Boston: Crashing Btone Fitness

Boston Common in the rain
For those of you who follow me on social media (hello!) this might be old news, but I wanted to share my review of a fun studio I fit crashed while in Boston last week.
I was in town for an overnight business trip and knew I wanted to sneak in a workout early in the morning before my meetings. I crashed Barry’s Bootcamp last time I visited and wanted to try something just as unique. Finding fun workouts while traveling is always a challenge – in fact, one of the sparks behind this blog was my deep frustration over not being able to find honest  fitness class reviews while visiting Chicago a few years ago.

Whenever I visit a new city, I try to do my homework and find someplace new to crash. Let me tell you, it’s not easy, but I’ve learned a few tricks of the trade. And there’s something truly energizing and fun about experiencing the city through fitness – I think it’s safe to say it’s one of my favorite forms of tourism. So, to come full circle, I may have been in Boston for less than 24 hours but made an extra effort to squeeze in a sweat.

Btone Fitness on Newbury Street in Boston
To give you the full flavor of what my experience was like, let me set the scene for you.

It’s 5:45 a.m. when my alarm goes off. How rude. It’s mocking me by marking the time when I should have awoken refreshed, renewed, and ready to flit out of dreamland and down to Newbury Street for my workout.

Instead, I’ve been up since a 2:30 a.m. siren sent me blearily bolting out of bed and into my sneakers. Wrapped in half-sleep and a crumpled robe, I methodically followed the tide of hotel guests down the stairs. A few of us locked eyes and exchanged silent complaints about the annoyingly crass alarm that set us on this troubled course to begin with. But on the course we went, such as fire alarms go. And after a few moments outside in the cold and rain, we were assured by hotel management that it was a false alarm, all was well, and we should get some sleep. Sleep? Ha. I instead laid achingly awake in a dark hotel room for two hours until my alarm suggested that yes, indeed, it was now time to start the day. Good morning sunshine! Harumph.

So I dug my spandex out of my suitcase, tied on my sneakers once again, and slowly traipsed through the still-falling rain to my workout class at Btone Fitness. Honestly, if I didn’t have a previously-scheduled class to attend, I would have rolled over and tried to snag a cat nap. But I was truly excited to crash this trendy little boutique megaformer studio that I just had to power through and make the most of it.

Btone Fitness on Newbury Street in Boston
Btone sits above fashionable Newbury Street in a wood-floored, cozy space that’s bookended by windows and flooded with natural light.
 It has a stylish and fully-stocked locker room with showers, a couch to hang out on, and storage for your belongings. Btone offers a few different boutique-style classes, including spin on Real Ryder bikes, barre blast, and the signature tone class on the megaformer. They offer a $5 drop-in deal for first-timers, so if you’re visiting or new to Boston, how can you say no?

Our instructor Lisa introduced herself as I got set up on my megaformer, asked if I had any questions, and talked through the upcoming class. I love the personal touch of making newcomers feel welcome. She mentioned another visitor from DC had stopped by earlier in the week – if you’re reading this, leave a comment below, I want to compare notes! Despite my severe lack of sleep, I was looking forward to finding how Btone might differ from classes at other megaformer studios I’ve crashed like Solidcore in DC, Sculpt in Bethesda, and Firebrand in Portland. While the machine is always the same, I’ve come to find that different studios approach teaching the megaformer in subtly unique ways, making it a fun adventure at every new location.

Btone Fitness on Newbury Street in Boston

The class itself wasn’t particularly memorable. Perhaps it was because my head was in a bit of a fog. Perhaps it was because everyone was feeling the early-morning start time. But the class seemed to lag and lacked a certain zesty energy that I’m used to. I didn’t break a sweat, which was really surprising. I wasn’t sore the next day, which was even more surprising. Transitions were slow and the music was just loud enough to be heard but not really felt. I left feeling accomplished but not especially tuckered out.

This might have been a unique case, and as with any studio, overall class awesomeness depends on the particular time of day, the energy from the students, and the instructor. Maybe DC just has crazy-hard, wildly-energetic megaformer classes that have now ruined me from enjoying any others. Who knows!

At any rate, I said my thank yous and good byes and ducked back into the rain for a quick jaunt to the nearest coffee shop for an extra-grande cup of joe. Extra. Grande. After the night I had and an early morning fit crash, it was a grande kind of day.

Until next time, Boston! 



  1. jody June 3, 2014 / 12:29 pm

    thanks for crashing! there is such a variety of instructors and yes the early am times tend to have a quieter delivery. hope to see you back in boston soon!

    • DC Fit Crasher June 3, 2014 / 6:39 pm

      Thank you for clarifying Jody! I look forward to crashing again next time in town, perhaps a later class this time!

  2. Lauren June 3, 2014 / 12:32 pm

    Hi Meaghan,

    I may be one of the few people who really don’t understand the megaformer craze – I’ve done it three times now (twice in DC and once in San Francisco), and I just thought it was so dangerous and awkward. Anyway, can I recommend you try a reformer pilates class at the beautiful Toolbox Pilates & Art Studio in Dupont Circle? It’s a delightful and beautifully restored two-story carriage house located within the interior of the block that is bordered by Q and R Streets and Connecticut Avenue and 19th Street. I am in no way affiliated with the space, but I take classes there and love it. Plus, the studio is GORGEOUS and will photograph so well for your blog! Great job and keep up the good work 🙂

    • DC Fit Crasher June 3, 2014 / 6:40 pm

      I have passed by signs for Toolbox before and have always wondered about it – so happy to hear you’re giving it a glowing review! I’d love to schedule a fit crash and feature it on my blog. Let me see what I can do about that : ) Thanks for the tip!

  3. Sally June 3, 2014 / 3:15 pm

    There’s another blogger I follow – Nicole from Pumps & Iron – who actually teaches at one of the btone locations in Boston. You should reach out to her if you’re in the market to give this type of class another try. I haven’t tried her class in person, but based on the workouts she posts on her blog, she seems like the type to lead a super energetic and tiring class!

    • DC Fit Crasher June 3, 2014 / 6:40 pm

      Yes I follow her too! As with all studios, I think it really just depends on the teacher and the mood of the room that day. There are a lot of variables. From reading her blog, I have no doubt Nicole would bring the heat!

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