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Summer —A Time to Take Advantage of Local Gyms

July 11, 2002

Whether people finally intend to get started on ambitious 2002 New Year's resolutions, prefer to stay in shape during the college summer break at home, or want to find a place to beat the heat and exercise indoors, the Mount Vernon area is filled with gym options and opportunities.

Summer is a perfect time to explore gym memberships, meet fitness goals and improve personal health.

The Mount Vernon Heath and Racquet Club offers a variety of fitness and sports activities for both children and adults. Over the past two years, the club building, indoor tennis courts and even locker rooms have been renovated, and all the equipment has been modernized.

Distinct from most local gyms, the Club, off Richmond Highway at Hybla Valley's 7950 Audubon Ave., has five indoor tennis courts and three racquetball courts in addition to cardio and weight areas, and aerobic classes scheduled weekly.

The tennis component of the club allows patrons to have group lessons, court reservations, and access to the ball machine with no additional cost and is a major advantage to membership at Mount Vernon Health and Racquet Club. In the summer, there are also Pee Wee tennis camps for children 4-7 and Junior tennis camps for 7- to 18-year-olds. The club offers body composition analysis to further promote health and better physical fitness routines. It also provides free baby-sitting.

"We are an extremely friendly and family-oriented community with a professional environment," said membership director Paul Lemery. The facility serves 1,200 members who live throughout the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area. "We've been around for 27 years," said Lemery.

GOLD'S GYM, a comfortable fitness community with a wide variety of equipment and exercise programs, is a popular facility for students and adults. Gold's has more than 622 gyms throughout the world and 30 company-owned gyms. Since 1965, Gold's Gym has gained worldwide fame as the largest international gym chain, with nearly 2,500,000 members in 24 countries. Not only is Gold's the gym of preference for many in the Mount Vernon community but amateur and pro athletes, as well as those in the entertainment industry, support the franchises, whose owners are recognized as fitness authorities.

Open from 5 a.m.-11 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m.-9 p.m. on the weekends, Gold's is easily accessible off Route 1 at Beacon Hill’s 2960 Southgate Drive, which simplifies finding a time to schedule summer workouts.

Gold's becomes a social environment for students returning home from school in the summer, as many choose this gym to continue their year-round fitness training.

"During the summer we still have a heavy clientele as always, yet we see an influx of students. As our normal clientele vacation and are in and out of town during the summer, the gap is filled by students who wish to maintain their work-out routines and weight programs," said General Manager Bob Shepard.

Set-up with cardio pieces, free weights, and a multitude of weight machines, the gym is considered an ideal workout facility. Another attraction to a membership at Gold's Gym is the calendar of aerobic classes scheduled throughout the day, which focus on cardiovascular endurance while one learns creative ways to work out. Daily activities include step classes, yoga, Kardio Karate, and the latest fitness sensation, Spin Classes, a mind and body workout on high-performance, stationary bikes.

With a membership at Gold's comes two orientation sessions conducted by a personal trainer featuring a one-on-one review of how your personal health goals can be met through use of fitness equipment or classes. Training packages are available, and currently Gold's is upgrading its computerized nutrition program system. Another change will occur in November, when Gold's moves to the former Hechinger site on Richmond Highway. The result will be a new Gold's 37,000-square-foot, multi-million-dollar facility south of their current location.

WOMEN'S FITNESS CO. could be the perfect workout facility for those looking for a convenient and relaxed setting at 1600 Belle View Blvd. in the Belle View Shopping Center. Attracting a female clientele, this gym specializes in aerobic instruction and keeping women fit.

Staff members explain, "Trained counselors are always available to address the specific needs of each individual and give personalized instruction." While taking each member through workouts, personal trainers monitor everyone on a monthly basis and ensure women meet their fitness goals.

The environment at Women's Fitness Co. is comfortable for those who train at any level, and an aerobic area provides a large space for assorted group exercises.

Students to senior citizens patronize this gym to achieve their fitness goals with the guidance of instructors and trainers who are all nationally certified. Individualized fitness programs are helpful as members find the perfect workout, anywhere from advanced cardio and strength training, to staying fit through an array of group classes.

AN APPEALING EXAMPLE of a summer workout program comes through Women's Fitness Co. aerobic classes. Offerings include basic step classes, emphasizing form and technique; muscle conditioning, targeting the lower body and abdominal; a Senior Stretch and Tone session; low intensity workouts, focusing on strength, balance and flexibility; and a Power Hour, which allows a complete body workout and conditioning.