Gyms, apps offer workout options

By Shelly Widhalm

For busy executives, getting fit in the New Year doesn’t have to mean a heavy commitment to strenuous activity requiring lots of hours. Exercise can be as lengthy as 60 minutes or squeezed in for high intensity bursts of cardio or strength-building activity. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week. That can include 30 to 60 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise five times a week, 20 to 60 minutes of vigorous exercise three times a week, or one continuous session or multiple shorter sessions of at least 10 minutes to add up cumulatively. No matter how they want to put in the time, executives have lots of options that foster an active lifestyle. They can go to an athletic club, a fitness center, a recreation center, a convenience 24-hour gym, or a boutique studio that specializes in one particular exercise, like cycling, yoga or cross-fit training. They might pay for access to a basic gym with weights and cardio equipment or have additional amenities like racquetball and basketball courts, a swimming pool and an indoor track. The facilities may charge monthly, semiannual or annual membership fees, and places like city recreation centers might offer one-use passes for the day or punch cards with a certain number of visits. There may be a low entry fee with additional fees to take specialized classes, engage in small group training sessions or hire a personal trainer for individualized training. Some of the facilities also may offer virtual fitness classes when an instructor isn’t on site and provide facility-branded fitness apps with workout-from-home options. Additional home workouts are available on independent fitness apps and websites that provide routines and track distance, time, pace, calories burned and goal achievement. Home workouts may not require any weights or equipment to make them easier to do at home or in a hotel, such as aerobics or body weight training, doing things like pushups and squats following a walk. “There’s an app for everything,” said Sherri Goering, fitness and wellness coordinator and a personal trainer at the Chilson Recreation Center in Loveland, pointing out Strava, a social fitness network that tracks cycling and running, and the Garmin fitness tracker as popular options. “The drawback of apps is no one is watching your form. No one is encouraging you.” Two other popular fitness apps are the Map My Fitness mobile app, which tracks gym and running workouts and measures things like distance, pace and calorie burn, and MyFitnessPal, a mobile app and website that tracks diet and exercise for optimal caloric intake and nutrients, said Rachel Southard, director of personal training operations for Anytime Fitness LLC, based in Woodbury, Minn. Fitbits, wearable wireless devices that measure steps, heart rate and other fitness metrics, and Apple Watches also help with determining fitness data, she said. “That is so important just to move your body. A 20- to 30-minute walk every day is a great first step to getting more active,” Southard said. “The Anytime […]

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