The SOS Circuit Workout!

 

 

PHOTOGRAPHS BY CASEY STEFFENS

There are a plethora of digital workouts available to stream — more than ever before with gyms closed and everyone working out at home. If the choices feel overwhelming, here is our basic old-school workout anyone can do  — and it’s free! 

The SOS Circuit Workout was designed by Ngo Okafor, the owner and founder of Iconoclast Fitness in NYC, who has transformed the physiques of such celebrities as Brooke Shields, Iman, Mariska Hargitay, and Kate Walsh, among others. He’s also the ripped guy in these pictures. 

The workout is easy to follow with tried and true moves that hit every body part. The starting position is in the inset photo. Do 15 reps of each exercise and go for 3 rounds — or just do 1 round for an express total body workout! In between each round we’ve got cardio intervals from which to choose. Hand weights are required, but other appropriately weighted objects can be substituted like wine bottles, water jugs, or elastics. Get creative! Read More

 

Staying Fit When Gyms Are Closed

 

 

CLOCKWISE TOP LEFT: PELOTON, ALOMOVES, NIKE TRAINING CLUB, INSANITY, MODELFIT, CLASSPASS LIVE, OBE, PHYSIQUE 57

 
Digital fitness has exploded in the last few years with streaming workouts, fitness apps, and interactive home gym equipment. With gyms now closed in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, these at-home workouts are more popular than ever. Maintaining our health and fitness regimens is still of the utmost priority for many of us — and these digital workouts offer a multitude of options to stay in shape.

So if you can’t go to the gym, let the gym come to you. HIIT, cycling, yoga, dance, cardio, Pilates and more – take your favorite classes online in the germ-free environment of your own home. Whether it’s your regular workout or something new you’ve wanted to try, here are some of the most popular digital options.

MULTI-CLASS PLATFORMS

Fitness platforms like ClassPass, Jetsweat, and Peloton Digital offer a full range of cardio, yoga, dance, sculpt, boxing, barre classes, and more — available live or on-demand to stream on your phone, computer, or TV. With so many options for one monthly price – generally less than the cost of one boutique fitness class – these are the best bang for your buck. Just filter by workout, duration, difficulty – and press play! Read More

 

31 Days of Digital Fitness!

 

 

The digital fitness market has exploded with online workouts you can stream live or on demand; fitness apps that let you take those workouts to go; and high-tech interactive home gym equipment. Treadmill, barre, Peloton, rowing, HIIT, swimming, yoga, Pilates and more – all these workouts, led by the industry’s top fitness instructors, are now available for the sweating — any place and any time. Most offer free trials to help you find the workout that’s right for you.

The best thing about all of these workouts is the convenience and variety. If you’re pressed for time, most offer classes or routines as short as 7 minutes, which can also be a supplement to your regular workout. Try quick Nike Training Club ab blast after SoulCycle or an AloMoves yoga stretch after a run. Ideal for travelers too, bring your favorite workout with you to do in the hotel gym or your room.

For easy reference we’ve marked each workout with a 👍 or 👎, and color coded them for ONLINE, APP, or HOME GYM machine. If you’ve got Roku, Apple TV, or Google Chromecast, the workouts can be synced with your TV too. Read More

 

HIIT IT!

 

ROWGATTA

One of the new entries in the ever-expanding fitness landscape of New York City is Rowgatta – a combination rowing and strength training class. You might call it Barry’s Bootcamp meets rowing — and it fits right in with the popular HIIT style workouts that combine cardio intervals on a treadmill, heavy bag, or rower, with resistance training that’s centered around a custom designed step bench.

At Rowgatta, it’s a CrossFit reminiscent “FITBENCH” — complete with dumbbells, kettlebells, a slam ball, and resistance bands. Like Barry’s, Orange Theory, Rumble, and others in this category, Rowgatta features a night-club inspired design, colored mood lighting, and a pumping sound system. If you’re a fan of the formula, and prefer rowing over boxing or running, Rowgatta is for you!

Barry’s Bootcamp opened in 1998 and popularized High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) in a group setting. HIIT style classes are a fun, efficient, and effective way to get in shape — offering maximal results in minimal time. You get all the benefits of cardio and strength training in one 50-minute class. High Intensity Interval Training also generates a physiological reaction known as EPOC – Excess Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption – and these total body workouts are proven to offer continual calorie and fat burning up to 36 hours after the workout is done.

