To be completely honest, we Malaysians are all the same. We can’t help but devour whatever our deplorable appetites are craving! Show me the superhuman who can resist the deliciously fragrant Nasi Lemak, the steaming coconut milk curry, and that spicy bowl of Chilli Pan Mee! An impossible feat indeed! Only after we’ve eaten to our heart’s content, will the disgust and self-loathing sink in. Why where were you two at the beginning of the meal?
So this guilt looms over you, but dread of the gym, the weights, the repetition, the no-funness of it all will lead us to delay and procrastinate till we shock ourselves the next time we step on a weighing scale. Sounds familiar? We’ve all been there at some point in time.
Exercise and getting fit doesn’t have to be a dreary chore. It can be kinda fun, when you know the right places to go.
Because I know you’re Malaysian, and you hate the sun, this list has places that exclusively indoor. You’ll be safe from the UV rays, and you’re welcome! Right, here are 15 places in KL where you’ll find fun and exciting activities to lose the weight you need and get fit!
Get Fit in KL Activity #1: Indoor Wall Climbing at Camp 5, One Utama
Burns 500 to 900 calories per hour
This is the first on my list, because it is super effective! If you’re thinking, “How hard can climbing walls be?” prepare to be mind-blown. It is the ultimate test of athleticism. If by the end of this snippet you still don’t believe that this will get you lean and fit in no time, just observe the people that come to Camp 5, and see how each and every one of them are at prime levels of fitness!
That’s because wall climbing forces you to use muscles groups you don’t usually use, both in the upper and lower body. Your back, abdominal and leg muscles all get exercised as well as your ﬁngers, shoulders and arms. Regular climbing can improve stamina as well as muscle strength. In addition, all the reaching and stretching for holds improves ﬂexibility and agility.
In fact, wall climbing can burn anywhere from 500 to 900 calories per hour, provided climbers keep rest to a minimum between routes. Research suggests rock climbing can also build strength, power and bring aerobic and anaerobic fitness levels to new heights.
Your arms and legs will be quivering in exhaustion just half an hour into your climb. But it will be so worth it watching the rippling muscles develop on your back and arms. Come back here and thank me later. 😉
Plus, wall climbing helps you set goals and achieve them, and when you do, you get profound pleasure along with a powerful workout.
Get Fit in KL Activity #2: Argentine Tango (Or any other dance) at Marguerite’s, KL
Burns 300 calories per hour
The great thing about this activity is not only that it gets you fit, but it does so much more at the same time. Exercise becomes fun when you interact with others and since tango is such a communal activity, especially if you’re dancing with partners, you hardly feel the burn, but still get a great workout!
Movements in tango are performed to music, but the rhythm changes all the time which is why it requires good balance, posture and alignment. In a tango dance, your knees are usually bent so it helps strengthen your legs and core. The short sharp movements are also great for upper body strength and for toning the core muscle groups.
Also, if you have bad knees, tango is non-detrimental in the sense that you’re mostly gliding, rather than jumping up and down on the floor, so you burn off the calories and tone your body, without putting the strain on your body like, for example, while running.
The benefits of tango doesn’t just end at getting you fit. It also improves grace and posture. The steps involved in the tango are steps to the front, the side and the back combined with turns. Completing such turns and steps will enhance your posture and your balance and give you far more grace and poise. Plus, the ability to bust a move on the dance floor with your partner at the next event you attend, makes this work out even more attractive!
With such a plethora of goodness tango does for your body, helping you to get fit in kl, why not start today? Here are some great classes that beginners can sign up for.
For serious learners: firstname.lastname@example.org
For social learners: Link to Lindy KL
Social Dances every Friday Night at Lindy KL!
Timings: 9:00pm – 12:00am
Venue: New Star Studio, Taman Desa
Cover charge: RM20 (includes 2 drinks + Beginner Class)
Get Fit in KL Activity #3: Jiu Jitsu at Marcos Escobar Brazillian Jiu Jitsu Academy, Kota Damansara
Burns 600 calories per hour
By far my favourite form of martial arts, this is one of my favourite ways to get fit in KL. Why, you may ask? Because the true goal of Jiu Jitsu is a great distraction to the pain of physical exertion.
