As a certified personal trainer and "marathon maniac," Empowered Personal Training Studio founder Emily Knudson often saw other runners performing cardio workouts without achieving the results they expected. She realized they were missing a key ingredient in their fitness regimen: strength training. Unlike cardio exercise, building muscles lets the body continue to burn calories hours after exercises end. That’s why her six-week boot camps mix body-weight and hand-weight exercises into cardiovascular routines and high-intensity Q&A sessions. Empowered’s team of trainers includes other competitive marathoners as well as a triathlon coach, a competitive female bodybuilder, and a former Army infantryman and combat medic. Their studio's intimate setting of weight machines, medicine balls, and cycles contrasts with the impersonal vibe of a traditional large gym full of blaring TVs and barking dogs.
During your two personal training sessions, one of ZX Fitness’ experienced personal trainers will work with you to assemble exercises that help you best accomplish your fitness goals, be they tightening your core, shedding extra pounds, improving muscular strength, or picking winning bingo cards. Then you’ll be let loose to use your newfound knowledge and six-week pass during all ZX Fitness group fitness classes and in its fully-loaded facility, which has cardio decks, basketball courts, free weights, large locker rooms, circuit training equipment, juice bars, a supervised children’s area, and more. Group fitness classes, of which there are more than 20, include cycling, dance, kickboxing, yoga, Pilates, and strength training. Unwind after a day of sweating and stretching by watching a sports game on one of the many HDTVs, or warm your socks while dehydrating fresh prunes in the sauna. Class schedules differ at each location.
Snap Fitness, bustling with cardio and strength-training gear, throws open the doors to its spartan facilities 24/7. Before exercisers put sneaker to treadmill or lift their first weight, personal trainers meet with them to talk about their fitness goals before suggesting a personalized, 60-day fitness plan based on each client’s strength, cardio condition, and bionic limb manufacturer. The gym keeps members motivated with regular check-in calls and demystifies healthy eating with custom online meal plans designed by nutritionists. Certified personal trainers work individually with clients routinely, whereas solo treadmill joggers or stationary-bike cyclists keep company with cardio TV theaters during their long treks to nowhere.
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 in cardio routines. Many Gold's Gym locations stockpile futuristic amenities, such as cardio machines with individual iPod docks and televisions that help keep patrons motivated.
Professional bobsled teams shave seconds off their time by breathing in unison and leveraging flexibility during turns. Master the techniques necessary to defeating hardened gangs of bobsled criminals with today's deal: for $39, you get a month of unlimited classes at Gotta Yoga Studio, a $135 value. Gotta Yoga's cozy studio is located about 10 miles outside of downtown Charlotte. With 30 days of unlimited classes, you don't have to commit to a particular style or time slot. Bring your own mat, or rent one of Gotta Yoga's for $2 per session.
In the 15 years since its founding, Fitness For Her has amassed a well-rounded collection of gym equipment and group classes in an encouraging studio where women jump into routines specifically designed for them. Ladies can work up calorie-burning sweats on cardio equipment, such as treadmills and bikes, as they take in favorite shows beamed in over the TVs or watch for cameo appearances by their favorite numbers on the heart-rate monitors. A weight-training area eases limbs into reps with Cybex machines, free weights, an abdominizer, and a multistation jungle gym to ensure no muscle group starts to feel left out. For a communal foray into fitness, personal trainers spur on groups to shake off calories in Zumba and Cardio Pilates classes, kindling a full-body burn in the aerobics studio. Postexercise, up to 10 weary frames can sweat out excess toxins or barbells lodged in pores in the dry-heat sauna. With senior classes, membership discounts for mother-daughter pairs, and free childcare services, the gym welcomes women at every stage of their sojourns into healthy living.