Give Your Workout A Little Pizazz

Studio 5 Fitness and Nutrition Expert Melanie Douglass identifies three new trends in workouts that could fit your personality and style.

You can access these class formats at most health clubs and short snippets are also available on Youtube. If you don’t have a club membership, ask for a one-day “trial” guess pass; in that one hour, you’ll learn great moves that you can perform on your own, at home or outside, for years to come. And if you really love the class, consider a membership… your health is worth every cent!

1. Power Body Sculpting:

These types of classes are strength training all the way! You’ll use bars, bands, balls, weights, and your own body weight to shape, tighten, tone and strengthen your whole body. The classes are usually 45 – 60 minutes and various strength exercises are performed the entire time. The “power” part means the classes are meant to challenge you by engaging as many muscles as possible in each exercise. So instead of standing there and doing an arm curl, you’ll do a squat with the arm curl.

If you don’t strength train, take a chance and try one of these classes! The right music plus the motivation and expertise of a qualified instructor can make all the difference in the world. And don’t worry, a class like this doesn’t make you “bulky”, it simply helps you burn fat, build muscle and boost your metabolic rate.

You might find this type of class under names like:


– 24LIFT (@ 24Hour Fitness)

– 24

– Flex

– Lift

– Body Sculpting

Here’s a great youtube sample of a BODYPUMP class:

2. Cardio Dance

These types of classes are all about moving your body and challenging your mind. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to be that coordinated for this type of class. The instructors break the moves down in a very clear, easy-to-follow format, then they work up to fun combinations that challenge your body and your mind.

You might find cardio dance classes under names like:

– Zumba


– Hip Hop

– Nike Rockstar

– Latin or Brazilian Dance

– Cardio Dance

Here’s a sample of a ZUMBA class: (remember, in a real class, they would break the moves down…)


Bootcamp has one universal meaning: no-nonsense sweat. That means no fancy moves, no complicated routine to follow… just basic exercises (like skills and drills) that make you sweat and burn lots of calories. Jumping jacks, pushups, ladders, squat thrusts (that’s right, remember those?) are common exercises done in boot camp workouts. In a class like this, come prepared to give it your best; the instructors are usually amped and ready to push you to new levels (but don’t worry, if it’s too hard, they help you appropriately lower the intensity as well).

Bootcamp is great because it’s usually a perfect mix of cardio and strength training. If you want to just work hard and be motivated by external forces (music, structure and good instructors), and not think about anything else, bootcamp is the way to go.

There’s a lot of junk on youtube when searching “boot camp workouts” – in fact, I wasn’t able to find a single clip I actually liked. The best advice is this: Make sure you go to a bootcamp class (or buy DVDs) taught by a certified instructor. (Credible certifications include: ACE, AFAA, NASM, ACSM)

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