Ashli Findley slams the ball during the Heart Rate Zone class. Photos: Melissa Donald 

If you are looking for a new exercise, take some notes from Today’s Woman exercise experiences in these fitness centers around the city.

Results by Design Fitness, East End, Louisville
Class: 45 Min Heart Rate Zone The interval-style class using heart rate monitoring helps to individualize the group coaching setting. Instructor: Sarah Parks
Cost: $167/month for the group coaching membership,
Sore Factor: 7
Fitness Level: any level
Exerciser: Ashli Findley

What to Expect
It’s a metabolic, interval-style class. Instead of using the traditional timed sets, participants move through exercises or rest based on their heart rate. There were about 13 people in my class, mostly younger middle-age and middle-age women. The culture was very family-oriented; everyone seemed to know each other by first name. It was also a lighthearted and encouraging atmosphere to work out in as small interaction and cheering were common between sets. The space itself was bright, airy, and open, as a wrap-around gym that includes a turf area along with strength training equipment.

MADE Fitness, East End, Louisville
Class: One hour Box N Burn
The class has the cardio benefits of HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) with the strength training benefits of a boot camp. Instructor: Garrett Watson (He has a brown belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and MADE is the official training outfitter of all LMPD recruits.)
Bring: boxing gloves, and hand wraps
Cost $80/month or $20/drop-in rate
Fitness Level: any level
Sore Factor: 9
Exerciser: Ashli Findley
What to Expect: It’s a cardio kickboxing class infused with boot camp-style exercise. Participants use anything from boxing bags and battle ropes to spin bikes and running, cycling through exercises every 30 seconds. The gym has a martial arts element to it, so much of the equipment and exercises, like rotating punches and kicks on the boxing bags, are incorporated. There were about 10 people in my class, men and women of various ages and physical shape. The space itself reminds me of a warehouse converted into two areas: one side is for workouts and the other side is the self-defense and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu area.

The Training Studio, River Road & St Matthews
Class: 1 hour Muscle Endurance Class: getting your muscles to be able to work for a prolonged period of time. Your heart rate will be elevated the entire time. “A lot of things are form-specific,” says co-owner Dale Benedict “…We’re not gonna let you do things wrong.”
Cost: $140/per month for memberships but required to complete the fundamentals program at $250.
Bring: boxing gloves, and hand wraps
Cost $80/month or $20/drop-in rate
Fitness Level: upper intermediate to advanced gym-goers.
Sore Factor: 10
Exerciser: Ashli Findley
What to Expect: I attended the Muscle Endurance class on a Wednesday at noon at the River Road location. The workout is filled with lots of repetitions using body weight and weighted equipment. Short, personal breaks provide the only relief, ensuring your heart rate stays up the entire time. There were nine people in my class, men and women mostly of middle age who looked to be in phenomenal shape. The River Road location is one large, open space with carpet, little machinery, and lots of equipment to aid you in using body weight or smaller weights for workouts.

Jennifer Wilham at the Burn Boot Camp. 

FIT4MOM, Beckley Creek Park, Oxmoor Center in the winter,
Class: Stroller Strides Class with instructors Cassie Fertig and Jessica Yared
Cost: $69/month unlimited membership
Bring: yoga mat, baby in a stroller; they supply exercise ball and tension ropes
Sore Factor: 2
Fitness Level: any
Exerciser: Jennifer Wilham

What to Expect: Lots of strollers and welcoming moms at Beckley Creek Park. Warm-up includes ballet stretches, then you select a power walking/running group, depending on your preference; there were three destinations in this hourlong class. Runners take a longer route and meet the walkers at the next destination where there are more core exercises — generally four to five different short workouts strengthening your entire body. The last destination is another intense workout, followed by some cool-down stretching at the playground. Then we dismissed so the kiddos could get in their workout on the playground. If you are looking for a highly active mom’s group, I suggest this one. I visited the Stroller Strides class, but they have classes that cover all mom stages, including pre-birth and postpartum classes.

Burn Boot Camp, Lyndon area
Class: One hour Burn Boot Camp, six stations; four reps of each station with instructor Camryn Fields
Cost: $110/five sessions
Bring: Water (they have free childcare during select sessions)
Sore Factor: 10
Fitness Level: some fitness will be helpful
Exerciser: Jennifer Wilham

What to Expect: The class I went to was at noon, and it was leg day. As I was the only first-timer in the class of 24, the trainer worked with me and taught me the right way to do a squat. I found this extremely uncomfortable at first, but by the end, it looked like I knew what I was doing. The class was divided into six groups, one for each station. At one station, we worked with an 8-15 pound free-weight and did squats; another station had resistance bands to be used to strengthen your hamstrings; the third station had a medicine ball (8 or 13 pounds), and we worked core muscles while maintaining balance. High energy and motivation based.

Edge Body Boot Camp, East End
Class: Get Fit/Give Back Cardio Boot Camp with instructor Austin Pegram
Cost: nonperishable food for the “give-back” boot camp
Bring: Water
Sore Factor: 4
Fitness Level: all
Exerciser: Jennifer Wilham

What to Expect: Before even coming to a class, they want you to go through an orientation and get to know you. This takes about 30 minutes. Actual class: Thirty minutes of an intense workout. I went to the Cardio camp at 10:45am on Saturday, and it was free with a donation of a canned good. This is a co-ed class, and everyone was so supportive. We started off with a quick stretch and got our hearts pumping with a little group tug-of-war. Then, the instructor dove straight into the stations. There were seven stations, and there was only a quick water break in between sessions. The class was broken up into two sessions. Seven stations, one each for 30 seconds, a water break, then we jumped into the second session with seven new workouts using the same equipment. We did partner up on a few of these workouts. I left drenched in sweat, happy and tired, but energized.