Establishing a regular exercise routine is a great way to show your body you care and is much less painful than swallowing a greeting card. Demonstrate some physical affection with this Groupon.
- $49 for one month of unlimited fitness and martial-arts classes (a $99 value)
Group settings help students build solid strength bases through functional workouts that incorporate kettlebells, sandbags, and free weights to counterbalance cardio drills and core work. Click here for a class schedule.
Building Muscle: Cells on the Move
Read on to learn exactly how fitness classes leave you with more muscle or better tone.
Bulky upper-body muscles might have hindered early humans who had to chase their prey across the plains, but it could help those who often had to climb trees to adjust their satellite dishes. That’s why the body builds muscle according mostly to use: do enough curls, and the biceps expand. As anyone who has experienced post-workout soreness could intuit, those curls are actually a form of controlled damage, making thousands of miniscule tears to the muscle tissue that beckon autoimmune cells to show up alongside testosterone and other hormones. The white blood cells help switch on satellite cells, which are similar to stem cells. Before they're activated, satellite cells aren't doing much—instead, they lie dormant around muscle fibers until they're called into action to repair torn tissue.
This isn't the only kind of cellular transformation at work in growing muscles. Long muscle cells, which contain several nuclei, can also begin to change type after a workout. Certain kinds of muscle fibers are equipped to handle brief bursts of effort but will quickly become tired if asked to do more intense work. These are the first to disappear as someone starts an exercise routine, as they're converted into fibers with more endurance. This principle is so dramatic that a sports scientist can generally tell whether someone is a professional athlete or a professional mattress model by examining a minute sample of muscle tissue.
Evolve owner John Cook and each of his trainers make it a personal mission to practice what the gym preaches: honing the fundamentals of physical prowess. Each coach is either a current or former elite athlete in addition to an exercise professional, a fact that enhances their ability to inspire clients. In John's case, a competitive history in wrestling, powerlifting, and mixed martial arts combines with positive mantras to motivate his students.
Since its 1996 founding, Evolve has embraced functional workouts rather than monotonous jogs aboard the treadmill or races with a slinky down the same flight of stairs. Strength and conditioning classes include drills for agility, core work, stability, and endurance, and MMA and wrestling programs showcase tried-and-true grappling techniques. Though sports-performance sessions might focus on specific athletic skills, most other classes remain accessible to anyone hoping to amp up their training. Routines mix up their maneuvers daily to keep muscles on their toes, and a charged atmosphere of support eliminates the need for kettlebells that say "I wuv you!" when squeezed.