Selecting a fitness program can be really overwhelming, especially when you’re new to the workout scene. I’ve tried many forms of exercise. From the elliptical at the gym, The Firm at-home workout videos, Zumba…I’ve tried almost everything and I’m here to help.
Finding your fitness groove is personal to the individual and it’s important to know what you’re looking for and for you to be comfortable. I’m here to share some of my favorite programs, but this article, from Fitness Magazine, could also help you determine what style is for you. Keep in mind, I’m not a doctor. Please talk to your doctor before beginning any fitness program.
When I was in college, my mom and I both ordered The Firm workout plans from an infomercial. We followed their fitness plan, and together, lost almost 30lbs. That was back in the early 2000’s and times are a changing! I still use their DVD’s when I’m in a pinch, and although they are a bit old school…they do the job. They get me sweating!
More recently, I fell in love with the Tone It Up girls, Katrina and Karena. Last year I completed their Bikini Series and it’s back! Their newsletter is free and they have tons of free workouts online. They also have a YouTube channel and you can complete any of their workouts on the go! I splurged and bought their Nutrition Plan and their Beach Babe 2 DVD. The girls are hilarious and their bodies are BANGIN! Not only do they motivate me to put down the pizza and workout, but I also want to be their best friend. Check them out!
Bootique Fitness / Barry’s Bootcamp / Blunt Force
If you’re a lady looking for other ladies to motivate your fitness, I highly recommend Bootique Fitness. A women’s only, outdoor boot-camp, you get SO MUCH for your money. Multiple locations with morning and evening classes, you’re able to find your inner fit babe from their program all day, every day, in the great outdoors. BONUS: As a Bootique member, you’re also able to attend their Zumba classes for FREE! I am a big fan of being strong, but I have fallen in love with the dance! I dare you to try it.
A friend of mine also turned me onto Barry’s Bootcamp. Another strength based boot-camp style workout, Barry’s pushes you to the MAX. A 60 minute workout, your instructor splits the class between the dreaded treadmill and the floor. Each day is a different muscle group and it’s not for the faint of heart. You’ve got to work. They are bit more expensive, but if you’re going consistently, you’re paying for results. But have a I ever mentioned how much I hate running? I love the calories I burn in their classes, but I dread those sprints.
In January, I bought a Groupon for Blunt Force Training. They have some KILLER group boot-camps with rotating Trainers. No two workouts are the same. They also offer Strength classes, Yoga and Boxing! I have never left that gym without feeling like I just got my ass kicked. They are friendly, motivating, fun and the clients come in all ages, shapes and sizes! The gym also has several Personal Trainers that have clients throughout the day. Team Fit Chick, with coaches Alysha White and Kasey Wilson, train their competitors out of this gym too. I’d call this one a one stop shop. And the Unlimited Membership is a steal at $99/month. Personal Training and competing are an additional cost.
24 Hour Fitness / Chuze Fitness / Planet Fitness
I’m not going to take a ton of time between each of these gyms. I know that some gyms offer fancy pools and saunas…but I would rather get a facial or massage from a specialist so I am all about the basics. Most standard gyms have the same equipment and cardio systems, so for me, it’s all about the cost. 24 Hour Fitness is the most expensive of the three gyms I’ve been a member of, ranging from $30-$60/month. At $10/month, for their basic membership, Chuze Fitness and Planet Fitness take the cake. The only setback is most locations don’t have free barbell weights. I like to lift heavy, but not for nearly $30/month more, so this isn’t a deal breaker. Make sure you take a tour of the facility and really understand the equipment before you get started. You want to make sure you get the most for your money! Plus, most gyms are creating awesome circuit areas for you to get an awesome 30 minute Circuit Training session in. BOOM!
I hope this helps you make a better decision for your fitness. Feel free to share your own experiences in the comments. I would love to hear your recommendations!