How Philadelphia Fitness Studios Are Changing Our City — And What It Means for Philly Gyms

Philadelphia Fitness Studis illustration by Gluekit; cycling photo courtesy of Soulcycle; city fitness photo courtesy of Palette Group

Illustration by Gluekit; cycling photo courtesy of Soulcycle; city fitness photo courtesy of Palette Group

When I trained for my first Broad Street Run in 2010, I easily logged more than 150 miles on a treadmill in a musty basement gym with exactly one tiny window and a row of half-functioning TVs. I was happy as an Asics-wearing clam. But over the past six years, I’ve done a complete 180. It’s not that I’ve given up on fitness. Quite the opposite; I’ve since run three more Broad Streets, plus a couple of half-marathons. It’s just that I’ve given up on gyms.

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Apparently, Robin Thicke Was at Sporting Club at the Bellevue Today

Pop singer Robin Thicke, who’s in town for Q102’s Jingle Ball tonight, apparently stopped by the Sporting Club at the Bellevue to shoot some hoops this afternoon. The gym posted a few photos on its Facebook page showing Thicke posing with fans and staffers and playing basketball in the gym.

Evidence below. Anyone see him there? More importantly, how’s his jump shot?

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How Much Is Too Much to Pay for a Fitness Class?

spin class
Philadelphians may have a bit of an inferiority complex when we compare ourselves to New Yorkers (c’mon, you know it’s true), but if there’s one way in which I’m happy we’re not like our neighbor to the north, it’s cost of living: Rent, food, beer and, yes, even fitness classes tend to cost a helluva lot more up there. Big Apple-based blog Well+Good NYC today lamented the high price of some New York fitness classes at in vogue places like SoulCycle, where classes cost upwards of $30 (!!).

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To Do: Donation Classes to Benefit MANNA at 12th Street Gym



Here is a class that will finally get you into the gym on Friday evenings! For four Fridays throughout the month of November, the Metropolitan Area Neighborhood Nutrition Alliance and go2max Fitness will be joining forces to host Fit to Feed circuit-training classes. All of the proceeds from the donation-based classes will go to MANNA, which prepares and delivers nourishing meals to Philadelphia-area residents battling life-threatening illnesses. The classes will be held at 12th Street Gym, but no gym membership is required.

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New CrossFit Gym Opening in Pennsport This Weekend with a Free Workout

crossfitCrossFit 2 St. (Get it? Like, Second Street?) will celebrate its grand opening this weekend in Pennsport at 1323 South 2nd Street. The box is a second location for co-owner David Lee, who also own CrossFit Manayunk; his business partner on the Pennsport box is  George Caroulis.

On Saturday, CF2ST will host an opening party with eats, drinks and a free W.O.D. (that’s Workout of the Day for you CrossFit newbies) at 11. This will also be your chance to get all your CrossFit questions answered. Like, finally.

Get more info about CF2ST here.

To Do: Donation Workouts at Unite Fitness for Breast Cancer Month

weightsOn October 24th, our friends at Unite Fitness are opening their studio doors for donation classes to raise funds for the Linda Creed Foundation, a local organization that helps underprivileged women get access to mammograms, treatment and support. The pay-what-you-want classes run all day, but there’s a special women-only session at 7:30 at the Philly studio. It will include an awesome girl-power playlist (this has GOT to be on there) and focus on, er, trouble spots that plague ladies most. Afterwards, you’ll score snacks and a goodie bag stuffed with treats from Pure Sweets.

Sign up for a class and get more info here.

Donations accepted, October 24th, Unite Fitness studios in Center City (105 South 12th Street) and Mount Laurel (3 Hovtech Boulevard, Mount Laurel, New Jersey)

>> Have a local health or fitness event you’d like to share with Be Well Philly readers? Email with details.

Four Amazing Fitness Classes That Tone Your Whole Body

Digital Vision/ThinkStock

Digital Vision/ThinkStock

I remember the first time I wandered into the weights section at the gym. It was a decade ago, and I was the only woman for miles, it seemed. With palpable trepidation, I picked up an eight-pound dumbbell and did some biceps curls. It was the only strength-training exercise I knew how to do.

Two hours later, at dinner, I went to pick up a saltshaker—and couldn’t. “Look! I can’t pick this up!” I said gleefully to my dining companion. Yup, I was hooked.

These days, I’m far from the odd woman out at the weight rack. “Women today want to be more shapely than straight-line,” says Jewel Kessler, manager and certified P90X trainer at Horsham Athletic Club’s Gravity Center. Beyond just looks, weight training strengthens your bones and builds stamina, coordination and balance—all of which enhance your cardio training, too. (Hello, marathon PR.)

Ready to join me in the weight room? Check out these four awesome local classes that are sure to pump you up.

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PSC Offers Free Workouts to Government Employees Out of Work

If you’re one of the tens of thousands of federal employees who live in the Philadelphia area (I know—that’s way more than I thought, too!), here’s something to fill some of your surprise free time this week: Head to the gym. Philadelphia Sports Clubs is offering free gym time to any federal employee affected by the shutdown for as long as the shutdown lasts. Same goes for the chain’s sister clubs in New York, Boston and D.C.

All you have to do is show your federal ID at the front desk to get in. You’re welcome to use any of the club’s six area locations (they’re in Center City, Fairmount, Society Hill, Ardmore, Radnor and Chalfont), and the deal is good for group classes, too—so go ahead and get your Spin or Zumba on. The only two catches are that you have to be 18 or older (are there government employees who are younger than 18?), and you can go anytime except Monday through Thursday between 4:30 and 7:30. But since you’ve got much time on your hands these days, I don’t think that should be a problem.