On March 10, the unmistakable sound of scampering sneakers heralded the arrival of Peoria's first ever half-marathon. Divided into age groups ranging from children to senior citizens, participants followed a continuous, open, paved route along the New River Trail System in the first event of Peoria's inaugural race series. Instead of having to deal with the regular streets’ bustle of cars and escaped parade floats, runners will have sole ownership over the pavement during 11 events held throughout the year. All runners receive points for participating in each race and how they finish, with the top 100 point-earners entered in a prize lottery at the end of the Series. Some events also include abbreviated Tortoise & Hare Kids' Run courses that give kids a safe place to develop a love for running and stay active.
As they enter the training circle at Curves, female guests come face-to-face with the smiles of other women. And just as points on a circle share a common distance from the circle's center, workout participants share the experiences of those nearby by trading stations throughout the 30-minute training session. One minute is spent on a piece of strength-training equipment built for feminine frames and designed to work two opposing muscle groups with a single movement. Exercisers then move on to a recovery station, where they run, jog, or dance to maintain heart rates and keep platforms in place during momentary losses of gravity.
The certified personal trainers at Personal Power Training travel to various fitness studios, clients’ homes, or outdoor locations on a mission to burn the fat off their trainees’ bodies. They call upon years of experience to find the right exercises to help clients see results as quickly as possible and get them motivated to continue until goals are met. In addition to losing weight and building muscle, they also focus on improving sports performances and boost quality of life by relieving pain carried in the back, neck, joints, and gills.
Fitness guru Shane Arcadia has dedicated himself to delivering personalized fitness guidance with a range of boot camps, training, and other services at Task Fitness. Shane’s weekly classes and fitness outings include 45-minute boot camps designed to burn 1,000 calories, group runs and hikes, and team-sports sessions. He also leads one-on-one grocery-store tours, sharing tips on how to pick out healthy foods and maintain a balanced diet.
Lacy Anderson, the calorie-burning wonder behind Entourage Fitness, knows what the human body is capable of when pushed to its limit. Every month, members at her fitness center enter into the 60-day challenge, completely remaking themselves during a month of intensive, small-group workouts. Gym-goers can avail themselves of four classes, including suspension sessions which use body weight to engineer strength- and flexibility-building exercises. BOSU classes use inflated half spheres to fine-tune balance, while trampoline classes strengthen cardiovascular systems and allow exercisers to see if the rafters need cleaning. RAGE circuit training uses high-impact resistance and weight exercises to jumpstart fat burning and efficiently build muscle.
The instructors lead students through Bikram yoga's 26 challenging poses and two breathing exercises in a heated room, which helps purge the body of toxins and allows limbs to sink deeply into stretches. Within a studio heated to more than 100 degrees, students flow through poses that strengthen and stretch muscles, ligaments, and joints. Each posture is designed to work muscle groups needed for the next pose, building a series of interconnected movements. By temporarily decreasing blood flow to specific areas of the body, the poses send in a rush of freshly oxygenated blood to joints, organs, and limbs when yogis unfold from folds and twists, unblocking the tiny traffic jams of hemoglobin. Most yoga classes are 90 minutes long, and most studios offer flexible early morning and evening classes. Visit the individual studios' websites to see their schedules.