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The Fitness Challenge

Training Outside the Box



Photo by Peggy Garbus

“Good god, Woman, how many gym memberships do you have?” asked my husband. He was holding my keychain, from which three key cards to local gyms were dangling. Okay, I admit it. My name is Lisa and I am a fitness junkie. I get bored of doing the same exercises all the time. With the holiday season fast approaching I decided to get out of my fitness rut and challenge myself to try something new. Here are some local gems:

Anytime Fitness
Dan, a personal trainer (and co-owner) introduced me to the world of boxing. I was surprised at the level of cardio fitness it takes to box. What’s key in the sport is keeping your arms close by your sides and relying on your core for strength. We did the basic two-punch, four-punch, seven-punch and 11-punch routines. I was trying so desperately to stay focused that I didn’t realize how hard I was working. There were left-right, left-right hooks, dips, dunks, and more punches. Every time I missed, he made me start over, so by the time I had finished the drills twice, 25 minutes had passed in a flash, and I—the reluctant sweater—had actually broken a sweat. A great workout.

JoyRide Ridgefield
I’ve spun before, but my experience in spin studios is somewhat limited. Rows of sleek bikes lined the studio. We began the class warming up to a Mumford and Sons tune and our instructor Cindy spent the next seven songs guiding us through different positions on the bike. 

JoyRide differentiates itself from other spin classes by incorporating an arm and shoulder workout into the class. Spinners choose a two- or four-pound bar to work their biceps, triceps, and shoulders. The strategically darkened room and rhythmic music allow you to mentally escape and focus on moving the flywheel. The burn was ridiculous. By the end, endorphins were zooming through my body and I felt energized.

Pilates Advantag
I have to admit I thought this would be an easy one. I’ve practiced mat Pilates, but I discovered it’s a watered-down version of the true discipline, which focuses on using the group of muscles at the center of the body to control the limbs.

My instructor Mary Beth took her time explaining the Pilates method. I learned that my body, like most, is not symmetrical. I rely on twisting my spine to the right in order to power through exercises. We focused on my centering myself to perform basic moves slowly and purposefully. What I thought would be a breeze was very challenging because my muscle strength was so lopsided. Result: I learned that I needed to focus on alignment basics before I moved forward with strength training. 

PTP Fitness
Special shout out to personal trainer Stephanie for a brutal agility workout. I admit I was nervous about this one because invariably what I dread the most is usually what I need the most. I’m clumsy so I was particularly concerned about my right side and left sides working in tandem. Stephanie put me through a routine packed with everyone’s least-favorite exercises: the TRX, burpees, the ladder, band resistance, and the BOSU balancer. Agility training is of value to athletes of all ages interested in stepping up their game. My reward for all the hard work? A welcome stretch at the end of our session. 

Hello Yoga
I loved the studio for its minimalist yet inviting feel. It’s just the right size for getting the individual attention you need while still being able to experience the collective energy of the class. The devil is in the details with yoga, and Hello Yoga’s instructors are the best at helping you make subtle changes in your practice. The music rocked, and so did my mood as I let go of my worldly concerns and absorbed the inspirational messages voiced in the class.

You don’t have to be a fitness junkie to benefit from any of these exercise options. Hello Yoga and JoyRide offer courses at all levels. Personal trainers take your specific needs (and limitations) into account and will modify routines accordingly. During the winter months, it’s tempting to exercise less and hibernate more, but why not lace up your sneakers and take your own fitness challenge? You’ll be glad you did. 

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September 2018

On June 23, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich opens Expressionism in Print: The Early Works of Richard Haas, 1957 - 64 in the Arcade Gallery. The exhibition will be on display through October 21, 2018....

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
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Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
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Cost: suggested donation of $5 for non-member adults is welcomed

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Wilton Historical Society
224 Danbury Road
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Cost: Admission & parking free. unlimited rides $25. Individual ride tickets available

Where:
Wilton
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Explore three private gardens in Greenwich, Westport, and Wilton, open for self-guided tours to benefit the Garden Conservancy. Highlights include water features, terraced perennial gardens, a...

Cost: $7 per garden, children 12 and under free

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Pixie Perennials
200 Nod Hill Road
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Sponsor: The Garden Conservancy
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On June 23, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich opens Expressionism in Print: The Early Works of Richard Haas, 1957 - 64 in the Arcade Gallery. The exhibition will be on display through October 21, 2018....

