Summer Fitness Fest Was Full of Fun, Sweat and Planks

JCC Fitness Festival 2015-02Despite scorching heat, the Summer Fitness Fest went off without a hitch on Sunday, June 7, and I was right there in the middle off it, sweating with everyone else.

The Fitness Fest included 10 different fitness classes offered outdoors in 30-minute segments. Members and guests got cards to get signed by each instructor to show that they participated in each class. When they turned in their cards, they were eligible to win prizes. More than 70 people participated in the event.

Tom Wissinger, director of Membership and Wellness, said that the biggest challenges of the day were getting equipment in the right place and tending to members who got too warm, but the day was a success.

I made a plan: Do two classes on land then two in the water. My own fitness Surf and Turf, if you will.

I began my day with Your Own HIIT, taught by Mary on the basketball court. Each station had water and towels for members, but the heat still got to us.

Mary kicked our butts with Your Own HIIT. We did cardio using the Tabata method – 20 seconds of hard work, then 10 seconds of rest for eight rounds. Yes, it was killer. We did jump squats, planks (ugh, planks!) and … some other stuff my brain has blocked out. Midway through the class, we had to move to the shade because the heat was taking its toll. But I eventually got through it, dreaming of my reward: getting into that pool!

I had planned to do one cycling class, but I knew there was no shade where the bikes were set up. No thanks.

Instead, I went to CXWORX, which is all core training. Though we were under trees, it was still really hot. We did variations on crunches and worked on our obliques and, of course, planks. Seriously? We just did planks in the last class!

After about 20 minutes, I had to step out. I was beginning to feel dizzy and was getting a headache. I drank lots of water, but I know my limit when it comes to heat.

I made my way over to the pool, and was greeted by Beth, who shouted, “Come on, Lisa, get in!” Yay! Water fitness!

Luckily, they were finishing up Shallow Water HIIT, which gave me some time to get acclimated to the water, which was really cold! I kept reminding myself, Cold is good! Better than too hot. But when that icy water hit my belly, yikes! At least we can’t do planks in the water.

JCC Fitness Festival 2015-08It only took a few minutes to be comfortable in the water, and by then Water In Motion had begun. WATERinMOTION is the only class I took during the Fitness Fest that I had taken before, and it was nice to get into familiar territory. Beth is always a fun instructor and makes the class enjoyable.

We rocked and jumped along with the music under Beth’s supervision. The outdoor pool is much nicer for aqua fitness because there is room to accommodate more people in the class. Also, sunshine! It was fun meeting new people, some of whom do water fitness classes all the time, and some who were new to the classes.

After Beth came Cynthia, who taught Aqua Zumba. This lady has serious energy! All the families who just came to the pool to relax got a show while she danced and sang poolside. We all joined in, singing, “Ole, ole, ole, ole,” while we danced in the water. By the end of the class, several children had joined in the fun, dancing along with the rest of us.

I asked a class regular, “Is Cynthia always that energetic?” Her answer: “Every single class!”

It was the perfect ending to the two hours of exercise. I’m going to do Aqua Zumba every week!

The next day, when I woke up and tried to emerge from my bed: Ouch! My abs are on fire! My abs continued to make their presence known for a few days: a painful reminder of all those planks!

JCC Fitness Festival 2015-04The Summer Fitness Fest was a way to show members that fitness can happen anywhere, Wissinger said. The event will be held annually, along with the Pre-Feast Fitness Fest, which is on Thanksgiving Day.

“The members who participated loved it,” Wissinger said. “I thought it was a fun event that hopefully exposed our members to different classes in a unique way. We want to continue to try to be innovative in our fitness programming and thank the members for coming with us on these ideas.” Trainer Sylvester Davis, who helped supervise the trainers for the day, said he thought the event went well.

“Overall, it went smoothly,” Davis said. “Participants had fun, and the atmosphere was very positive.”

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