Getting fit in new ways in Northern Kentucky

At the beginning of the year, many people make New Year’s resolutions to get fit, but often their drive fades within a few weeks. Having a more exciting workout plan may be one way to inspire people at NKU to start working out.

CrossFit, for example, is a unique workout that anyone can try.

“We don’t use machines. It’s all your own body and your body weight,” Kristie Bey, public relations major, said. “We do a lot of sit-ups, squats, pull-ups and we use a lot of barbells for all of our lifts.”

CrossFit is more than just a workout, it’s a lifestyle. “It’s everything, it’s not just physical. It’s mental, it’s your entire body,” Bey said. “It’s not just a workout program.”

If people are interested in starting CrossFit, they can go to Fort Wright CrossFit in Fort Wright, Ky.; the facility offers classes for people at any fitness level.

“We have our regular CrossFit classes, which are for people that are familiar with all our movements, weightlifting, stuff like that,” Kyle Stark, owner of Fort Wright CrossFit, said. “We have an introductory boot camp class that teaches you all those movements and how to scale those to your ability.”

Bey said that when people work out at Fort Wright CrossFit, it creates a strong community between the people there.

“If you miss a day, everyone is going to get on your back, and give you a hard time for not showing up,” she said. “It’s the friends and community that we’ve built that keeps us going on tough days.”

“Come try it. You never know how something is going to be until you try it,” Stark said. “You don’t have to be in shape to start CrossFit.”

When doing CrossFit, it’s important to make time to work out when they aren’t in the gym.

“I try to run and we follow a diet that goes along with CrossFit that definitely helps, but it’s about keeping yourself active,” Bey said. “Even on days where we have a rest day, we’ll still go in and just work on stuff to try and get better at what we do.”

Bey and Stark have advice for people who want to start doing CrossFit. Bey suggested that people should not be intimidated by what CrossFit trainers do because a lot of people are afraid to start.

“You don’t have to be an elite athlete to start CrossFit. A lot of the girls that I started with all started a little overweight and we were not in the best shape,” Bey said. “A lot of people think they can’t do it because they aren’t an elite athlete already. You can cater the workout to any shape, size and strength level.”

Stark suggests that people should just come and try it.

Another workout to try is using Kettlebells. A Kettlebell is a ball that has a handle made out of cast iron. The weights vary from 18 – 106 lbs., and the weights can even be heavier than that. It’s different than traditional weight training; it’s functional fitness.

“What that means is that it’s training for your life,” public relations major Michelle Forlenza said. “With Kettlebells, it’s full body all the time. It’s weight training and cardio, it gets your heart rate up and tones your muscles at the same time.”

Compared to regular weights, Kettlebells are a lot safer. “If you just learn how to use them the right way, your risk of injury will decrease significantly,” Forlenza said. “It would be just working with your trainer the first few times, and then doing it by yourself.”

Forlenza had advice for people who are thinking about starting the use of Kettlebells. She suggested that people should learn from someone who is experienced with this kind of training. If they can’t afford to work out with a trainer, they should go on YouTube and search “Kettlebell Swings.”

Joe Daniels, owner of Swing This in Latonia, Ky., has a YouTube channel where he teaches the correct way to do it.

Forlenza also said not to be afraid to start with a light weight. “It’s very different than what you expect so be careful.”

When Forlenza isn’t in the gym, she makes sure that she is cognizant about her diet. “I really watch my carbs and I really count my calories. Just try to stay healthy.”

Molly Doody, public relations major, said people should schedule a session with a personal trainer. “Even though it’s expensive, try to get one personal training session. Try to ask as many questions as you can.”

When people work out, they experience a lot of benefits. People will have more energy during the day and sleep better at night, according to Doody.

“Once you start, it’s kind of an obsession. It’s an addiction and I’d rather be addicted to something like this,” she said.

When it comes to getting in shape, “Get fit in the gym and lose weight in the kitchen,” Doody said.