Green grass and blue skies bookend the boot-camp classes at Bulldog Bootcamp. Leading the outdoor workouts, owner Greg Major and his team of seasoned fitness instructors spur their students on by shouting words of encouragement and tearing Chicken Soup for the Soul books in half. Major—a decorated bodybuilder and inline skater—has been a certified personal trainer since 1989, and has since picked up the credentials to teach CrossFit’s Level 1, Football, and Kids programs. He and his staff stage CrossFit classes at Bulldog Bootcamp’s training facility in Forest Park.
Starting a fitness routine can be intimidating, but the trainers at Evolution Fitness believe that it’s something everyone should do. That’s why they strive to make exercise easier for every one of their members by supplementing gym visits with their wealth of fitness knowledge. To guide guests on their own paths to health, they conduct one-on-one yoga, Pilates, and custom-training sessions. Group classes, meanwhile, add a social aspect to the mix with boot camps, step aerobics, and Zumba, which turns exercise sessions into freewheeling dance routines like a treadmill on a Broadway set.
Students should bring: A yoga mat, water bottle, and towel
Registration required: Yes
Good for beginners: Yes
Average class length: 60 minutes
Guests allowed: Yes
Parking: 2 hour free parking
Pro Tip: Classes at Navy Pier are first come first serve. Plan accordingly.
Different people want to get in shape for different reasons, and they go about it in many different ways. Fortunately, Fitness Formula Clubs' trainers understand this. They start every new member at their gym with four complimentary personal-training sessions that not only help hammer down each individual's goals, but also provide a solid foundation of knowledge and motivation. From there, equipment and guidance help each client reach whatever heights they're after.
Programs that focus on endurance in running, swimming, and cycling pair with Pilates work and basketball courts to develop well-rounded regimens. There's also classic equipment?cardio machines and free weights?offsetting a selection of less-than-traditional equipment?an artificial rock wall which lets clients build upper-body strength while practicing lines for their Cliffhanger: The Musical audition.
The certified trainers at Elite Fitness meet with guests to determine a personalized fitness routine that utilizes the number of gym equipment and the skills of the trainers. They lead guests through one-on-one training sessions or lead groups through body-sculpting and boot-camp fitness classes.
As a broadcast journalism student, Kimberly Refilek found time between lectures, internships at Kiss FM and NBC, and papers to pursue her other passions: sports and fitness. Somehow she found the time to study and work while scoring goals for the co-ed soccer team and training in boxing and muay thai.
Inspired by her after-work and between-class endeavors, Kimberly's colleagues began to ask her to help them train. She balked at first, saying she only knew how to train herself. But at their insistence, Kimberly began to help and slowly she came to the revelation that not only did she truly love fitness, but she also loved helping others reach their fitness goals.
After graduation, Kimberly switched careers, swapping her steno pad for kettle bells and her pencils for more kettle bells. At Moirai Health and Fitness, Kimberly provides many forms of personal training and nutritional counseling but also teaches fitness classes including Moirai Surfset, a workout that approximates the core-toning experience of surfing.
Rush Performance: Personal Training Studio's certified trainers take positive attitudes and community support so seriously that if you complain during your trial of the Team Rush training program and bring any negativity, you won't be able to join Team Rush. And that would mean not torching hundreds of calories and toning up during strength, cardio, and sports conditioning sessions and high-intensity interval circuits.
Even the personal training requires supporting your fellow exercisers as it usually involves small groups of two to four working out together and forming a human pyramid to place any junk food out of reach. The trainers often use the FitRanX fitness-testing system to determine how fit a person is before they start Rush's programs and to monitor their progress throughout.