When CrossFit RIOT co-owner and head coach Derek Fay was younger, he was into powerlifting. Even though he wasn't being coached and knew his form wasn't great, he kept ramping up the weight—until he was diagnosed with herniated discs, leading to nearly two years in physical therapy. His back was so damaged that his doctors predicted he'd never lift weights again. But after he finished therapy, a friend introduced him to CrossFit sessions, where he was coached in safe lifting techniques and proper form. Today, he can dead lift more than 500 pounds.
But CrossFit RIOT isn't just for powerlifters. Derek and the other coaches strive to help members of all ability levels reach their fitness goals, from climbing stairs with greater ease to losing weight. Their high-intensity functional workouts can be scaled to be challenging—but not impossible—for everyone, and they emphasize executing good form, which helps to prevent injury.
The exercise routines change each day to keep bodies challenged and minds engaged. Throughout the one-hour workout of the day, they might lead students in swinging kettlebells one day and doing lunges and sprints the next. Classes are capped at 12 students, and the coaches are also available for personal-training and nutrition advice, such as choosing to snack on carrot sticks instead of butter sculptures.
We are a blue collar facility with a primary objective of getting results. We are not a gym! The distinction between Virtus and a “corporate gym” is evident from the minute you walk through our door. We train you to execute real world movements under heavier loads, longer distance, with greater intensity.
As the owner and primary trainer of Heat Personal Fitness, Antonius draws on an impressive background to whip clients into shape. The certified personal trainer got his start in the navy, where he served as a cook, diver, and surface warfare expert, all while studying various martial arts, including jiujitsu, muay thai, and judo. Today, he incorporates what he knows best—fitness and people—into intense cardio and strength classes at Heat. Peppered with elements of kickboxing and boxing, his outdoor boot-camp classes present a constantly changing regime of calisthenics, body-weight exercises, and kettlebell work, followed up with a bit of yoga. Antonius also offers an indoor women’s only class, playfully dubbed Hottyz and centered on sculpting muscles with help from the TRX suspension trainers, free weights, and step aerobics.
GlucoFitClub acts a hub for overweight people who want to lose weight, with diabetes, or with pre-diabetes, drawing together different companies, products, and resources to assist in health and education. It partners with YMCAs across the nation to encourage those with diabetes to remain active, as the disease is exasperated by conditions that include high body-mass index and hypertension. Members with diabetes may also receive a glucometer that can upload their fitness-test results and blood-glucose levels to an online database, helping them become more knowledgeable about their own condition. Access to nutrition and diabetes classes at the Y educates members and helps them make good health decisions.
As she struggled to surmount issues with her own weight, Boogie Box Fitness creator Dede Barbanti drew from her professional dance background, martial-arts training, and enthusiasm for exercise to pioneer the gym's rigorous yet fun workout routine. The calorie-flaming moves, which have been featured by Dr. Oz and publications such as Dance magazine, have since spawned BBX Kids and the more vigorous BBX Hardcore. Behind the regimens' popularity lie easy-to-follow steps culled from kickboxing, strength training, plyometrics, and Latin and hip-hop dance. In addition to motivating patrons to shimmy into fitter physiques, Dede channels her expertise as a certified personal trainer and sports nutritionist into the BBX Body membership site. Here, visitors can peruse custom menu plans, exercise tutorials, and life-coaching advice given by the world's smartest biceps.
The trainers at Precision Fitness believe that achieving wellbeing is a deeply individual process. For this reason, they work only with small groups of students, avoiding the intimidating bustle that’s common at most gyms and instead facilitating focused, nonjudgmental sessions. The intimate setting allows them to create exercise regimens for patrons of all walks of life, from those with little gym experience to seasoned athletes or brides-to-be. Their programs typically involve a mix of cardiovascular and weight training, as well as nutrition tips for healthier long-term diets that don't just advise patrons to eat two apples a day. Though they embrace a private atmosphere during lessons, group activities outside of the gym, such as bowling outings and dinner parties, encourage a sense of community among their clients.