With machines set up in rows to encourage competition, many ordinary gyms cater to men's bodies and psychology, right down to the urinals that were "accidentally" installed in the women's locker room. At Curves, you'll move around a circuit of hydraulic resistance machines that have been designed to work with women's bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. An experienced trainer is always nearby to help manage your machine maneuvering and your muscle making. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks and losing your momentum, the hydraulic machines use your body weight and fitness level to create resistance that matches your abilities, decreasing the risk of soreness or injury. Because traditional lift-and-lower motions create bulky muscles, each machine uses push-and-pull motions to create toned, lean muscles perfect for crushing a grapefruit without looking like you can.
Starting a new workout regimen can be intimidating. That's where the professionals at CrossFit Cherokee come in. According to level-one-certified trainer Lori, the staff cheers on students of all stripes, irrespective of their skill or experience levels. Lori is just one of eight dedicated instructors at CrossFit Cherokee. They have a variety of backgrounds, but they all share a passion for their own fitness as well as their students’ fitness. They leverage the CrossFit program to help participants get in shape during constantly changing sessions. Their classes incorporate new moves each time to keep things interesting and prevent boredom; this mix might include chin-ups, 400-meter runs, and back squats.
The team also assists new members by creating diets and 30-day workout plans as well as posting notes of encouragement on their blog. Instructors rotate leading classes—like when a high-school math teacher teaches bio, and the bio teacher teaches how much mRNA is in a dumbbell.
Anytime Fitness, which boasts 1,689 clubs in North America, makes it easier for average folks to etch out time for exercise by doing one simple thing: staying open 24 hours a day for 365 days a year. As fit-seekers challenge themselves on Nautilus and Hammer Strength cardio and strength machines and hoist free weights in clean, well-stocked facilities, security monitoring ensures they’re safe and producing enough sweat to meet official government standards. Members can also ramp up their exercise regimens with the help of Anytime Fitness’ staff of personal trainers, who demonstrate moves and sling motivating tips. After workouts, guests can shower in the private restrooms.
Source4 Fitness delivers comprehensive exercise programs and professional health and nutrition advice in a state-of-the-art facility. The two-month membership (a $29 value per month) includes access to boutique fitness facilities and enrollment in group fitness classes ranging from Pilates, yoga, kickboxing, and boxkicking to Mom and Me, a joint class for mothers and children ages 2–4. A FitPro will guide eight 30-minute personal training sessions (a $30 value per class) that help clients achieve long-term health goals through custom exercise programs and nutritional consultation. Each 30-minute, tailor-made workout is designed to achieve Source4 Fitness' tenets—energize, inspire, rejuvenate, and improve—reaching well beyond the quick fix in an effort to bring about sustainable health improvement. A FitPro will also help members develop a customized nutrition plan (a $39 value), meeting twice per month to help shape an effective plan of attack and discuss which Muppet is the most lovable. These 20–30 minute sessions cover lifestyle issues and include weigh-ins, measurements, and supplement consultation.
Bodyplex Fitness boasts a 28,500-square-foot facility, equipped with group classes, modern equipment, and personal trainers to whip burgeoning muscle mavens into shape. Health-hunters can attend three selections from a schedule of more than 50 classes, slurp down a complimentary smoothie from the in-house bar, test out a bevy of Life Fitness and Precor cardio equipment, and train for spontaneous, t-shirt-tearing flex-offs in the free-weight area (a $44 value). Meanwhile enjoy body-pampering amenities such as a 30-minute massage (a $45 value) and unlimited 30-day access to the 200-watt tanning systems (a $33 value).
At Fusion Dance & Fitness Studio, experienced instructors help booty shakers harness the body-slimming power of boogie through a variety of dance routines. Zumba is a dynamic dance workout that combines Latin and international music with aerobic interval training and easy-to-follow dance steps. Keeping up with the instructor's fancy footwork will furrow brows, activating sweat glands and calorie Bunsen burners to sculpt and tone bodies. During a three-hour pole-dancing workshop, inversion experts teach athletes of all levels a tasteful striptease. The sexy moves and sensual choreography relieve insecurities and peel away stress as if it's a no-longer-relevant Baby on Board sign.