Class Review: Regeneration Z

1st March

You know you can always rely on Gymbox to keep revolutionising your workout experiences. But offering a class that stops time itself? Well, it’s safe to say we’ve probably outdone ourselves this time. As part of our latest timetable release, Regeneration Z is the programme that takes a swing at ageing. You know you’re already intrigued… so we sent our blogger Lucy to try it out and see if she could shave a few years off…

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Organic diets. Botox. Daily whiskey or keeping frisky. There’s plenty of so-called ‘secrets’ that can trick the body into feeling young. But thanks to Regeneration Z – Gymbox’s newest functional training class – you can get a science-backed programme designed by Master Trainer Firas that’s supposed to turn back your body clock in a 45-minute workout. Well, count my gently withering, gin-battered, 30-something self in.

Finding myself in the safe (and massive) hands of infamous butt-kicker Sam Bradley, I arrived with energy, an open mind and a healthy dash of anxiety. Apart from the brutal-looking glimpses I’d spied on the Gymbox Instagram stories, I’ll be honest, I really didn’t know what I’d signed up to. But recommending weight ranges to each of us on the way in, Sam tells us that all we’d need to grab is a single dumbbell and a kettlebell. Interesting.

Now, as someone who routinely swerves kettlebells wherever possible, I must admit I felt my arse do a little twitch of fear at this point. But that was soon to change. In fact, it turned out that discovering this class may have been the best thing that happened to us. After a quick warm up, we had a few important things explained to us. First, that we’d need to keep moving constantly all the way til cool down. It’s essential we keep the heart rate up, so no staying still. *Cue me, hopping around looking like I need to pee for the next half hour.*

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Secondly, that the reason we’ve only got these two pieces of kit is because we’re only doing two compound, high-power movements. The kettlebell swing, and the viking press. Eight alternating rounds, with four sets of six in each. Why? Because this is a heavy, aerobic class with high power intervals designed specifically to kick your mitochondria production up a gear. (Aka, the magic shit in your body that generates energy cells and combats metabolic ageing.) Putting my faith in science, I braced myself and tried to not tune in to the ominous subtext of ‘Highway to Hell’ as it pumped out of the speakers.

Before we did anything, a tutorial. A step-by-step breakdown on how to a) not do your back in b) get maximum power and c) avoid just weirdly thrusting at yourself in the mirror instead of getting full range of movement. From squat/butt/ab form to doing that ‘tssssss’ exhale noise all the proper people make when they train – it was a handy masterclass in the perfect kettlebell swing. Pair that with the burst of power needed to drive the dumbbell up for a viking press, I already knew my glutes would have a date with DOMs in the morning.

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As we kicked off the main workout, I already felt like my brain was more in the game than other classes I’ve been to. With those clear steps repeating themselves over in my head, I could feel myself actively vetting my own form and pushing myself to improve – helped along by the odd gentle(ish) reminder from Sam of course. That structure and discipline from Fufu’s programming kept my whole body active and engaged throughout the session. And while I may not have looked like I’d fallen into a swimming pool as most lactic-loving Gymbox sessions make you do, I could feel the benefits almost instantly.

So, the big question is, did I feel any younger? Well, I’ve still not been asked for ID in Sainsbury’s yet. But whatever impact it may or may not have on my age, Regeneration Z more than makes up for it in experience. For everything else? There’s still Botox.

You can follow Lucy on Instagram.

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