Within 10 years of opening its first location, Fitness 1440 has expanded into a franchise of more than 15 clubs across nine states. But, the enterprise doesn’t adhere to the cookie-cutter model of typical franchises; each location looks different, offers different amenities, and is tailored to meet the needs of the community. What members can always expect, however, is an arsenal of cardio and weight-training equipment, knowledgeable personal trainers, and group fitness classes, such as Zumba, yoga, and cycling.
The Punta Gorda Club unleashes muscular potential with an on-site nutritionist, a well-equipped gym, six clay tennis courts, and more than 80 group fitness classes each week. During a one-on-one nutrition consultation and dietary analysis (a $99 value), the club's food guru will discuss each client's eating habits, then draft a written meal plan that outlines what flavors of Twinkies they're allowed to eat. Additionally, an unlimited one-month membership (a $90 value, including enrollment fee) lets patrons loose to toughen tendons on the gym's playground of cardio machines, free weights, and step-aerobics teeter-totters. Members can also choose from more than 11 types of group fitness classes such as yoga, spinning, and Pilates, to tone their tummies in tandem or swat serves on six clay tennis courts.
Serendipity Health & Racquet Club is more than a gym. The word gym evokes a sterile room surrounded by mirrors, where the sounds of clanking weights and grunting weightlifters fill the air. Nestled in a gated community, Serendipity lives up to its soothing moniker with an elegant, airy facility on the edge of a placid lake. Inside, a spacious fitness club presents members with a full circuit of Cybex Eagle weight equipment, free weights, and cardio machines illuminated by natural light flooding in through wraparound windows. Outside, members can practice their serve on 19 Har-Tru tennis courts, or turn laps in the heated Junior Olympic–size pool.
While stationary bikes implicitly imply immobility, ON1 Cycle’s RealRyder bikes are anything but immobile. Designed to engage core muscles in addition to legs, the stationary cycles tilt, lean, and gallop when kicked just like real bikes do. Certified instructors lead six different types of sessions that range from the music-infused Happy Power Hour to the intense High Octane course, which incorporates high-intensity interval training. Students can tinker with their own bike settings and choose how hard they wish to pedal during the adaptable classes.
Pilates Plus has a trio of studios, and each serves a specific purpose. The first is outfitted with Pilates Reformer machines, atop which students whittle their core muscles and increase their flexibility. The second has ample space for the other fitness classes on the gym's schedule: dance-inspired Zumba, kickboxing, mat Pilates, and Booty Barre, which coalesces dance, yoga, and Pilates. The third studio opens for massage and personal-training clients.
Sarasota Wind and Water Adventures gives adventurers the vessels and knowledge to plunge boldly into the surf, providing paddleboard, kayak, and waterski rentals as well as lessons. Fishing trips set sail for open water with a Coast Guard-certified captain and all of the tackle necessary to hunt for kingfish, triggerfish, and the vengeful ghosts of scuba divers, while sunset cruises let passengers experience the wonder of voyaging directly into the heart of the sun.