The future of fitness changes your mentality, not the machines.
By now the initial excitement of sticking to your New Year’s resolution of getting in shape has probably started to fade. Let’s be honest, unless you’re one of those macro-conscious, “follow my fitness Instagram” people, working out isn’t enjoyable. How many times have you caught yourself saying, “Ugh, I don’t want to go to the gym”? For most of us, it’s every time we think about how we should go to the gym. Luckily, there are options for those of you seeking to spice up your fitness game.
Having a gym that offers cool gadgets and tech requires a membership, and memberships require money. When you’re serving tables for $3.49 an hour, disposable income isn’t exactly at your fingertips. Fortunately, many of the on-campus gyms recently received new cardio machines that incorporate technology beyond just measuring how far you’ve ran or your heart rate. It’s not hard to notice that some of these newer machines have large touch screens, but have you ever explored the options that they offer? If you do, you might find an ‘entertainment’ tab. This tab feature has different variations for each type of machine, but they generally have similar applications. For example, the new stair climbers at the RPAC have the ability to stream YouTube, and if you can’t stay away from your recent Netflix or Hulu obsession, you can connect to the app on your phone to the machine and continue binge-watching. For those of you craving a change of scenery from this cold and dreary Ohio winter, try out the virtual scenery tab. You can run, bike or climb through foreign locations such as the Bohemian Mountains of the Czech Republic. If you’re looking for something a brings a competitive nature to your workout, like fishing or darts, try the top-floor rowing machine that allow you to earn points based on how fast and how hard you pull.
Orangetheory Fitness (977 N. High St.) has swept the nation with their unique strategy of integrating technology to spark the competitive side of their clients. The one-hour class focuses on high intensity interval training or HIIT. Class members wear heart rate monitors that take into account you age and gives each individual their own ‘splat number’. This number tells you the level of effort that you should be exerting during the class by displaying how long you should be in your target heart rate zone. The more time you spend in your zone the more ‘splat points’ you receive. This number is displayed on a leaderboard in the front of the room, so naturally you have to get the most points. To really kick it into gear and have some friendly competition to go along with it, check out the new Short North location just a short drive down High Street. Need even more motivation to check out this revolutionary program? Your first class is on them ($28 value), and students receive $10 off the unlimited monthly class rate.
Also close to campus, Cycle614(1636 Northwest Blvd.) is an indoor cycling club. Similar to Orangetheory, Cycle 614 has what they call a ‘Beat Board’ that displays your stats periodically throughout the class. Appropriately named, the board serves as motivation to get the best ride. No special equipment is necessary (although clip-in shoes are recommended), and your participation is voluntary. There is a computer in every bike that records your performance such as speed, resistance, power, distance and calories burned, and all of these components are accounted for in your total power score. You can also access these after the class in your own private account so you can track your progress and set goals for next time. Be sure to register for your free trial class, an $18 value.
If you can’t handle commitment, there is an app, ClassPass, that connects you with variety exercise classes ranging from yoga to boxing. Simply put in your location and see what’s available in your area. Different classes cost a different amount of credits, and the good news is you get 27 credits for free just for signing up and have a month to use them. Group fitness classes really not your thing? The app also has videos that you can stream to your TV—so there’s no excuse not to stick with your resolution.