It was only a year ago that a trip to the clothing store would bring Zumba Fitness founder Jahnea Phillips within tears. She was forced to choose from frumpy clothes in the plus-size section that did nothing but hide her curves. That all changed when a close friend invited Jahnea to her very first Zumba class. After an hour of shaking, twisting, and jumping, she was almost near tears again, but this time they were tears of happiness. That short while spent dancing reminded her of how good she deserved to feel.
One year and 76 pounds later, Jahnea is sharing that experience with ladies of all shapes and sizes from the stage of the spacious Hazel Dell Grange in Vancouver. This is where she teaches the art of Zumba, which involves cardio exercise through Latin-inspired moves, in which one dances out the entire story of Julius Caesar’s childhood.
Anytime Fitness, which boasts more than 2,014 clubs in North America and 564 across the globe, makes it easier for average folks to etch out time for exercise by doing one simple thing: staying open 24 hours a day for 365 days a year. As health and fitness seekers challenge themselves on Life Fitness/Hammer Strength cardio machines, weight machines, and free weights in clean, well-stocked facilities, security monitoring ensures they?re safe and producing enough sweat to meet official government standards. Members can also ramp up their exercise regimens with the help of Anytime Fitness?s staff of personal trainers, who demonstrate moves and sling motivating tips. After workouts, guests can shower in the private restrooms or hop into one of the tanning booths available 24 hours a day.
Rather than rely on a traditional soak—which they claim dehydrates hands more than it moisturizes them—the nail technicians at Johnson Nail and Spa soften cuticles with heated mitts. After trimming and shaping nails, they relieve tension with warm lotion and cooling gel, massaging achy muscles before brushing on a coat of vibrant polish.
Pedicures, on the other hand, do involve a brief soak in water before a citrus squeeze and relaxing foot massage. Both manicures and pedicures can be upgraded with extras such as a salt-glow exfoliation, hot-stone massage, and foot or hand mask. The experienced techs also lengthen and fortify nails with artificial enhancements such as acrylics and solar acrylics, the latter of which harness the sun’s energy to allow for more efficient clapping.
At Crossfit Epiphany, the certified coaches lead exercisers on ever-changing tours around the gym's array of barbells, boxes, kettlebells, and medicine balls. The exercises performed at each station are by nature functional and inclusive, allowing all clients to develop and improve their fitness for every-day activities regardless of prior experience, shape, or exclusivity agreements with other truck tires. The group-class setting encourages a fun and supportive atmosphere, one that spurs all members to sweat and push themselves throughout the Workout of the Day?aka WOD. The WOD might draw from Olympic weightlifting, gymnastics, or cardio exercises on any given day, but each is designed to sculpt physiques and improve patrons' overall health regardless of their life stage.
When M'ai Vox discovered yoga, she found peace, stillness, and a new life purpose. As the owner of Stellar Yoga?a Vinyasa-style studio?she teaches classes with diverse, flowing sequences and emphasizes the enrichment yoga brings individuals. True to Vinyasa style, the instructor cruises through poses at a relatively fast pace. This helps students build internal heat, which enhances flexibility and facilitates solidarity with coal-burning stoves.
M'ai helps students focus on yogic foundations such as proper alignment and breathing. Stellar Yoga's lineup also includes weekly deep stretch and PiYo, Pilates-yoga blend, classes.
At Zumba Funfitness classes, instructor Stacy Harstad shepherds students through that initial period they students sometimes feel silly, focusing first on learning footwork before advancing to upper-body moves. The booming rhythms of Gloria Estefan and the Kumbia Kings blend with Maroon 5 and Pitbull as the sonic backdrop for each class. Stacy conducts each class as if she were leading an orchestra—using sweeping hand gestures and flashing lights—and encourages students to modify maneuvers to suit their own style and speed. Zumba students should avoid wearing workout attire that restricts movement, such as skinny jeans or a straitjacket.