Category: Group Fitness

5 Simple Tips to Set Up for First Time Spinners

Looking for an amazing low-impact cardio workout that will burn a ton of calories? Look no further than Spinning, indoor cycling classes. But what if you’ve never taken a Spin class before? Won’t you be overwhelmed by bike set-up and trying to figure out how everything works?

Not if you follow our easy 5 step guide for beginner spinners!

5 Simple Steps For Your First Spinning Class at Elevate Fitness Gyms in Syracuse, Dewitt and Liverpool


At Elevate, we help our members become the best version of themselves with a huge variety of quality programs and cutting-edge fitness technology in a high-value, low-cost, clean, full-service fitness facility. At Elevate Fitness, we believe that high VALUE doesn’t have to mean high cost. We deliver high-quality customized programs and services, many included with membership, for much less than you’d expect. At Elevate you won’t find a candy dish by the door or pizza in the lobby, that because we FOCUS ON WHAT REALLY MATTERS: creating a high-quality experience that generates positive, lasting results through lifestyle change, community involvement, and an outstanding member experience. Locally owned and operated for over 30 years, Elevate is committed to helping its members achieve positive, lasting results through innovative programming, technology, and lifestyle change. Other clubs offer equipment, Elevate offers RESULTS.

Barre Classes Come to Elevate Fitness

Free 30 Day Membership at Elevate Fitness Gym in Syracuse


Maybe you took ballet as a kid. Or maybe you’ve been to the ballet and you’ve seen the incredible shape those dancers are in. Maybe you’ve tried yoga and willPower and are looking for the next workout to get a great full-body workout while getting some great mind/body benefits. Elevate Fitness is pleased to bring our members BeyondBarre classes starting the week of September 23rd in Dewitt, and shortly thereafter in Liverpool.

What is BeyondBarre?

BeyondBarre is a hot full-body workout — a true cardio ballet program. The BeyondBarre program is unlike any other thanks to its creative design and limitless workout variations. BeyondBarre kicks up the intensity of the typical barre exercise program with its unique one of a kind cardio series.

Why BeyondBarre and not one of the other Barre options?

The BeyondBarre program is unlike any other thanks to its creative design and limitless workout variations. BeyondBarre kicks up the intensity of the typical barre exercise program with its unique one of a kind cardio series. We have combined small, precise muscle movements and isometric holds to sculpt, strengthen, and stretch the muscles with an EXCLUSIVE cardio glide to increase endurance, stamina and balance while melting away fat.

The BeyondBarre method has the flexibility to be performed with only a ballet barre (or chair if you are at home) or it can be enhanced with weights, balls, resistance bands, and the ice-skating inspired BeyondBarre Glide Board.

How does it work?

Each exercise is thoughtfully and purposefully placed in the class exercise order to optimize the ability to burn fat, sculpt the body, and build long, lean muscles. At BeyondBarre we use ballet barre leg sculpting exercises and amplified them. In addition to our leg contouring barre work weights are added to tone the arms and a stomach flattening abdominal series is included to challenge the core. Our program is designed to strengthen the muscles by working to fatigue then stretch to lengthen and sculpt.

Want to try out BeyondBarre at Elevate Fitness? Good news, your first class is FREE!

10 Songs to Change Up Your Cycling Playlist

10 Songs to Change Up Your Cycling Playlist

by Group Fitness Instructor and Athlete Extraordinaire Lisa Dolbear

If you’ve ever been to a spin class, you know that the playlist is instrumental (no pun intended) to the experience. I’ve been a cycling instructor for over 10 years and have always considered the flywheel as a medium to interpret music through body and mind. With a running background (marathons) that transitioned to triathlon (3X Ironman), music was a tool I relied on to help me get into my head and dig deep for meaning in every mile. I’ve never been one to “tune out” during long runs or rides, preferring instead to find my flow state against a backdrop of rhythm and sound that empowered me to access the rawest emotion and hunger I could summon during my athletic efforts.

In short, music has helped me tap into the mental aspects of training in a powerful way.

I’ve had success bringing that spirit into my classes—encouraging people to get inside their heads and find the kind of spirituality that can only exist when you triangulate the cinema of music, the power of pushing physical limits and the focus of measured breathing. Think of it as a mashup between a therapy session, an awesome movie, and a HIIT class.

In order to do this, I like to use longer tracks that allow me to help participants build to these insightful moments. When it’s done correctly, they will feel the rush of a 30-second interval over the course of a 5+ minute consistent push. I call these efforts “tempo rides” (athlete parlance for flirting with the border of the comfort zone, but not going all the way into a max effort). There are many classes where people can get off the bike after 50 minutes and tell you that you made them sweat and kicked their ass. My goal is to hear people say they found a new side of themselves and felt something shift from within. I’m lucky to have heard that compliment many times over the course of my career in coaching and teaching—and I couldn’t have done that without some seriously awesome records.

Below are a few of my absolute favorite go-to songs, which I’ve always been reluctant to share (like a magician, I don’t like to give away my secrets), but it’s time to put these gems in the hands (or pedals) of others. With the exception of a few tracks, I’ve chosen songs over 5 minutes. If you listen to the longer tracks, you’ll find some obvious moments where you can build your story (the layering of sounds, the ebb, and flow of the music, etc.). Other tracks might seem “out of place” for a spin class where the perception is “balls to the wall” pop hits designed to max out heart rates and increase the sweat factor. I use these quieter, unexpected tracks toward the end of my playlists when people THINK they need a big bass, crazy track to get through it, but instead I leverage their exhausted and raw state and use that as an opportunity to open the mind while the body keeps working. By making the music more subdued, we can “quiet” the physical body and turn up the spiritual aspects of the workout.

Have a listen and see how the music might inspire your next workout. I remind my classes often that a good workout should have shades of gray—it’s not black and white. Don’t approach your workout as being either “all-out” or “recovery.” It’s the stuff in between those moments that’s really great, and longer tracks can help you deliver that experience (or find it for yourself if you’re using these tracks on a run or solo workout). Without further ado, here are the goods from longest to shortest, with a few notes on my interpretation of the music.

Marry the Night (Afrojack Remix)
Lady Gaga
9:18 min

I’ve always coached this track as two long intervals, where the piano in the beginning is the seed planted to grow into a massive effort around minute 4. For me, it’s about coming out of darkness and fear and landing in a place of certainty and purpose.

Elements of Life
8:25 min

It’s impossible not to find a new “limit” in this track, where every minute seems to bring in another sound or riff to play on. I like to encourage people to think of each “build” (an increase in tension while keeping the beat), as another reason they’re committed to their fitness—another reason “why” they’re here.

All This Time (Club Mix)
Jonathan Peters

I refer to this song as the “everything AND the kitchen sink” because I hit every tension setting and every speed at some point in the song. There’s so much texture in the sound and it’s hard not to get swept up in the momentum as it builds.

Ride (Tiesto Extended Remix)
Cary Brothers

This song has always felt like a “cruise control/in your zone” track. Nothing crazy to coach, just setting up a consistent pace that barely creeps out of the aerobic zone and lets your mind go where it may. Many people can’t spend one minute in their own head, let alone 7. This song has a nice vibe for helping people get there.

Bring the Noise (Pump-kin Remix)
Public Enemy vs. Benni Benassi

There’s a straight-up gansta feel on this one. You either show up or shut up here. Find that beat on an easy tension, then see how far you can take quarter-turn increases until you say “uncle.” It’s like an arm-wrestling match against yourself, with your legs.

Pavement Cracks (Mac Quayle Extended Mix)
Annie Lennox

Great track with some good material you can (literally) steal from the lyrics. Anyone who cycles outside knows about navigating the pavement cracks—and isn’t that just a metaphor for life?

Veridis Quo
Daft Punk

I used this song in my mental skills training workshops when I used to coach triathletes. This song can give you all the feels while you’re sitting in chair with your eyes closed, imagining your goal and the short term steps to achieve them (I narrated my athletes through a triathlon, while sitting in a conference room, and at the end there were tears). If it can happen in a chair, imagine what happens when you put that on a bike? Boom.

Breathe Me

I challenge you to Google this one on YouTube and watch the finale of the HBO series, “Six Feet Under,” then try to ride or run to this without some kind of emotion.

I’ve Tried Everything

Here’s one of those songs that when you listen, you’ll think, “How does this possibly motivate anyone in a physical way?” Think of lust. It’s quiet, subtle and eventually powerful. Now go put that on a bike.

I Want To Know What Love Is (Piper Radio Edit)

Because don’t we all want to know what love is? Love is hammering your pace to this song and leaving caution in the wind. (But seriously, this offers SUCH a variety of beats to choose from—you can do it fast or slow and still find yourself in the music).


Want to try a cycling class with Lisa?

Truths to Help You Practice Yoga Consistently

Truths to Help You Practice Yoga Consistently from Elevate Fitness in Syracuse

Guest post by Dana Bender, MS, ACSM, CWWS, E-RYT

As a fitness professional and yoga instructor for more than a decade, I have received tons of feedback from yoga

More often than I can count, I have heard students and members express the following:
“I can’t do yoga because I am not flexible.”
“I tried yoga, and I liked it, but I couldn’t do the poses like others in the room.”
Or, “yoga is too challenging.”

Most often, I hear this from beginner yoga students. However, I also get this feedback from people who cycle in and
out of yoga classes: not quite a beginner, but not quite committed to a consistent yoga practice.

In both situations, the common limitation is the mindset. One that has adopted myths and unrealistic expectations about
practicing yoga.

Regardless of the situation, mindset plays an important role in our successes or struggles. Our thoughts affect our
feelings, which then impact whether our behavior is consistent or inconsistent.

Throughout my years of teaching, I have seen when such mindsets prevent people from practicing yoga consistently.
(Or even for the first time!)

If you or a client share any of the above sentiments, the truths from this article can help overcome those barriers.
Let’s begin!

Truth #1: You Do NOT Need to Be Flexible to Practice Yoga

I can’t do yoga because I am inflexible is my favorite yoga myth to challenge.

This statement implies that we need to be great at something before we do it.

In this example, we need to be remarkably flexible before we can do yoga.

If we applied this mindset outside of yoga:

We have to be a great driver before learning how to drive.

We have to be a great chef before trying a new recipe.

We have to be a great artist before painting on our first piece.

Seems unrealistic and unnecessarily hard on ourselves, right?

The truth is flexibility is not a prerequisite to practice yoga. The only prerequisite is the willingness to practice and
keep going.

By practicing yoga poses over time you will increase muscle flexibility and joint mobility (in addition to muscular
strength and endurance). Practice makes greatness.

Truth #2: Yoga is Hard. Period.

I have been practicing yoga since 2006, and it is still challenging.

Yes, certain poses have gotten easier, and some of the challenges are more intricate, but at the end of the day, yoga
is hard. Period.

The truth is yoga can be challenging for anyone.

Yoga offers challenges for both the beginner student and the advanced practitioner. Yoga can be tough even for
seasoned athletes who have heightened body awareness. Yes, even yoga teachers struggle with yoga sometimes.

So why do it?

Challenges make us better.

One of my yoga teachers always said, “If this came easy, we wouldn’t be here.”

In other words, if there is no sense of challenge or accomplishment then there is no point.

We wouldn’t do yoga at all if it didn’t improve our lives. And self-improvement comes from doing hard things. It’s
supposed to be hard.

The challenges of yoga will help you become stronger and flexible, physically and mentally. Practice yoga
consistently and you will develop discipline and grit. These traits will help you achieve your ambitions outside of
the studio.

When we practice yoga with this understanding, it frees and motivates us to keep practicing.

Truth #3: Modifications Are Key to Practicing Yoga

I partially tore my semimembranosus in 2014, which significantly affected my yoga practice.

