For Debbie Benko, owner of Fitness Bootcamp Canada, boot camps aren’t just for sculpting muscles and melting calories. They’re a tool for shedding hang-ups and unlocking pent-up potential. A certified personal trainer and enthusiastic life coach, Debbie draws upon more than 20 years of fitness expertise and recent training in neuro-linguistic programming to help women become more focused and resilient. She’s also driven by an important lesson learned while teaching English overseas: everyone wants to feel valued, no matter how they look, where they live, or what language they speak. To blaze a trail to the future, people often need to look at the past, at those times when they’ve felt undervalued or misunderstood. “That’s why I’m about making breakthroughs,” Debbie explains. “I help my clients take a close look at why they want to accomplish a particular goal and how their past has affected that goal so far.” Listening carefully is a key to achieving these breakthroughs, as is a strong support system. During one-on-one activities such as nutrition consultations, Debbie showers clients with personal attention while helping them make positive changes in their lives, from planning healthier meals to establishing clear boundaries with overly clingy shadows. She rallies exercisers of all levels for indoor boot-camp classes, where team-like camaraderie propels each participant toward goals while enhancing confidence and self-esteem. Most classes teem with calisthenics, plyometrics, and short sprints, which boost energy levels while toning muscles throughout the body. Exercises are often performed in intervals to maximize calorie burn and cultivate endurance at a manageable pace.
With exposed-brick walls and warm wood floors, Move Your Body Fitness evokes a homier feel than most fitness studios. Once inside, instructors lead classes that help clients of all fitness levels burn calories and balance their bodies. They lead small-group boot camps of eight to nine students, as well as gentle-flow yoga and Zumba dance-fitness classes.
What is Treetop Eco-Adventure Park? Think an obstacle course, except set in the forest and 10–85 feet above the ground. Participants wear harnesses and attach to zip lines, which allow them to navigate the course. But surely as an inquisitive explorer you have questions.
Which Route is Best?
The park splits its 60 aerial activities into four colour-coded routes.
Green: a beginner's course for adults and children 10 or older. Still no prance through the park: footbridges, zip lines, and other obstacles intersect 9 platforms.
Blue: an intermediate course for adults and children 10 or older. At the end you can either climb down or exit via a controlled leap known as the Tarzan jump.
Red: an advanced course for adults and children 10 or older. It doesn't get more challenging than the labyrinth and wall-climb obstacles that come between the course's 11 stations.
How Long Does It Take to Complete a Course?
Typically, two to three hours for an adult course. Each route also includes exit points where guides, like funk musicians, can help people get down.
Can Friends and Family Watch?
Yup. Non-participants can follow along with the guides, who monitor the courses via a series of forest trails. Guests of participants can access them for no charge. Children under age 16 require adult supervision.
What Are the Course's Safety Features?
Here are just a few ways Treetop Eco-Adventure Park ensures your trek through the trees is safe:
What Else Is There to Do?
Visitors can grab chips, granola bars, or cold drinks at the welcome center. A human foosball course and giant Jenga are available in the picnic area.
About Oak Ridges Moraine
It's not all about adrenaline-packed thrills at Treetop Eco-Adventure Park. The zip lines and obstacles also introduce visitors to the beauty of the Oak Ridges Moraine, and the guides hope visitors can walk away with a new appreciation for the area. The important geological land form covers some 190,000 hectares of Ontario, and it serves as home to threatened plant and animal species.
Unlike the many gyms that strive to exorcise the competitive spirit, the architects of the GameChanger program embrace it, continually updating an online ranking of student results. By ranking each exercise, they hope to inspire clients to not only beat their own best times, but those of their friends as well. They don’t just rely on the competitive framework to motivate students, though; they populate their team with coaches who boast decades of experience in training and athletic competition. Former competitive figure skater and current fitness model Karen Gallagher brings her relentless poise to each session, and pro volleyballer and former Canadian Interuniversity Sport All-Rookie Team member Mike Johnson helps students develop and hone athletic power and agility. In class, they focus on functional exercises based on everyday movements, such as climbing, jumping, and deadlifting 200-pound stacks of cash.
At Pro Dojos, certified martial-arts experts lead students of all ages and skill levels through a variety of pugilistic disciplines. Each location is independently owned, so the martial-arts styles may vary, but many offer karate, tae kwon do, kick-boxing, aikido, and jujitsu classes. The instructors elucidate the noble combat arts to kiddos as young as 4 years old, helping them build strength and motor skills while instilling the values of self-confidence. Teen classes focus on honing discipline and treating yourself and others with respect, and adult classes reinforce cardiovascular conditioning, strength, balance, and coordination. The instructors also lead classes for the whole family, allowing them to bond as a unit, which could possibly lead to starring in a hit sitcom about a crime-fighting family who takes down comical villains in their idyllic suburban neighborhood.
Extreme Fitness sets Toronto's calories ablaze at the 13 renovated, multimillion-dollar locations peppered throughout the greater suburban area. Each facility hosts a menagerie of group fitness classes, which can be taken à la carte or bundled into a gym membership. Muscles loosen up in hot-yoga classes or bulge into sinewy symbols of might in outdoor boot camps, where students soak up vitamin D or distill Capri Sun from the sun's rays. To make sure members get the most of the gym's myriad amenities, personal trainers kick off fitness journeys with their Smart Start program, taking BMI measurements and analyzing heart health and oxygen uptake to give patrons a clearer picture of how much and what types of exercise they need to hit their goals.
After working up a calorie-blasting sweat, members can retire to the steam rooms or whirlpool tubs to soothe sore muscles. The internet business lounge lets people catch up on email while sipping a rejuvenating smoothie from the juice bar, and the basketball courts host pick-up games where adults can show underdog teams of fifth-graders that it takes a little more than pluck and an adorable animal sidekick to win games.