Smart Fitness

The Exercise Coach brings technology to workouts in Cary.

Story by Lipsa Shah
Photos courtesy of Barbara Blair
(Above photo: Co-owner John, client, trainers Adrien, and Barbara.)

Barbara Blair and her brother John.

Barbara Blair and her brother John.

A 20-minute workout that promises results? It sounds too good to be true, but that’s exactly what The Exercise Gym in Cary is offering. After many years of training in different gyms and participating in various workouts, I was a true skeptic when trying to imagine an effective workout in such a limited amount of time.

Barbara Blair, one of the owners of the Cary location, moved into the ownership side after having been a client herself. Barbara hated working out at a gym and could not find anything that was working for her until she stumbled upon The Exercise Coach in Atlanta. She enjoyed the idea of being in and out quickly and believed that there were many other people who only had a limited amount of time to spare, but also wanted to take better care of themselves.

Barbara and her brother, John, who was also looking for a new business opportunity, opened The Exercise Coach in October. Although Barbara continues to live in Atlanta, her brother John has transitioned into becoming the face for Cary’s Exercise Coach, working alongside their personal trainers at the facility.

The Exercise Coach began in Chicago 17 years ago with husband-and-wife founders Brian and Gerianne Cygan. The gym’s approach to fitness stands out for its use of advanced technology—a proprietary approach that is all computerized and not available at other commercial or private gyms. The Exercise Coach does not necessarily focus on weight loss (although that may be part of your goal, and gaining muscle can actually cause weight gain (the desired type of weight gain!). The purpose of The Exercise Coach is to create a personalized system to help you lose fat, become stronger, and see progress in real time.

Trainer Adrien with one of our clients, Teresa Cote.

Trainer Adrien with one of our clients, Teresa Cote.

Here’s the skinny on how it works: When you go in for the first of two 40-minute consultations, you will enter all your information and create a PIN that you use each time you come to work out. All of your information is stored in your profile to track your progress, and a green line will be visible to represent your exertion from your last workout. The green line works as a target, and your workout can be viewed as a game; you are constantly trying to beat the green line and go above it each time.

For example, let’s say I was on the leg press machine at 40 pounds on a Monday. When I come back on Wednesday, I attempt to go past that line. The best thing about these machines is that they are personalized to your strengths and weaknesses. Bad knee? The machines also have a setting that allows you to take it easy. All of them are equipped with different settings such as “Dig” and “Focus” to target different areas and yield results, and the various machines include at least 70 different workouts. These settings and programs allow you to constantly change your workout to keep boredom at bay, and help you stay motivated as you track your progress.

The gym offers various packages ranging from 20 to 80 sessions, as well as month-to-month contracts. When you purchase a 20, 40, or 80–session pack, The Exercise Coach will also include Gerianne Cygan’s nutrition book, The Metabolic Comeback, which offers menus and guides to clean eating. Do you ever feel like you are eating all these vegetables but never fully grasp the benefits of them? Does anyone know the benefit of an acorn squash? Are cucumbers just water, or are they actually benefiting me in some way? The book will tell you what to eat, and specifically why you are eating it.

Begin 2019 with a new workout regimen that will constantly challenge you and remind you that fitness is a lifetime journey, not just a temporary commitment.

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