I had to take time off, work with a physical therapist, and modify my yoga practice when I went back to it.

While recovering, modifications were key to practicing yoga and obtaining its benefits.

Even without an active injury, I still modify my yoga practice to accommodate muscle soreness and tightness.

As a yoga teacher, I often suggest modifications in class. I see many students not following the suggestions.

These students end up feeling discouraged. Sometimes even misaligning their bodies in a way that leads to
discomfort and pain.

The truth is modifications are a part of practicing yoga.

There are many reasons to modify a pose or improve a movement pattern

You might be a new yoga student. You might be sore from a workout. Like me in 2014, you might be dealing with
an injury. The reason does not matter.

There is nothing wrong with modifying.

Modifications are key in making yoga poses feel good and meeting your body where it’s at. If you are receptive to physical cues and open to modifications, success with yoga awaits.

Share These Truths!
I encourage everyone to share these truths. A simple shift in mindset can help increase consistency and joy in practicing yoga. Together, we can spread the life-changing benefits of a consistent yoga practice.

BIO: Dana Bender, MS, ACSM, CWWS, E-RYT. Dana Bender works as a fitness and wellness Program Manager for Health Fitness Corporation in downtown Chicago. Dana is also a National Board Certified Health and Wellness Coach, an adjunct professor with Rowan University, and an E-RYT 200 hour Registered Yoga Alliance Teacher.

Try a Yoga Class for FREE at Elevate Fitness in Syracuse:

Back in the Saddle (Spinning at Elevate Fitness)

Lose Weight Spinning at Elevate Fitness in Syracuse

Back in the mid-nineties, I was working in a health club in the Utica, NY area called Brookside Athletic Club. I love everything about Brookside. I loved the staff, I loved the members, the equipment, the classes. Everything.

I was teaching what we then called Aerobics and Cardio Kickboxing in a tiny studio on the second floor of the club. The room was small but always packed full of amazing people who were positive, supportive and so very kind.

When Brookside converted a couple of tennis courts into an expanded workout area, everyone was excited. But what most people, myself included, didn’t understand was the little, dark room that was being built just off the new fitness floor.

Enter one of the most amazing people I’ve ever worked with/for: Christina. She was the group fitness director and she asked if I’d be interested in a new program called Cycle Reebok. Now, I wasn’t green enough to have not heard about these Spinning classes that were all the rage in large cities, but I hadn’t seen or tried one in person yet. But if Christina thought I’d be good at it, then I was absolutely on board.

The certification was held in the new area of the club prior to its opening to the members. We sat on the risers that would soon house brand new cardio equipment and listened to lectures and read our manuals and learned about Reebok and Cycle Reebok. We spent hours and hours in that dark room learning the mechanics of the bikes, how to set them up and riding until every square inch of our bodies, including our ears, were tired and sore.

I loved it. I taught themed rides and spent hours picking out my music (which had to be copied onto a cassette tape in those days) and took as many classes from other instructors as I could.

Then I went to work on a cruise ship – one without a cycling program. And my certification lapsed, and then my interest was caught by other things. Yoga. Marketing. Management.

Flash forward to 2019. Almost (but not quite!) thirty years later. Cycle classes are in every self-respecting gym and have made their way onto cruise ships, even! I found myself back in Spinning classes as I worked on implementing heart rate monitor technology into our classes at Elevate Fitness. The last class I’d taught was yoga and that was over a decade ago. But after a few rides, I was hooked again! I was taking classes every opportunity I got.

I bought spin shoes. I bought a cadence sensor for my shoes. It was like finding an old friend again after life had taken us in different directions, to find we still had everything in common and we were able to pick up right where we left off. So I got re-certified. And there’s been barely a day since that I haven’t climbed onto a bike and taken my position in the saddle.

This journey back to the saddle has reminded me why I loved (and still love) spinning so much:

1. It’s as easy as riding a bike. There are literally no other special skills you need. And you don’t even have to be particularly coordinated since this particular type of bike riding involves a bike that doesn’t actually move!

2. You can scale every ride to your fitness level, your energy level, and your mood. Because you control your resistance and you control your pace, you can work out at the level that’s perfect for you every single time.

3. It feels great. When you finish a challenging hill-climb or a really fast sprint, it’s impossible to not feel like you’ve really given 100% – and nothing beats the feeling of stepping off that bike after an amazing workout.

Want to learn more about Spinning at Elevate Fitness? Click here. Not a member and interested in trying it out? Your first class is free at Elevate Fitness:

The Heart of Group Power


Get a cardio workout while lifting weighs at Elevate Fitness in Syracuse

The cardiovascular effects of strength training, as explained by Mossa.

Have you ever felt your heart racing during Group Power? You are not alone. Group POwer can be a high intensity strength training class. Minimal breaks in the activity keep the heart rate elevated. Although it is not suggested that you substitute Group Power for cardio training, there are cardiovascular benefits. Think of the cardiovascular effect as just one more benefit of Group Power.


Cardiovascular fitness refers to the effectiveness of the body at taking in oxygen through the lungs, transferring that oxygen to the blood, and pumping the blood via the heart to the cells of the body. The stronger this system is, the better it is at its job. We become better at an activity through work. Our heart is the same. Exercise challenges our heart by increasing the demand on it, making it stronger.

Think of this in terms of the muscles in your thigh. We use these muscles every day when we stand up, walk, run, and jump. I doubt anyone would assert that standing up from your desk to walk to the coffee maker is going to make your thigh muscles stronger. In order to strengthen the muscles you have to challenge them by placing increased demand on them. That may be through weight training like squats or endurance training like cycling. A challenging effort makes the muscles better at doing every day activities.

Your heart is the same. If you are reading this then your heart is beating; however, your heart is probably not being challenged by this activity. To strengthen your heart muscle you have to challenge it. Increasing the demand on the heart through exercise makes the heart better at it every day activities of moving the blood throughout your body.


Group Power has an effectI’ve cardiovascular component because of the way the program is designed. Literally it is true; you cannot lift weights with your heart, but you can make your heart stronger by lifting weights. Any activity that raises your heart rate and is maintained over a period of time is cardiovascular exercise. Joining in for an hour of Power would certainly follow under this definition.

So, how are we going to raise our heart rate and maintain it for the duration of a Group Power class without feeling like we are about to fall over from exhaustion? Our formula for success lies in the ebb and flow of intensity found in circuit style training.


Circuit training essentially means rotating or switching from one exercise to another with minimal or no rest between exercises. Sound familiar? This type of training maintains an elevated heart rate and increases cardiovascular benefits. It does not matter what area of the body is being trained; you still get the benefits. Suffice it to say that if the exercise elevates your heart rate and you move from one exercise to the next with little rest you were doing circuit training.


Although Group Power is not promoted as a cardiovascular class, such as Group Group, GroupFight, Spinning, or Zumba, anyone who hass used a challenging weight in class has felt the cardio effect. Just feel your own heart pounding or look around the room at the sweat dripping off of noses or elbows.


Cardiovascular improvements are a benefit of any resistance training workout, especially circuit style training. Although Group Power is not designed as a cardiovascular training program, this important benefit should not be overlooked. Knowing what you might experience in class and why you feel that way helps you make better decisions about your intensity level. This knowledge increases the feeling of success when the workout is completed and hopefully keeps you coming back on a regular basis. Ultimately, it is this consistency that is going to help you achieve your fitness goals.


Not a member of Elevate Fitness, but want to try the heart-pumping effects of Group Power for yourself? No problem! Your first class is FREE at Elevate Fitness.

Motivating Yourself with Music

Use Great Music to Motivate Your Workout at Elevate Fitness

There are a number of things we can do to get ourselves pumped up to have a great workout, but possibly the most effective of those things is the music. Is it possible to hear the theme from Rocky without pushing yourself a little harder? When the beat drives forward isn’t it hard not to pick up your pace to match it?

Music is a powerful motivator both inside and outside the gym. Finding great music to help you get the most out of your workout can get tiring, and often times we find ourselves listening to the same songs or playlists over time. Changing up your tunes can help you blast through a plateau or set new personal records.

Different types of music are great for different types of workouts. Rock and Hip Hop are great genres for strength training and weight lifting. Dance and House music are great for cardio workouts. We asked certified Spinning Instructor Jason Jaquays-Tarbox what he’s been playing in his Spinning Workouts since Spinning focuses on both high-intensity cardio (speed and sprint work) and strength building (high resistance climbs and jumps). He shared six playlists with us with everything from warmup and cool down tracks to sprint tracks and slow climbs. 

Some Playlists from Certified Spinning Instructor Jason Jaquays-Tarbox

This playlist is a balance of sprints, seated and standing climbs and some jumps. It starts off with an extended instrumental warmup and ends with an easy cool down with Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga.

Exhibit 13 by Blue Man Group
Take me to Church by Hozier
Dance, Dance by Fall Out Boy
Pumped up Kicks by Foster the People
Zombie by The Cranberries
Rise Up by Andra Day
The Edge of Glory by Lady Gaga
Don’t Stop the Music by Rhianna
Waving Through a Window (dance mix) by Ben Platt
Too Good at Goodbyes (dance mix) by Sam Smith
It’s Not Right But It’s Okay by Whitney Houston
Shallow from A Star is Born

This next playlist is another mix of tracks meant to switch it up between speed work and strength work to keep the body moving and working at different intervals throughout the ride.

Pandora by Arno Elias (warmup)
Barrel of a Gun by Guster
Shallow Remix by Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga
What’s Up Remix by 4 Non Blondes
Fallin’ Remix by Alicia Keys
Hit Me With Your Best Shot/One Way or Another from the Glee Soundtrack
Rolling in the Deep cover by Go Radio
Bring Me to Life by Evanescence
Violet Stars Happy Hunting by Janelle Monae
Sweet Caroline Remix by Neil Diamond
Reach (Higher Remix) by Gloria Estefan
White Rabbit Remix by Dr. Drone
Wicked Game by Gnus Cello (cool down)
Chasing Cars by Gnus Cello (stretch)

This next playlist was designed to be HIIT work (high intensity intervals) to build the heart rate up to the 90-100% zone and then recover to 60-70% and then work back up and repeat. This is great for fat loss and putting the body into an extended fat burning period.

Best Day of My Life (instrumental version) by Backtracks Band (warm up)
Shooting Stars by Bag Raiders
Wake Me Up (workout mix) from Power Music Workout
Crazy Crazy for You by Rumor Willis and the cast of Empire
Beautiful Heartbeat (Avicii Remix) by Morten
Mic Drop feat. Desiigner by BTS
Only Happy When it Rains by Garbage
Beats Knockin’ feat. Fly Boi Keno by Skrillex & Diplo
Jump by Rihanna
American Woman by Lenny Kravitz
Somebody Told Me (workout remix) from Power Music Workout
Let’s Get Loud by Jennifer Lopez
Creep (Maelseom Remix) by Make it Rain & Harley Huke
Landslide (cool down) by Dagny
Perfect (stretch) by Gnus Cello

The next two playlists are about progressive building of both speed and strength. They start with a solid warm up followed by speed work (slowly building to sprints) and strength work (building resistance from seated climbs through jumps and into standing climbs).