And that true goal is learning to defeat your opponent and defend yourself. Definitely motivation enough for me to completely exert myself. Also, Jiu Jitsu is a great skill to pick up, for women especially. Its training gives leverage to physically weaker individuals (not necessarily just girls), through Jiu Jitsu techniques to overpower unskilled opponents much stronger or larger in size. So if you’re ever about to be harmed by someone bulkier than you, at least you have a fighting chance, like the lady in the video below!
Also, the amount of calories you burn doing live sparring in Jiu Jitsu is ridiculous. If you manage to spar continuously for one whole hour, in which case I will salute you with total reverence, you will burn at least 600 calories. I can only manage 10 minutes at most before calling it quits with my quivering limbs, and I’ll have burned a 100 calories by then. A great return on investment indeed!
Jiu Jitsu works out both your anerobic and aerobic systems, giving you great cardio endurance. In addition to working on your cardio, the sport also helps you build muscles, often in areas that are least developed. The grappling art uses muscles very rarely used during the day—so it gives you a chance to develop major muscle groups along with muscles that you would not otherwise develop by just lifting weights. On top of cardiovascular and muscular strength, Jiu Jitsu also increases agility, reflex, and balance, not to mention a brain workout as well to apply all the techniques learned during training in the actual combat.
So here’s to getting fit, building muscles and becoming a badass on the mats.
Here is a simple technique to give you a taste of what to expect.
Get Fit in KL Activity #4: Aerial Hoop at Viva Vertical, KL
Burns 300 to 400 calories per hour
Get out of your workout comfort zone—six-feet above the ground! This genre of aerial dance brings fitness and flight together into one stunning art form. Although these aerial activities might look very graceful and effortless, it is a facade. It’s actually tough as nails.
Aerial hoop is a circular apparatus suspended from a single point in the ceiling, and you learn various techniques to enter and exit from the hoop, along with conditioning, strength and flexibility exercises.
It is already a major calorie burner, but because frequent participation will build muscle in your body, the increased muscle mass increases metabolic rate, so even at rest more calories are burned. Such a win!
As I said, aerial hoop exercises help you get fit by improving core and upper body strength. This strengthening goes beyond the muscles to other soft tissues such as tendons and ligaments, helping to prevent injuries while undertaking other activities.
You’ll develop greater flexibility, increase your range of movements possible, and improve coordination. Also, tension tends to build up in the muscles and joints during our daily lives and aerial hoop exercises are the perfect way to allow the release of this; the decompression of the spine via the release of pressure between the vertebrae is particularly notable, aiding posture on both sitting and standing.
And that ladies, is how you get fit in kl with elegance and style.
Get Fit in KL Activity #5: Join a Frisbee game with Ultimate Frisbee Malaysia
Burns 400 to 600 calories per hour
Right, I know that this is not indoors per se, but play it in the evening and it counts. As long as we’re not under burning sunlight, we’re good. I gotcha.
If you’re in a game of Ultimate Frisbee, you’re basically running almost full speed across the field the entire length of the game. With little opportunity for rest, this is why this sport burns so many calories per hour.
I don’t know about you, but I absolutely abhor running. Jogging to me is the most mundane and painful activity you could do to lose weight. BUT, I never mind running for hours playing Frisbee. Why? Because I have a goal! A goal to get the damned Frisbee from my opponents and defend it at all cost if my team gets control of it.
The good thing about Frisbee, compared to games like football and basketball, is the low level of contact you’ll have with other players. Hence the lowered risk of getting injured by contact with another player. I don’t know about you, but I love being able to have my body function normally, so I avoid risks of twisting my ankles or breaking my bones, like the plague. And because of that, Frisbee is the best alternative.
Needless to say, it’s a great cardio workout, improves hand eye coordination and builds camaraderie between teammates. A real fun activity that’s goal oriented and comes with noticeable improvements, it certainly is a rewarding experience in addition to its effectiveness in getting you fit in KL.