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
Website »

More information

Inspired by the upcoming New York Fashion Week (September 5 - 12), the Wilton Historical Society is presenting a fashion exhibition "A Century of Style: 1860 - 1960", which will run...

Cost: suggested donation of $5 for non-member adults is welcomed

Where:
Wilton Historical Society
224 Danbury Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

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Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
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Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Nadia Martinez
Website »

More information

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On June 23, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich opens Expressionism in Print: The Early Works of Richard Haas, 1957 - 64 in the Arcade Gallery. The exhibition will be on display through October 21, 2018....

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
Website »

More information

Inspired by the upcoming New York Fashion Week (September 5 - 12), the Wilton Historical Society is presenting a fashion exhibition "A Century of Style: 1860 - 1960", which will run...

Cost: suggested donation of $5 for non-member adults is welcomed

Where:
Wilton Historical Society
224 Danbury Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Nature is on display in “A Reverence For Nature” with pieces that reflect the artists’ admiration of nature or the environment in a multitude of ways. Exhibiting artists include...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Nadia Martinez
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

On June 23, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich opens Expressionism in Print: The Early Works of Richard Haas, 1957 - 64 in the Arcade Gallery. The exhibition will be on display through October 21, 2018....

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
Website »

More information

Inspired by the upcoming New York Fashion Week (September 5 - 12), the Wilton Historical Society is presenting a fashion exhibition "A Century of Style: 1860 - 1960", which will run...

Cost: suggested donation of $5 for non-member adults is welcomed

Where:
Wilton Historical Society
224 Danbury Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Nature is on display in “A Reverence For Nature” with pieces that reflect the artists’ admiration of nature or the environment in a multitude of ways. Exhibiting artists include...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Nadia Martinez
Website »

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Cost: Free

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Martin House Workspace
69 Westchester Ave.
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Sponsor: Martin House Workspace
Telephone: 914-764-3128
Contact Name: Erin Trostle
Website »

More information

On June 23, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich opens Expressionism in Print: The Early Works of Richard Haas, 1957 - 64 in the Arcade Gallery. The exhibition will be on display through October 21, 2018....

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
Website »

More information

Inspired by the upcoming New York Fashion Week (September 5 - 12), the Wilton Historical Society is presenting a fashion exhibition "A Century of Style: 1860 - 1960", which will run...

Cost: suggested donation of $5 for non-member adults is welcomed

Where:
Wilton Historical Society
224 Danbury Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Nature is on display in “A Reverence For Nature” with pieces that reflect the artists’ admiration of nature or the environment in a multitude of ways. Exhibiting artists include...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Nadia Martinez
Website »

More information

Show More...
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Woodcock Nature Center plans Under the Harvest Moon Benefit Event Friday, September 21 One of the largest fundraisers of the year for Woodcock Nature Center, Under the Harvest Moon on Friday,...

Cost: $80/person

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Woodcock Nature Center
56 Deer Run Rd
Wilton, CT  06897
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

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Grace Farms
365 Lukes Wood Road
New Canaan, CT  06840
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Cost: $45

Where:
WEPCO Parish Hall
48 New Canaan Road
Wilton, CT  06897
View map »


Sponsor: Music on the Hill
Telephone: 203-529-3133
Contact Name: Music on the Hill
Website »

More information

On June 23, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich opens Expressionism in Print: The Early Works of Richard Haas, 1957 - 64 in the Arcade Gallery. The exhibition will be on display through October 21, 2018....

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
Website »

More information

Inspired by the upcoming New York Fashion Week (September 5 - 12), the Wilton Historical Society is presenting a fashion exhibition "A Century of Style: 1860 - 1960", which will run...

Cost: suggested donation of $5 for non-member adults is welcomed

Where:
Wilton Historical Society
224 Danbury Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Nature is on display in “A Reverence For Nature” with pieces that reflect the artists’ admiration of nature or the environment in a multitude of ways. Exhibiting artists include...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Nadia Martinez
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

On June 23, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich opens Expressionism in Print: The Early Works of Richard Haas, 1957 - 64 in the Arcade Gallery. The exhibition will be on display through October 21, 2018....

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
Website »

More information

Inspired by the upcoming New York Fashion Week (September 5 - 12), the Wilton Historical Society is presenting a fashion exhibition "A Century of Style: 1860 - 1960", which will run...

Cost: suggested donation of $5 for non-member adults is welcomed

Where:
Wilton Historical Society
224 Danbury Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
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