Children (warm up) by Robert Miles
Basket Case (base speed) by Bastille
Love Runs Out by One Republic
September by Anden
My Shot from The Hamilton Mixtape featuring Busta Rhymes
The Heat (I Wanna Dance With Somebody) by Ralph Felix & SDJM
Losing My Religion remix by Unified Highway
Dance, Dance by Fall Out Boy
Chandelier by Sia
Beats Knockin’ by Skrillex & Diplo
In The End by Linkin Park
Barracuda by Heart
Wolves by Selena Gomez & Marshmellow
Shallow (workout remix) by Power Music Workout
Wicked Game (cool down) by Gnus Cello
Chasing Cars (stretch) by Gnus Cello

Exhibit 13 by Blue Man Group
Counting Stars by One Republic
Hey Brother by Avicii
Coming Home by Sheppard
Havana (remix) by Camila Cabello & Daddy Yankee
4 Minutes by Madonna feat. Justin Timberlake
Uninvited by Alanis Morissette
Hey There Delilah cover by Manuel Costa
Jolene by Straight No Chaser feat. Dolly Parton
Work by Frankie and the Witch Fingers
How Deep is Your Love by Calvin Harris & Disciples
This is Me by Keala Settle & The Greatest Showman Cast
Have You Ever Seen the Rain by A-Sides Club
Skyfall cover by Brynn Cartelli

This final playlist, like the last two, is about progressive workload increase but this time builds strength first and then speed.

Codex Destiny by Frank Borell
Take Me to Church by Straight No Chaser
We Are Young by Fun. feat. Janelle Monae
Toxic by Rumor Willis
Need You Now the Jason Nevins Remix by Lady Antebellum
Gotta Get Thru This by Daniel Beddingfield
Rise Up Tabata Remix at 128 BMP from Power Music Workout
Hella Good by No Doubt
All I Do Is Win (workout remix) from Power Music Workout
Crazy in Love by Beyonce
Poker Face by Lady Gaga
Swing, Swing by All American Rejects
Rewrite the Stars (cool down) by Zac Efron & Zedaya
Electra (stretch) by Airstream


Try a Group Fitness Class with Great Music at Elevate Fitness in Dewitt and Liverpool

How Group Classes Train You For Life

Get Fit for Life at Elevate Fitness in Syracuse

by Group Fitness Instructor, Tonya Warner

When new class participants embark upon their fitness journeys, they most likely won’t realize what’s in store for them. Sure, they understand that they will torch a lot of calories, get more fit, get leaner and maybe even have some fun in the process. But a fantastic side effect is the benefit they will see outside of the gym walls.

Walking into a new group fitness class can be hugely intimidating. There are all kinds of new equipment that you’ve never used before, there are people milling around and gathering their weights, steps, mats, or adjusting their bikes like old pros. Don’t be afraid to speak up! The instructor is there to help you get the best workout possible – so ask for any assistance you need in getting set up. But eventually, you find your groove. Each class is easier, and before you know it, setting up and gathering your equipment is natural and seamless.

Fast forward a few weeks to a few months and you realize a noticeable change when you’re NOT at the gym. You may be doing simple tasks at home. You may be on the tennis court, ski slopes, or you may be simply walking to your car on an icy day. Members that have consistently taken group fitness classes on a weekly basis have noticed things about their bodies for possibly the first time in their lives. They’re physically stronger, more coordinated, more balanced, have postural improvements, and experience a brand new mind/body connection.

They can now ski longer and harder because their cycle classes have greatly improved their quad strength and control. Their footwork and agility now show on the tennis courts because of all the work on the step in Group Blast and Group Active.  Because Group Power and Group Blast focuses on building muscular strength and endurance, runners have found significant improvements with their race times. They’re able to prevent a potential tumble because their balance has dramatically improved thanks to all the Will Power and Grace classes. Even all the bending and reaching while gardening feels easier because people are more flexible thanks to all the yoga classes.

The examples of the benefits of group fitness classes are endless. Try one of our classes at Elevate and you’ll be hooked for life!!


Top 5 Reasons to Try a Group Fitness Class

Top 5 Reasons to Try Group Fitness Classes at Elevate Fitness in Syracuse

In gyms all across the country, there are two types of people: those who swear by group fitness classes as the best way to spend their time in the gym, and those who haven’t tried group fitness yet. Here, in no particular order, are our top five reasons that you should try a group fitness class if you fall into that second category!

If you don’t want to spend the money to hire a personal trainer (which is the best way to get the results you want from your fitness program quickly and effectively), then group fitness classes might just be the next best thing for you.

Whether it’s getting expert coaching on your form, expert program design or expert motivation – you get lot of benefit from the experts that are group fitness instructors. Take the guesswork out of your workouts by attending a predesigned and progressive workout being coached and led by a qualified (and certified) fitness professional.

Make sure you’re working with a certified instructor who’s delivering a quality program. And don’t be afraid to speak up! Introducing yourself before class and explaining any physical limitations you may have, or specific results you’re looking for will allow the instructor to provide you with customized coaching specific to you!

Sometimes it’s hard to keep yourself motivated in the gym. Whether it’s because you’ve had a long day at work, or because you didn’t sleep well the night before, it can be tough getting yourself motivated in the gym day after day.

Being in a room full of like-minded people all looking to get their sweat on and have a good time can be INCREDIBLY motivating. And it can mean the difference between an hour wasted at the gym half-heartedly run/walking on the treadmill and getting an effective full-body workout that leaves you feeling accomplished and energized.

It’s the same experience you might have at a concert or a sporting event where you get swept up in the energy of the crowd – sometimes the right group fitness class can be so motivating that it turns an otherwise ho-hum day into a great one!

Group fitness classes are great at providing your workout routine with structure. From a predictable schedule to expertly structured classes, group fitness can do all the prep and planning work for you.

Another favorite expression is “failing to plan is planning to fail” and this applies to your fitness goals as well. You can’t just join a gym or take up running and expect results. You need a plan to get you there. The great thing about group fitness is that you can simply work with a program coordinator to determine the best classes for you based on your goals and your schedule and then boom – you have a plan! Once you have a plan, it’s just a matter of executing – which in the case of group fitness, means showing up and doing what the instructor tells you to do!

Not only is the structure great for getting you results, but having a schedule that you’ve committed to makes it easier to hold yourself accountable.

It’s easy to fall into a rut when you’re working out on your own. You sign into the gym and throw your stuff in a locker and then off you go to your favorite (same old) machine to do your favorite (same old) workout. This is the most common reason people fail to get the results they’re looking for at the gym: failure to keep the body challenged!

Falling into a workout rut can cause you to plateau – after all, as they say, what doesn’t challenge you doesn’t change you, and after a while, the same old will fail to challenge you.

You don’t have to worry about that in a good group fitness class. Between the expert design of the classes and the wide variety available to you, you can make sure you have enough variety in your workout plan to keep your body challenged and changing.

Our final reason is our favorite reason. Group fitness feels more like a party than a workout. Think about it: group fitness is a social activity. You get the support, encouragement, and motivation of your fellow participants. There’s an instructor helping you get a great physical workout. There’s awesome music pumping through the speakers.

You’d be surprised how the party-like elements of group fitness can make an hour pass so much faster than an hour on a treadmill. Find an entertaining instructor and you’ll find your workouts are over in the blink of an eye! Making fitness fun is a key to increasing exercise adherence (meaning you’ll work out more often) which means you’ll see results faster!

When Mary Poppins sang that a spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down, she could have been talking about group fitness (sugar) and exercise (medicine).


With so many great reasons to try group fitness, why not slip into a class and see what all the fuss is about? Not a member yet and want to try Elevate Fitness classes anyway? No problem, your first class at Elevate Fitness is free!

Health Experts Strongly Recommend Group Fitness

Why Many Health Experts Strongly Recommend Group Fitness Training

By Anthony Holton

One of the best ways to improve health and maintain a healthy fitness level is through exercise and fitness training. However, not everyone likes to exercise especially when they do not have anyone with them. And so, many health experts actually recommend group fitness training. As with anything, each kind of training comes with its own advantages, so it is worthwhile to determine which type best fits you and your overall goals.

If the boredom and lack of motivation describe you, you should seriously consider group fitness training which is strongly recommended by many health experts. Expert fitness trainers share the advantage of this type of training or exercise.

One of the main advantages of group fitness training, many people ought to know, is that it will provide the motivation to train harder. As you see other people in the class sweating, grunting and overcoming training obstacles, you will be inspired to push past your limitations. When you feel yourself progressing, you get motivated to train consistently, which then allows you to reach your fitness goals faster and be more encouraged to stay fit.

Additionally, training regularly allows you to form a special bond with fellow members of your group fitness training. People in your neighborhood or in your circle of friends can use as a form of accountability. When you know that other people are expecting you to show up, when there are people who actually care about your success, it makes it more difficult to skip a workout or go back to your unhealthy habits.

Fitness training groups offer a wider array of classes, ranging from high-intensity cardio sessions to get your heart pumping, to weight training using a variety of equipment designed to get you functionally fit, and explosively fun boxing classes. This means that you can select classes that fit your personality and goals or perhaps even discover a new passion. As many fitness experts say, finding an activity that you truly enjoy is one of the greatest ways to motivate yourself to train consistently.

And lastly, group training is a great opportunity to meet new people. In these classes, you will meet a diverse number of people, many of which share a common goal with you. This allows you to build a solid network that can help you not only with your fitness goals but in other aspects of your life as well, including your professional career.

Know more about this here.

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Whether you’re trying to lose weight or tone up or train for an event, find out why Elevate Syracuse is your best choice!

Spotlight On: Group Core

Group Core gives you three-dimensional strength training and 30 action-packed minutes! Stronger core improves athletic performance, enhances movement health, and helps prevent back pain. Expert coaching and motivating music will push you through integrated exercises that use your body weight and weight plates.

Group Core Training is at Elevate Fitness in Dewitt, Liverpool and Syracuse

What makes Group Core Unique?

Comprehensive Core Training

Group Core is much more than just an “ab class” where you do a bunch of ab curls. This is 30 minutes of comprehensive core training that targets the entire core – everything from the shoulders to the hips, including the front, back, and sides of the core. Exercise professionals know that you cannot target one area for fat loss (this is called the “Spot Reduction Myth”), so Group Core uses full body metabolic training to strengthen and define the core. The workout also features posterior-chain exercises that improve posture and balance out core training for the front and back of the body.

Three-Dimensional Approach

The programming for Group Core utilizes the revolutionary science of Loaded Movement Training. Participants move in all three planes of motion, both with and without an external load (weight). Loaded Movement Training is ideal for this program because rotation and multi-directional movements are highly effective ways to strengthen and define the entire core. This novel approach to core training does more than just build a better six-pack – it makes people better movers in everyday life, lowers the risk of injury, and helps prevent nagging aches and pains.

Great Music

The Group Core workout uses a professionally designed and market-tested playlist to ensure there’s something for everyone, musically speaking, in every Group Core class. The entire experience is sound-engineered to ensure you have the best possible physical and mental experience, pushing you to work harder and get more from your workout!

All Fitness Levels

Group Core is designed for able-bodied adults of all ages and fitness levels. Instructors receive detailed examples of how to coach options or modifications to ensure that all participants are able to do every part of the workout in their instructor training and development. This results in greater success for you and will keep you coming back to Group Core for many workouts to come!

REMEMBER: Your first workout is always FREE at Elevate Fitness in Dewitt and Elevate Fitness in Liverpool!

Why Workout in Water

by Susan Ohlsen

Why Workout in Water at Elevate Fitness

We all know that water exercise is easy on the joints, increases flexibility and provides an opportunity to develop aerobic capacity. In addition, the following properties of the water itself can enhance and improve physical functioning.

Buoyancy supports body weight and means less impact on joints. If the water is chest deep, it reduces body weight by 60%, if the water is up to the shoulders or neck, it reduces body weight by 90%! Buoyancy also provides resistance which can lead to more balanced total body conditioning.

Hydrostatic Pressure is the pressure that water exerts on all surfaces under the water. It compresses the chest and can make breathing more difficult. It also reduces the heart rate so that the heart does not have to work as hard in the water to get the beneficial effect of exercise. Hydrostatic pressure acts like a total body “massage” that stimulates the lymphatic system and helps muscles recover from injuries.

