I tested the Joseph Pilates theory and did 30 reformer sessions for a whole new body

Up in the gym just workin’ on my fitness

BEAUTYcrew Beauty Editor / May 25 2022

I would never describe myself as athletic, or even particularly coordinated for that matter. 

In fact, I pride myself on giving ‘queer intellectual woodland fairy who’s really into poetry and art’ vibes. 

However, I do have a ridiculously cavalier attitude about trying new things. 

It’s this mindset that’s seen me test Cutera’s TruSculpt Flex (AKA the body sculpting treatment that’s the equivalent of 54,000 crunches in 15 minutes), Matrix PDO threads, and bleached hair respectively. 

So when I had the opportunity to head into the fancy digs at SOMA Collection in Chifley Square to try my hand at transforming my figure with reformer Pilates, I, of course, said “yes”.  

According to Joseph Pilates (the founder of Pilates), “in 10 sessions you’ll feel the difference, in 20 sessions you’ll see a difference, and in 30 sessions you’ll have a whole new body.”

I decided to test that theory and subsequently signed up for 30 sessions. 

With the highly qualified and diverse range of instructors who teach at SOMA at my disposal, what did I have to lose? 

The SOMA Collection experience

The boutique fitness and social club provides top of the line gym equipment, studio classes, PT sessions, and there’s even an infrared sauna available for use in the changing rooms. 

Image courtesy of SOMA Collection

Image courtesy of SOMA Collection

I can’t lie, the inviting environment made the idea of working out a little less formidable. Eventually, carving out 45 minutes of my day for a Pilates class actually brought me joy. Must have been the endorphins or something…

Image courtesy of SOMA Collection

Image courtesy of SOMA Collection

As for the all important Pilates studio? The energy was always calm but motivated; I never felt overwhelmed or like I couldn’t keep up. 

Image credit: BEAUTYcrew

Image credit: BEAUTYcrew

I thrust my shaking hips into warm-up bridge exercises more times than I’d care to admit. 

I even snuck into an Intermediate class or two and struggled through some of the more complicated workouts. 

Imagine this: dance versions of Moby classics playing in the background while an instructor desperately attempts to realign my lopsided form on the bed of a reformer machine. 

In the eponymous words of Paris Hilton – “that’s hot”.

The transformation

I’d love to be able to show you a series of before and afters with a glaring polarity, but in all honesty the transformation I was promised by Mr. Pilates was less physically evident than expected. 

Image credit: BEAUTYcrew

Image credit: BEAUTYcrew

While I didn’t suddenly inherit a totally new physique after 30 sessions of reformer, I was able to notice a difference in my strength, coordination and overall fitness that was hard to ignore.

My body looks slightly more toned than before, and my waist a little slimmer, but I think in order to see more drastic weight loss results I would need to couple Pilates with a supplementary cardio routine and calorie deficient diet. 

I’m no personal trainer or dietician but if it’s good enough for Lori Harvey

Image credit: BEAUTYcrew

Image credit: BEAUTYcrew

I also noticed an improvement in my energy levels and mental health during this challenge, which was impressive considering I managed to come down with COVID-19 smack bang in the middle of the whole process. 

I took two weeks off to recover, during which I noticed a significant amount of muscle and fat fall off my frame. 

After only consuming hot tea and sucking on throat lozenges for 14 days, I spent the second half of this fitness challenge regaining my strength and upping the ante with eating. 

In fact, I actually ate an entire box of Aldi soup dumplings prior to taking my after photo – impressive, I know.

Image credit: BEAUTYcrew

Image credit: BEAUTYcrew

As for my future with Pilates? After 30 sessions I still have a passion for it, but I’m keen to diversify my workouts with a bit of cardio here and there, and potentially even a rogue aerial yoga class. 

It’s only up from here (sorry) folks...

I’m not the only one who likes a bit of diversity in my workout routines, Dua Lipa swears by it for staying fit. 

Main image credit: Getty

Briar Clark got her start in the media industry in 2017, as an intern for Marie Claire and InStyle. Since then, her keen interest in fashion and beauty has landed her gigs as a Digital Content Producer and Beauty Editor with titles like Girlfriend, Refinery29, BEAUTYcrew and beautyheaven. She loves the way seemingly innocuous topics like skin care and style have the ability to put a smile on people’s faces or make them think about themselves a little differently. A big believer in self love and experimentation, Briar has made a point of becoming the Australian beauty industry’s unofficial guinea pig for unusual treatments and daring hair trends. When she’s not testing out the latest beauty launches, Briar is big on broadening her horizons, mostly in the form of food but she’s also partial to travelling to new destinations both near and far (and of course, allocating an extra bag to bring their best beauty offerings home with her).