To symbolize the raw energy and intensity of their training program, Donna Pierce and Lauren Bunney named their gym—named "Baltimore's Best" by Baltimore magazine in 2010—after Costa Rica’s active Arenal Volcano, which relentlessly spews hot smoke and molten lava. Similarly, the fitness team turns up the heat of their fitness routines with the CrossFit regimen, which transforms bodies through simple, rigorous, no-frills workouts. Exercisers won’t find circuit training strength machines at Arenal’s 4,800-square-foot facility. Instead, they use free weights, medicines balls, and kettlebells to sculpt chiseled physiques. All students start out learning the proper form of CrossFit's functional movements before taking on the rigorous “workout of the day.” Sessions can be scaled to meet the fitness level of each participant, but always keep muscles guessing with varying reps, weight levels, and surprise trust falls.
Gary Ostroski was bored. He was tired of workout routines that followed the same pattern of arms one day, back the next, and so on. He wanted a challenge, and he found it in CrossFit. His first CrossFit workout left him drained, but it also left him with a new passion. He founded 410 CrossFit to help people like himself push themselves to new levels of fitness through CrossFit's ever-changing workouts. Each class showcases new challenges designed to balance muscle development and weight loss so clients don't develop bulky silhouettes or float away on strong breezes.
For the staff at CrossFit Catonsville, intensity is about the sweat on the shirt, instead of the weights on the bar. The experienced coaches at this facility understand that each client is unique, which is why their workouts are tailored to each individual person. Those who complete the CrossFit Catonsville program should see improvements in their strength, speed, agility, and cardiovascular health. In addition to tough workouts, they also offer on-site nutrition counseling and body composition testing. This way, each person has the motivation, guidance and expert knowledge they need to become their best self.
The coaches at CrossFit Towson are living proof that each WOD?workout of the day?can benefit anyone, regardless of his or her fitness goals. The staff includes a rower, a marathoner, lacrosse players, a football player, and a world-ranked kettlebell lifter, all of whom would perform the same movements if they participated in a class. So, too, would a housewife or a high school student. That's because CrossFit's exercises scale by intensity, not by form. Its weightlifts and cardio drills can be performed by students of all experience levels, and the shared workout?not to mention the instructors non-intimidating approach?can lead to a strong sense of camaraderie. CrossFit Towson schedules standard CrossFit classes in addition to open gym time, when guests can plan their own routines and target weak points such as the one pack on their six-pack that creaks.
At CrossFit Harbor East, participants row, dead-lift, squat, and sprint their way to better bodies and improved overall health. High-intensity, varied, functional movements are the name of the game when it comes to workout programming, with each day consisting of a different assortment of exercises that snuff out weakness and help individuals perform better in everyday life experiences, such as dead-lifting their backlog of telephone books. Exercisers pump out reps on pull-up bars, ropes, rings, kettle bells, and other apparatuses side-by-side with their classmates, but they'll never touch weight machines, which fly in the face of the CrossFit ethos of self-sufficiency.
Just as each day of exercise is an eclectic assortment of routines, the certified coaching staff at CrossFit Harbor East represents a similarly wide spectrum of backgrounds and expertise. Former collegiate and pro athletes, CrossFit games competitors, and strength and conditioning experts fill its ranks, bringing a fresh perspective and a positive attitude to the gym every day. The gym was recently recognized by Spot Me Girl as one the "Top 15 CrossFit Gyms In America."
Co-owners Paul Davis, Catherine Chasen, and Brandon Chasen are highly qualified trainers and have a lot in common: they all played sports in college and they’re all CrossFit Level 1 instructors. Catherine and Brandon have even competed in the 2012 CrossFit Games as seen on ESPN. At their fitness studio, CrossFit Owings Mills, they and their similarly fitness-minded staff will challenge you to a slate of constantly varied, high-intensity, functional workouts that utilize everything from weights and pull-up bars to ropes, running, kettle bells, and sleds. The program pushes its followers to the limit, but also offers them an encouraging group environment and the dream of someday having a body as chiseled as the Statue of Liberty.