Viscosity refers to water density. Water is 800 times denser than air and generates resistance in all directions of movement. Different types of movement in water can be varied to make exercise more or less difficult, e.g., the speed of movement, lever length, and the surface area of the body. Slower movement can help improve precision and coordination through all ranges of motion.

ThermoDynamics involves the flow of heat. Water transfers heat away from the body 25 times faster than air. This affects heart rate and oxygen consumption. Performing vigorous exercise in cool water results in lower heart rates than in warmer water, therefore, using the Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE) is a better way to gauge the intensity of your workout.
X marks the spot! If the water is at the level of your Xyphoid Process (the bottom tip of your sternum), 60% of your body weight is supported by the water.

Source: American Fitness Magazine, Summer 2017

See our aquatics schedules here, and remember your first class is always free at Elevate Fitness! Just fill out the form at the bottom of this page.

Susan Ohlsen is a Group Fitness Instructor who teaches both in and out of the water.

Should You Buy Cycling Shoes?

By Tonya Warner

Cycling Shoes Can Make Your Workout More Effective

If you’re a regular participant in indoor cycling classes, you already know that it’s a perfect low impact way to raise your heart rate, torch calories, and increase your lung capacity. You’ve also most likely looked around at your peers and noticed those sleek looking velcroed shoes that a lot of people are wearing. Maybe you’ve wondered to yourself “What’s the difference between regular sneakers and cycling shoes and should I invest in a pair?” Before you talk yourself out of it because they tend to be expensive, here are some major advantages to owning a pair.

-Because of minimal wear and tear to your new indoor shoes, they will last for years.

-Cycling shoes have stiffer soles. This means the stiffer the sole, the more power you get when pedaling. Also, you’ll have more balance when you’re out of the saddle.

-Your feet stay in constant position when clipped in. This means perfect alignment that will prevent your feet from pronating. Your hips will also thank you for it!

-Your pedal stroke is smooth as silk! Cycling shoes help lift your pedals on the upstroke which takes pressure off your quads and brings your hamstrings in the mix.

-No shoe laces to worry about! It can be terrifying getting a shoelace stuck in the flywheel if they’re not safely tucked in the toe cages. The Velcro straps that come with most cycling shoes ensure a secure fit.

-More controlled and powerful pedal stroke ensures an awesome workout every time. Once you get used to clipping in and out, you’ll be amazed at how much more efficient you are, maximizing your time in class!

Once you try them out, you’ll most likely never go back to cycling in sneakers again!!

Click here to see Elevate’s indoor cycling class schedule and fill out the form at the bottom of the page to get your first class free!

ABOUT TONYA: Tonya is a Group Ride and Indoor Cycling Instructor at both Elevate Fitness’s Dewitt and Liverpool locations.

How to Set Up Your Bike for a Spin Class

by Darcy Dibiase

How to Set Up Your Spin Bike at Elevate Fitness

It’s the most common reason people avoid spin classes in gyms: they don’t know how to set up their bike for the class. And not every instructor is in the habit of beginning each class with a “How to Set Up Your Bike for a Spin Class” powerpoint presentation. Yet, we know that indoor cycling is a great class to help you meet your goals, so let’s not let fear of the unknown stop us any longer, okay?

So let’s give you a brief tutorial so that if it’s your first class you can set up with confidence, or if it’s your favorite class you can get a nice refresher on how to make sure your bike is set up to give you your optimal workout. These tips apply to both our indoor cycling classes and our Group Ride and R30 classes!

On most spin class bikes, including those at Elevate Fitness, there are essentially adjustments you’ll want to make before the class begins:

1. Saddle position (how high up and forward/back your seat is) and,
2. handlebar position (where your handlebars are relative to your saddle height and arm-length).

Let’s watch Elevate Fitness Instructor Darcy give us a great demo on how to properly set up your bike:

That’s really all there is to it! Make sure to bring your towel and your water bottle, and don’t forget – if you have any questions not only can the instructor help you out, but your fellow classmates are almost always more than willing to help you out! Ready to give spinning or Group Ride a try? Remember – your first class is always free at Elevate Fitness Clubs in Syracuse, just fill out the form at the bottom of this page!  And get more great tips from Darcy here!

Getting Started with Group Ride

Group Ride Indoor Spin Class at Elevate Fitness in Dewitt and Liverpool


Group Ride is a huge calorie burner that builds great-looking legs! It’s a 60-minute cycling experience brought indoors. Roll over hills, chase the pack, spin the flats, climb mountains, and sprint to the finish! Feel the thrill of energetic music and group dynamics as you get all the benefits of authentic interval training. RIDE ON!


The “Ride” consists of ten tracks that make use of different terrains, speeds, and intensity levels to create a fun and highly effective interval-based cardiovascular workout. You will train a variety of speeds, resistance levels, and cycling positions that are all based on cycling principles. The speeds are controlled to ensure that everyone can “keep up.” As your fitness level and your confidence increase, you can crank up the resistance to challenge yourself even more.

The ten tracks have a specific training objective:
1. Ride – We jump on our bikes and begin the ride! Music kicks in, a few hellos to your neighbors, legs start turning over, and your body starts to get warm as you run through the cycling positions and techniques that will be used during the hour.
2. Terrain – The intensity begins to increase, and the workout feels like it really gets started. Sometimes the terrain is flat, sometimes it’s hilly, or maybe a mix of both, but it’s always an exciting ride.
3. Roll – The pace comes down but the intensity does not. Rolling hills keep the physical intensity of the ride rising while turning the workout feel toward strength-training.
4. Intervals – Repeated working sections, with quick recoveries between, push you toward higher intensity to increase your endurance.
5. Chase – Get in the race, get out of breath, and challenge your fitness! The first physical peak of the workout improves your endurance by motivating you to break away from the pack.
6. Spin – An opportunity to pull back the intensity and gather yourself, but also an opportunity to pick up the pace if you want to train endurance with smooth, quick pedaling. This is the calm after one storm and before the next one.
7. Climb – The road turns upward. The feel returns to strength. You’ll notice the results in your legs from the heaviest resistance of the workout, as you challenge yourself to reach the top of a mountain peak.
8. Sprint – With just four minutes of work left, you’ll empty your tank in a race to the finish line. You’ll finish this energetic sprint feeling spent but exhilarated.
9. Celebrate – You’ll feel a sense of accomplishment as you look back on your workout while you take an easy spin to cool down from a great ride.
10. Stretch – Wrap up your recovery and relax from your ride with some stress reversal for your muscles to make sure you’ll walk as tall as you feel.


If you want to improve your cardiovascular fitness, burn calories, burn fat, shape and strengthen your lower body, and have fun doing it, then Group Ride is for you. Group Ride attracts people with all different levels of exercise experience, fitness, and exercise goals because you control the intensity of your workout by adjusting your own bike during class. Group Ride is ideal for:
• Men and women, conditioned or deconditioned exercisers, and those with or without cycling experience
• New exercisers looking for simplicity and the ability to work as hard as they want
• Avid cyclists looking for an indoor, off-season, or bad-weather-day cycling option
• Anyone looking to add variety to their workout
• Anyone looking for a low-impact option to build cardiovascular fitness


Group Ride is a cardio workout, so you can do it once a week in conjunction with other workouts or you can do it almost every day as your primary exercise routine. A beginner to exercise would not want to do too much too soon, but as fitness levels and the ability to recover improve, workout volume and intensity can increase. How you feel is the best gauge of your body’s recovery requirements between workouts.

HELPFUL HINTS? Just remember that it will only be your first class once. After attending Group Ride three times, you will start to feel like a pro.

These tips will ensure your success and enjoyment:
• Wear appropriate workout clothing that is loose or flexible in the legs and in which you are comfortable getting sweaty. You will sweat a lot in Group Ride!
• Bring a towel and a large water bottle.
• Cycling shorts, while not absolutely necessary, are padded and give a little extra comfort where needed.
• Regular workout shoes work fine for Group Ride, but some choose to invest in cycling shoes once they are hooked on the class.
• Arrive 15 minutes before class and introduce yourself to the instructor. Most importantly, the instructor will help you set up your bike, but he or she will also let you know what to expect and answer any questions you may have.
• It is not necessary to be up front, but choose a bike where you have a clear view of the instructor.
• Speak with the instructor at the end of class to ask questions and to check in about your experience.

HOW WILL I FEEL? It is perfectly normal to feel apprehensive and nervous before your first Group Ride class. Most of us do not like to be “new” at something. Learning the feel of the bike seat and how to ride a stationary bike may take a bit of time. It is good to attend your first few classes with this simple objective in mind: try not to concentrate so much on the quality of your workout — that will come later as you become more familiar with cycling. During your first few classes, remind yourself that you have to start somewhere. It might seem like the class is moving a little faster than you would like, especially if the terminology and movements are somewhat unfamiliar. Keep in mind that the goal is to elevate your heart rate, and as long as you keep moving you are doing that. Success is all about increasing your fitness and workout intensity over time, not about doing it all in one class. In addition, your rear end may feel uncomfortable in the beginning, but you will adapt and each class will become more comfortable. After class, know that your muscles may be sore. This is because your body is adjusting to the demands of the new activity. It is perfectly normal. Once your body begins to adapt and you become more comfortable with the equipment, the terminology, and the flow of the class, you will find that Group Ride is a fun and addictive workout!

Ready to take the Ride of your life? Find our class schedules here, download our Getting Started with Group Ride Guide here and remember your first class is always FREE at Elevate Fitness!

Getting Started with Group Groove

Group Groove Class at Elevate Fitness in Dewitt and Liverpool



Group Groove will make you sweat with a smile during this energizing hour of dance fitness. It’s a sizzling cardio experience that is a fusion of club, urban, and Latin dance styles set to the hottest current hits and the best dance songs ever produced! IF YOU CAN MOVE, YOU CAN GROOVE!

WHAT WILL I DO? Group Groove’s cool approach will have you moving to a variety of dance styles, including Disco, Club, Hip-Hop, Jazz, Latin, Musical Theater, African, Swing, Country, and more! Ten tracks with top-charting songs will get your heart pounding and sweat pouring as you feel the freedom of dance. Each track has been expertly choreographed to be easily followed and with a specific fitness and workout aim:

1. Warm-Up – We hit the dance floor early with dance-inspired moves designed to help us get our Groove on!
2. FirstDANCE – Not wanting to peak too early, this track helps us get our “dance face” on. Mostly low-impact dance moves help us continue to warm up and get to work!
3. PartyDANCE – The Groove party has really started now! Sometimes Latin-inspired, sometimes the best of Disco…but no matter what, this one puts a smile on your dial and gets the heart working.
4. LowDANCE 1 – We work on shaping and toning the legs and glutes with dance styles that drop us low in the legs so we feel the burn…did we say urban, anybody?!
5. CardioDANCE 1 – As the name implies, this one serves up the work, meaning hearts will be pounding and sweat will be pouring! Could cardio really be this fun???
6. LowDANCE 2 – The low-down on this track is that we get lower than before. This one is designed to give us a “leg training hangover.” Urban tunes will drive this track.
7. CardioDANCE 2 – Climb to the second cardio peak with this hot, sweaty, and pounding Groove!
8. BreakDANCE – Not to be confused with resting…this is the calm before the storm.
9. Finale – The class finishes on an emotional and physical high with this big dance fusion!
10. Cool Down – Think slow, cool dance – the one before you go home. We’ll stretch out those dancing muscles to make sure you recover and are ready for your next Groove!


