We’ve thankfully moved past the “no pain, no gain” mentality that was prevalent earlier on in the fitness industry. But you may have noticed that once you start seeing results, it can be tough to slow down and listen to your body—especially when it comes to recognizing the difference between muscle soreness (a “good ache”) and pain, or outright injury. Knowing which is which—and when to push through or back off—is key to either continuing progress or being sidelined. [···]
As we work out, our exercised muscles are contracted—which means they are shortened in order to make them stronger. But for overall fitness, any muscle that is shortened must be lengthened again to reduce injury and that awful next-day ache, and also to aid in its recovery so you can work it out again. Naturally, stretching is one important way to accomplish this. But foam rolling is another recovery technique to put in your fitness arsenal. [···]
As our culture becomes more fitness-conscious, the services offered by gyms continue to improve in quality. But it’s more than just high-end machines and equipment. Gyms like ours also offer fun, engaging, and effective group classes and small group or one-on-one personal training.
As training and group fitness started to rise to popularity, it seemed anyone could be a “trainer”—and that almost anyone was. But fitness expert Walter Thompson PhD (president of the certification body ACSM) says, “Overall, people who work in the fitness industry are much more accountable and professional than previously.” And this is great news for anyone who wants to train and transform their body in a safe environment and under the guidance of a qualified coach. [···]
Group fitness classes are a common offering in many gyms these days (including ours), with industry leaders like Les Mills, Pilates, and Zumba offering formats for fitness clubs large and small, alongside staples like yoga, strength training, and cardio equipment. But where did this phenomenon come from, and why is it a great way for you to get—and stay—fit? [···]
Opinions about stretching are almost as varied as the exercises out there to be performed. Some positive, some negative, and many with just enough of a mix of right and wrong to really hurt somebody. So let’s get down to the plain facts about stretching (and bust some myths). By applying them to your fitness regimen, you’ll likely see your mobility, flexibility, comfort, and even overall health improve. [···]
What is the most important gear any avid exerciser can invest in? Without a doubt—it’s shoes. Some types of workouts require other equipment, but even if you’re exclusively doing cardio and bodyweight training, you still need shoes. $20 discount store shoes won’t do, either. You don’t get replacement feet after you’ve worn them out, so what you put on them as you set your body in motion definitely matters. We’ve talked before about choosing shoes that offer the right types of support and motion for a variety of exercise types (for example, shoes that are ideal for running will not do so well for dancing). But after “what do I buy?” the next most important question is “when do I throw them away?” [···]
Did you know that one of the most effective things you can do to your body is… confuse it?
Keeping your muscles—including your heart—guessing, is a powerful way to see fast fitness results. And a popular method we’ve just added at Club 14 Fitness is HIIT training, courtesy of the LES MILLS GRIT™ class. [···]
It shouldn’t surprise you that around here we encourage women to lift weights. But when it comes to the heavy weights, even those who lift regularly may pause. I mean, how heavy is too heavy? Will a woman who lifts heavy look like “Ah-nold”? [···]
Even though football is one of the most energetic and intense popular team sports in America, for most of us, “Are you ready for some football?” means reserving a spot on the sofa and clearing the coffee table to accommodate chips, dips, and beer. While our sports heroes sweat it out on the gridiron, we’re packing on the pounds for winter.
That’s like eating ice cream—from the carton—while watching The Biggest Loser. [···]
Most of us, as we start working out, major in cardio fitness: treadmill or elliptical, group aerobic classes, running or walking, etc. But as we gain endurance and look for more, or even hit plateaus, strength training is the natural next step. [···]