Yoga Loft Chicago

One of the coolest perks of my job is we get to try out a variety fitness studios and classes in the city. Sometimes they come to the office and we do a group workout in one of the conference rooms but this past week we were lucky enough to be invited to Yoga Loft, a gorgeous, almost hidden studio in the heart of the River North neighborhood.


All I knew before stepping foot in the studio was it was going to be a “sculpting” class. I assumed that since it was a sculpt class at a yoga studio it would be yoga + weights and maybe a little more movement than the usual yoga class. BOY was I wrong. But let’s rewind…

We walked into the small but well-utilized space and were immediately faced with rows of dark wooden cubbies for our belongings, a variety of weights to choose from, Dixie cups full of water and a wall of yoga mats. From the second we walked in it was a very warm and welcoming place.


Next we met Tim, who was our teacher for the day. I should have realized when he said he was a personal trainer that we were NOT going to be doing yoga, but I remained blissfully ignorant to what lay ahead.


All 15 of us grabbed some five pound weights, headed into the studio and sat down on mats already waiting for us. The room was hot as could be so I knew it was going to be a doozy.

Now, onto the workout. After a quick five-minute “warm up” (a term I use lightly because it was tough in and of itself) we jumped right into a 40 minute bootcamp-style workout. Now, I’ve tried just about every workout: spin, body pump, Crossfit, running, yoga, etc., but these 40 minutes were by far the toughest I’ve ever experienced.

We performed two circuits, including some of the following moves:

  • Moving pushups (moving side to side after each one)
  • Burpees + jump with knees to your chest
  • Pushup + lunge + jump lunge to the other leg
  • Planks
  • Forward and back kicks + punches
  • Mountain climbers
  • Sumo squats
  • High knees

I could keep going but you get the picture 😉

The intensity of this workout plus the heat in the room made for a hilarious picture.  All 15 of us were slipping and sliding on our mats, and I even fell a few times while trying to hold a plank. The longest break we had was 15 seconds, a well-deserved rest that only came two or three times during the workout. Needless to say, it was the quickest 40 minutes of my life. After it was done we all looked around at each other and couldn’t believe we had just been moving like the for 40 whole minutes!


Now that is some good old fashioned sweat! (Plus a side of some serious forehead)

I left Yoga Loft feeling better than I have in months. They aren’t lying when they say that exercise gives you a serious high. I could have flown home on that endorphin rush!

The thing I’m most excited about is that Yoga Loft  is offering new students an incredible deal: two weeks of unlimited workouts for $35! Anyone who has gone to a small studio in a big city knows just how expensive they are, so this is a steal. Megan and I are definitely going to go back for the next two weeks and get our sweat on again – we’re addicted!

If you’re from Chicago and want to check it out with me, I’d love to go with you in the upcoming weeks! Just check out their website, see if it’s something you want to test out, and let me know! I’m always looking for new fitness partners in crime 🙂


  • When was the last time you had an amazing workout?
  • Do you belong to a regular gym or a small studio?
  • Any ideas for how to make a little extra cash so I don’t have to sell a kidney to keep going to classes like this once my two weeks are up?


  1. Wow, nice sweat going!!! Feels good to detoxify!!! I had an amazing, sweaty workout yesterday during speed work!! The Bryan Kest Master’s Yoga Class I went to in DC a couple months ago….I don’t think I’ve ever sweat so much!! It was amazing!!

  2. looks like a fab workout, even if it was a bit of a slip and slide. 🙂 i love circuit/boot camp style workouts… if i’m not running, these are my faves.

    1. Same – and since the weather has still been pretty crappy I haven’t been motivated to run outside. These are a perfect substitute because I get my butt kicked! I love group fitness – it pushes me past the limits I’d put on myself if it was just me alone

  3. Oh gosh, that workout sounds insane! I can barely handle plain ol’ vinyasa yoga in a slightly heated (80-85 degree) studio, never mind an actual workout. Don’t you just wish all these fitness studios were free all the time? I can’t even afford a basic gym membership, let alone the class fees at these sorts of places!

    1. Hahaha same! Luckily there are so many small studios in Chicago that offer “free for your first time” classes that I can just bounce around for a month or two before I have to actually start paying for anything 😉

  4. omg as a yogi in River North I can’t believe I didn’t know about this place! I’m so excited you posted this! I really want to give this studio a try!

  5. Um, let’s go!!!!!! I’m pretty faithful to my CorePower, but I love to check things out, for myself and for Ramblen! And maybe we’ll just have to have a big lunch after??

  6. Ok effective, short workouts that you hardly realize it was 40 minutes sound like my kind of workout! I totally wish I was closer to Chicago to try it out!

  7. This whole post just made me giggle… I took a cardio barre class last month and was also so blissfully ignorant to what it really was. The class you described is exactly what the cardio barre class was like and I was like omggggggg–I was dying. BUT it was an awesome workout and I’d gladly do it again!

  8. Oh my gosh, this sounds like the insanity workout– except with a group of people not at your own house haha I would have been done at the walking pushups- but it sounds like an amazing workout! I’ve been meaning to try out Pure Barre, but it’s SO expensive I know I can’t really justify paying for it when I can go to my regular gym and have unlimited classes for a fraction of the price.

    1. Tell me about it. These small studios are seriously an arm and a leg haha. And I can barely do two normal pushups so those were a challenge, but I’m telling you there’s something awesome about having other people around you that makes you push yourself even harder.

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