Chris was in terrible health. At 51 years old, he was battling two issues familiar to many Americans—high blood pressure and high cholesterol. So, he started attending Dallas Fitness Boot Camps. In time, he lost 40 pounds and 18% of his body fat, which enabled him to get his cholesterol down to normal levels and finally ditch his blood-pressure medications.
Though the classes completely changed his life, Chris didn’t have to make an exorbitant commitment—coach Ron Routhier asks students to attend just three 30-45-minute workouts each week. That’s all the time it takes for Ron’s masterful approach to emerge. The former infantryman spent years as the trainer in charge of soldiers that had met or exceeded the Army’s physical fitness standards. That discipline shows through now; in fact, another of his students boasts that Ron’s training got her in better shape than she was while in the Army Reserves. That’s not to say that students are expected to arrive in tip-top shape—Ron’s routines can be modified for all fitness levels, and his plans include nutritional guidance that helps people supplement their exercise with custom diet plans.
If you ask a professional cheerleader how she got her toned physique, agile limbs, and powerful muscles, she might point you to Jay and Lin Johnson. The husband-and-wife duo are the brains behind Jay Johnson's Boot Camp Fitness—an exercise program designed to slim waistlines and pump up muscles of students of all abilities, from fitness newbies to professionals and prestigious clients such as the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. They have also introduced the program to national audiences through numerous television appearances, including Dr. Phil's Ultimate Weight Loss Challenge.
Drawing from their extensive training in the US Army and years of fitness experience, the pair and a staff of elite trainers—including professional football players and mixed martial artists—lead boot-camp programs in the Dallas area. Within parks, fields, and parking lots, they conduct high-intensity workouts, keeping patrons engaged with constantly varied regimens, along with games, obstacle courses, and scavenger hunts. They focus on functional training throughout the sessions, challenging students to heave barbells, flip tractor tires, and lug fire hoses.
The trainers also offer a specialized cheerleading boot camp ideal for high-school teams training for upcoming seasons or assistant grocery managers seeking ways to motivate their teams of disillusioned bag boys.
Austin Fit Magazine named RockBody Boot Camp its Best Boot Camp of 2011 and also lauded its owner, Brian Prinzo, as one of the city’s Top 10 Fittest Trainers in 2010. But for Brian and his staff of experienced trainers, it’s not about the accolades; it’s about helping others lose weight and reach their fitness goals. Classes eschew routine courses of treadmills and bench presses for a variety of challenging workouts that put participants through a mash-up of strength, core, cardio, and interval training designed to push them to their personal limits. Best of all, the workouts provide the motivation and accountability needed to help exercisers push past plateaus, and exercises can be tailored to accommodate many fitness levels and concerns, such as arthritis, body pain, and conjoined sweatbands.
The instructors at Core Group Fitness understand that getting buff doesn't happen by simply visiting the gym; rather, they see it as a process inextricably linked to camaraderie and community. This team-based approach comes out in their group classes and boot camps, where cohorts of exercises grunt their way through TRX suspension training or build lean muscle and improve flexibility with functional workout regimens. They pair strength training with cardio work during their interval training sessions, which torch fat thanks to metabolism-boosting exercises. In addition to group classes, instructors also build rapports with individual students during personal training sessions, helping clients prep for their first marathon or last street fight with the meter man.
Though they're all in enviable shape, you shouldn't feel intimidated by the highly accomplished certified trainers at Performant Fitness & Core Group Fitness. The team—which includes pro fitness competitors, marathon runners, and Tae Kwon Do black belts amongst its ranks— works hard to foster an encouraging atmosphere in the gym, motivating patrons of all ages and fitness levels to work together to tackle the workout of the day.
But that doesn't mean the sessions are easy. Each day, the trainers lead a routine that combines interval, strength, cardio, and flexibility training into one high-intensity, functional workout. And no two workouts are the same. One day, it might incorporate kettlebell drills and TRX band exercises, while the next might challenge patrons to toss medicine balls or heave bags of sand. Meanwhile, those who prefer to exercise at their own pace can gain 24-hour access to top-of-the-line fitness equipment, including cardio machines equipped with personal TVs that always remember your name.
Certified personal trainer and running coach Jennifer Reid founded LiveWire Fitness to help make positive changes in peoples' lives. One way she and her staff accomplish that is by offering fitness services like boot camps, one-on-one personal training, and a running club, the latter of which meets each Saturday morning at Arbor Hills Nature Preserve. Of course, hard work is only half the battle—to really affect change in others' lives, the company strives to establish a nurturing culture where guests can foster positive relationships with one another and their environment. The all-for-one, one-for-all attitude is reflected, not only in group classes, but in wellness services like group grocery store tours, during which, a trainer will lead guests around their local grocery store, highlighting the healthy foods.