What began as Anita Gibson's struggling, two-person family business has evolved into Advanced Weight Loss Clinics, an organization with 17 corporately owned clinics and 3 franchise locations spread throughout the southeastern United States. Each center's team of doctors and weight-loss specialists encourages clients to win a similarly daunting battle by creating personalized plans for success. The program incorporates vitamins, supplements, and appetite suppressants with a low-calorie, low-fat meal plan that discourages using soft-serve ice cream as toothpaste.
Firm Body Boot Camps blasts apart repetitive gym routines and packs the fissures with functional strength training and a blend of fun and no-nonsense equipment. During indoor and outdoor camps, clients may swing kettlebells to crank up triceps, wrestle with battle ropes, toss medicine balls, or use their own body weight to build muscle on suspension equipment. The 45-minute routines kick-start heart rates with cardio drills, and team-based exercises breed camaraderie among campers and ensure backup should the exercise equipment rise up against its masters. Because its maneuvers are fully modifiable, there's ample room at the fitness table for guests of every experience level, including those who have never set foot in a gym.
Supplementary dietary plans and progress-tracking tools collaborate to keep metabolism racing outside of class. To date, Firm Body Boot Camps has helped more than 13 individuals lose 100 pounds each, the weight equivalent of a compact car that refuses to exercise.
Escape Day Spa co-owners Carrie Wheelock and Alicia Liddon know how therapeutic a day at the spa can be. Wheelock, an experienced massage therapist, has witnessed the restoration and healing power of touch while both giving and receiving massages. Liddon, on the other hand, is not only an aesthetician, but also a wife and mother of three who understands the daily stressors of family life. Her passion for healthy skin has helped ground her and was her inspiration for opening her own skincare clinic.
At the spa's new location in Edgewood, the duo and their team perform treatments that range from multimodality massages and facials with organic Babor products to mother-of-pearl body scrubs and mani-pedis with vegan SpaRitual polish. They also create spa packages that allow romantic couples, pairs of best friends, or celebrities and their egos to enjoy chocolates and champagne while relaxing together.
If she were handed a list of humanity's basic needs, Crystal Sutton might write "relaxation" just beneath "food, water, and shelter." The licensed massage therapist believes that cutting down on stress at the spa shouldn't be a special occasion, but a regular occurrence.
Crystal—who graduated from University of Alabama with a biology degree—backs up that perspective by citing its many benefits, which range from a decrease in chronic pain to better blood pressure. She strives to achieve these results in her clients with a handful of methods. Swedish, deep-tissue, and hot-stone massages complement specialized styles, such as a TMJ treatment—focused tissue work around the mouth that relieves pain in the jaw from trying to swallow whole grapefruits.
Bernadine Tillman was inspired to pursue her colon hydrotherapy certification out of a desire to rescue a friend's failing health. After the success of her healing efforts, Bernadine expanded her business to encompass other cleansing technologies as well as body-sculpting services. Supplementing the detoxification work of hydrotherapy's ionized, antioxidant, liquid water, the BioCleanse foot bath pulls toxins out through the soles, and an infrared sauna promotes purification through sweating. Body-sculpting treatments draw upon the noninvasive Lipo-Ex, which shrinks fat cells with radio waves, and the VibaBody Slimmer, whose rollicking platform stimulates muscles and trains Elvis impersonators.
MiBella Wellness Center's medical director, Dr. Mia T. Cowan, revealed two important facts in a Birmingham Business Journal interview—that her guiding principle in business is to always be respectful to others and that if she could have any super power, it would be x-ray vision. Dr. Cowan helps patients improve their health through diet programs and vitamin injections. Additional cosmetic procedures, such as SmartLipo, result in figures svelte enough to shimmy into packed elevators or tuck behind trees during hide-and-seek.