It’s one of the most common New Year’s resolutions. After a season of too much cocktail-party fare, many of us vow to lose weight and get fit. While intentions are good, the follow-up isn’t always there. To help you stay focused in 2014, we asked the owners of four new local gyms in Darien what keeps them motivated.
Set the Goal
“Don’t make your fitness goal about a number,” says Felice Marcy, co-owner of CST50Darien. “If you focus on a specific weight you’ll get frustrated if the scale doesn’t move. Instead, set goals that are related to fitness milestones, such as running a certain number of miles a week or perfecting the plank. Pick a short-term goal that’s an easy win and build on it from there.” Try It: CST50 offers one of the hottest (and hardest) workouts. The Megaformer is like a Pilates machine on steroids that works multiple muscle groups at one time (think bicep curls with resistance straps, while doing lunges). The Fundamentals class is a good choice for those who want to stay motivated. “Instruction moves at a slow pace to get you acclimated to the machine,” says Marcy, “and with no more than ten people to a class, it’s personalized instruction.” cst50darien.com
“Find the workout you love and then make it fun,” says Amy Hochhauser, cofounder of JoyRide, an indoor cycling studio. “It helps to keep it social by working out with friends. They make exercise more enjoyable and keep you accountable. If your friends are expecting you, you’ll show up. You’ll feel like part of a community, too, and that can be a motivator in itself.” Try It: The 50-minute Cycle is JoyRide’s signature class. It’s the best way to torch calories (as many as 800) and save your joints, but many people do it for the tunes. At JoyRide, there’s a brand-new playlist for every class. “Our instructors spend a lot of time selecting music, but they do it because they want each class to be exciting. If it’s fresh, there’s a good chance you’ll forget how hard you’re working.” joyridestudio.com
Be at Ease
“If you find an environment you’re comfortable in, you’ll go back time and again,” says Amy Shelton of Flair Fitness, a facility for women only. “At Flair, people get to know each other and we strive to create a communal atmosphere. We also make the idea of exercise less intimidating by offering packages that don’t expire. You can take a few classes and then walk away. There’s no pressure to come back within a certain time frame for fear of losing your investment.” Try It: Zumba is the big draw at Flair, and Shelton says that’s because dancing doesn’t feel like exercise. “It brings out the joy in people,” she says. flairfitnessstudio.com
Slow and Steady
“Any trainer can beat you up and put you through hell to help you achieve a fitness goal, but you’ll have more success if you start up easy and then gradually progress in the level of difficulty,” says Aidan Gaffney of Vibe Fitness, who offers group and one-on-one personal training. “To keep our clients motivated, we set up short- and long-term goals, and they’re often easier to meet when you have the support of family or friends to keep you going.” Try It: Vibe has programs for adults, but it also caters to youth who want to enhance sports performance. “We get them moving in more of a game atmosphere. We’ll sneak in push-ups and sit-ups, but we want them to have fun without them realizing they’re getting a great workout.” vibefitnessdarien.com