Woman of Fitness: Robbin U.

My name is Robbin. My life, for the last 32 years, has been divided between raising my two children and working as a nurse on a labor and delivery unit of a local hospital. I cannot remember a week that I have not worked at least 50 or so hours. Overtime always helped make ends meet. A little over 5 years ago, I went into management on the same unit. The hours remained the same, but the stress level went up exponentially! It was that same year that I decided to take care of me.

I had stepped onto a scale at the doctors office and could not believe what I saw. I had been on Weight Watchers most of my life and decided to add exercise. I took a Zumba class at the local park district and the instructor told me that she taught the class at Women’s Workout World as well, and I joined soon after. I never imagined that Zumba would take me where I wanted to go, but slow and steady won the race.

As I started losing weight I started new classes. I tried Turbokick early on, but I could not hang. 65 pounds later I was running back to Turbo because I wanted that challenge. Some of the weight crept back on, and I am determined to not allow that to happen. So at almost 60, I am going to kick it up and I started to take team training.

I have always been a strong-minded person, and now I am going to let the trainers at W3 help me to become strong in body as well! I used to say that I wanted to lose weight and get healthy for my kids. They are grown now, and I truly believe that when I really do it for myself, I feel better. I do not feel my age, and that is a great feeling!!

Oh… and did I mention that I am a HUGE Cubs fan??? ๐Ÿ™‚

-Robbin

W3 Hosts WERQ fitness group exercise dance certification!

What is WERQ? WERQ is a fitness dance class. All of the music in this class is current top 40 pop, hip hop and rock. Unlike other hip hop fitness formats, WERQ ensures that anyone who is teaching this format is a fitness professional- in other words, holds a nationally recognized group fitness certification, such as ACE or AFAA. WERQ was founded in Chicago. Women’s Workout & Wellness recently hosted a WERQ certification for our instructors to become certified in this format. We are always looking to improve our group exercise schedules! And one of the ways we look to improve our group fitness classes is by adding new formats to keep our members excited. We also change our signature formats (we recently changed our HardBody group X class format) to ensure our members get a great yet different experience each time. If you’re looking for group exercise classes in Chicagoland, check out our vast group exercise schedules. You will no doubt find something you like from Latin dance- Zumba- to weight lifting- HardBody and Body Fit- to interval classes, like cardioflex, and then to cardio kickboxing, like Turbokick! We also offer mind/body classes, like Yoga or PiYo. Now, with our recent WERQ certification, we have yet another fun, calorie-burning format to add to our group exercise schedules throughout our Chicagoland gyms! Stay tuned for when this class will be added to the group exercise schedule at the W3 nearest you! In the meantime, check out this picture of our awesome W3 instructor TEAM before the WERQ cert!

W3 Chicago Spotlight: Group Exercise Instructor of the Month July

Introducing W3’s Instructor of the Month! Who’s in the spotlight? She was a member for 6 years and then turned into a group exercise instructor. While a member, she lost 131 pounds! And has obtained her Turbokick certification and also HardBody certification through Women’s Workout & Wellness since her weight loss.

She continues to inspire all W3 members and staff as she teaches at least 6 group exercise classes per week. She mainly teaches at the 51st and Kedzie location (Chicago) but also at the Monroe St. location in the Loop as well as subs and guest instructs at the other W3 clubs. Her name is Danitra, and her classes are phenomenal: full of energy, motivation and inspiration!

Check out the following video of her story and clips of her classes as well as a clip of a member who loves her Turbokick class! Share the link and her weight loss story with others to inspire them as well!

Weight Lifting is for…. Girls!

Woah …  This news is really HEAVY! – as in weights, get it?

I confess! For years I was that girl who would grab the 2.5 lb weights to work my biceps and shoulders and maybe the (whoa) 5 lb big boys to work glutes and thighs. Oh, I was certain that my way was the best way. After all, I didn’t want to bulk up (gross) or start lookin’ all manly (eeww)  I mean, everyone knows that lifting big heavy weights leads to a massive, Schwartzenager-esque physique, right? And c’mon, I personally wear lipstick, brow pencil AND fragrance to the gym so the last thing I wanted was to become less than feminine. Toning and shaping were what I was after, not mass, muscle and heaven forbid, strength, oh no.

Since then, I have become much more enamored of the heavier-the-better method when it comes to weight lifting. Why? Well, because first off, it makes me more powerful and gives me an edge so I can push myself in ways that I could not before. I can now jump, run, plank and TurboKick with the greatest of ease where in the past I would lack the stamina and wimp out more quickly.

