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Signature Forum presents Lifestyle Stories July 2007

After exploring the "science of beauty" in our July newsletter, it got us to thinking-- what are some of the other options and obstacles involved with achieving those physical ideals we all strive for? Everyone knows how important a workout regimen can be to getting in shape, but do I really want to deal with the fees and inconveniences of that gym membership? As this month's newsletter will show you, a better option might be much closer than you think.

Signature Forum
Helen of Troy

Health Club Drop Outs

Each December many Americans begin to contemplate resolutions for the New Year. Among the plethora of "new leaves to turn over," one classic leaf remains: weight loss, the reason why January is the health club industry's cash cow month. Gym managers across the country scramble to find asphalt contractors to add parking spaces for the influx of new members, right? WRONG! By the end of February more than half of the newly committed "resolutioners" have dropped their daily trip to the gym from their list of priorities. Needless to say parking is not an issue for long.

Statistics reveal that new gym members often don't have or don't make the time to regularly attend, which contributes largely to high churn rates. The common "member rationale" is that by the time you pack your bag, get snacks for the kids, fill your water bottle, get in the car, drive to the gym, park, drop the kids off in "kiddieland," exercise, and get ready for the trip home, the task simply seems daunting! (I suppose they tend to demote the importance of these reservations in January and reconvene with reality at the end of February). About eight years ago a new trend began to emerge that solves all of the issues affiliated with exercising in a group fitness club. Home gyms offer a solution for any homeowner committed to working out, but doesn't have time for the obstacle course. A place to workout, tailored to your fitness goals, in the convenience of your own home, open 24 hours a day, with no daycare and snack packing necessary, no parking required, no community showers, and no traffic to endure. Where do I sign?!

Sweat in Style
Vitruvian Man

Sweat in Style

Home gyms can be designed to meet virtually any budget. Thousands of Chicago, Miami, Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, New York City, and Atlanta homeowners have taken the concept of home gyms to extreme levels of accommodation by implementing surround sound, wall-mounted televisions, stationary cardio equipment, free weight racks, athletic flooring, weight benches, separate showers, and mirrored walls to achieve that "health club look and feel." The possibilities are endless. Many remodeling contractors specialize in building home gyms and many of them are able to offer fitness equipment at prices below retail cost.

Not all home gyms have to replicate the gyms at the Venetian or the Bellagio in Las Vegas. They can be kept very simple with one piece of cardio equipment and some hand weights. If you are unsure about your future adherence to a fitness program or are concerned about spending too much money, start out with an entry level variety of equipment and add new pieces over time. My suggestion is that you begin with an elliptical or treadmill with some dumbbells covering your bases for both cardio and strength training. Purchasing refurbished fitness equipment is one way to keep the costs down while gaining a really nice addition to your home gym. Just make sure that you buy from a reputable vendor and that you understand the warranty policy. Remember that the most important consideration in designing your home gym is that the people who will use it are able to achieve their fitness goals with the equipment in it!


Thank you for reading our SignatureForum newsletter. Next month, we'll be continuing our series on Health & Fitness, giving you more of the information you need to stay smart and get fit.

Until Next Time,

The SignatureForum Staff

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