$34 for five spinning classes (up to a $85 value)
Calories: The Original Renewable Energy
The key to any workout regimen is burning calories. Discover how that happens with Groupon's exploration of the body's inner furnace.
In all of weight loss, there may be no concept less aptly named than the calorie. That's because a calorie is a unit of scientific measure—specifically, a measure of the energy needed to raise the temperature of 1 gram of water by 1 degree Celsius. Though the calorie unit we associate with food actually refers to kilo calories—meaning when we say, “2,000 calories a day,” we actually mean 2,000,000. And if the number of calories we ingest is bad news, the upside is that we are burning them all the time.
A certain amount of calories—about 60–75 percent of the calories you burn each day—are needed to sustain the body's unconscious functions, such as breathing and circulation. Known as basal metabolic rate, the specific percentage depends on factors such as size and body composition, gender, and age (typically, as people get older, fat makes up a larger portion of body weight, causing calories to burn more slowly). Digestion makes up about another 10 percent of the calories burned, leaving physical activity to account for the rest.
During exercise, the muscles contract, causing the body's adenosine triphosphate (ATP) molecules to break down as the heart continues to pump faster and faster—increasing the body’s demand for more energy. Once the muscles have depleted the day’s caloric intake, they turn to other calorie sources to fuel the fire—making weight loss possible as the body begins to sacrifice fat cells to the god of the treadmill.
LifeStyle Fitness Gold
A strong, healthy body is a form of wealth, according to Felisia N., the health coach who helms LifeStyle Fitness Gold, along with her partner–a United States Marine Corps veteran. Though a healthy body won't fit in most wallets, it can lead to a fuller, happier life. To help clients get in top shape, Coach Felisia incorporates fitness training into a preventive health program that includes nutritional seminars, motivational support, and collaboration with medical professionals such as physicians, dietitians, and metabolic specialists, all set in an air-conditioned studio with a parking lot for maximum convenience. Cardio and strength training converge during group classes, which range from challenging boot camps to dance-aerobics routines as energizing as an espresso brewed in a particle accelerator.
Though most workouts are suitable for exercisers of all levels, several are tailored to special populations such as children and seniors. Whether she's teaching Zumba or stressing the importance of good nutrition, Coach Felisia draws upon extensive training from the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA) and Institute for Integrative Nutrition. While at the Institute, she studied more than 100 nutrition theories and coaching techniques with wellness experts—such as director of the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine Dr. Andrew Weil, head of Yale University's Prevention Research Center Dr. David Katz, and chair of Harvard University's nutrition department Dr. Walter Willett.
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