Group Groove is for anyone of any age who wants to have fun…lots of fun, and sweat a ton! Group Groove is ideal for:
• Anyone looking for a fun way to get a great cardio workout
• Those who might find “exercise” a bit too serious and just need to smile
• Anyone who has danced in their bedroom while using a hairbrush as a microphone
• Anyone who can’t stop tapping their foot or wiggling their hips whenever they hear any song
• Those who just want to express themselves
• Anyone who wants to feel young again
• Anyone who watches Dancing with the Stars or So You Think You Can Dance


Because Group Groove is an all-out cardio-fitness jam, you can do it once a week or Groove every day. How you feel is your best gauge of your body’s recovery needs between workouts. Keep in mind, the more you Groove, the cooler you’ll be!

HELPFUL HINTS? Just remember that it is only your first time once! These tips will ensure your success and enjoyment:
• Wear comfortable workout attire. Most people wear sweatpants, cargo pants, or shorts with tanks or t-shirts. Basically anything that makes you feel cool and lets you move.
• Wear comfortable athletic shoes. We suggest not wearing platform shoes.
• Bring a water bottle and a towel.
• Arrive 15 minutes before class and introduce yourself to the instructor. The instructor will answer any questions you may have to help put you at ease.
• Stand close to the center of the room so you can see the instructor clearly. It is not necessary to be at the front, and having a couple of other participants in front of you can help provide visual information about the movements.
• Try to ignore any mirrors in the room, as they can be distracting. Just have fun and remember that the instructor is the best source of visual technique information.
• Speak with the instructor at the end of class to ask questions and to check in about your experience.


It’s perfectly normal to feel apprehensive and nervous before your first Group Groove class. Once you get your first class out of the way, much of the apprehension will disappear. Remember there is safety in numbers. Allow yourself to have fun because, as long as you’re going in the general direction, you’re hip! During class, time will fly! You might experience mixed emotions. Just go with it. Remind yourself you are new. Adults often have very high expectations of themselves, but you have to start somewhere. It might seem like the class is moving a little faster than you would like. That is simply because the terminology and movements may be new to you. With each class, you will become more comfortable and confident. After class, you’ll probably be disappointed that the class is over. You’ll be amazed that an hour is already gone. You may be surprised the next day that you are sore all over. This is a great sign; it means you got a great workout even while you were smiling and laughing.

If you’re ready to find YOUR Groove – remember your first class is always FREE at Elevate Fitness. Download the Group Groove Getting Started Guide here, and check out our schedule of classes here.

Getting Started with Group Power

Group Power Class at Elevate Fitness in Liverpool and Dewitt


Group Power will blast all your muscles with a high-rep weight training workout. Using an adjustable barbell, weight plates, and body weight, Group Power combines squats, lunges, presses, and curls with functional integrated exercises. Dynamic music and a motivating group atmosphere will get your heart rate up, make you sweat, and push you to a personal best! POWER UP!


Group Power combines traditional strength exercises and the hottest functional training moves, utilizing a barbell, weight plates, and your body weight to make you fitter and stronger. High-rep training and athletic movements are key components of this results-driven workout. Group Power is developed with a periodized approach to ensure you are constantly changing your workout and challenging your body.

Ten tracks are expertly programmed with specific workout objectives:
1. Warm-Up – We grab the barbell with lightweight and introduce many of the exercises you’ll be doing over the next hour, warming the body and practicing the movements.
2. Legs – Working the big muscles first, we do Squats and sometimes add in Lunges to get the heart rate going and ignite a fire in the legs, creating great shape and definition.
3. Chest – We strengthen the chest with a variety of exercises, such as the Chest Press, Chest Fly, and Push Ups. You’ll often find new twists on these exercises to maximize your results!
4. Back & Legs – Full-body exercises like Deadlifts, Deadrows, and the Clean & Press really fire up the back and hamstrings and get the heart rate up! Plus, you’ll learn innovative Power movements like the Power Clean, Deadsquats, Reverse Flys, and the Single-Arm Row.
5. Triceps – Shape, build, and define the back of the arms with Tricep Presses, Extensions, Pullovers, and Kickbacks. But beware of the Tricep Push Ups – they’ll push you over the top!
6. Biceps – The best of high-rep weight training, combined with new and unique biceps exercises. Experience the difference with variations on barbell curls, wide grip, offset grip, bicep rows, and even weight plate work.
7. More Legs –This is functional integrated training at its best. Challenge your legs with Power Lunges, Crouches, lateral movements, balance challenges, offset loading, and even plyometrics! You’ll feel like a pro when you learn these moves!
8. Shoulders – A ton of exercises to give you great-looking shoulders. Work the front, top, and back of the shoulders with Upright Rows, Shoulder Presses, Lateral Raises, and Rear Delt Extensions. Plus, groundbreaking functional movements will make you feel like an athlete in training!
9. Core – Concentrate on your core with exercises that train the front, back, and sides of your midsection. There’s always a new way to shake up the routine and ensure your core is strong, solid, and good looking!
10. Stretch – You’ve earned it. Stretching out the muscles from head to toe helps improve overall range of motion and muscular recovery.


Group Power is for just about everyone. Strength training is essential to staying healthy, and Group Power is ideal for:
• New exercisers because of the simplicity of the class
• Men and women of all ages because you get to select how much weight you use.
• Anyone who wants a fun way to add strength training to their workout
• Athletes looking for a training edge
• Women because weight-bearing exercise is proven to reduce the incidence of osteoporosis
• The time-pressed exerciser because one hour two times per week delivers results fast
• Serious weight trainers that want to challenge their muscles in a different way


Group Power is designed to be done two to three times per week. It is recommended that you not exceed three times in one week. This is not a case of “the more you do, the better.” The body needs time to recover in order to grow stronger. For at least your first month of Group Power, twice a week is sufficient. A schedule allowing for two days of rest between class experiences is ideal.

HELPFUL HINTS? Remember that your first class only happens once. After attending Group Power three times, you will get into the rhythm of things and will start to feel like a pro.

These tips will ensure your success in your first few classes:
• Wear comfortable workout clothing and comfortable athletic shoes.
• Bring a towel and a water bottle.
• Some people prefer to wear weight training gloves, but they are certainly not essential.
• Arrive 15 minutes before class and introduce yourself to the instructor. The instructor will help you set up your equipment, provide starting weight recommendations, and answer any questions you may have to help put you at ease.
• It is not essential that you be up front, but stand near the center of the room and where you have a clear view of the instructor.
• Your instructor will coach you and include exercise options to ensure your success.
• You should feel comfortable stopping at any point in a track, either to rest or adjust your weight.
• Speak with the instructor at the end of class to ask questions and to check in about your experience.


It is perfectly normal to feel apprehensive prior to your first Group Power class. Once you get your first class out of the way, much of that apprehension will disappear. Remember, there is safety in numbers. You will be amazed at how many others will be willing to help you. The objective of your first few classes is to familiarize yourself with the format, the equipment, and the technique of the various exercises. The instructor will probably recommend a starting weight or weights that may seem too light to you at first. Keep in mind that you will be doing high numbers of repetitions, and the lighter weight will help you learn proper technique from the beginning. Allow yourself to be a student; proper technique leads to safer, more effective exercises, and better results. After you get the feel, you can slowly start to increase your weight selections to increase your workout intensity. Talk to the instructor after class to let him or her know how you felt and if anything felt particularly challenging for you. The instructor will then make recommendations for your next class. Keep in mind that you may be sore for several days afterwards because your body is adjusting to the new demands on your muscles. This is perfectly normal. Have fun during your Group Power experience as you build strength, confidence, and a sense of accomplishment that comes with improved fitness.

Get your power on, your first class is always FREE at Elevate Fitness. Download our Group Power Getting Started Guide here and check out the class schedules over here!

Getting Started with Group Fight

Group Fight Class at Elevate Fitness in Dewitt and Liverpool


Group Fight™ is a gripping hour that burns a ton of calories and builds total body strength. Tap into the hottest mixed martial arts movements done at a rapid-fire pace to smash your cardio fitness! From the boxing ring to the fighting cage, Group Fight combines cutting-edge moves with thrilling music. This electric experience is addictive! FIGHT FOR IT!


Group Fight is an explosive cardio workout fueled by MMA moves from inside and outside the octagon. You are your own opponent in this high-energy experience that borrows training styles from mixed martial arts, kickboxing, Muay Thai, karate, functional athletic training, and more!

The hour is divided into ten parts, each with its own objective:
1. Warm-Up – Steadily warm your body with simple upper-body boxing moves and basic footwork. Consider this a rehearsal for the workout ahead!
2. Box – Get straight into the workout with upper-body boxing moves. Jabs, hooks, and crosses coupled with authentic footwork keep you on your toes.
3. Muay Thai – Lower-body work is introduced with movements borrowed from the exciting Muay Thai discipline. Think sharp elbow and knee strikes, all with power and gusto!
4. Kicks – Consider this a working and rehearsal track combined – concentrating on your kick technique is a great way to define and strengthen your lower body.
5. Mixed Martial Arts – Anything goes! Upper-body and lower-body strikes are combined in exciting and intense combinations, all to take your cardio fitness to a whole new level.
6. Super Box – Take the Box track and supersize it! Harder, faster, and more intense. Did we say harder and faster?!
7. Mixed Martial Arts – This second round of Mixed Martial Arts is not all-out like the first. You have a chance to catch your breath as you prepare for the next working round. Here we train additional elements like balance and kick finesse.
8. Muay Thai – Empty your tank as you hit the final cardio peak by using the best strikes Muay Thai has to offer!
9. Conditioning – It can be core conditioning, leg conditioning, upper body conditioning, or a combination of each. You will get results!
10. Cool Down – Stretch and recover with basic flexibility training, with the addition of kata sequences from various martial arts disciplines.


Group Fight is for anyone wanting a challenging, athletic, and motivating workout in a realistic time frame. Group Fight would be ideal for:
• New exercisers, because the workout is a blast and you have the ability to adjust the level of challenge to suit yourself
• Anyone wanting to add variety to his or her training and improve timing, precision, and focus
• Anyone who wants great shoulder and arm definition while punching and kicking the stress out of their lives
• Men and women who want to get a great cardiovascular workout while getting as far away from “aerobics” as possible


Group Fight is a cardiovascular training workout, so you can do it once a week in conjunction with other workouts or you can do it almost every day as your primary exercise routine. A beginner to exercise would not want to do too much too soon, but as fitness levels and the ability to recover improve, workout volume and intensity can increase. How you feel is the best gauge of your body’s recovery needs between workouts.


These tips will ensure your success and enjoyment:
• Wear comfortable workout attire in which you can get sweaty. Most people wear shorts and a t-shirt or athletic wear. Make sure your clothing allows freedom of movement for kicks and punches.
• Wear comfortable athletic shoes. Training-style shoes are recommended because there is a lot of lateral movement in Group Fight. While running shoes will work, they are designed for moving forward and do not offer much lateral support.
• Bring a water bottle and a towel.
• Arrive 15 minutes before the workout and introduce yourself to the instructor. The instructor will answer any questions you may have to help put you at ease.
• Stand close to the center of the room so you can see the instructor clearly. It is not necessary to be at the front, and having a couple of other participants in front of you can help provide visual movement information.
• Catch up with the instructor at the end of the workout to ask questions and to check in about your experience.


It is perfectly normal to feel apprehensive prior to your first Group Fight experience. Once you get your first workout out of the way, much of that apprehension will disappear. Remember, there is safety in numbers. You will be amazed at how many others will be willing to help you. During the workout, time will fly! You might experience mixed emotions. Just go with it. Remind yourself you are new. Adults often have very high expectations of themselves, but you have to start somewhere. It might seem like the workout is moving a little faster than you would like. That is simply because the terminology and movements may be new to you. With each workout, you will become more comfortable and confident. After the workout you will be excited to have your first experience under your belt. Keep in mind that you may be sore for several days afterwards because your body is adjusting to the new demands on your muscles. This is perfectly normal. Just have fun during your Group Fight experience as you build fitness, confidence, and a sense of accomplishment!