I am also now a fitness instructor/trainer who sees the gorgeous results in the bodies of my class participants. Let me tell you, the girls who lift heavy are the ones who actually achieve that lean and sculpted look. And as for myself, well back in the days of the itty-bitty weights, I was kinda fit looking, but had no real muscle definition (AKA: Tone). Lifting weights that actually challenge me helped me to carve out firmer arms, legs, shoulders and tush.

Not convinced that you want to increase your pump — or even get your pump on at all? Here are some superfun fact about weight lifting:

1) Muscle tissue burns calories even after your workout is done. Wait, did you hear me? Because I just said “Muscle tissue burns calories even after your workout is done!” Unlike steady-state cardio conditioning, where the burn ends when you jump off the treadmill, the results of your strength training endure. The expected rate of additional caloric burn can be significant. It is believed that 20 pounds of muscle burns 100 calories in a day – even while just sitting around watching “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” While 20 pounds of fat would burn only a measly 40 calories.

2) Osteoporosis, yo! We girls have a greater tendency to succumb to this medical problem which can lead to brittle bones. One way to fight that is by developing stronger bones. How? You already know …  lifting heavy weights. In fact, studies show that strength training can not only help to prevent bone loss but can even help to build new bone.

3) How about enhancing that feminine physique!? When you start to build muscle, you can get an even more girlish figure. Working your abdominal muscles helps to slim and taper the waist and strengthening butts and thighs helps that backside become firm and lifted. And by the way, how much testosterone are you packin, sister? I’ll give you the easy answer: NOT ENOUGH TO BULK UP. Your body’s own natural hormone balance (tipped away from the testosterone) will prevent mass. Only men have the amounts of T that will allow for building big muscles.  Ready to drop those 2.5 weights and hop on the heavy lifting band wagon? I’ll save you a spot (and a set of 7.5 – 10 lb dumbbells) in Hardbody class!

~Susan Magilton, W3 Group Exercise Instructor & Personal Trainer

Spring into Fitness at W3!

The big “New Year’s rush” is over…but summertime is almost here! So what does that mean? It’s REALLY time to get in shape. Pressure is on for beach/swimsuit season, not to mention the weddings, vacations, graduation parties, summer bbqs and more that await our agendas during the summer. It’s fun, but it’s alsoย nerve-rackingย if we slacked off a bit during the winter months (especially these winter months in Chicago- it’s May and it’s 50 degrees outside!) So, with the weather (hopefully) attempting to warm up outside, it’s time to get serious and really take some time to focus on ourselves.

Besides the ever-so-popular Zumba, Turbokick, HardBody and CardioFlex classes at Women’s Workout & Wellness, you can also find a variety of bootcamps, challenges and functional training programs going on that are changing the lives of women across Chicago- helping them lose weight, tone up, increase their strength and cardiovascular levels, feel better and more energized, and just overall GET IN SHAPE! Before we talk a little bit about what these programs consist of, I just wanted to share a few comments we have heard from some members across our W3 locations. One 4-Week Summer Shape Up Challenge member from the Downers Grove W3 said she can’t even begin to explain how these workouts make her feel- not just physically but emotionally and mentally as well. She decided the 4 weeks wasn’t enough for her and enrolled in this program for a minimum of 3 months! Good for her!

Another member from the W3 on Monroe St. in the Loop had to put another hole in her belt… not to make it looser, of course, but to make it tighter! Her belt has now become too big. She thanked her trainer for the great workouts so far. Yes, it’s the trainer’s motivating training style and amazing workouts, but she has put in a lot of work and has amazing fat loss results to show for it. Can’t wait to see her before and after picture side to side! Only a few weeks left of her bootcamp. Unbelievable RESULTS coming soon!

Intrigued yet?

We could write blog post after blog post of amazing success stories followed by pictures to show the results these women have received, and we will continue to do so because we know this program is what will help women across Chicago get fit and HEALTHY. What’s so great about it? It’s the functional training style of classes. Women join our group functional training program for various reasons: to lose weight, reduce fat and inches, gain muscle tone, feel better, get rid of pain, gain energy, sleep better, and more! And they are getting what they asked for. We use our functional “toys” and carefully designed workouts to produce amazing results. Some of our toys include ropes, slam balls, kettle bells, Bosus, TRX suspension training, plyo boxes, val slides, bands, superbands, monster tires, and more. Have you seen the Biggest Loser? Then you know exactly what we are talking about.

Check out our video HERE to understand ย a little bit more about functional training. Come check it out for yourself- whether you are a member of Women’s Workout & Wellness or someone looking for a gym/program to join, we have a challenge, bootcamp or program for you! Non-members are welcome to enroll in a program for 4 weeks or more, depending on our current promotion. Call today- you’ll be amazed.

What are YOUR results? Be our next success story. Call or visit us today!

~Women’s Workout & Wellness~