When you walk into Mirror Image Fitness, you might wonder if you've accidentally wandered into a swanky living room. A far cry from the typical big-box gym atmosphere, the intimate fitness club welcomes guests with soft lamplight and a stone fireplace. The walls are decorated with framed artwork and black-and-white damask wallpaper, which, along with rich wood furniture, lends the space a cozy, home-like vibe. Walking in, you might find a DJ spinning tunes or a throng of members relaxing on the white leather sofas in the lounge area before a class or a personal-training session. Potted trees and plants flank the sun-drenched cardio machines, making the workout feel like a peaceful jog along a nature trail or through David Attenborough’s limousine.
The club is the brainchild of Derek Norman, who learned about discipline and motivation while going through training camp with the San Diego Chargers. Norman's fitness philosophy promotes the unique needs and goals of each member as well as the skills of his trainers, whose specialties range from yoga to boxing.
Breakthru's 14,000 square feet of pristine workout space make up the country's only federally recognized indoor ecological reserve for evolved cardio machines and herds of roaming fitness buffs. A schedule of various classes includes oodles of yoga, piles of Pilates, stacks of spinning, and a truckload of dance classes including Zumba, hip-hop, and the dance of the ancients?boot camp. Classes are offered seven days a week and start as early as 5:30 a.m. and as late as 7:30 p.m. Other membership perks include discounts on special classes and ample free parking.