If you’re ready to unleash your inner Fighter, don’t forget that your first class is always FREE at Elevate Fitness. Check out the class schedules here and download the getting started guide for Group Fight here.

Getting Started with Group Centergy

Getting Started with Group Centergy at Elevate Fitness in Syracuse


Group Centergy will grow you longer and stronger with an invigorating 60-minute mind-body workout. It incorporates yoga and Pilates fundamentals with athletic training for balance, mobility, flexibility, and the core. Emotive music drives the experience as you breathe and sweat through this full-body fitness journey. REDEFINE YOUR SELF.

WHAT WILL I DO? Group Centergy has a consistent format that will enable you to get comfortable with movements and to see your health and well-being improve. The workout consists of 10 tracks, accompanied by emotive music, that have specific workout objectives.

1. Focus – Athletic, functional, full-body movements kick off the journey to get your mind and body warm.
2. Salutations – The sweat really starts here as traditional yoga postures are repeated, building strength and stamina.
3. Challenge – Standing yoga poses put the lower body on notice during this physical highpoint track. This is a full-body track that will leave you shaking.
4. Balance – The energy pulls back, allowing you to focus inward and concentrate on balance, but you are still working and burning calories.
5. Core BACK – Core training for the often-neglected back area will create muscle balance and improve posture.
6. Core FRONT – Uses inspiration from one of today’s most popular exercise trends, Pilates, to strengthen your abs and stabilize your pelvis.
7. Hips – Exercises promote both stability and mobility through the hips, which translates to a healthy and pain-free back and spine.
8. Spirals – Includes rotational movements to improve the mobility, flexibility, and stability of the spine, all requisites to feeling and staying young!
9. Folds – Lower back and hamstrings stretches are the antidote for a physically and mentally stressed body.
10. Restore – Also referred to as a mini vacation, you’ll be ready to take on all physical and mental challenges by the end of this track as you recover from the workout.


Group Centergy is truly for everyone, removing barriers of age, gender, and fitness background. The nature of the program makes it easy for everyone to achieve success, master techniques over time, and return for more.

Group Centergy is perfect for:
• New exercisers because the program makes it easy to work at your own pace
• The “fit-it-in-where-you-can” exerciser, because Group Centergy is a timely way to increase strength, flexibility, and to relax – all in one hour
• The athlete, because it keeps your body in peak condition, helps fight injury, and facilitates quick recovery
• Men and women of all ages and fitness experiences that want to enjoy the mental benefits of a mind-body discipline


Group Centergy can be done as often as you like. How you feel is the best gauge of your body’s recovery needs between workouts. It is important that you gradually build a regular class schedule, being careful not to push too far, too fast. During your first four weeks, we recommend you do no more than three Group Centergy classes per week.

HELPFUL HINTS? Remember that it is only your first time once. After attending Group Centergy three times, you will become much more comfortable with the flow of the class and the movements and poses involved.

These tips will ensure your success in your first few classes: • Wear comfortable workout clothing that moves well with your body.
• Bring a towel, a water bottle, and a yoga mat. Even if the club provides mats, they are a worthwhile purchase once you are hooked on the class.
• Arrive 15 minutes before class and introduce yourself to the instructor. The instructor will answer any questions you may have to help put you at ease.
• Stand close to the center of the room so you can see the instructor clearly. It is not necessary to be at the front and having a couple of other participants in front of you can help provide visual information about the movements.
• Try to ignore the mirrors in the room, as they can be distracting. Just have fun and remember that the instructor is the best source of visual technique information.
• Your instructor will coach you, including movement and pose options, to ensure your success.
• Speak with the instructor at the end of class to ask questions and to check in about your experience.


Typically adults do not like to be “new” at anything, and they have high expectations of their first performance. It is important to understand that Group Centergy is a journey, not a destination. The goal at first should be to start the journey to improved physical and emotional well-being. During class, you will feel more aware of your body than ever because of the newness of the experience and the nature of the workout. Some of the movements and postures may feel quite different than your everyday movements and even awkward as a result. The class might also seem like it is moving a little faster than you would like because the terminology is somewhat unfamiliar. With each class, you will become more comfortable and feel more successful. Talk to the instructor after class to let them know how you felt and if anything felt particularly challenging for you. The instructor will answer your questions and address your concerns to help you achieve greater success in your next class. Keep in mind that you may be sore afterward because your body is adjusting to the new demands on your muscles. This is perfectly normal. Above all, don’t forget to have fun as you start your Group Centergy journey.

If you’re ready to try out Centergy, don’t forget that your first class is always FREE at Elevate Fitness in Dewitt and Liverpool. Check out our class schedules here, and download this Getting Started Guide here.

Getting Started with Group Blast

Group Blast Class at Elevate Fitness Clubs


Group Blast is 60 minutes of cardio training that uses The STEP in highly effective, athletic ways. It will get your heart pounding and sweat pouring as you improve your fitness, agility, coordination, and strength with exciting music and group energy. HAVE A BLAST!


Group Blast is a one-hour, results-driven cardio workout that uses The STEP as its primary training tool. Simple, athletic movements and an adjustable step height enable you to determine the intensity that is just right for you. The workout is inspired by functional integrated exercises, circuit training, and sports drills to make you feel like an athlete in training. And the best part is you will HAVE A BLAST because all of the exercises are set to motivating, energetic music. Every Group Blast workout has 10 tracks, and each track has a specific training objective.

Here is a breakdown of what you will experience:
1. Warm-Up – Get the workout started right with a full-body warm-up that gives you a chance to learn and practice movements that will be used later in the hour.
2. Skills – This is more than just skills practice – it’s real skills training with The STEP. The music speeds up, the heart rate increases, and you really start to burn some calories!
3. Cardio Push – This workout phase will push your cardiovascular fitness as you have a chance to lift off The STEP and “get some air!” The movements are intense but simple so that everyone can push themselves at the right level.
4. Strength – Strengthen, tone, and define the legs, glutes, and core with functional integrated exercises. This part of the workout is the best of both worlds – strength, and cardio!
5. Cardio Surge – Climb toward the first cardio peak as you move over and around The STEP. Lateral movements improve your overall fitness and everyday performance. Cardio Surge is more challenging than Cardio Push, but the interval-style training ensures that everyone has a chance to catch their breath.
6. Agility – This track takes you to the top of the first cardio peak. The STEP becomes a target for training speed, agility, and power with moves like high knees, tire running, and broad jumps – just to name a few!
7. Integration – Your legs and heart get a chance to recover as the cardio intensity lowers. But you’re still working to train the backside of the body and important motor skills like balance, as you prepare for the final cardio peak that follows.
8. Cardio Blast – When you get to Cardio Blast, it’s game on! This track features athletic moves strung together in a circuit-style approach. You could be doing plyometric jump training, strength work, or speed drills – all designed to help you reach the final cardio highpoint of the hour. You might almost feel like you’re in boot camp, and you will definitely see the results!
9. Conditioning – As with any great training experience, cardio is followed by conditioning. You get a minute to recover the heart rate, and then you begin to work on defining the core and toning various parts of the upper body.
10. Mobility – Recover like an athlete in this final phase of the workout. Stretching to music will improve range of motion, aid in muscular recovery, and prepare you for whatever comes next in your day.


Group Blast is ideal for you if:
• You want an athletic, energetic, exciting, results-oriented workout.
• You are a new exerciser or getting back into fitness, because there is a variety of intensity options offered, from step height to exercise variations.
• You want to add training variety to your workout routine, including speed, agility, strength, power, balance, coordination, and plyometrics.
• You are experienced or brand new to training with The STEP, because Group Blast is more about the physical workout rather than the mental complexity of many freestyle step classes. We’ve taken out the fancy and injected some athleticism into your workout to deliver fantastic results!


Group Blast is a cardiovascular training program, so you can do it once a week in conjunction with other workouts or most every day as your primary exercise routine. If you are just starting (or restarting) a workout routine, you would not want to do too much too soon, but you can increase the frequency and intensity of your Group Blast workouts as your fitness and recovery ability improve. How you feel is one of the best ways to gauge your body’s recovery needs between workouts.


These tips will help ensure your success and enjoyment in Group Blast:
• Wear comfortable clothing that you don’t mind getting sweaty. Most people wear athletic shorts or pants and t-shirts.
• Wear comfortable athletic shoes. Training-style shoes are recommended because there is a lot of lateral movement in Group Blast. While running shoes will work, they are designed for moving forward and do not offer as much support for side-to-side movements.
• Bring a water bottle and a sweat towel.
• Arrive 10-15 minutes before the start time and introduce yourself to the instructor. The instructor will help you select your step height, give you an overview of the program, and answer any questions you may have.
• Stand close to the center of the room so you can clearly see the instructor. It is not necessary to be in the front row, and having people in front of you can be helpful visually.
• Try to ignore any mirrors in the group fitness room – they can be distracting. The instructor will be doing the workout with you, and they are the best source of visual information.
• For the first few times you do Group Blast, just concentrate on how to do the basic movements and learn some of the names of moves. While the arm movements each have an athletic purpose, they are all completely optional. Foot placement is most important, so focus on how your legs and feet move before thinking about the upper body.
• Catch up with the instructor at the end of your first workout to ask questions and check in with them about your experience.


It is perfectly normal to feel apprehensive prior to your first Group Blast experience. Once you finish your first workout, much of that apprehension will disappear. Remember, there is safety in numbers – you may be surprised at how many people in the room are willing to help you. In Group Blast, time will fly! You might experience mixed emotions as you try to get the hang of some things – just go with it! As adults, we often have high expectations of ourselves, but we all have to start somewhere. At times, you might feel like the workout is faster than you would like – that is because the training style and terminology may be new to you. So before you make a decision if Group Blast will become your workout of choice, we suggest you try the workout three times because you will become more confident with each and every Group Blast experience! You should feel a sense of accomplishment and excitement after your first Group Blast workout. Remember to talk to the instructor and let them know how you felt and if anything was particularly challenging for you. This helps the instructor make recommendations for your next workout. Keep in mind that you may be sore in the days following your Group Blast workout – this is a totally normal way of your body adjusting to the new demands on your muscles. Most of all, remember to have fun during your Group Blast experience as you build confidence and improve your overall fitness!

And if you’re ready to blast off, remember – your first class is always FREE at Elevate Fitness in Dewitt and Liverpool! Download the full Getting Started guide here, and check out our class schedules here!

Getting Started with Group Active


Group Active gives you all the fitness training you need – cardio, strength, balance, and flexibility – in just one hour. Get stronger, fitter, and healthier with inspiring music, adjustable dumbbells, weight plates, body weight, and simple athletic movements. ACTIVATE YOUR LIFE!


In 60 minutes you’ll do it all: cardio, strength, balance, and flexibility! This will be achieved over 11 tracks, each with a specific focus. Each track has motivating music to guide you through your workout:

1. Cardio Warm-Up – Gets you loose, warm, and ready to go for the workout with some basic, simple movements.
2. Cardio Basics – The cardio work starts to build and sweat starts to drip as we step up and down on The STEP® to increase the heart rate.
3. Cardio Intervals – Two words…lungs and legs! Cardio training goes up another notch with interval training mixed in to focus on lower body strength.
4. Cardio Peak – 20 minutes of cardio training finishes off with a bang in this high-energy track making use of athletic step movements.
5. Active Recovery – Simple movements bring your heart rate down and get you ready for strength training.
6. Back & Legs – Time to grab the dumbbells. Exercises like Deadrows, Reverse Flys, Lunges, and Squats are performed to make you stand taller and stronger!
7. Chest – Now we move to the front of the body with dumbbell exercises such as Chest Presses, Chest Flys, and even a few Push Ups!
8. Arms – Finish off the upper body using small muscle group exercises, such as Bicep Curls, Tricep Presses, Tricep Extensions, and Shoulder Presses. Your arms will be leaner and stronger.
9. Balance – Focuses on improving your balance to assist in your coordination, athleticism, and posture – it will make you smile!
10. Core – The final strength track ensures your core muscles are strong so you can do more…and so your abs look great!
11. Flexibility – Stretching ensures flexibility and recovery, so you’ll be ready for your next Group Active class!


