Members of Synergy Fitness Clubs thrive on choice. Choice of location? There are nine. Choice of activity? Instructors lead classes in almost any form of exercise imaginable, such as power sculpt, full-body circuits, and intense cycling. To make sure that members are making the choices that will help reach their fitness goals the fastest, the clubs are staffed with more than 100 lifestyle coaches. These pros are continually educated in their fields of specialty—which might mean nutrition counseling, yoga, or boxing.
A wide slate of equipment and amenities makes it as easy as possible to fit in workouts. Most locations are open 24 hours, and while parents lift free weights or dance a beautiful tango with a Precor elliptical, their kids can hang out in a free childcare room.
Applied Fitness's personal trainers never quite know what they're going to do next. That's because they use a process called Metabolic Typing to design customized workouts and diet plans. This system accounts for a person's metabolic rate and lifestyle, which helps trainers select exercises that will maximize each workout's results. In addition to these evaluations, the personal trainers follow guidelines set forth by organizations such as the American College of Sports Medicine and the National Strength and Conditioning Association.
Furthering this personal approach, Applied Fitness's trainers will work with clients wherever they feel most comfortable. They can train at homes, offices, or the company's own studio, which is designed to be as distraction-free as the office Neil Armstrong built on the moon.
Inside The Transform Fitness and Training, a strip of artificial turf runs a six-legged metal frame, hung with punching bags, suspensions harnesses, and ropes. Around this construction stand racks of free weights, medicine balls, and kettlebells. It's the equipment of a gym where the specialty is not specializing. The trainers offer a variety of classes using their brand new space, from pure bodywork such as yoga and Pilates to advanced, equipment-heavy circuit training in boot and glute camps.
The supportive staff at the women's-only Kelly Lyn North specializes in issues such as menopause, teaches kicks and crunches in energetic group classes, and also works one-on-one with members to assess body stats and create healthy goals. After joining, a one-hour personal-training session with a fitness guru helps members build personalized workouts and dish about nutrition, or focus on issues such as toning muscle, losing weight, and building bone density. Complimentary body assessments track progress with a body-fat test, measurements of target areas, and a BMI calculation, which divides each guest's weight by height as they jump on a pogo stick. Group classes let students sample a range of calorie-blasting maneuvers, from swiveling hips to Latin beats in a 60-minute Zumba class to kicking and jabbing in a 45-minute Taebox session. A 45- to 60-minute Turbo Kickbox Challenge class packs kicks, punches, and cardio circuits into a comprehensive workout, and the 15-minute Abs Express class hones in on cores. Strength-training equipment, cardio machines, and skateboards strapped to treadmills ensure convenient solo exercise. Groupon holders can jog through the online schedule for a full list of class times.
After fighting her way back to a size four following the birth of her third child, Debi Condon earned her personal-training-and-nutrition certification and founded Evolution Fitness. Debi and her crew lead mostly female groups of all ages and fitness levels through indoor and outdoor boot camps, TRX-suspension classes and personal-training sessions. Interval routines leverage mats, free weights, and nearby playground equipment to build up endurance against fatigue and cooties. With an emphasis on supportive motivation rather than drill-sergeant tactics or endless scrimmages against fast-food mascots, trainers strive to build accountability among their students through friendships and unlimited email support.
With personal training, sports nutrition, and even sports hypnotism certifications tucked under his weightlifting belt, Tony DiCostanzo brings more to DreamBodies than a booming voice and admirable biceps. The dedicated fitness coach leads boot campers and personal-training clients through calorie-burning workouts, supplemented with diet tips and what he calls "mind-motivational conditioning," which makes eating healthy an automatic response, rather than a chore. Unlike other training programs, Tony’s DreamBodies also offers an online edition, complete with a consultation over the phone, continuous coaching via e-mail, and custom at-home workouts that forge lasting results and show house pets who's boss.
Lovingood Fitness Lounge & Spa brings wellness to not only the individual, but also to the “family, community, and corporate world.” Along with wellness coaching and nutrition programs, the center also hosts group fitness classes that range from yoga to Latin-dance-inspired Zumba classes. Lovingwood’s services extend beyond the office; the center also educates clients at workshops and wellness clubs to provide take-home information that can be applied throughout day-to-day life.