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January a busy time for fitness

Published 4:13am Monday, January 13, 2014 Updated 6:20am Monday, January 13, 2014

Losing weight, staying fit and being healthy are No. 1 and No. 5 on the list of top-10 New Year’s resolutions for 2014, according to the University of Scranton Journal of Clinical Psychology.

So maybe it’s New Year’s resolutions that make January a key month for places like the Fergus Falls YMCA. By the number of people using the facilities so far this year, it doesn’t seem like many people have fallen off the resolution wagon.

“January is usually pretty strong,” said Stacey Vaughn, health and wellness director for the YMCA. “My goal is to keep everybody.”

The facility usually offers something new each January, with this year being no exception. New equipment is just about ready for its members, which is “a big draw for people,” Vaughn said.

Members can also take new classes, like INSANITY and kettlebells. INSANITY is a cardio-based total body conditioning class that will push participants past their limits with the aim of getting them in the best possible shape. Kettlebells is a class that focuses on cardio, core and resistance.

“The classes have just been packed,” Vaughn said. “The participation and consistency is still there.”

Vaughn couldn’t pinpoint any specific reasons for why people might drop off from the fitness habits, but she recommends the more than 50 fitness classes offered each week. Having a workout buddy can also help with realistic goals.

“It has to become a habit,” Vaughn said. “It’s almost like an appointment.”

Still, January certainly seems to be the busiest month for the YMCA, according to Vaughn.

“I think it’s just the start of a new year, so it’s a new year to start new things,” she said.

The Y also offers some deals during January. For those who decide to become members this month, the joiner fee of $50 will be waived. All personal training packages are 20 percent off when purchased this month. The packages must be used by June 30.

At New Beginnings, owner Blaine Buseth promotes using insurance fitness discounts, making memberships $12.13 per month. It’s very affordable, he said.

“My plan is to educate people and to give them the best information on exercise and how to exercise and how to progress… to keep them coming in the gym,” Buseth said. “I want to keep them interested and active.”

He also offers a free two-week trial, so people can get a feel for the facility and see how they like it before committing to a full membership. New Year’s resolutions can be drivers for getting people back to the fitness routine, and so lots of people are looking to join a gym, according to Buseth.

“A lot of people right now are really hot to get into exercise,” he said. “The seed’s been planted. The big resolution is weight loss.”

There’s been a slight increase in the number of people at Curves of Fergus Falls so far in 2014, but the weather has kept some people away, according to owner Kristi Edman. Her facility offers a one-week free trial.

“Any time is a great time to make a resolution for yourself,” Edman said. “Not just New Year’s.”

For the women out there looking for a total body workout, there’s a new option at Curves of Fergus Falls. It is now offering Curves Workouts with Jillian Michaels, cutting-edge total body workouts that feature the Curves Circuit strength training machines in conjunction with functional bodyweight-based exercises that ramp up metabolism and transform your physique.

“The moves are going to change every month,” Edman said. “So it’s not going to be the same 12 moves all the time, which is going to keep it even more interesting.”

The workouts with Jillian Michaels, who’s known as America’s health and wellness expert, will be shown on a large TV screen set to upbeat music and a trained Curves Coach will be available in each circuit. They’ll offer about 10 classes a week and increase that number based on demand, according Edman.

For those that have tried it so far, they’ve said the 30-minute workout goes fast.

“They’ve loved it,” Edman said. “That it changes their ‘routine,’ and challenges their body a little bit more.”

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