Group Active is perfect for:

• Anyone that is new to exercise or that has not exercised in a long time.
• Those that are just unsure of where to begin with exercise.
• Infrequent exercisers that want a well-rounded workout.
• Individuals with busy schedules that need a comprehensive, time-efficient workout.
• The experienced exerciser that wants to be able to work hard and do it all in one hour.


Group Active is designed to be done one to three times per week. You should allow your body at least 24 hours of rest in between workouts so that your muscles can recover and become stronger.


Remember that your first class only happens once. After attending Group Active three times, you will get into the rhythm of things and should feel like a pro. These tips will ensure your success in your first few classes:

• Wear comfortable workout clothing and comfortable athletic shoes.
• Bring a towel and a water bottle.
• Arrive 15 minutes before class and introduce yourself to the instructor. The instructor will help you set up your equipment and answer any questions you may have to help put you at ease.
• Stand close to the center of the room so you can see the instructor clearly. Have a couple of other participants in front of you because they can help provide visual information about the movements.
• Your instructor will coach you and include exercise options to ensure your success.
• Speak with the instructor at the end of class to ask questions and to check in about your experience.


You may feel apprehensive or nervous before your first class. No one likes to be “new” at anything. Group Active instructors are trained to help you feel successful, so be sure to let them know you are new to the class. During the first few classes, you may feel awkward and even uncoordinated at times. After this, you will feel more comfortable because you will be familiar with the class format, terminology, exercises, and equipment. Start with light weights and the 4″ STEP platform with no additional risers. Be prepared to get warm and to break a sweat. As you become more confident, you’ll be able to increase the intensity of the workout to suit your specific needs. After class, you will feel a sense of success from getting your first class under your belt. It is important to know that you may be sore for several days afterward because your body is adjusting to the new demands on your muscles. This is perfectly normal. Enjoy the sore muscles; you earned them!

Want to give it a try? Remember – your first class is always FREE at Elevate Fitness in Dewitt and Liverpool. Download your Getting Started in Group Active Guide here, and check out our class schedules here.

Getting Started with Group Core

Group Core at Elevate Fitness


Group fitness classes can get you real results, real fast. And Group CORE is one of the classes our members and guests are raving about. Here’s what it’s about, what to expect and how to get started.


Group Core trains you like an athlete in 30 action-packed minutes. A strong core, from your shoulders to your hips, will improve your athletic performance, help prevent back pain, and give you ripped abs! Expert coaching and motivating music will guide you through functional and integrated exercises using your body weight, weight plates, a towel, and a platform – all to challenge you like never before. HARD CORE!


Your workout session will consist of 5 tracks that have very specific training objectives. Each track is supported with great music to push you through a variety of exercises:

1. CorePREP – Quickly warms you up and gets you ready to tackle the workout.
2. CoreMAX – Uses maximum muscle and effort to train your core using functional, athletic movements in a circuit training approach.
3. CoreINTEGRATION – Uses a circuit training approach that includes total-body exercises focusing on the back and glutes.
4. CoreSTABILITY – Hones in on the muscles that keep the spine stable – control is the name of the game.
5. CoreMOBILITY – Brings it home with traditional abdominal training – your abs will be burning!


Group Core will be ideal for:

• Those seeking an athletic training session
• Anyone wanting great-looking abs
• Those needing to be faster, quicker, and stronger
• Individuals who are short on time and need a challenging, quick workout
• Athletes, former athletes, and “wannabe” athletes
• Those into the latest and hottest training methods


To get great results, participate in Group Core one to three times per week, with a rest day between classes. Group Core will fatigue your core muscles, so any type of strength or resistance training should not be done afterward. If you are up for the challenge, you can always add Group Core before or after a cardio workout.


Just remember that it is only your first time once! After attending Group Core three times, you will feel like a pro. These tips will ensure your success and enjoyment:

• Wear comfortable workout clothes and athletic shoes.
• Bring a water bottle and a light towel at least 30 inches long.
• Arrive 15 minutes before class and introduce yourself to the instructor. The instructor will brief you on what you need and help you get set up for class – they’ll put you at ease.
• Stand close to the center of the room so that you can see the instructor clearly and have a couple of people in front of you, as they can help provide you with visual information.
• Your instructor will coach you and include many options for the exercises to ensure your success.
• Catch up with the instructor at the end of class to ask questions and check in about your experience.


Group Core includes the latest athletic and functional training exercises. Some of the movements will be new to you. As you attend Group Core more often, you’ll learn how to execute the movements better and better. Allow yourself to be a student; learn the movements and how to effectively move through space. This is an important part of functional training. During your first few classes, you may not execute some of the movements properly – this is normal, you are in learning mode. You might experience fatigue in muscles outside of the core muscles, like the shoulders and the hips – this is normal, your support muscles have to get stronger to be able to train your core well. You might experience lower back fatigue – this is normal, your lower back is a group of muscles that should be trained just like the muscles on the front side of the core. You might feel rushed – this is normal, 30 minutes goes fast and Group Core is action packed with a ton of exercises. 30 minutes will go by in the blink of an eye. You will get a great total-body workout, and your abs will really feel it!

Check out the class in action:

Download the Getting Started (Group Core) Guide here! And don’t forget, your first class is always FREE at Elevate Fitness!

Yes, you can lift weights on the bike (an explanation).

Yes, you can lift weights on the bike, and here’s why.


Last week I had a member ask me after class if it was “safe” to use hand weights while on the spin bike because she’d read somewhere that it was one of the top no-no things to do in a cycling workout.


I did a little digging to see what people are posting out there, and as suspected, most of what I found were blogs written by fitness “experts” on the various “gimmicks” they’ve seen or despise about cycling classes. I use the term “expert” loosely here — because like me, these experts are by and large just other instructors who teach different classes. I’m not claiming to be an expert, but I do want to share some thoughts on the subject since I happen to teach my own cycling class using weights on the bike (I call it PowerCycle). So before someone tells you that I don’t know what I’m doing in that dark room with the loud music, consider this:


    1. When we’re lifting, we’re not really cycling. I break up my class so that when it’s time to pick up handweights, it’s after a period of work that builds to an intensity where the legs welcome (need) a recovery period. I typically format my class as a 25-minute warm-up to increasing intensity period (with the intensity coming from a specific focus on intervals, hill repeats, tabatas, etc.) wherein the last 5 minutes is used to push the legs to all-out fatigue before allowing them to recover for 3-4 minutes. During this recovery period, participants go to seated coast and I guide them through a series of compound exercises using the weights (that means we’ll be using at least two muscle groups at a time for all exercises).
    2. When we’re lifting, we’re not really lifting. Critics of using weights on the bike will say it’s a waste of time because you can’t really build strength using such a low weight for a short period of time. I never promote the idea that lifting hand weights for 3 minutes on a spin bike is a way to “get swoll.” That doesn’t mean it’s an empty effort though. I also teach a strength training class and at least once a week, that class precedes the PowerCycle class I teach. The 3 minutes of compound upper-body exercises is like the “cherry on top” of my weight-lifting cupcake. Using the right-sized hand weight (I use 5lbs) you can absolutely feel the effects of the weight after 3 minutes. For those who don’t lift, they will report back that they “feel” something – it might not be the feeling of building actual muscle, but it could be the feeling of starting to get comfortable with the idea that strength training can (and should) be part of one’s fitness routine OUTSIDE the cycling room. And I’m okay with that. We all start somewhere.
    3. When we’re cycling, we’re really cycling. In addition to my certifications to teach strength-training classes and cycling classes, I am a USAT certified triathlon coach who has completed a number of endurance races in the past 20 years from marathons to multiple half and full IRONMAN races. The format of my class may vary from the type of riding I did when I needed to train for 100+ miles on the bike, but I’m very well versed in how the resistance knob, pedal speed, bike fit and overall “landscape” of the room impact the cycling experience, and I know how to translate those things to the idea of “outside riding.”


  • We don’t do anything willy-nilly. I change up my PowerCycle playlist and the workout every two weeks. This guarantees that the class is always fresh while giving participants the opportunity to tackle the same “course” more than once. I average about 4 hours of prep for every 52-minute class I teach. Two hours is used to find the right music and arrange the playlist appropriately (I blend all kinds of genres together, and I’m very particular about the order of the tracks so that everything flows). One hour is used to test ride the music and see what feels natural to do on the bike — sometimes I pick a song and plan it as a hill, but it wants to be a fast-paced interval once I’m riding to it. The last hour is used to refine the playlist based on the actual ride, and then organize my teaching guide to I can replicate the experience in class. All that being said, I know what every minute of my class is meant to achieve for the participants. There are no gimmick movements and no wasted seconds.


Still not convinced? Come and try a class. PowerCycle happens every Tuesday at 5:30 PM and every Saturday at 9:00 AM, at Elevate Dewitt. And don’t forget your first class is always free! Fill out the form below to try indoor cycling classes at Elevate Fitness.

Getting Started with Group Fitness and MOSSA

If you’re just getting started with Group Fitness, it can be overwhelming. Elevate Fitness Clubs alone offer over 130 classes a week in Syracuse.

At Elevate Fitness, we have three group fitness programs that we recommend for new exercisers:

Group Power, Group Active and Group Ride.

These are all a part of our MOSSA lineup of classes. MOSSA is the most respected developer of professional, high quality, enjoyable group fitness workouts in the health club industry today. MOSSA provides branded group fitness programs carefully designed and tested to deliver a fun and effective social exercise experience. Classes are created with the purpose to appeal to the largest audience possible.

Spearheaded by Cathy Spencer-Browning, VP of Programming and Training, MOSSA has the most comprehensive Program Development process, which includes an unsurpassed, methodical Testing Phase. Microsoft has recognized MOSSA’s commitment to engaging people and creating an exciting atmosphere that gets people moving and gets results. This is why they are the only group fitness program selected to be part of Xbox Fitness.

Each quarter, the MOSSA Program Development team creates a new release, or workout, for each program. Over 300 hours are poured into each and every release to ensure the participants’ enjoyment and success. This Testing Phase, which involves clubs and instructors, consists of 150 field test classes for just one workout, which guarantees the programming of music and exercise is motivational, safe, and effective.

So let’s talk about what makes Group Power, Group Active and Group Ride the three most recommended classes for new participants.

MOSSA's Group Power Class

Group Power uses adjustable barbells to build lean muscle and burn stubborn fat fast.

GROUP POWER is a great starting point for new folks who want a sweaty strength-training workout. Instructors are trained to coach the entire workout in a way that is accessible to first-time participants, and beginners can start with a lightweight on the adjustable barbell. Group Power uses loaded movement training to help people get muscle strong and movement strong. This program is especially popular with males of all ages.


MOSSA's Group Active Class

Group Active incorporates all the components of fitness into a single 60-minute class.

GROUP ACTIVE is perfect for first-timers who are ready to exercise. Because it combines cardio and strength training, Group Active is right for people who want to improve their overall fitness, general health, and movement health. Looking to get a lot of fitness in a single hour? Group Active is for you! The program also caters to new and deconditioned participants so everyone feels included.



