Meredith Chartier developed a love for cooking as a young girl, helping her mother, aunt, and grandmother prepare family meals. This passion stayed with her, even as she went on to become an elementary school teacher. After 10 years of teaching, Meredith's good friend––a pastry chef by trade––offered her the opportunity to create the savory portion of a sweet-and-savory soiree for a client. In doing so, Meredith discovered that cooking was truly what she wanted to do for a living, and less than a year later she launched Bellamy Kitchen.
As the chef behind Bellamy Kitchen, Meredith puts her teaching skills to use designing lesson plans for in-home cooking courses. She also builds menus for catered events and helps people organize their kitchens. She does it all with an eye toward sustainability, getting her produce from the local Catalpa Ridge Farm, composting all food waste, and using packaging that can be recycled or at least turned into a cool hat.
Koko FitClub’s digital personal-training system rockets both men and women toward fitness goals with 30-minute custom workouts that incorporate cardio and strength training. An initial consultation determines fitness levels and baseline measurements, which Koko’s computerized equipment uses to design a tailored workout plan that precisely measures the weight, pace, and rest time appropriate for each exerciser.
The Koko machines guide exercisers through each workout and adapt as the user’s fitness needs change in order to constantly challenge the body. Designed by professional trainers, workouts maximize the body’s lean-muscle mass, which can boost metabolism and help fight off disease by challenging viruses to kickboxing matches. Exercisers can track their shrinking waistlines and swelling muscles online by analyzing workout scores and comparing individual fitness levels to the Koko FitClub community.
The knotted wood floors, exposed brick, and cerulean walls at Go Row Training Studio set a rustic scene for one-hour rowing workouts that hold groups of 10. Rather than falling into a repetitive workout routine, exercise physiologist Garrett Roberts’s college-rowing-inspired workouts change up in order to keep torching calories and chiseling muscles. Sessions kick off with rowers perched atop the studio’s signature WaterRowers, which replicate the experience of open-water rowing. Exercisers then orbit a weight-training circuit, lifting dumbbells of varying weights. The class closes with students again mounting the rowers to further stump muscles and to rehearse a rescue mission to Gilligan’s Island. Garrett helms each class on Go Row’s schedule, and the 10-student attendance cap allows him to ensure each paddler performs with proper technique.
Passersby that peer inside the windows of CKO Kickboxing won’t see treadmills, ellipticals, or stairclimbers. Instead, they’ll spot rows of heavy bags lurching backward and sideways from the force of participants’ kicks and right hooks. The kickboxing-focused gym doesn’t need excessive equipment or a catalog full of workout programs—the high-intensity fitness regimen of kickboxing is more than enough to shape up CKO members. Students of all levels reap the system’s multifaceted benefits, burning up to 1,200 calories per class, releasing stress, and developing a six-pack more realistically than drawing on their midsections with a marker.
With sunlight cascading across their studio’s hardwood floors and crystal chandeliers, Danielle Buccellato and her staff lead more than 75 group classes every week, specializing in Pilates Mat, Xtend Barre, and group Apparatus training. Mixed in among those weekly classes is Renaissance Pilates’ popular four-week beginner program. During this program, students build strength and a full understanding of Pilates principles across eight sessions, so they are prepared to move onto regular classes and more advanced sessions. The studio’s other offerings map out different, but equally effective, routes toward fitness, including Xtend Barre—a toning workout that incorporates a ballet bar, handheld weights, and yoga straps. In addition to a variety of program options, Renaissance Pilates also offers the new Extend Barre Stick classes to help chisel bodies.
Sunlight has barely begun to creep up the sidewalk when Coach David throws open the doors to his 2,500-square-foot facility, surveying the kettlebells, sand bags, and stretch bands arrayed within. He conducts 35-minute boot camps in this energetic atmosphere, drawing inspiration from the many success stories told by his students. For six years, David has worked as a certified personal trainer, and in that time, he’s learned to customize his fitness routines on the spot, tailoring moves to each guest’s fitness level and goals. He sends students racing through calisthenics and cardio endurance exercises, changing the routine for every class to keep minds and bodies active and the ever-watching kettlebell deities appeased. To complement the intense boot camps, he also invites students to 50-minute Vinyasa yoga classes that link breathing and movements in workouts that improve flexibility.