A former staff sergeant in the Air Force. An airplane mechanic who repaired oxygen masks. A master massage therapist, registered medical assistant, and certified laser technician. Tina Long is all of these things and more. As the owner of Parker Med Spa, she combines her unique background with innovative technology to offer clients the latest anti-aging and beauty solutions.
Long helps her clients to deal with the frustration of weight loss with body-contouring treatments such as the Zerona and Yolo laser systems, having herself lost pounds, inches, and degrees of insulation with the fat-emulsifying devices. The historical ambiance, array of facial and body treatments, and advanced technology earned her spa recognition on ABC 7 and CityVoter's 2011 A-List; it was named a finalist in the Best Day Spa category and nominated in the Best Medical Spa category.
The practice is located within the charming yellow Hoskins House, a century-old Victorian landmark surrounded by cottonwood trees, complete with a porch swing. Inside, massage therapists and aestheticians perform relaxing massages, hot-stone pedicures, and skin-rejuvenating chemical peels in 15 private rooms. Technicians use seven different lasers to perform procedures ranging from vein and hair removal to nonsurgical face-lifts.
The pole maestros at Mile High Pole Club integrate floor-to-ceiling poles, chair props, and flirtatious dance moves into fun, empowering workouts. The dedicated instructors offer classes with names such as Pole Vixens, Chairlates, and Belly Dancing, teaching students to spin, whirl, and slide on poles like jousting knights gone wild. The Combolicious class lets indecisive students try out a blend of chair- and pole-based dance moves, and the male-friendly Pole Trix & Play gives Y-chromosomed dancers a place to learn. All classes featured in the schedule run 55 racy minutes each and require class-specific fitness attire.
UFC Gym’s four fight-centric Denver-area gyms ditch the polished look of wood-floored workout studios for gritty, competitive spaces filled with 150-pound punching bags and intense workouts. Like a baker molding gingerbread men, UFC Gym sculpts six-packs with boxing, kickboxing, and mixed-martial-arts classes. Although instructors and students agree that the gym’s atmosphere may enkindle intimidation in first-time attendees, most experience boosted self-confidence after conquering their first class. Private training sessions further stoke courage with workouts that leave patrons with the exhilaration of having survived 12 rounds in the ring or five minutes in a high-school lunchroom.
It’s all about personalization at Fitness together. Here, certified personal trainers guide clients of all skill levels through motivating one-on-one and small-group training sessions designed to meet goals loftier than a giraffe’s basketball hoop. To help their charges torch calories and tone muscles as efficiently as possible, the trainers customize programs to individual goals and incorporate evidence-based training methods, such as intervals, tempos, and fartlek, into each fitness regimen. In-studio sessions take place in a studio flush with energizing green walls and functional training tools such as medicine balls, kettlebells, and TRX trainers.
Dribbling dynamo Darren Pitzner leads all clinics and fills sessions with more positive reinforcement than the entire Congratulations section of Hallmark. Expect to get an earful of positive music, motivational speeches, and ethic-enforcing instruction during the practices. Fast-paced drills are organized to whip benchwarmers into big shots and big shots into humungous successes with a variety of game-speed stations (each is 3 to 7 minutes long).
On 10 a.m. on the first day of 2013, City Park's Great Lawn will fill with people ready to start the year off not with a resolution, but a commitment—a commitment to a healthy lifestyle. They'll run, walk, or jay-walk through the park and Marconi Drive on the flat, fast course, which it circles back to the Great Lawn where they started. After the race, runners can stick around for a post-race party to celebrate a successful first morning of the New Year.
In more than 30 cities across the nation, other runners will be participating in similar events as part of a movement that aims to stymie the rising rates of obesity and inaction in the United States.