Get Fit in KL Activity #6: Xtend Barre at Urban Spring, Bangsar
Burns 350 calories per hour
“If Pilates sculpts your body, Xtend Barre chisels it.”
This is the secret behind the Victoria’s Secret Angel’s heavenly bodies! Angels Karlie Kloss, Iza Goulart and Lily Aldridge, three blazing hot Victoria Secret models have been known to prep for their runway shows with barre exercises.
So naturally, I went to check it out! Xtend Barre is a premier ballet barre workout, merging elements of dance, ballet and Pilates to create an adrenaline-fueled workout that strengthens, lengthens and chisels the body.
Classes combine strength, cardio and flexibility training, which means you’re burning calories while sculpting the body. It’s easy to follow along, and you can go at your own pace. But be prepared for a pulsing cardio workout that uses the best bits of Pilates and ballet to target and tone different zones of your body as you sweat it out – and discover muscles you didn’t even know you had!
There’s a difference between working from the outside in versus the inside out. Think of it like a push and pull analogy. Push workouts are where you work hard and expend external effort, say in a boot camp class or a hard core sweat session. Pull workouts are when you work from the inside out, like in yoga and barre classes where the energy is pulled from within.
The power in pull workouts comes from your breath and all the tiny muscles that are often forgotten: glutes, transverse abdominals, and mental resilience. It isn’t that push workouts are bad—I do lots of HIIT exercises—but pull workouts work completely different muscle groups so doing both gives the body a more wholesome muscular development.
Xtend Barre works muscle groups evenly to create long, lean limbs, with small movements and high reps. So getting that lean dancer’s body may not be impossible after all!
Get Fit in KL Activity #7: Capoeira at Casa do Capoeira, KL
Burns 500 calories per hour
Capoeira (pronounced cap-wearer) is a Brazilian martial art form, combining self-defence, acrobatics, dance, music and song. It was developed by slaves who used it to disguise the fact that they were practising fight moves. Capoeira is ‘played’ (it’s known as the ‘game’, or jogo) in a circle called a roda, accompanied by music and singing
Superbly entertaining to watch, but exhausting to perform, you will sweat buckets during all your capoeira classes! And I’ll explain why. It’s because even the most basic of moves, which is Ginga; a warm up movement is already a prolonged and painful squat. You’re basically shifting your body weight from lunges and squats alternately, while your arms protect your face from any ‘attacks’.
Capoeira also crisps up your reaction time. It’s all about reacting quickly to evade, trick or ‘attack’ your opponent. Regular practice builds fast reflexes and superior agility. Your hand-eye coordination will also improve because your arms will be moving around your head to protect it from oncoming kicks. Escape moves such as the Esquiva (means ‘to dodge’) will help you escape from all kinds of kicks. The speed of the capoeira game is sometimes determined by the music that is being played. If the music has a fast beat, you’ll tend to move quicker.
Unlike many sports and activities, capoeira takes the body in all directions, improving flexibility. The moves you do such as bends, twists, curls and stretches, helps to develop mobility throughout your joints and muscles.
Many of the moves, including handstands and cartwheels, require taking the body’s full weight through the hands, so strengthening upper arms, chest, shoulders and back. And because you’re constantly in motion with the music, your stamina definitely increases.
With training and practice, you’ll soon look wicked cool with those epic Capoeira moves while getting fit in KL.
Get Fit in KL Activity #8: Pole Dancing at Bobbi’s Pole Studio, Bangsar
Burns 300 to 400 calories per hour
Any exercise that requires you to lift your entire body weight is bound to have a drastic effect on your overall fitness. Pole dancing is one trend that has quickly gained ground. The muscles you usually use for walking are useless here! It is a completely different ball game for your body.
Pole dancing is a fantastic and safe way to build strength in your body. Many pole dancing moves require you to use your own body weight as a resistance and through repetition and practice you gradually get stronger and able to undertake more advanced moves. Not only is this a fun way to build your strength, but it also produces lean muscles that avoid the bulk that you might gain by using weights. On top of all that, it’s a safe and natural way to become stronger.
