Zip Fitness's staff strives to keep intimidation from creeping in to each of the five gyms. To welcome all exercisers—even those who have never had gym memberships before—Gym Geniuses stroll through each location donning bright-red shirts that signal their availability to help guests operate the various machines and guide them in drafting fitness goals and coming up with routines for the day. They've stocked each location with strength equipment from brands such as Precor and Life Fitness, and a guided strength circuit's 30-minute full-body workout takes the guesswork out of toning physiques. Rows of cardio equipment include treadmills, ellipticals, and upright and recumbent bikes, along with rowing machines and StairMaster step mills. For stretching and ab work, bands, balls, and body bars abound, and free weights include dumbbells, barbells, and tamed school bells.
Gold memberships unlock additional perks, such as unlimited access to Hex II tanning booths and the ActivTrax online fitness and nutrition coach, which plots out workouts and offers nutrition tools tailored to each user's goals, from slimming down to having the flexibility to comb your hair with your feet.
Fitzone For Women boasts all the amenities of any modern gym, including row upon row of sleek workout equipment, 24 different kinds of fitness classes, and nutritional seminars. The gym’s staff tailors each service specifically to women’s needs. One-on-one instructors teach the tips and tricks needed to build long, lean muscle, while nutritionists suggest regimens designed to keep the female form healthy. Large screen televisions line the cardiovascular room, providing mental escape into another world while bodies work on burning calories.
As a branch of the not-for-profit Advocate Health Care system, the Advocate Condell Centre Club has filled two 60,000-square-foot locations with fitness amenities for exercisers of all ages and ability levels, captained by professional and welcoming staff members. The club's philosophy follows the Advocate network's holistic approach, taking on a mission of all-over wellness with features for exercise, rehabilitative therapy, sports performance, and spa services. Much like a territorial wolverine, each of the facilities' elements—from a trove of resistance-training machines to a demonstration kitchen for cooking classes—occupies its own specialized area. Lake County magazine and Libertyville Patch have highlighted the club for its weight-loss systems and free training program for cancer patients, respectively.
Since its 1965 founding in Venice Beach, California, Gold's Gym has dotted the globe with more than 600 locations where professional athletes and exercise newbies gather under the umbrella of personal strength. Nearly 3.5 million Gold's members chart and aim for their fitness peaks, perspiring beneath the gaze of certified personal trainers or pedaling beside peers at cycling sessions. In a diverse lineup of group classes, patrons strengthen cores with Pilates, finger-paint pictures of ninjas in martial arts, and amp up heart rates along to the pulsating soundtracks of Les Mills routines. Many Gold's Gym locations stockpile futuristic amenities, such as cardio machines with individual iPod docks and televisions that help keep patrons motivated.
Exercisers seek out stronger muscles and leaner forms in National Fitness & Tan's state-of-the-art health-club facility with encouragement from a staff of weigh- loss and workout professionals. Rows of advanced fitness equipment fill the 8,000-square-foot health club instead of bulky, human-sized hamster balls or stationary penny-farthings. Pump up with strength-training machines, cable machines, and free weights, or get your heart racing on a treadmill, treadclimber, or elliptical machine, all of which are equipped with televisions to keep brains entertained while bodies get fit. During four sessions with a personal trainer, novices develop a balanced fitness program through conditioning routines and overcome fitness plateaus. They can continue calorie mastery at home after a one-on-one appointment with author and weight-loss expert Trista Rodéo. Trista will analyze clients' eating habits, create meal plans based on their nutritional needs, and explain which foods are best for the body and which are waxen centerpieces. After the consultation, four weekly weight-loss coaching sessions ensure clients stay on the right track.
"No boys allowed," proclaims The Underground's website. If that makes it sound more like a playhouse than a gym, that's not an accident. Inside, you won't find any rows of treadmills or the latest elliptical machines. Instead, lights fit for a dance club shine as catchy music plays through an advanced sound system. In this festive space, women of all fitness levels support each other as they throw themselves into a wide range of classes, from the Latin dance–inspired cardio workouts of Zumba to the intense cross-training regimen of P90X. In other parts of the studio, they sculpt muscles via Booty Barre classes, learn to swing from aerial equipment, and work their way up dance poles in hopes of finding the hunky fire fighters at the top.