When Regina Janesko had to take a physical fitness test in order to keep a new job, the avid gym rat and weightlifter wasn't worried about passing. Yet somehow she failed the first two times she took it, leaving her with only one opportunity left. When her test administrators suggested she try CrossFit, Regina went to Bergen County CrossFit, where co-owner Daniel Ramsay created fitness routines tailored to the requirements of her exam. Needless to say, she nailed it on the third try. Today, she's still an active member at Bergen County Crossfit.
It's a common occurrence here: people wander in, some with a specific goal others without, and eventually become part of a community that seeks to support and encourage each other. The daily classes can be modified based on age and fitness level, and incorporate techniques such as kettle bells and core strengthening. Co-owner Lily is also known to dish out nutritional advice, helping members supplement their workouts with healthful meal suggestions and tips on where to find low-cal snacks.
Seeking the formula for an ideal gym, Bob Bonham spent 15 years exploring other fitness facilities, talking to trainers, and studying equipment—all the while taking note of what worked and what didn't. He put all of his research to good use, opening Strong and Shapely Gym in 1984, packing its 25,000 square feet with professional strength-training equipment and cardio machines. He organized the workout areas by body part, an innovative design concept that won praise from Bodybuilding.com.
Today, you can spot fitness seekers of all stripes at the 24-hour facility, from regular moms and dads to famous bodybuilders. A staff of certified trainers inhabit the gym, conducting personal-training sessions and leading group fitness classes, such as yoga and Pilates. The expert staff eagerly supply members with fitness tips and advice, from tactics to prevent workout boredom to instructions for donating old gym socks for use as therapy puppets. The gym boasts a variety of convenient amenities, including onsite tanning, childcare, and a supplements store.
Though now spread over the United States with 83 locations, Crunch gym started in a basement-level aerobics studio in New York City. Despite the humble location, the gym's founders aspired to foster a workout environment that would keep members exercising through entertainment and not shouting from drill-sergeant-like trainers. Their idea was to host fitness classes with offbeat touches, including hip-hop aerobics featuring a live rapper and coed action wrestling.
Twenty five years later, Crunch gyms' fitness classes still stray from the beaten path. Body Web with TRX sessions suspend members from a pillar, where they complete gravity-defying maneuvers with help from strong resistance ropes. In Bosu Bootcamp, every exercise is completed on an apparatus that is part balance ball, part core board, and fully endorsed by circus seals nationwide.
Since its 1965 founding in Venice Beach, California, Gold's Gym has dotted the globe with more than 600 locations where professional athletes and exercise newbies gather under the umbrella of personal strength. Nearly 3.5 million Gold's members chart and aim for their fitness peaks, perspiring beneath the gaze of certified personal trainers or pedaling beside peers at cycling sessions. In a diverse lineup of group classes, patrons strengthen cores with Pilates, finger-paint pictures of ninjas in martial arts, and amp up heart rates along to the pulsating soundtracks of Les Mills routines.
Many Gold's Gym locations stockpile futuristic amenities, such as cardio machines with individual iPod docks and televisions that help keep patrons motivated.
The tagline of Ultra Fitness Center is “The Unique Women's Gym.” Owner Cheryl Paganelli Kehoe strives for that uniqueness by hosting 34 classes per week, many of which she teaches. Cheryl and her trainers give physical-fitness instruction as diverse as classic body conditioning training, Zumba dance fitness, and boxing, which is taught by a professional boxing coach. All classes take place within the two-floor facility and make use of its newly appointed classrooms and modern workout equipment—cardio machines, exercise balls, and the chairs with which Hulk Hogan used to wrestle.
Fit Female is more than a gym. It's a culture of empowerment that encourages women of all ages to nourish their bodies, minds, and spirit animals through exercise. As a workout facility, Fit Female features more than 40 cardio machines and a recently renovated space where instructors host fitness classes in yoga, spinning, Pilates, and Zumba. Personal-training sessions offer customized workout plans, and amenities such as free childcare, tanning, and an indoor salt-water pool take away any lingering excuses.