What started with Barry’s Bootcamp and the treadmill, has taken off and launched the opening of a host of other HIIT studios across the country. Boxing workouts like Rumble and GRIT BXNG have added or replaced the treadmill with heavy bags (water-filled, rubber boxing bags). LIT Method and now Rowgatta, have added rowing into the mix. No matter your cardio preference, there is a HIIT class for you. Here’s our guide to the most popular:  Read More

 

5 Simple Fixes!

 

 
My edited food journal above may look overwhelming, but the changes come down to a few basic concepts. Back in July we launched a contest offering 2 lucky readers the chance to win a diet makeover by Sarah Wragge, our contributing nutrition editor, with just 5 Simple Fixes. Yes, there are the obvious splurges like pizza, ice cream, and cookies, but lurking in many of our diets are extra hidden calories of which we are completely unaware. I found that out firsthand when I asked Sarah to take a look at my diet.

Thinking I ate pretty clean and expecting a pat on the back, instead I got, “OMG… you eat so much sugar!” Unbeknownst to me, what I thought was my healthy fruit and rice cake snacking was like sugar dosing and carbo loading all day. With some simple substitutions like adding more healthy fats such as avocado and nuts; swapping dairy for plant based alternatives like almond milk and coconut yogurt; and replacing my fruit dessert with dark chocolate (yes!), those abs I work so hard for started to pop — and with no feeling of deprivation because I was eating satiating and nutritious foods.

Our 5 Simple Fixes contest winners, Suzanne Donaldson and Mike Loftus, learned some of the same lessons and few more of their own — along with some easy fixes to attain their fitness and nutrition goals. Our contest should probably have been called “1 Simple Fix” because the leading culprit for all 3 of us was hidden sugar.

We all want to look good and feel good. We want those workouts to show on our bodies. For those of you who entered the contest but didn’t win, we wanted to share a sample 3 days of our diets, with the changes Sarah made. Many of you might have similar habits, and we hope seeing our mistakes and the easy fixes can help you achieve your fitness and nutrition goals too.  Read More

 

Best of The Box

 

ROW1: AEROSPACE; GRIT BXNG; GOTHAM GYM; ROW 2: PUNCH FITNESS; SHADOWBOX; OVERTHROW; ROW 3: MENDEZ; CHRUCH STREET; RUMBLE

 
Walking around New York City these days it’s not unusal to see a pair of boxing gloves draped over the shoulder of a fashionably dressed woman. Check out Instagram and you’ll see many a fashion model punching it out with her trainer in sweaty style. From the spa-like Shadowbox, to the speakeasy grungy Overthrow, to long established boxing gyms like Gleasons in Brooklyn — boxing is the hottest workout in town.

Fighters are known for their fitness and ripped physiques. Not only does boxing tone muscles and build full body strength, but it’s a major cardio workout, as anyone who has jump roped or hit the heavy bag for 3 minutes straight can attest. Just one boxing class can burn up to a thousand calories. It’s a sport that requires not just physical but mental discipline as well. Putting together a series of jab-hook-cross-upper cut combinations while bobbing and weaving requires intense focus and concentration, in addition to muscular and cardiovascular strength. Read More

 

Shock Therapy

 

 

Imagine fitness in the future. You strap on a full body suit – a cross between motocross and scuba gear — equipped with electronic stimulation pads that pulsate and zap your muscles while you workout. Standing in one of 6 spotlights in a darkened room, you watch a screen with exercises to follow, as house music throbs, and a master trainer wirelessly controls how much electrical stimulation is given to each body part. In 30 minutes, a full body workout is delivered in what would have taken been 3 1/2 hours in the gym. Imagine fitness in the future is now.

Shock Therapy Fitness is the first workout to incorporate EMS training – or Electronic Muscle Stimulation – into a group fitness class. Those who have had physical therapy will be familiar with the “Stim” machine as part of their rehab, and EMS training has been popular in gyms throughout Europe for years. It was a company in Germany, Miha Bodytec, that first developed a full body EMS suit. Shock Therapy Fitness has created their own custom Powersuit™ that safely distributes electrical impulses simultaneously to all the major muscle groups throughout the workout for continuous full body training no matter which exercise is being performed. Over 300 muscle groups are activated in one 30-minute class, with 8 to 10 times more contractions than without EMS. Read More

 

The 5-Minute Warm-Up

 

1. RUNNER’S STRETCH

For those tight quads and hip flexors, place right

knee at 90 degrees with left leg bent behind at 90 degrees.

Hold for 30 seconds, switch legs, and repeat.

 

Ngo Okafor is the owner and founder of Iconoclast Fitness in NYC who has transformed the physiques of such celebrities as Brooke Shields, Iman, Mariska Hargitay, and Kate Walsh among others. Before any workout, he focuses on limbering up the body to prevent injuries and get it ready to go. We asked him for a quick warm-up routine to share with our readers. Here are the 6 total body stretches no workout should start without!
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