What’s more, pole dancing is a very intense workout for your core, as many of the moves involve you rotating your body or—as you become more experienced—inverting your body. A two-hour pole class is thus a great way to improve your core strength, giving you that essential powerhouse of a fit body.
And here are some pole dancing classes around KL to get you started handling that pole! 😉
Get Fit in KL Activity #9: Parkour at Alpha Movements, KL
Burns 600 calories per hour
The aim of parkour is to get from one point to another in a complex environment, without assistive equipment and in the fastest and most efficient way possible. Sounds simple enough, but look what this simple goal has birthed; an entire community of fit individuals crafting creative, epic (almost superhero-like) movements to traverse obstacles that stand in their way. It has become an art form really. And you can enjoy some of their amazingly artistic moves in the video below.
Parkour workouts encompass total body fitness. Running and jumping over and through obstacles requires work from all muscles. It’s a fun twist to your usual static gym routine. It encourages play while tackling practical and fundamental movements.
Also, parkour promotes quick-thinking skills and creativity. You have to snake your way through barriers quickly. These sudden moments require you to exercise your brain and think on your feet. Practicing instinctive decision-making skills in parkour may lead you to trust your instinctive decisions in everyday life.
Another work out activity that brutally develops core strength and cardiovascular endurance, parkour training helps you bend, twist and transfer power and strength across your body, as well as builds your stamina to keep up with all the moves you’re dishing out.
A healthy and fun way to get fit in KL. Develop your mind along with that toned body, overcoming obstacles both mental and physical along the way.
Get Fit in KL Activity #10: Fly Yoga at Fitsy, Kota Damansara
Burns 300 to 400 calories per hour
One of the best ab workouts around, fly yoga is intense on building up core strength. A benefit of taking your routine off the ground is that you lose your point of stability; you’ll start to engage your core immediately without even realizing it.
Also, expect to see definition in your shoulders and arms especially, because being suspended by your arms obviously gives your upper body a much needed strength training.
Research shows that mind-body activities can reduce stress, and aerial yoga is no exception. Many classes end with you lying in savasana, cocooned in a hammock as you gently swing from side to side. Talk about blissing out!
Surprisingly intense in the cardio department and at the same time having zero-impact on the knees, makes fly yoga the perfect workout for anyone looking to get fit in KL in a safe and Zen environment.
Get Fit in KL Activity #11: Jazzercise at The Ballet Studio, KL
Burns 400 to 600 calories per hour
Jazzercise is a pulse-pounding, beat-pumping fitness program that gets you results…fast. It’s a calorie-torching, hip swiveling, Shakira’d-be-proud dance party with a hot playlist to distract you from the burn.
Many of the moves will be high intensity. You’re encouraged to put your full effort into the dance steps and moves which combine dance-based cardio with strength training and stretching to sculpt, tone and lengthen muscles for maximum fat burn.
However, it’s not all about the aerobic fitness. There is some strength training involved. There’ll be exercise balls, ropes, resistance bands, free weights used on top of body weight exercises. You’ll find that you have to do push ups, crunches, bicep curls, and much more. All your muscles will feel the burn as you work up the sweat.
It helps that there is fresh body-pulsing music and exciting new moves to keep you psyched to sweat. Time to tone up that body while learning some cool dance moves that you may find useful at your next party’s dance floor!
Get Fit in KL Activity #12: District 21 at IOI City Mall, Putrajaya
What better way is there to get fit in KL by challenging you and your mates to brave an obstacle course in Putrajaya? You don’t have to wait for the next Viper Challenge to come around, go to District 21!
The first of its kind, District 21 is an apocalypse themed Adventure Park. Located in a 70,000 sq.ft, indoor premise with a 55ft air-conditioned atrium, within IOI City Mall, Putrajaya, it’s comprised of 10 prominent attractions, most of which are super unique to Malaysia, and even Asia!
