Fitness trainer Paul Dexter knows that actions speak louder than words. That’s why the former Bally’s Total Fitness director became nationally ranked as a natural bodybuilder, proving he had the goods to transform his body and the bodies of others. To give his clients a more personal experience, Paul left Bally’s and teamed up with his wife Laura to open Dexter Training Concepts.
Along with a team of certified trainers, Paul and Laura lead personal-training sessions that approach fitness using a three-pronged philosophy: strength training, cardio exercise, and nutrition. They put these fitness pillars into practice inside a 5,000-square-foot gym, which holds training sessions as well as yoga, Pilates, cardio-kickboxing, boot-camp, and aerobics classes. Free weights and machines occupy most of the gym floor, a juice bar fuels athletes in between sessions, and an onsite licensed massage therapist soothes aching muscles with practiced strokes and whispered sweet nothings.
Cardio combat focuses on torching calories and shedding fat with its fast-paced regime of kickboxing and combat moves. Poundfit classes combine interval trainging and low-impact cardio exercises with weighted neon-green drumsticks to burn calories. Women-only self-defense classes equip ladies with techniques to stop an assailant during an attack or masterfully exit an uncomfortable conversation with an in-law. ZENergy also provides less intense options for new clients.
The knowledgeable staff at New England Nutrition helps customers sort through the hybrid gym-and-wellness center's vast collection of nutrition supplements. They dole out expert advice and insider opinions on such BSN and Solgar products as protein powders, meal-replacement shakes, and low-fat, preservative-free powdered peanut butter.
To further help their customers reach their fitness goals, certified trainers host boot-camp classes onsite in the center's functional-training gym. They help melt fat and build muscles with kettlebells, battling ropes, and medicine balls and harness the body's natural weight with body-sculpting suspension-training classes.
Equipment: Treadmills, ellipticals, free weights, circuits, boxing, and MMA equipment
Number of Staff: 5–10 people
Registration required: No
Good for beginners: Yes
Parking: Parking lot
Exercise is challenging, and people frequently give up on their fitness routines. How do you keep clients motivated?
We are not the "cookie-cutter" gym. We have strength training equipment from Cybex, Life Fitness, Free Motion and Hammer Strength for traditional bodybuilding. We also have treadmills, ellipticals, bikes and rowing machines from True Fitness, Star Trac, and Life Fitness. There is a separate area dedicated to those that enjoy "functional training" which is designed to prepare members for obstacle course endurance races or their specific sport. We also have an area designed for combat sports such as Muay Thai Kickboxing, Boxing, Judo, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Mixed Martial Arts. Our combat athletes range from beginners to professional fighters and have competed in Strikeforce, Bellator and the UFC. We truly have everything under one roof with an ego free environment that is open to everyone.
What's the most radical physical transformation you've seen a client make?
We were featured on the MTV reality show "I Used To Be Fat" where the contestant lost 75 pounds in four months with our Muay Thai kickboxing and strength and conditioning program. We've had numerous clients completely transform their bodies because we provide a team like atmosphere where everyone learns and helps each other reach their goals.
Has your business won any awards?
Our competition team has competed in numerous body building shows, obstacle course endurance races, kickboxing events, and mixed martial arts competitions at the amateur and professional level.
Boxing is renowned for its full-body fitness benefits and its high-intensity workouts. It's also considered by many to be a male-dominated sport. Dena Paolino is changing that. In 2009 she established Striking Beauties, the only female-centric boxing gym in New England, as a way to introduce women to the sport. At the gym, instructors lead beginners and experienced boxers through sessions full of jabs, strikes, and uppercuts, all of which help build muscle tone, boost endurance and agility, and develop hand-eye coordination.
The team at Clubex Fitness & Nutrition believes that when it comes to diet and exercise, success is a team effort. Thankfully, the trainers host about 30 different group exercise classes every week, ranging from spinning, kickboxing, and Zumba to a Kick Your Butt boot camp. Those looking for a more specialized approach can work one-on-one with personal trainers that help clients design custom exercise plans.
Of course, the facility also allows for clients to exercise on their own. Clubex makes solo workouts easy with its more than 75 pieces of cardio equipment, more than 100 pieces of strength equipment, and about 10 tons of free weights, which keep the gym from blowing away during storms. And if that lengthy list of equipment isn't enough, Clubex also offers boxing and karate rooms, basketball and racquetball courts, and even an outdoor obstacle course that doubles as an auto shop in case you need new tires. Onsite babysitting makes it even easier to enjoy a productive workout, and afterward clients can refuel at the facility's full-service juice bar.