Three months ago, I was invited in to the newly-opened boutique gym in Glasgow, Two Birds Fitness in Glasgow for a free taster session to try out their famous Peak 45 class.
I’ve always been a regular gym goer and really enjoy working out but I’d recently totally lost my motivation for following any kind of programme at my local gym (a run of the mill, cheap and not so cheerful, Exercise 4 Less). With my friends wedding in Italy just a few months away, I knew I wanted to shake up my workout routine so I was keen to see what Two Birds could offer. After my 30 minute taster class, I came home and signed up for a 14 day trial straight away and then a monthly membership right after the initial two weeks and haven’t regretted that decision for a single second since! I post about it A LOT on Instagram so I thought I’d break it down and explain exactly what is involved and why I think this stylish boutique gym is the best way to get lasting results and feel so much better about yourself.
TWO BIRDS FITNESS: THE WORKOUT
The thirty and forty five minute classes (called Peak 30/Peak 45) follow the same format every time; three minutes of cardio (take your pick from the rowing machine, assault bike, air runner, boxing or the ski-erg) and then three minutes of work in the middle of the room using dumbbells, kettlebells, TRX, the step and bodyweight exercises. The best thing about this is that, even if you’re having a day where you’re lacking motivation or energy, just concentrate on the three minutes in front of you instead of thinking about it as a thirty or forty five minute workout. Trust me, the time FLIES in and, before you know, you’re on the cool-down. There’s a maximum of 14 people per class so it never feels cramped or too crowded too which is great. Scroll to the bottom to see a little time-lapse video I took from a session earlier this week to give you an idea of exactly what’s involved.
TWO BIRDS FITNESS: CARDIO
As I mentioned, there is a great selection of cardio equipment and you’re only ever in competition with yourself. I know I can hit 700m on the ski-erg so that’s what I’m constantly trying beat and I know I’m definitely capable of getting 750m so that really motivates me. When I first started, I think I was probably hitting 550/600m in three minutes so it’s amazing how quickly you can improve. Everyone in the class is so focused on what they’re doing themselves that it doesn’t feel like an intimidating environment – it’s just you versus you so don’t be put off if you haven’t worked out for a while or are just a beginner. I also find the three minutes goes in so much quicker when I’m focusing on something other than the time so the calories burned and distance are what I chose to go by depending on what machine I’m on. The assault bike is a great workout for the whole body and I really notice a difference in my back and the back of my arms from using the ski-erg regularly.
TWO BIRDS FITNESS: MYZONE
At Two Birds, they use the MyZone heart rate monitors so you can keep an eye on how many calories you’ve burned throughout the class and keep an eye on your heart rate. I’ve got my own belt and use the MyZone app to track all my workouts and see how many calories I’ve burned and also how many ‘effort points’ I’ve gained per workout. It also breaks your workout down into heart rate percentages so you can see how hard you’ve worked per class.
TWO BIRDS FITNESS: YOGA
I’ve always wanted to be one of these people that’s really good at yoga but I honestly just found it really boring. Two Birds has definitely changed all that for me now and I’m gutted when I can’t make it along to one of the yoga sessions with the most amazing yoga teacher, Soulfully Suzi. Her classes are always really tough and I’ve felt a massive improvement going twice a week for a few months. She’s honestly the most amazing teacher and she’s super supportive and encouraging so you MUST try out her yoga classes if you join.
