Once again, you’ve made a New Year’s resolution to get fit. This year, make it count. Showing up at a gym isn’t enough. You need a workout that not only motivates you to shed pounds and get stronger, but is also so much fun that you forget how hard you’re pushing. If you need a little help getting started, we’ve created a list of the hottest, most enjoyable workouts at the best gyms in Chicago, whether you like to swim, spin, or shake a tail feather on the dance floor. It still won’t be easy, but you’ll be smiling through the sweat with these six fantastic exercise routines.
FitCore at Fitness Formula Clubs
With locations all over town, as well as in Oak Park, FFC goes out of its way to accommodate all. And if super-tight abs are your goal, this is the place to be. FitCore’s only 30 minutes, so you know the routine’s intense, with a concentration on abdominal and lower back work. It’s highly recommended to take it before or after another class such as contact boxing, cardio dance, or yoga. It’s $20 per person when you come with a member and $30 without.
FlyBarre at Flywheel Chicago Old Town (1653 N. Wells St.)
If you dig dance and strength training, you’ll obsess over the newest fitness sensation at the second location of Flywheel Chicago. Oh, it’s difficult all right, as you’ll lift weights and participate in some Pilates-esque exercises, but the music cranking out of the system will help push you beyond your limits. It’s 45 minutes. The first class is free; $25 per person thereafter.
Glideology at Trainology Fitness (309 W. Chicago Ave.)
Get your hips, thighs, and butt ready for shorts season by jumping aboard one of the boards in Glideology. For 45 minutes, you’ll cross train between the glide board–which puts you in skating motion–and light weights. That’s a full-body experience designed to give you a taste of what it’s like to be Michelle Kwan for a day. The first class is free; $25 per person thereafter.
Aqua Fit at Lakeshore Athletic Club Lincoln Park (1320 W. Fullerton Ave.)
Don’t think that because aquatic aerobics is easier on your joints that this class will be a breeze. It aims to be quite challenging as it targets the heart rate with aggressive movement. It takes place in four feet of water, so all levels are encouraged to attend. Lakeshore also boasts one of the largest gym pools in the city, so you should look into the variety of swim classes if water is your thing. It’s 45 minutes and $25 per person.
Shockwave at Equinox (900 N. Michigan Ave.)
This Shockwave business is exactly what you think: a shock to your system. It combines circuit-training exercises of kettlebells, lunges with weights, cardio, and Indo-Row machines. If you’re extremely competitive and prefer team sports, you’re sure to love it. Small groups compete against one another and you don’t get to move on to the next exercise until each member completes each task. It’s a 45-minute class. It’s $35 per person, but you must go with a member.
Tango lessons at Dance Tango Chicago (3868 N. Lincoln Ave.)
You’ll find few places around town where you can get all dolled up and get a great workout in. Dance Tango is one of those spots, particularly on the third and fourth Saturday of the month when late-night classes are offered. From 9 to 10pm, the tango lesson takes place and is immediately followed by a milonga, or social dance party, until 1:30am. All levels are welcome. Classes are $15 per person. See you on the dance floor.