2017 4th of July Holiday Weekend Hours

Can you believe it’s almost July?! Below are the operating hours for each club during this year’s holiday on Tuesday, July 4, 2017:

Friday 6/30, Saturday 7/1 and Sunday 7/2 will observe regular opening/closing club hours.

Monday 7/3

All clubs will close at 8 PM.

Tuesday 7/4 (4th of July)

  • FFC Union Station & FFC Old Town: closed.
  • FFC West Loop and FFC Park Ridge: 7 AM – 5 PM.
  • All other clubs: 7 AM – 3 PM.

Wednesday 7/5

Regular hours resume at all clubs: 24-hour clubs will open at 4:30 AM.

Summer of Sharing is Here!!

It’s back and better than ever! Share what you love about FFC with your friends and family by gifting them one of your favorite services (featured below).

Plus, when they join, you’ll receive a month of FREE dues!! FFC Park Ridge members will receive $75 FFC Bucks for every referral who joins.

 

 

June Spa Specials

Summer is such a great time in Chicago. All the food and music festivals, BBQs and happy hours are an invited break after months of hibernation. While fun is the order of the season, don’t forget to make fitness and self-care a priority to keep you looking great and also to help the recovery process after indulging in icy cold treats and adult beverages!

Massage therapy will help that recovery along and give you a chance to get out of the heat and sun, but also flush out toxins and alleviate any summer activity-related soreness.

Enjoy a Two (2) 30-Minute Massage Package this summer for $119 (reg $130)

Don’t forget your skin! Protect yourself by wearing a hat, a good zinc based sunscreen, and UVA/UVB protective clothing. Our estheticians can help soothe and replenish your skin after taking in too much sun, give you guidance on how to thwart off the effects of sand & sun, and smooth your skin free of any unwanted hair.  

Come to the spa this month and enjoy a Facial & Waxing (brow, lip, or chin) Package for just $100 (reg $115)*

Looking for a great gift for Dad or the Grad in your life?  

Buy an FFC gift card for the spa this month and get $10 back in Spa Bucks** to use on a future visit!

Happy Summer!

These spa offers expire June 30, 2017. No two discounts apply. 2-pack of massages expires on September 30, 2017. Facial & waxing must be received same day, paid for and received in June. Facial offer not avail at FFC Park Ridge.

Become a Pilates Instructor! Sign Up for Our Classical Pilates Formula at FFC Program

Do you want to learn to become a Pilates instructor? Our Classical Pilates Formula at FFC training programs starts June 16!

Click here to register!

Classical Pilates Formula at FFC is a 450 hour Comprehensive Pilates training apprenticeship program.  We are a diploma program and included in the Pilates Method Alliance Registry of Schools.

  • Learn exercises with Pilates Studio Apparatus– Mat, Reformer, Cadillac, Chair, Barrels, Ped-o-Pull and Magic Circle
  • Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced level Pilates exercises
  • Classical Pilates repertoire and orders
  • Systems of teaching which will enable you to effectively teach all types of people
  • In addition to a thorough instruction of the Pilates exercises, our program highlights anatomy, teaching/cueing techniques, instructions for special case clients (i.e. obesity, pregnancy, back problem, neck, knee, shoulder, etc.), and a Pilates business plan to ensure a successful career as a Pilates professional

Throughout the program, you will be evaluated on your understanding of the material by written examinations, practical examinations and physical performance of the exercises. Have questions? Email Kristin Strom at kstrom@ffc.com!

FFC + PRIDE 2017

June is PRIDE month and FFC is proud to support the city and this worthy cause. Check out some of this month’s programming!

Saturday, June 24: Pride at the Pier with Navy Pier

Join us with our friends at Navy Pier with a day of celebrations! FFC will also be leading a special workout at 12 noon. Check out the schedule of events below – we hope to see you there!

Sunday, June 25: Pride Parade

Help FFC show support at this year’s 2017 Pride Parade! Keep an eye out for FFC’s float! The parade will take place in Chicago’s Boystown neighborhood, heading down Halsted and Broadway between Montrose and Diversey.

 

Sunset OmG Silent Yoga with Andrea Metcalf and FFC’s David Bohn

Tune out the city and get centered with yoga and some of the most gorgeous views of the city!

The OmG Silent Yoga sunrise events will occur each Tuesday morning from June to August at 6:30 AM at four unique venues around the city – 360 Chicago, Spirit of Chicago at Navy Pier, Morgan’s on Fulton, and Streeterville Social.

FFC’s own David Bohn will be teaching two of these classes, along with instructors from eight yoga studios! For more information, visit this link for July 11th’s class and this link for August 8th’s class with David.

Fitness at the Field Museum – Sundays, July 9 – August 20

Grab a water bottle and a workout buddy for a series of free outdoor fitness classes at the Field Museum this summer!

Fitness at The Field offers a variety of group fitness classes hosted by FFC South Loop and Bar Method South Loop, including yoga, BollyX, barre, bootcamps and Zumba. All workouts are free to attend. Check out the schedule below!