TWO BIRDS FITNESS: THE COACHES
The majority of the sessions taken at Two Birds are by Danny – aka, Mr Two Birds. He’s FULL of enthusiasm which is very contagious and you’ll be made to feel really welcome straight away. He’s extremely encouraging is always pushing you on to hit bigger numbers and making sure you’re constantly progressing. I can quite often be found slagging off his musical choices during the classes but, some dodgy dad-tunes aside, he’s a total ledge! Iain is the other ace coach at Two Birds and is constantly checking/correcting form so you know you’re training safely and effectively. We have a bit of friendly competition when it comes to MyZone Effort Points but, again, he’s super encouraging and always pushing you a little bit harder. Both just really good guys but I’ll stop now because I think they’re probably more comfortable with getting the usual friendly abuse from me rather than compliments…
TWO BIRDS FITNESS: THE SQUAD
The good thing about Two Birds is that there is definitely a great team spirit… but also, if you want to come in a couple of minutes before the class and leave as soon as it’s finished and not really talk to anyone, then that’s totally cool too. I’ve always been more on the more anti-social side at gyms (i.e. I always normally prefer just putting my headphones in and not speaking to anyone at the gym) but, working on my own quite a lot, I actually really enjoy the social aspect of Two Birds.
At the weekend, we all took part in a Dragon Boat Race to raise money for Calum’s Cabin. I really can’t say I was looking forward to it beforehand but we actually ended up having such a good day. Turns out we’re all really quite competitive and we were a bit gutted to finish second despite the fact none of us had actually ever been in a dragon boat race before. It’s a really friendly bunch of people and anyone new is made to feel welcome so newcomers feel part of the ‘family’ in no time.
TWO BIRDS FITNESS: THE RESULTS
I’ve maybe lost 4 or 5 pounds in the three months I’ve been going to Two Birds but I feel SO much better! The scales are not the best indicator for me but I know I feel so much healthier and happier. Clothes I couldn’t fit into or didn’t feel comfortable in a few months ago now fit perfectly and I definitely see a change in my overall shape. I never, EVER dread going (like I used to with my old gym) and I know I give 100% every workout too. I love that I don’t look at my phone throughout the class and it’s a great way to really clear your head as you’re just focussed on getting through each round. Even after two weeks off when I was in Italy, I didn’t worry about going back and have been back into my consistent routine without any problems at all since then. I turn 35 in a couple of months and I’m really determined to be in the best shape ever by then and I know that it’s a much more achievable task being at Two Birds.
TWO BIRDS FITNESS: THE DETAILS
There are a few different membership options available at Two Birds; I go to classes most days (because I’m kind of addicted to it) so I’ve got the Enhanced Membership which means that I can book in as many Peak 30/45 classes and yoga per week as I like. It costs £65 a month but I’ve had way better results at Two Birds than when I’ve paid a LOT more for one-to-one personal training sessions in other gyms in the past. I probably go to about 20+ classes per month which works out at only about £3 per class!
I also get a free Dear Green coffee after class and I feel so much more confident, healthy and more comfortable in all my clothes so, for me, it’s worth every single penny. I’d definitely recommend trying a free taster class and then the 14 day trial membership (which is only £25) so that you feel totally confident signing up to a membership. There are a few other membership options on the website too so there should be something to suit everyone.
TWO BIRDS FITNESS: THE LOCATION
Two Birds is located in the Axiom Building on Washington St in the City Centre, just next to the Kingston Bridge. It’s not even a 10 minute walk from Central Station and is right next to Anderston station if you’re getting the train in. There is street parking outside and also a big car park which is cheaper (but there are cameras that track when you come in and out so make sure you put enough money in the meter as it’s a £65 fine… can you tell I’ve been caught out?!)
TWO BIRDS FITNESS: FINAL THOUGHTS
I should probably mention at this point that I’m a happy, paying member and I’m not writing this in exchange for a free membership and I haven’t been asked to write it either. I just know how much better I feel about myself and how much healthier and happier I’ve been since I joined and I would recommend it to anyone. Unlike other group fitness classes when you feel like it’s really obvious if you’re not as fit as other people or not as fast, it’s entirely self-paced which is much less intimidating for anyone who is just looking to start working out. There are some amazing before and after pictures and stories over on the Two Birds instagram and it’s so encouraging seeing other members smashing their goals and getting so much fitter and stronger too.
As I mentioned, I took a little time-lapse video earlier this week when I was the only one booked on for a lunch time Peak 30 class with Danny.