With so many studio classes, diets, fitness apps and “expert” formulas choosing your best program can be overwhelming. It can also be frustrating if you are not seeing results and investing time and money. One thing I have learned over the years is there is not one formula that will fit everyone. The best program is the program that motivates you, is balanced and realistic. Having a sense of community and accountability is a key component to stay on track with goals.
Here are some tips I have come up with based on different programs that are available to stay on track and compliment varying lifestyles.
Know your goal
Think about what your motivation is to start a program and write it out so you can find the best program for you.
If you follow a program because you want to look like a fitness star or celebrity or you like before and after pics on Instagram then I would classify that goal as: to look like a fitness model. And that is great! Just know that means: eating clean, meal prepping and maybe even going to bed at nine pm. It is a lifestyle choice and it is very attainable. Choose a program based on your desired outcome. For example, Kayla Istines is more sleek and sculpted whereas Lyzabeth Lopez is curvy and strong.
Advice: Talk to your doctor to get medical clearance and also for medical advice if programs encourage supplements or artificial food. Find someone who has followed the program for over two years and maintained results. Get support from a community of others with like minded goals.
There are so many different styles of personal training. Personal Training studios have the best of the best in the industry with different styles and genres of training. Referrals based on common goals and success results are the best way to go. If you are in Chicago- Hi Fi Personal Fitness (820 N. Orleans) is absolutely the best studio to find a trainer.
Advice: Studio owners are great at matching up clients with trainers based on results and personality. Several of my colleagues share clients and collaborate with designing well rounded programs. If the trainer is over booked-ask the trainer who they would recommend.
Long Term Athlete or Art Form Training
If you choose a long term life style program such as adult team sports, martial arts, marathon running or dance -it is important to understand the mechanics of your training. Do some muscles get overused? Does one side of your body work harder? Is injury prevention a part of your program?
Advice: Invest in private sessions with a sports physical therapist or Integrative Movement Specialist. The investment will be money well spent for long term athletics and health.
Cross Fit Schedule a private session to go over technique if you are new to working out. Daily recovery stretches and monthly sports massages may also be beneficial. Take a week off every few months for recovery, and injury prevention.
Barre Classes Take a beginner ballet class at a professional dance studio and learn dance posture and breathing dance technique before taking a barre class or as a compliment to a barre class. Ballet is good for the brain and breaking down the actual art form takes time, so be patient and kind to your body.If the Barre studio offers private classes, find the most experienced instructor with a dance background. If certain muscles get overused or tight, be sure to add daily stretches. Professional dancers are always stretching and foam rolling.
Interval Classes Shred 51, Orange Theory
Warm up before class and check in with your body to be aware of soreness. The atmosphere can be fun and motivating so be sure not to over do it. Listen to your body and communicate with the instructor ahead of time about any form questions.
Spinning and Rowing Classes Go Cycle, Go Row, Soul Cycle
Be aware of muscles that may get tight from over use or which muscles might overcompensate. A strength training routine to target muscles that do not get used may be beneficial.
105f Variety is the way to go to avoid stagnation! I love the variety and availability of classes at 105f. The Yin Yoga class at 105f is great for recovery and body awareness. Smart 60 is a great offering if you have less time and Nidra is an amazing practice for calmness and clarity.
Core Power If you are new to yoga, I suggest scheduling a private session to go over the break down of the moves. The heat may make muscles feel more malleable so it is important to have body awareness in each pose as well as understanding the mechanics especially if the class is moving fast. Several yoga studios have free beginner level community classes. This is a great place to start! When you are ready to go for it-Core Power offers a free week of Yoga!
Free Yoga Community Class
COMMUNITY and Support
After you have defined your goal and researched available programs-why not buddy up with a friend for motivation, join a studio or a sports team! Many find support from online communities with fitness and yoga contests and daily motivation. Whatever your goal is-there is a community and support available. Go for it!!!
define your GOAL define your BODY define your LIFE