For more than 130 years, the YMCA has worked to facilitate growth for individuals as well as communities by providing social-enrichment programs that promote honesty, respect, and responsibility. YMCA of Greater San Antonio, which features locations throughout the metropolitan area, helps people improve their lives with healthy living programs that offer inclusive training classes as well as lifelong learning classes. Youth development initiatives and childcare services allow children as well as teens to develop positive behaviors while exploring their interests in a safe, supportive environment. The centers also encourage social responsibility by providing opportunities to support local communities through volunteerism and charitable giving.
In 1997, Damian Cortez decided that a crammed calendar shouldn't cancel out exercise. He founded Specialized Fitness as a way to transport the gym to working men and women, either at their home or in their office buildings. Today he sends insured and certified personal trainers to more than 100 houses, where they set up equipment and guide clients through customized cardio and resistance routines. The company also has two of its own gyms and boot-camp classes, which incorporate innovative workout tools?such as tires, ropes, and sledgehammers?to keep groups engaged. Body-composition assessments help track progress throughout the training programs and ensure that coiled springs have taken the place of fat deposits.
When 16-year-old Roger Soler crossed the finish line first at the Peruvian National Junior Championship, his victory marked the beginning of a love affair with running. At age 18, he set a Peruvian record in the 1500-meter and eventually brought his talents to the U.S., where he competed in the 5000-meter race at the 1984 Los Angeles Summer Olympics. Through it all, Roger nurtured a genuine fondness for running that blossomed into a full-fledged passion when he opened the first Soler's Sports more than two decades ago.
Today, Soler's Sports boasts four locations staffed by athletes with real-life experience in biking and running and was awarded a spot on Running Insight's Top 50 Running Stores of 2011. Staffers tend to customers on an individual basis, guaranteeing sneakers to accommodate gaits and bikes to fit bodies based on detailed analyses. Once employees have profiled the perfect shoe or bike, they help patrons find them, searching through the store’s stock, which includes brands such as Ridley Bikes, Vibram FiveFingers, Vitalsox, and Spibelt. Patrons can test-drive new kicks and wheels at the store's group runs and rides.
Chad Humphrey comes from a family of eaters, with a particular penchant for his mother's southern cooking. But when he tipped the scale at 275 lbs., he entered a bet with his brothers to see who could get to 220 lbs. the fastest. After cruising to 215 and taking the $100 prize, Chad was inspired to help other achieve the same transformative goals. Workouts at Chad Humphrey Fitness are based on the idea that group exercise promotes greater results and accountability. Each one-hour session blends a mix of metabolic and plyometric conditioning, including suspension rings, weight sleds, box jump, and medicine balls.
AFAA-certified group and personal trainer Cherise Curby owns and operates Curby Fitness, where she gets a kick out of helping her students achieve what they never thought they could. Her boot-camp classes emphasize circuit training, strength work, and cardio for a well-rounded workout, while one-on-one personal-training sessions put clients on the fast track to fitness.
Johnathon Inman dove into personal training nearly 15 years ago while in the United States Air Force. His passion for whipping bodies into shape has taken him to train with the USAF Academy, Bally Total Fitness, and YMCA, before becoming his own boss with Next Level Personal Training. He works with clients one-on-one and gathers groups for boot-camp classes, where people work together to flip giant tires, carry logs, and sing both parts of “I Got You Babe.” Johnathon specializes in weight loss, body-fat reduction, strength building, and core enhancement, and he takes care to include all aspects in his workouts.