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Samantha Whitaker takes on the work out of her life when she trials GRIT for Hip & Healthy

LES MILLS fans listen up: you know when you do a class and there’s one track that leaves you feeling like you might collapse? GRIT™ is half an hour of those tracks! But don’t let that put you off. For our time-poor generation, this explosive hit of exercise – which fits snugly into the precious pre-work or lunchtime hour – is exactly what we need.

Following the global trend for High Intensity Interval Training – or HIIT – GRIT seriously pushes you to the next level. It’s incredible how much your body can adapt to even the toughest training: I suddenly felt like I hadn’t worked out since sometime last year – and the shock pushed me to give my absolute all.

I’m not going to lie: there were points when I felt nauseous. But it was at those moments that the instructor was right next to me, counting down the seconds until the end of the rep, so there was no way I could give up. Because that’s what GRIT is all about: high-impact movements to great music, with inspirational trainers who are there doing it with you, harnessing the power of the team. There’s lots of whooping and high-fiving, but I can see why it’s addictive. ‘The workouts are demanding, but they’re over quickly,’ says Marcus Benson, a LES MILLS GRIT Series trainer. ‘Each 30-minute session mixes short bursts of high intensity with recovery periods, which is the best way to increase fitness, tone muscle and lose fat.’

There are three different classes in the GRIT Series. GRIT Strength uses barbells and plates to blast the major muscle groups and stimulate the metabolism to keep burning fat for hours. GRIT Plyo is based on the principles of plyometrics to build an agile, athletic body by transforming muscle fibre and increasing stamina. GRIT Cardio, which I tried, is a fast, fat-burning combination of explosive power moves and body-weight exercises. All three promise non-stop action and big results, fast.

At GRIT Cardio, the small class (of around 15) stood either in a circle or in two groups facing each other. From the start, it was fast and intense: short reps of shuttle runs, ladder climbs, push-ups and burpees. As always with LES MILLS classes (such as BODYPUMP and BODYATTACK), there are lower-impact options – which is good because GRIT™ has been designed to attract those who might not traditionally be into the idea of group workouts (men, in other words). And with three classes, and new routines every three months, there’s no way you’ll get bored.

The GRIT Series is being rolled out into gyms right now, so keep an eye out. And if your workout is in need of a shake-up, this half-hour attack is 100% what you need. For more information, or to find the nearest participating club, visit www.lesmills.com.

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