My newest obsession

It’s still dark — pitch dark — when my alarm sounds. Eyes puffy and barely open, I climb slowly out of bed and walk stumble to the bathroom to wash my face, brush my teeth and put in my contact lenses. A few more weary steps and I’m in the spare room getting dressed. Normally it’s an easy task, but at 4.45am it’s harder than it really should be.

Why am I up this early, you ask? [Okay, you probably didn’t ask, but I don’t care.] Because I’ve got a Grid class to get to by 5.30am, I answer — while I think, admittedly, that it’s quite weird that I’m not only talking to myself, but also talking to fictional masses of people who I think care. But I digress.

#TheGrid, my newest obsession PICTURE:
#TheGrid, my newest obsession

For the last two weeks I’ve been going to The Grid, a high-intensity, functional-fitness class at Virgin Active. And I am hooked!

What exactly is The Grid, Matthew? I’m glad you asked [even though you didn’t really]. It’s a series of six exercises laid out in grids, done back-to-back, with a 10 second break in between [there’s also ‘The Accumulator’ variant, where you do the exercises sequentially but always start back at the first station, i.e. 1, followed by 1-2, then 1,2,3, then 1,2,3,4, then 1,2,3,4,5 and, finally, 1,2,3,4,5,6]. The six basic movements are: push, pull, squat, bend, twist and lunge. It lasts about 30 minutes and it is truly intense.

Me, after a particularly brutal The Grid session last week.
Me, after a particularly brutal The Grid session last week. PICTURE: Snapchat, @matthewsavides

Here’s the Virgin Active description of The Grid:

Let’s talk functional fitness training benefits

  1. Each move involves your entire body. You’re not isolating any particular muscle. That means more calories burned. Bonus.
  2. You get more out of your time. The moves you’ll do are so great, you don’t need to labour away for hours. 3o minutes and you’re done.
  3. If you do the same movements over and over again, your body gets used to it. Then you’ll hit a plateau. The worst. The Grid is all about challenging and surprising your body to move
  4. Functional fitness training has massive core-strengthening benefits, because it engages he body’s core stabilising and balancing muscles. These types of exercises put less wear and tear on your muscles and joints, and help improve coordination, balance, and stability.
  5. Into a specific sport? Functional fitness training can enhance your skills in any sport.
  6. It’s a fun, full body workout. There are so many different pieces of equipment to try out and experiment with. Variety!


Two weeks in and I’m hooked. Not only do I feel better and does it feel like I’ve lost weight and fat [I’ll only know at the next weigh-in, which takes place every two weeks], I also get the feeling that my fitness is much better. I feel stronger on the road and that I have much more endurance — and my recovery time also seems much better. Here’s hoping…

This is NOT a sponsored post.


2 thoughts on “My newest obsession

  1. […] for the Mandela Day 1/2 Marathon on August 30 — my first ever 1/2 marathon] and been doing Virgin Active’s ‘The Grid’ classes at least four times a week. Diet has also improved significantly, apart from last week when I was […]

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