All fitness classes take place on the Museum’s Northeast Terrace. Fitness at The Field is presented in collaboration with the Near South Planning Board.

Yoga By the Lake – Every Tuesday/Sunday This Summer

Vitamin D

Zen out with the tranquil scenery of Lake Michigan every Tuesday (7 – 8 PM) and Sunday (10 – 11 AM) this summer during our Yoga By The Lake series at Belmont Harbor! Drop-ins welcome.

Note: please bring your own yoga mat. Classes will be held indoors if there is inclement weather. Please call (773) 477-3664 to confirm!

 

Spin For a Great Cause with FFC, Augie’s Quest and Windy City Smokeout! – 7/15; 8:30 – 10 AM

Save the date and join us with Windy City Smokeout and Augie’s Quest for a charity spin class on Saturday, July 15 at 8:30 AM to raise money for an amazing cause!

The mission of Augie’s Quest is to directly fund the ALS Therapy Development Institute, whose sole focus is to find a cure for ALS. Proceeds from the Windy City Sweatout event will benefit this research program.

Raise money to reserve your bike in this once in a lifetime 90-minute spin marathon – every 90 seconds someone is diagnosed with ALS.

>> Click on this link to get started!

Participants in the program will also get access to the Windy City Smokeout all day Saturday, plus admission to the shows! Want more access?! The more money you raise, the more access you get – get entered to win prizes like backstage access, meet & greets with the artists and more!

Complimentary June Injury Screenings Presented by NovaCare

The weather has finally changed – summer is right around the corner! Now’s the time to spend your days enjoying the sun and lake breeze – not nursing an injury. Take advantage of this month’s complimentary injury screenings, presented by NovaCare, and visit your chosen location during the designated days this month to prevent injury all summer long!

  • FFC East Lakeview: 6/22/17 4pm-6pm
  • FFC Halsted Street: 6/19/17 11pm -1pm
  • FFC Lincoln Park: 6/27/17 430pm-630pm
  • FFC Oak Park: 6/28/17 from 5pm-8pm
  • FFC Park Ridge: 6/6/17  3:30pm-5:30pm
  • FFC South Loop: walk-ins welcome
  • FFC Union Station: walk-ins welcome
  • FFC West Loop: 6/20/17 4:15pm-5:30pm

LUZIA Yourself: FFC Members Receive Discounted Cirque Du Soleil Tickets!

We are excited to announce we have partnered with Cirque Du Soleil to bring FFC members discounted tickets to their upcoming LUZIA show! LUZIA is a delightfully-imaginative and visually-stunning production – a waking dream of Mexico. From July 21 – September 3, audiences are invited under the Big Top next to United Center to escape on a surrealistic journey filled with grand visual surprises and breathtaking acrobatic performances. Performing jaw-dropping feats of agility, flexibility, strength and tumbling; the 44 athletes and circus artists of LUZIA push forward the limits of physical performance and leave audiences wondering how human beings can achieve this high level of precision, body awareness and perfection.

Take advantage of their special offer and save 15% on tickets by visiting http://cirk.me/2oYsTS1. (Note, your promo code is already applied using the link).

Not only that, but recently, a few artists from LUZIA recorded instructional videos on how to perform specific fitness exercises at 3 different levels of complexity (beginner level to expert) just for YOU!

Exclusively created for Fitness Formula Club members, the videos highlight the hard work, dedication and muscle control the artists need to perform their acrobatic acts on stage 8 to 10 times a week, and show that with strong will and consistency, you too can get to the Cirque du Soleil level! Check them out below!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Not Your Ordinary 5K – Imerman Angels Brunch Run – Saturday, 6/17; 8:30 AM

Looking for something out of the ordinary? Sign up for Imerman Angel’s Not Your Ordinary 5K Brunch Run on Saturday, June 17 at 8:30 AM at Montrose Harbor! Proceeds benefit Imerman Angels, a Chicago-based organization which provides personalized connections that enable free one-on-one support for cancer fighters, survivors and caregivers.

The Brunch Run is a 5K with a reward worth running (or walking) for – when you reach the finish line, you will be treated to an amazing brunch from Chicago’s esteemed Blue Plate Catering. And that’s not all – every participant receives:

  • On-Course ‘FauxMosa’ Stations and more
  • Mimosa Bar (must be 21 years old or older)
  • Lifestyle T-Shirt (gender specific)
  • Signature Brunch catered by Blue Plate Catering (check out “What’s for Brunch” HERE).

Visit http://www.brunchrun5k.com/ for more information! You can also use code “DAHL” to save $10 on registration.

 

USA Triathlon & Ironman Tri Club

Are you a USA Triathlon member? Join the FFC TriMonster and Chicago IronMonster clubs – the 2014 USAT club national champions!

