Trend 3: Trendy Gym

Trendy GymSo today was a big day for me. I moved from my home office to a permanent work space uptown. One of the perks of working uptown is access to trend-setting gyms with little luxuries that my local gym doesn’t provide, like towel service, trendy classes and a plethora of new exercise equipment. I fell in love with their indoor pool and already saw several new classes that I must add to my routine. More on that later…

Today I made the trek over to the gym during lunch and eked out a quick 30-minute run. I was in and out within 45 minutes, including my quick shower. I returned to work invigorated and it was a great way to step away from my desk and get reenergized.

Should you join a gym?

I thought about this a lot during my run and I honestly can’t think of anyone who wouldn’t benefit from joining a gym. If you work outside the home, find a gym near your work and you can workout before work, during lunch or before you head home. You can even use hitting gym as way to avoid rush hour traffic, using your gym time to hit the road during a less-traveled time. If you are a stay-at-home parent, find a gym that offers free childcare. It’s a great perk for parents and kids. My daughter comes with me to our hometown gym with child watch and she loves it because they offer kids fitness classes in the gymnastics studio. She can practice her flips and jump in a foam pit while I’m getting my sweat on. It’s a win-win!

A gym is great for beginners, intermediate and advanced exercisers. There are classes on yoga, step, weights, athletic conditioning and more. There are treadmills, ellipticals, bikes and rowers. If you lift weights, you can choose between weight machines, free weights or weight classes. You can play a game of basketball on the court and or get in a few laps swimming in the indoor pool. No matter what your fitness preference, there is something for you at the gym. I love this uptown gym because of the little extra perks that make life a little more comfortable. It’s definitely designed for the working professional who needs to get in and get out quick.

Who shouldn’t try it?

Honestly, the only reason I can see for not joining a gym is financial. However, the YMCA will work with individuals to develop a monthly rate that works for their budget. There are also Groupons and Living Social deals for gyms frequently,

Are you a member of a gym? Do you prefer to work out at a gym or at home?

Trend 2 – Turbo Kickbox

KickboxThere’s kickbox, then there’s turbo kickbox. One small word, one big difference. Turbo is derived from the Greek word τύρβη, meaning “wake”. This makes sense since turbo kickbox completely woke up muscles that I didn’t know existed.

I walked into class and stood nervously near the front row since it was my first time and I needed to see the instructor. A tiny blonde powerhouse popped up onto the stage and provided a disclaimer that we could march in place if we got lost in the movement, which would be likely if it was our first time. She warned us that the class was “turbo” kicked and movements were fast and furious, but it was important to keep moving.

She pumped up the music and I immediately got into the groove when I heard Iggy’s Black Widow. The music was on super speed, and so was the instructor! I seriously think she took speed before the class because I don’t know how she moved so fast.

We did a series of kicks, jumping jacks, jabs, upper cuts and punches. While the moves were challenging, they were easy to learn and it was also easy to scale.

Should you try it?

This is a great workout for all fitness levels. If you are advanced, you can kick the class up a notch with more explosive movements, but if you are just beginning you can march in place or take the lower intensity option. It is also great for beginners because the movements are simple and easy to learn. I was sweating all over the place and it was a great cardio workout. There was no equipment, so it’s super easy to pop in and pop out.

Who won’t like it

If you don’t like loud music or group classes, this may not be your cup of tea. Personally, I love the music and group atmosphere, but I’ve been in classes where people complain about the volume of music to the instructor and wear cotton balls in their ears during the class. Please don’t be that person.

Also, this class is super fast paced and has choreographed moves. Again, not for everyone.

Kickbox offers many benefits, including working out both upper and lower body. It i also great for your abs. Check out the article on the benefits of kickbox. Turbo kickbox is different than regular kickbox because it kicks the cardio up a notch and doesn’t offer a lot of instruction or guidance on proper form. The focus is more on staying moving than learning specific kicks or punches.


Have you taken kickbox or turbo kickbox? What did you think?

Week 1 – Air Fit

AirFitThe hottest new fitness trend will have you floating on air…literally. Air Fit is an intense fitness class, in which participants hang from hammocks suspended from the ceiling and perform a series of moves that fuse ballet, pilates and yoga. I completely underestimated the intensity of this class the first time I took it. I’ve run marathons…I should be able to take an aerial yoga class with no sweat, right? Wrong! I was sweating all over my mat and had an intense workout. The best part about Air Fit is that it doesn’t feel like a work out. I feel like a kid again as I hang upside down, or step up into the hammock. For 50 minutes we do push ups, air pigeon, planks, kicks and star jumps and at the end of class I can’t believe it’s over.

My daughter has even caught the Air Fit bug and she’s taking an upcoming Mom and Me class, where we can fuse fun and fitness together.


emilyairfitI visit Air Aerial Fitness and they have studios in Chicago, Charlotte, Los Angeles, River North, Dallas and Lincoln Park. Steve Harvey recently tried Air Fitness on his show and it’s all the rage in the latest fitness magazines.

Each instructor has a slightly different method, which is great because you will get a different workout each time you visit. My favorite class is Air Shred because it resembles Tabata training, in that we do intense 30 second spurts of exercise, followed by a short rest for the entire class. It moves quickly and creates results fast.

There are many benefits to inversions as well, including improved circulation, activation of the parasympathetic system, creating feelings of balance and calm and mental and physical invigoration.

How do you know if Aerial Yoga / Air Fit is for you?


If you like Pilates, you’ll love Air Fit! If you are looking for a workout that fuses cardio, strength training, yoga and Pilates, you should also give it a try. It’s also great for anyone who is looking to try something new or is bored with their current routine.

Who shouldn’t take Aerial Yoga / Air Fit?


The weight limit on the hammock is 300 lbs. and it’s recommended that individuals weigh less than 250 lbs. It’s not recommended for those with vertigo, high blood pressure or heart disease.

Have you ever done Air