MOSSA's Group Ride Class

Group Ride and other cycling classes are popular for two reasons: one, they’re great calorie burners and two, they’re as easy as riding a bike!

GROUP RIDE is a straightforward cardio workout on a bike, so it is ideal for participants who are ready to focus on their cardiovascular health while burning calories. You can use heart rate monitoring technology to view your results in real time at Elevate Fitness. This 60-minute cycling program is excellent for anyone who wants to work up a sweat without fear of a complicated workout – it’s as easy as riding a bike!



Add to the strength of the workout some amazing music and you’ve got a recipe for success! MOSSA music is a key to driving motivation and enjoyment for every program workout. MOSSA music is unique as it is customized and engineered for the workout experience. An exclusive arrangement with the industry’s top music producer, SAIFAM, with 13 music production studios around the world, ensures the highest quality, emotive, and heart-pounding music. Playlists include many of the most popular songs today complemented by chart-topping hits from the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s, all to appeal to the largest audience possible.

But, really, don’t take our word for it. Try it out for yourself. Your first class is always free (just fill out the form below) at Elevate Fitness, so get in on the excitement and see how group fitness classes can help you reach your goals faster than you ever thought possible!

Grow Younger with Group Active

We’d all love to grow younger each day instead of the opposite. But until we find the proverbial fountain of youth, diet and exercise will have to do.

There is a simple truth that cannot be avoided: human beings are moving less and sitting more. People need to move more, and they need to move better. Here are some shocking statistics on current human activity levels:

Shocking Statistics Group Fitness

Indeed, the term “sitting disease” is now being used by the scientific community to refer to the metabolic syndrome and ill effects associated with an overly sedentary lifestyle. People are sitting for so long during the day that they cannot maintain proper posture. As a result, their bodies present with postural problems and movement impairments that make exercising more difficult and require special anatomical considerations for fitness programming. Sitting at a desk all day also creates a steep uphill battle for a 30- or 60-minute workout to balance out the ill effects of sedentary lifestyles.

Group Active is perfect if you are new to exercise or have not exercised in a long time. It’s also ideal for super-busy people who need to get it all in one hour – cardio, strength, balance, flexibility, core work, and movement training for everyday life.

Group Active is an innovative one-hour workout that improves cardiovascular fitness, builds total-body strength, and enhances movement health for daily life. Inspiring music and supportive coaching will ensure you succeed with simple, athletic exercises that use dumbbells, bodyweight, and The STEP.

Check out the class in action here:

As always, your first class is FREE at Elevate Fitness, just fill out the quick from below!


Lose Weight with Group POWER

Group Power can help you power up your results, whether you want to tone up or lose weight, build endurance or increase strength.

If you’re like most of us, you’re looking for the most effective workout you can get in the shortest time period possible. The biggest bang for your buck, so to speak.

We’re asked this question all the time. And most of the time, our answer is the same – Group POWER. We’ll get in to WHY this is our most popular response, but first, let’s talk about what Group POWER is…

Group POWER is a group fitness exercise class (included in Level Two and Level Three membership types, and available for Level One members by purchasing class passes here). Using an adjustable barbell or dumbbells, weight plates, and body weight, Group POWER combines squats, lunges, presses, and curls with the hottest functional, integrated exercises. Dynamic music and motivating coaching by certified instructors will get your heart rate up, make you sweat, and push you to a personal best!

Group Power combines traditional strength exercises with the hottest functional training moves to make you fitter and stronger. High-rep training, athletic movements, and a periodized training approach are key components of this results-driven workout. Add to this dynamic and motivational music and it simply is the most fun you’ll have strength training.

So why do we recommend this class more often than others? Simple: Group POWER combines two of the most effective training modes for weight loss (the most popular fitness goal): strength training and cardiovascular training. Increasing your body’s lean muscle mass is the most effective (bang for your buck) way to turn your body into a fat burning machine.

According to Dr. Michael Roizen, MD Internal Medicine, “Adding muscle to your body burns fat because, well, muscle needs energy to survive. … When you build lean muscle mass, the additional muscle requires additional energy. In turn, this raises your resting metabolic rate, or the amount of calories your body burns while at rest.” (Source.)

So if your goal is to lose weight, take advantage of the benefits of Group POWER by aiming for three classes a week, with at least 24 hours of rest in between POWER classes (or alternate with other great classes like indoor cycling or yoga). See our full class schedules here .

Download the Getting Started guide here.

And get your first Group Power class for FREE by filling out this quick form:

Getting Into the Groove with Group Groove

Group Groove is a dance-inspired fitness workout that draws on a variety of dance styles including club, urban, and Latin.

Check out the October 2017 Release here:

Groove promises to get you sweating, burning calories, and having fun! Group Groove is great for those that might think exercise is a bit too serious and prefer to smile, scream, and sweat their way to getting fitter and healthier. If you always tap your foot or wiggle your hips when you hear music, or if you want your hour of exercise to fly by, well then, Groove is for you!

We talked to Group Groove Instructor, and Elevate Fitness Group Fitness Director, Tamara Muller to find out what makes Groove such a special class.

Q: How would you describe Group Groove to somebody who’s new to Elevate Fitness and trying to figure out which classes they want to try out?

A: Group Groove is a fun, simple choreographed cardio class that uses music from all genres and gets your heart pumping!

Q: You started your fitness career as a Jazzercise Instructor. What does Groove have in common with Jazzercise, and what makes it different?

A: Both programs are choreographed with different dance moves, Groove is an hour of dance whereas Jazzercise was a mix of dance and strength training.

Q: To someone who’s just getting started on their fitness journey, and who is considering all the different group fitness options at Elevate Fitness, why would you recommend they try out Group Groove?

A: Group Groove is the perfect class for someone getting started on their fitness journey, because you don’t have to mess around with any equipment, you just have to show up, move and enjoy the music, energy and environment!

Q: How long does it take for the average new participant to get “up to speed” in a Groove class? Do they need to have dance experience or consider themselves a dancer?

A: No! not at all. The average person starts to feel comfortable with the class movements and format in as little as three classes. But you definitely don’t need to be a dancer to enjoy Group Groove.

Q: Why do you teach group fitness?

A: Because I’ve danced my whole life, love making people smile and have a good time, and love being an ambassador to a healthier lifestyle.

Q: What’s a fun fact members would like to know about you?

A: I eat ice cream every day!

Download the Group Groove Getting Started Guide here, and view our group exercise class schedules here (unlimited group fitness classes are included in all our level two and level three memberships, if you’re a level one member, or you don’t have an Elevate Fitness membership, you can buy classes here!)

And your first class is FREE at Elevate Fitness. Just fill out the short form below!


Evolution of Group Fitness

Group Fitness Classes have been around for decades. But how much have they changed?

The other day, at lunch, my mother commented when Neil Diamond’s “Coming to America” came on the restaurant’s sound system, that the song always reminds her of a Jazzercise class she and my grandmother took in the early 90’s. I was immediately reminded of her (blue and teal?) spandex outfit with matching headband that would seem retro and fun today that were totally in-vogue for a Jazzercise class in the community center in 1992.

I hadn’t thought about my mother’s experiences in group fitness (aerobics was what we called it then – and it was 90% cardiovascular exercise) in years. You’d think because I’d spent so many years teaching group fitness and managing group fitness and prescribing group fitness to clients that I’d have considered her group experiences more often.

But I hadn’t. Not until Neil Diamond serenaded us via a Muzak system. And this made me curious. WHY? Why hadn’t I thought about her pristine white sneakers and scrunch socks? It dawned on me long after lunch had ended that the reason I hadn’t more often considered her group fitness experiences is because group fitness is 100% different today than it was when she was perfecting her side-pony.

Aerobics were classes of (mostly in-shape) women in brightly colored workout gear dancing to sped up version of popular songs. Grapevining back and forth in front of a mirror, or doing complicated steps over a raised platform (Denise Austin made Step Aerobics a phenomenon that should probably have resulted in more sprained ankles than it did).

But today’s group fitness classes are a mix of men and women of all body types at all stages of their personal fitness journeys working on all facets of their fitness, not just cardio. Classes like Mossa’s Group Power have introduced strength training to the world of group fitness.  Mossa describes their popular class as, “a results driven strength training workout utilizing an adjustable barbell, weight plates, and body weight.” And it’s no wonder the classes are popular, with science indicating that strength training can be just as, or more effective than cardiovascular exercise for individuals trying to lose weight and burn fat.

Tae Bo went from choreographed kickboxing that looked like a number from a Broadway musical about Bruce Lee to popular mixed-martial-arts formats like Mossa’s Group Fight. Jazzercise went from and endless loop of grapevines to a mix of hip-hop dance, Latin dance, ballroom dance and traditional steps in classes like Group Groove.

But it’s not just that group fitness evolved to be more inclusive and less “dancey,” it’s that group fitness became highly specialized in ways that used to be exclusive to personal training. Group Core will work on your core stability and strength, Group Active will give equal attention to the components of your fitness in what Mossa describes as “a simple and athletic program drawing from all four elements of fitness: cardio, strength, balance, and flexibility.”

And there’s more to love about group fitness than just the fact that modern group fitness is formatted and designed to be more inclusive and effective, there’s also tons of science to support the idea that group fitness creates social accountabilities can help you reach your goals faster!

Get your first class FREE at Elevate Fitness by filling out the short form below!

Take Indoor Cycling for a Spin

If you’ve ever walked past the indoor cycling room before and wondered just why people would choose to sweat it out in one of these ever-popular group fitness classes versus just riding a bike on the fitness floor on their own, or chugging away on a treadmill or elliptical – this is for you.

Everyone has their own reasons for cycling indoors, but there are some overwhelmingly popular benefits that keep most people in the saddle and turning the pedals long after their first class. Let’s look at the most common reasons people choose indoor cycling:

Calories! For most of us, we want the biggest bang for our buck when it comes to gym time, and indoor cycling classes offer just that. According to, you can expect to burn anywhere between 400 and 600 calories during a 45-minute class. The added motivation of the instructor and people working hard all around you typically pushes you harder than you would push yourself on the treadmill.

Heart Health. We all know by now that the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans from the Surgeon General’s office recommend that adults should engage in at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity each week. The benefits of this cardiovascular work are significant:

Lowers your risk of coronary artery disease.
Helps to lower blood pressure.
Helps to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol.
Helps to lower your resting heart rate, increasing your heart’s efficiency.

Stress Relief. The stress relief benefits of indoor cycling are significant and many.

First, there’s no fancy footwork to follow – almost anybody can ride a bike, and an indoor cycling bike is MUCH easier to ride than the one you used to speed around the neighborhood on as a child. Not having to learn complex movements means your brain is free to focus on your effort and how you feel.

Secondly, indoor cycling releases endorphins, neurotransmitters known for enhancing your mood (if you’ve heard of “runner’s high”, this is what they’re referring to). Endorphins can:

Lower stress levels.
Enhance the body’s immune system.
Create feelings of euphoria.

We could go on and on. There are so many reasons you’d want to give indoor cycling a chance. It’s low-impact meaning it’s safer for your joints and for people recovering from (or just plain trying to avoid) injuries. You control the intensity of your workload, so you really control the overall effectiveness of your workout. You increase muscular capacity (which has such a huge range of benefits it would take us SEVERAL articles to cover them all).

So, why should you consider giving indoor cycling a spin (sorry – we couldn’t resist the pun)? Because it’s really, really good for you, almost anybody can do it, and because right now you can access FREE, no-obligation spin class at Elevate Fitness in Dewitt or Liverpool by filling out the short form below!

So grab a towel, your water bottle and prepare for those endorphins to kick in! See you in the spin room!