It is recognized by Malaysia’s Book of Records with 5 records, which are:
- The First Indoor Pump Track in Malaysia
- The First Indoor Ropes Course for Children in Malaysia
- The First Indoor High Ropes Course in Malaysia
- The First Indoor Maze in Malaysia
- The First Indoor Roller Glider in Malaysia
If any of these sound innately fascinating to you, head on over for a fun and interactive calorie burn as you climb, jump, ride, slide and fly your way around the obstacles.
Void of ‘passive’ rides, the credo of District21 is Fun, Passion and Participation. So make a communal workout of this adventure park and encourage friends and family to join you in your quest to get fit in KL!
Get Fit in KL Activity #13: Yoga at Oscillation, PJ/KL
Burns 250 calories per hour
For one thing, this is the perfect workout for lazy, or more politely put; efficient people. You can do it anywhere. There’s no need for driving to the gym to get fit in KL.
Plus, it’s efficient! Why waste so much time at the gym working each part of the body separately when you can connect all of the dots and do it all at once with yoga? The only weight needed is your body. If you can lift yourself, you’re good to go.
Also, practically everything you do in yoga is engaging your core, from core-centric poses to moving from pose to pose, using your core to stabilize your body. And in different inversions and arm balances, yoga allows you to raise your heartbeat, strengthen your muscles, and lengthen them out all at once. How’s that for efficiency?
It can also be quiet cardio! All you have to do is try a few sun salutations or any flow at a good, steady pace, matching your breath to your movement.
It saves money. (I’m sold at this point, being the cheapo that I am!) In fact, yoga doesn’t have to cost a penny. All you need to practice is you. You can wear any clothes that allow you to move, and you don’t even need a yoga mat: grass and carpet work just fine. If you want some inspiration, there are plenty of great, inexpensive yoga videos online. Here’s one to start you off.
Lastly, practicing yoga somehow shifts your perspective. It changes the way you approach life, your body, and eating. Yoga shows you how to appreciate your body for all of the amazing things that it can do for you and points you in the direction of wanting to fill your body with the best possible fuel rather than processed junk food. And changing your mind about your body and the foods you feed it will be a much more effective weight-loss tool than burning a bunch of calories in an aggressive gym routine and then mindlessly plowing through equal or more calories later that day.
Get Fit in KL Activity #14: Trampoline Workout at Jump Street, PJ
Burns 400 to 700 calories per hour
According to a Nasa study, jumping on a trampoline for 10 minutes is equivalent to a 30-minute run. I don’t know about you, but having the same benefits in a third of the time is success indeed.
It may seem like child’s play; jumping on a trampoline, when in truth, is an enjoyable low-impact workout that can provide you with numerous cardiovascular, health and fitness benefits. Exercising on a trampoline is a superior aerobic activity that can help you not just burn calories but bolster your metabolism, immune system and many other vital organs.
Jumping on a trampoline is particularly efficient at toning and defining your stomach and entire abdominal core. Abdominal muscles are developed because your body is required to flex and release every time it springs off a trampoline. And experts say that trampoline training can shape abdominal muscles more effectively than doing standard crunches or sit ups!
Rather than other workouts that focus strictly on a certain area, repeatedly bouncing off a trampoline provides you with a full-body workout. Your legs, thighs and buttocks are especially conditioned and toned by the consistent jumping movements. In addition, your arms can be worked by swinging them with every jump. You can increase the difficulty level of your workout by adding ankle weights or holding hand weights for extra resistance.
Unlike high-impact physical activities like running, skipping or jumping rope, training on a trampoline is unlikely to damage joints. It is the preeminent low-impact exercise after swimming. Also, consistent physical activity on a trampoline can strengthen your lymph and immune systems. Jumping on a trampoline can trigger the removal of toxins and other poisonous substances in your body.
So while you’re getting fit bouncing, say hello to that healthier immune system!
Get Fit in KL Activity #15: Ice Skating at MYNISS, Empire City
Burns 350 to 700 calories per hour
I asked a fellow skater while I was here, how she remains so fit even after having THREE kids!!
