, serve the platter, bicep curls and a few others.
After the Tone portion, we all put our sneakers on for the HIIT portion of class. If you didn’t know that you needed sneakers, you can do the workout barefoot-it is just easier with shoes! We did 4 reps of an AMRAP which means you do as many reps as possible during a set period of time for each exercise. Nicole had a timer and also gave us warning when we had our very short break between exercises. The exercises we did in my class were:
- Squat Kicks. One leg will stay stationary and the moving leg squats backwards. When you stand from the squat, kick the moving leg to hit your hand in front of your body.
- Squat jump and punches. Get in a squatting position and do a squat jump. When you return to the squat, you punch cross body both left and right arms while holding hand weights.
- Push-up frog jumps. Do a push up and then jump your legs up to your hands and quickly back to push-up position to get your next push-up in.
- Full body crunches. Extend your arms and legs without having your feet or upper back touch the floor. Crunch everything in and then extend again.
For the bonus round, Nicole had us see how many burpee/push ups we could do. I ended up doing 21 and did the most out of the class. I won a coupon for Chipotle of buy one get one burrito!
The second class I attended had Tabata format instead of a regular interval format. This meant 20 seconds on of an exercise and 10 seconds off for 8 reps. The moves included the following:
- Step ups onto the reformer platform. I was keeping up some speed in the beginning but slowly got worn out! Such a simply move but so tough!
- Side plank with hip dip and crunch. Dip your hip and then crunch in your arm and leg that is facing the ceiling.
- Squat jumps holding a weight. When you hit the bottom of your crunch, your arms should reach the floor and you try to touch the ground with the weight. Nicole challenged you during breaks to hold a squat. Of course…I tried. I did pretty well but my legs were definitely feeling it towards the end.
- Touch toes and hip lifts. These are similar to the reverse toe crunch in the P&I Cardio Core workout.
Lastly, she had us do a minute of jump squats to mountain climbers. I was able to get 21 reps in (must be my lucky number!). My legs were feeling like jelly!
Efficient and Effective
It is difficult for me to push myself to do HIIT at home. Having an inspirational guide and others there with me by my side struggling helps me get it done.
I got the most out of my time and really was pushed to work hard (like always at BTone). The first class I was sore for 4 days since I haven’t done a workout that tough in a while. After the second class I improved and was only sore for 2 days.
Well Thought Out
Nicole puts a lot of thought into the workouts. The class was inspired by her workouts she posts on her blog Pumps and Iron. If you haven’t already-I would check her blog out. I love all her instructional workouts and delicious looking recipes.
Unfortunately, this class is only offered on the weekends. I may just have to stop my “not go into the city on the weekend” habit so I can get to this class more often. And I suggest you try the class too! Make sure you bring sneakers and also a water bottle-You will be sweating a lot so you will need to hydrate!