Cycling for Your Life

November 23, 2009

Spending as much time as I do at the Rec Center, I have observed all activities and I have to say the most challenging and sweatiest workout is group cycling.

Its also the most popular. 

The Rec Center has the only cycling studio on campus and any student or member can participate if they purchase the group cycling pass.


The pass is only $40 a semester and if you purchase the combo pass that includes TexerCise classes it is only $100. 

“Cycling is just part of my weekly workouts,” JV Vong said. “Its worth the money.” 

There are 13 different cycling classes you can choose:

Group Cycling:  For all participant levels. (beginner – advanced)

Group Cycling Express:
A 45-mintute group cycling class for those on the go.

Power 40:  designed for those who are short on time but high on motivation over their lunch hour (beginner – advanced)

Endurance Ride: A 60-minute class that involves cardio challenges, hills, varying speeds and resistance, and endurance segments. (beginner – advanced)

Endurance Ride PLUS: A 90-minute class for the weekend warriors out there. 75 minutes on the bike plus a 10-minute stretching segment. This class ends with 5 minutes of pure relaxation.

Cycle 40/20/20: Great for those who are looking for a complete workout! Cycle for 40-minutes, do 20-minutes of upper body exercises, and finish with 20-minutes of core and flexibility work. (beginner – advanced)

Cycle + Abs: A 40-45-minute cycling workout followed by 15-minutes of great abdominal exercises. (beginner – advanced)

Cycle + Pilates: A great cycling workout on the bike – followed by a Pilates segment to lengthen and strengthen your entire body. No previous Pilates experience necessary. (beginner – advanced)

Cycle + Sculpt: Combine the best of both worlds and reap the benefits of a cycling class infused with sculpting and group strength exercises.

Cycle + Upper Cuts: Complete a great cycling workout and finish up with some amazing upper body exercises to tone, strengthen, and define.

Cycle + Yoga: Get a great cardio workout and follow it up with a yoga segment. The perfect combination for a complete mind/body workout! (beginner – advanced)

Hill Ride: This class will focus on hill specific movements and will challenge and improve your lower body strength and cardiovascular system. Shake up your cycling routine and try this class! (beginner – advanced)

Speed & Interval Ride: Consists of fast flats, standing and seated runs, and intervals galore! (intermediate – advanced) 

And be prepared to sweat because the classes are challenging and although it is a group class, you can set your own personal speed and rate that fits how you feel. Just remember to bring a towel and water bottle to every class and arrive at least five minutes early because they fill up fast. 

“It is the most intense workouts I have,” senior Myrna Rombado said. “Looking in the room it seems easy and basic but its not like an ordinary bike ride. The instructors are intense too.”


Review: Planet Fitness

November 18, 2009

Photo by Planet Fitness

When I first heard of Planet Fitness offering monthly rates as low as $10.00 (plus tax) per month with no contract, I immediately thought that there was no way that this could be true. But sure enough, I seen the ad on the homepage in big yellow letters.

There is, however, the dreadful catch:

  • Start up: $39.00
  • Annual Membership Fee $29.00
  • Membership can only be used at the 1100 W. Anderson Lane Austin, TX gym.

Nonetheless, even with the fees added up, the cost is still less than the gyms I compared in last week’s post. I did some additional digging on Planet Fitness, and found out that they have Pizza parties the first Monday of every month (a strange choice of food to serve at a gym, no?).

The strangest thing I discovered was its Judgment Free Zone policy. Basically, for those guys and gals who like to grunt and drop their weights, this gym is definitely not for you. In New York, a man had his membership revoked for grunting. Also, beware of the “lunk alarm” which goes off when someone violates the no grunting, weight dropping rule. Oh, and don’t even think about lifting dumbbells heavier than 80 lbs. They don’t house it.

Other things prohibited on the gym floor include: no cell phone use, no jeans, do rags, bandannas, or skull caps, no short or revealing attire.

Yeah, there seems to be a lot of restrictions at this gym. A little to much to me, but check it out and see for yourself.

Check out the video below to hear what the lunk alarm sounds like.


Let’s go to the gym

November 10, 2009

So you’ve taken the plunge and have decided to start hitting the gym. Where to go…. You’ve probably seen Bally Fitness and the Pussycat Dolls on TV and most likely heard about what Physique  57 can do (have you seen Kelly Ripa’s guns?), but sadly, neither of those are located anywhere near Austin.

