Jennifer Gray puts her 15 years of fitness-industry experience to use formulating goal-oriented programs for women. Gray begins with a healthy helping of circuit weight training and kickboxing before adding a pinch of Pilates, a dash of yoga for flexibility, and a sprinkling of belly dancing for core strengthening. She also strives to help clients develop nutritionally sound eating habits, giving them the tools to avoid fatty, bad-for-you foods such as processed meats and deep-fried statues of Grover Cleveland.
David Krainiak has been fit his whole life, participating in athletics at a young age, graduating from college with an exercise degree, and garnering 15 trainer certifications in his professional career. But the impetus to start a women's-only boot camp began before all that. It started with his grandmothers and his mother, all of whom he watched struggle to stay fit while dealing with their demanding lives. When starting Michigan's Adventure Boot Camp, he sought to create a workout environment that would have welcomed any of his matriarchs?an accessible, noncompetitive camp for women of all ages.
Each boot camp spans four weeks of exercise, with classes held five days a week, with students making sure to attend on three of those days. Classes might meet indoors or out, depending on which of the nine locations a client chooses to attend, but the regimen of exercise remains the same. Trainers cook up new routines daily, which might include fitness kickboxing, jump-roping, obstacle courses, or sport yoga, in which the class plays a scrimmage using the first student who manages to contort themselves into the shape of a football.
The nationally certified trainers at Forest Fitness challenge students to set goals and strive to achieve them during one-on-one sessions focused on training for sports and achieving overall wellness. Sessions take place in a 3,500-square-foot facility lined with rows of free weights, exercise balls, and chin-up bars. Through a back-and-forth dialogue not unlike those in scenes from Rocky and Earnest Goes to the UFC Championship, trainers map out programs to address and strengthen specific muscle groups. Or, the experts engineer sports-focused regimens than can improve power and coordination in games such as soccer, basketball, and golf. Exercises that incorporate Bosu-ball work and heavy-rope training additionally prepare clients for police and fire exams by improving mental focus and techniques for unwrinkling uniforms, such as dropping grand pianos on them.
As the name suggests, the trainers at every BODY believe people of all ages and fitness levels can live longer and healthier lives by exercising. They’ve put together a lineup of classes that target specific areas of the body, such as Belly Be Gone and Booty Boot Camp, as well as age-specific classes that pair clients with appropriate workouts and nutrition education. The Discussion Group class fosters a community where students facing similar issues find the support and motivation necessary to face their most daunting fitness challenges and bathroom-scale poltergeists.
When Mark Swift began personal training eight years ago, it was a part-time passion. But his love of fitness so inspired clients that the on-the-side job flourished into a full-time endeavor, Swift Results Personal Training. Mark still whips his clients into shape with a back-to-basics philosophy that relies on high-impact, high-intensity, sweat-inducing workouts. But his services now also encompass in-home sessions, group training, sports training, and Warrior Boot Camp.
Though she looks nothing like Ghengis Khan, Jen Dunbar is building an empire. Its outposts are made of muscles resting on a foundation of knowledge, and it exists to promote an active lifestyle filled with motivation and self-confidence. As an exercise physiologist, Dunbar studies the latest kinesiology research every day, looking for evidence-based ways to melt fat and boost muscle mass. She also draws from years of lacrosse coaching and four personal-training certifications to help her clients to perform at their peak, whether they're running a marathon, slimming down for a wedding, or preparing for the national hopscotch championships. Filled with strength training, sprinting, and constant encouragement, her workouts challenge exercisers to push themselves, even if they've never done a pushup before. In addition to training athletes one-on-one, Dunbar leads small-group workouts and online boot camps packed with jumping drills, body-weight exercises, and weight-lifting challenges.