“I burn it all off on the ice“, she says.
And thus began my exploration of the ice rink. Mind you, it’s super tough in the beginning and your thighs will burn for the next day or two, but the end result of being able to run and glide on ice makes it all worth it.
Pro-tip here to get you started is to buy lots and lots of protective gear.
Cover what you can cover.
Knee guards, elbow guards, a helmet if you need. Anything to help you get rid of the fear of falling. When you feel safe falling, that’s when the learning can begin.
Also, don’t expect that you’ll be up and moving in one session. It’ll take a few attempts but hopefully by your third or fourth consistent visit, you’ll be able to move with confidence on the ice.
The good thing about working out on the ice is that although you are getting a lot of exercise done, provided you’re moving constantly round the rink, is that you don’t really feel the burn.
Yes, you’ll feel slightly hot and sweaty, but that’s because you’ve been practically running rounds about the rink. The low temperature keeps you dry and somewhat comfy, but rest assured, your body is still getting work done!
Get Fit in KL Activity #16: Crossfit at Crossfit Lah, Bangsar
Burns 500 to 900 calories per hour
I know this is technically a gym, but it’s a pretty great one, which is why it made the list.
First off, it is not boring. So, this is good news for those who dread mind-numbing repetition. There are different workouts every single day and most of them are pretty interesting. During my time here, I had to work out with a sledge hammer. Yes, an actual one. The exercise itself, is for you to figure out.
Secondly, workouts are pretty intense per session (usually lasting about an hour) so if you’re looking to push yourself and get as much work done as possible during your workout, I think this brings back a lot of ROI. You’ll definitely be drenched in sweat when the hour is up and you’ll find satisfying changes in your body and fitness level in as little as a few weeks time.
Thirdly, when there are partner workouts, you’ll have to work as a team to get the workout done, hence the extra motivation.
Fourthly, trainers here are qualified, so you reduce the risk of getting injured.
It’s so bad to get injure doing an exercise wrong, because that means you’ll need to take time to heal and having to stop workout altogether may reverse the good effects of all your workout done previously. This is such a frustration to me so it’s so important to be careful when working out and having someone experienced guide you is an added bonus.
And finally, there is a pretty great community here to workout with, and you kinda enjoy coming and getting the work done together.
Get Fit in KL Activity #17: Alternative Gym Workout at Honey Badgers, PJ
If you absolutely must engage in some sort of gym work out with weights and an angry trainer screaming down your neck (I jest), before you sign up for that dreaded gym membership, I suggest you check out Honey Badgers first.
Their tagline is: Shortcut Your Fitness by using a 30-Days Results GUARANTEED or your MONEY BACK.
Well, that’s definitely hard to say no to.
Qualified coaches will take care of you from the very start as they assess your goals, needs, and psychology, and implement for you the correct path forward, so that you save maximum time, money and effort while reaping the rewards of a low-risk, high-return partnership with HB.
With lots of emphasis on crafting a plan most suitable with your current lifestyle as well as providing a supportive community of like-minded individuals, Honey Badgers take upmost caution to make sure they’re not setting you up for failure. Because well, let’s face it. If you lose, they lose too. So you sort of become their problem, hence the extra care.
This would be one of the better ‘gym’ options of getting fit in KL, achieving that weight goal and getting your health back on track.
So now that you’re thoroughly educated on fun, alternative ways to get fit in KL instead of taking those usual trips to your local gym, go for it! Getting fit can evolve from just a chore to a fulfilling activity that brings benefit to your health, your mood and even your friend circle! Try out the activities or places above and let me know how it goes. Remember your getting fit now is an investment to your health tomorrow! And it’s never too late OR early to start! You’re very welcome to say HI, give advice or ask questions in the comments below just so that I know that my dispensing of knowledge had some sort of impact! 😀 Thank you for reading and welcome to your journey of getting fit in KL! Remember, you’re not alone!
For more tips and tricks on how to get fit fast and lose the weight you need to, check out my previous article here.