And while I have been blessed with finding a home at Gregory, I’ve compiled a mini review of a few gyms around our neck of the woods.

There were a ton of gyms I could have reviewed, but I decided to spare you the research paper and have instead chose four gyms: our home gym, Gregory, a chain gym, Gold’s Gym, a traditional gym, Hyde Park Gym, and a family gym, YMCA.


In addition to costs and services available at each gym, I’ve also included the Yelp ratings for each gym. It’s no surprise that UT scored the highest, albeit it was most likely due to student votes, but what struck me as surprising was Gold’s Gym scoring the lowest. It just comes to show that going going local may be the best way to go.

It should be noted that Gregory gym is the only gym free for students among the four gyms I reviewed. The community, however, can also join the gym through a membership ranging from $135-$518.

Lastly, I must ask of you, which of these gyms would you attend?

P90X: For those who want to bounce nickels off their abs.

November 3, 2009

It’s two in the morning. You should be either studying or sleeping, but here you are, on your couch trying to find something to watch on TV. Shamwow. Click. Classic movie. Click. A room full of sweat dripping men and women in tight spandex outfits doing one handed push ups and blasting away with plyometric sets. Click… wait, what?

It’s P90X, a series of 12 sweat-inducing, muscle-pounding workouts, designed to transform puny, unworthy bodies into buns of steel in just 90 days. Three months to transform a body P90X says it can do, initially seemed like a complete fake. And then I seen the before and after pictures… amazing. mind boggling. fantismo.
I, myself have been tempted to purchase the P90X set, despite its price at $139.80 plus tax. But just to be on the safe side I spoke with a couple of guys to give me the 411.

How long have you guys been using P90X?
Chris: for about 2 weeks now
Dustin: I just got done with the first work out.

How did you find out about it?
Chris: My friend told me about it. I was tired of running and when i work out, I need direction, or someone telling me what to do, so I tried it out.
Dustin: Chris actually told me about it.

How intense are the workouts and for how long?
Chris: It’s as intense as you make it. It’s like with any other work outs, the more effort you put in, the more you get out of it.
Dustin: Each workout is an hour long and focuses on different body parts. Today I did the arms and shoulders and it raped me. I had to take a lot of breaks, but I finished it.

Is buying P90X worth the cost?
Chris: Yeah, otherwise I’d be pissed that I wasted my money.
Dustin: What he said. It’s a really good workout.

For more information about P90X check out their website. Picture by

Review: Work Out: One-on-One Training with Jackie

October 27, 2009
I literally just finished my workout with Jackie Warner’s  DVD. My arms feel like lead, and I’m drenched. It just comes to show that even if one can’t afford the $100 plus per hour personal training session with her,  her $12.99 DVD is no disappointment.
You can personalize three available workouts-upper body, lower body, and abs- to what you feel like doing on any particular day. You can choose to do all three, two, or like I did, just one, the upper body. And you can even play them in any order. Each workout lasts 20 minutes with a warm-up, four sets containing strength and cardio, and a cool down.
Here’s a clip of what I did today.

The Work Out is perfect for all athletic levels; so if you’ve never lifted a dumbell in your life or are a gym rat, then this DVD is for you. Throughout the workout, Jackie will say how you can adjust each set to your level. This was especially beneficial to me, because I had to use a 10lb dumbbell as opposed to my usual 5lb. That was no joke, 10lb is clearly not the new 5lb.

Safe to say, I will definitely be doing this again. This is a 5 stars out of 5.

Austin Fitness Review

October 27, 2009

Happy Monday and welcome to Austin Fitness, a blog comprised of four students, all dedicated to providing you with… well, Austin fitness. While you can check out the posts of my fellow bloggers to see what they will be focusing on, stop by every Monday and Tuesday to check me out as I scour all that there is to be reviewed.

I don’t know about ya’ll but I’m a fitness blog fiend (check out the blog roll to see what I’m reading). Not only do I find out about a ton of tips and new routines through these blogs, but I find out about new work out DVDs and events happening around the Austin area.

Tomorrow I will be reviewing Jackie Warner’s workout DVD, but if there is anything that you guys want to be reviewed, then feel free to leave a comment.

To start you off take a look at the links below.

Fitness themed Halloween costumes

Is Cholesterol really that bad?

Is the human body not designed to run?

Twitter, the new diet fad

Does the number on the scale really matter?