29 classes in 30 days: I challenged myself to do cardio dance for a month

At the beginning of April, I took on the challenge to stick to one workout for an entire month to see how it may change my fitness and my perspective.

Interested in Fitness?

I’m a producer at “Good Morning America” with a crazy schedule, and needed to get back on track after traveling nonstop this year.

I chose DanceBody — a studio based in New York City that specializes in dance-based cardio and toning classes. It felt like a good fit since I have a background in dance and cheerleading.

You can say it wasn’t jumping way out of my comfort zone. What was out of my comfort zone was committing to only doing DanceBody workouts this month. I keep active, but I get easily bored with the same routine so I tend to vary my workouts — running in Central Park, yoga, barre, bootcamp classes, boxing … you name it.

In terms of keeping a fitness “routine,” no part of my life is routine, so that in itself would be a challenge. I travel often for work, most times with no prior notice and my work “hours” vary from day to day and week to week. One day I might be in the studio by 5 a.m. with a guest, the next I’m supervising the late-shift in the office until 11 p.m., and the next jumping on a plane to cover a breaking news story.

For that reason, I’ve never been a “on Tuesdays I do barre” type of girl. After I got over the initial fear of workout monotony, knowing I was committing to DanceBody actually took one thing off my plate, allowing for one less decision in my day.

The workout

DanceBody, as you would guess, is a fully dance-based workout. DanceBody’s founder, Katia Pryce, offers a few different classes for different levels: Follow Along for beginners, Signature, Sculpt focused on toning, and Level Above for advanced dancers.

I mostly stuck to Signature and Sculpt.

In Signature, you learn a set of dances that stay the same for three months with the same playlist.

At first, it was intimidating. (To up the ante, the first time I tried the dances we had a camera crew filming — but you can even try it in the privacy of your living room through their DanceBody at-home streaming service.)

After a week or so, I caught on and my muscle memory started to kick in.

I liked the Signature class because it relies more on choreography instead of an 80’s-style aerobic workout, which reminded me of my cheerleading days.

Katia does throw in some “pop-ups,” which are actually just burpees to a beat. There are about 10 in one of the songs, but who’s counting?

By accident once, I tried the class level above, “Full-Out,” which is based off the signature class choreography but ups the ante adding more difficult, faster moves.

I decided to stick to the Signature classes for this first month where I became super comfortable and even started to look forward to each day of dances.

Sculpt consists of lots of leg lift series, ab and arm work and everything in between. Think light weights, resistance bands and ankle weights. It hurts. I started to see changes in my body from these sculpt workouts within days. Everything just felt a little bit tighter!

By week two, my body was tired and my muscles were sore. The cardio class keeps you moving for 60 minutes straight and the sculpt sections really focus on tiny “sculpting” muscles that you would use in most workouts.

I did travel a few days during week 2 but was able to squeeze in a 20-minute toning workout both days streaming DanceBody on my laptop in my hotel room.

By week three, I had convinced at least one of my friends to tag along regularly with me. It was a fun alternative to meeting for drinks or dinner. There is always an incredible playlist in both the Signature and Sculpt classes so it was easy to lure her with promises of Cardi B.

29 classes in 30 days

I went all in on this challenge, taking classes five to six days a week.

In total, I completed 29 classes in 30 days. I even found myself cancelling a date once to fit in a class instead.

My diet stayed mainly the same — even had a few glasses of wine throughout. Though I didn’t drop any weight, we took measurements at the beginning and end of the month and I lost almost an inch and half off my waist and an inch off my hips.

I can see the changes in my body and definition in places that are often difficult to see results. Hello summer!

By the end of the month, I looked forward to the dances and felt super confident in class.

I will say, I do like variety in my workouts, so I think I will definitely add running back in (I missed it terribly), and some other classes while keeping with DanceBody a few days a week.

Personally, I see a better result in my body when I have a little bit of variety. But, there is no toning quite like I got at DanceBody so I will definitely keep with it a few days a week, specifically the toning classes.

I would recommend the class to anyone looking to add fun to their routine, especially if you are new to fitness and looking for something enjoyable.

I always walked out of class in a better mood than when I arrived. The workout felt like an escape from the crazy hustle of city and news life.

I mean, who doesn’t love dancing to Britney Spears with your BFF … and counting it as a workout!

ABC News’ Elisa Tang and Faith Bernstein produced and contributed to this report.

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