  • FREE to join the FFC team & compete at races together!
  • Training discounts for USAT members
  • Free training plans & monthly team socials
  • Prizes for participation, volunteering, and performances
  • Group workouts and private coaching services with USAT and IRONMAN certified coaches
  • VIP race day team support at select races

Racing the Chicago Triathlon? Register with team discount code “TMONTEAM17” to save and join team roster! Email endurance@ffc.com for more information and to sign up!

2017 Memorial Day Weekend Holiday Hours

Can you believe it’s almost June?! Memorial Day Weekend is almost here! We’re wishing you a happy and healthy holiday weekend.
Below are the operating hours for each club through the holiday weekend and this year’s holiday on Monday, May 29.
Monday, May 29
  • FFC Union Station – 8 AM – 2 PM
  • All other clubs – 7 AM – 7 PM
Friday, 5/26, Saturday, 5/27 and Sunday 5/28 will observe regular opening/closing hours. 

National Pilates Month: Sign Up for the 2017 Strengthen Your Core Challenge – 5/2 – 5/31

Did you know May is National Pilates Month?! This May, discover the innumerable benefits of Pilates through our all-club Strengthen Your Core Challenge! From NFL running backs to our own local superstar and Cubs’ pitcher Jake Arrieta, Pilates is having a SERIOUS moment. What better time to get involved in the Pilates movement than with our May Strengthen Your Core 30-Day Pilates Challenge?!

The challenge is a great way to add Pilates to your current workout programming to see how Pilates will benefit any fitness goal and supplement any training program. Access a wide variety of all types of classes – all for $49! Plus, complete as many punch cards as you can to earn swag, prizes and more!

From May 2 – 31, visit your local club, grab a punch card and get going! Each card has 5 punches. Earn 1 punch for each completed Pilates experience which include mini sessions, Pilates Mat classes, Group Apparatus Sessions, Private and Partner Pilates training sessions, workshops and demos. See and feel the results of the Pilates exercises in your body in just 30 days!

How does it work?

  • Click here to purchase your Pilates punch card online or visit your local club’s fitness desk or Pilates studio to sign up!
  • Turn in each completed card for the reward specified below:
    • 5 sessions: earn a Pilates tank top and 25% discount on one spa service
    • 10 sessions: earn 1 group apparatus session
    • 15 sessions: earn 1 30-minute private Pilates session and a raffle entry for your club’s grand prize 
    • 20 sessions: earn 1 raffle entry for your club’s grand prize

*Discount on spa service expires July 31, 2017

Pilates Program Schedules

FFC East Lakeview

FFC Gold Coast

FFC Halsted & Belmont

FFC Lincoln Park

FFC Oak Park

FFC Old Town

FFC Park Ridge

FFC South Loop

FFC Union Station

FFC West Loop

May Spa Specials: May day! May day! Let the spa come to the rescue this month.

May Day-May Day!  Let the spa come to the rescue this month.

Our massage and skincare therapists have received advanced training in treating conditions of all kinds. From persistent problems like migraines, plantar fasciitis and sciatica to acne, rosacea and sun damage, our talented staff will create a treatment plan to get you quickly on the road to pain and problem-free. In May, take advantage of a special twofer at the spa :

  • Two Signature Massages or Facials – $199 (reg. to $230)*
  • 60 Massage + 60 Facial Combo = $159 (reg. to $190)*
  • Custom 2-Pack – purchase any two services & save 15%*

*Offers expire May 31, 2017.  These special packages expire 1 year from date of purchase.  May not be combined with other discounts. Offers not valid at FFC Park Ridge.

**This package available for services received on the same day only and may not be split with another party.  

Message from the RDs: All About Chicago’s Ethnic Markets by Carla Schmitz

If you need to shake up some of your favorite recipes, why not venture to one of Chicago’s International Markets to add some variety to your plate?  Chicago is truly a melting pot of cultures and flavors. Check out our list below for some of our favorite International Markets where you can get dishes like grandma used to make or the unique ingredients to make specialty dishes right at home.

Joong Boo Market – 3333 N. Kimball Ave

For 25 years, Joong Boo has been the go-to Korean and Pan-American supermarket in Chicago offering a wide variety of fresh produce, meats, and seafood along with uniquely Asian ingredients that you’ll have a hard time finding anywhere else in the city. Not to mention, they have an in-store snack counter and a new outdoor walk-up counter serving three types of Wang Mandoo.

The Devon Avenue Corridor – Devon Ave between Broadway and California

Devon Avenue might just be the most complex and interesting street in Chicago. There are markets catering to Assyrians, Indians, Pakistanis, Arabs, Greeks, Russians, Poles, Turks, Cubans, and Eastern Europeans (just to name a few). Below are some of our favorite highlights from the Devon Avenue corridor:

La Unica  – 1515 W. Devon Ave

This tiny grocery store not only sells Cuban staple ingredients, but there is also a small eatery in back where you can try Cuban coffee and other traditional dishes.

Devon Market – 1440 W. Devon Ave

This grocery store has a wide variety of international fare, but it would seem that their speciality is Eastern European goods. From pickled vegetables to Croatian wine, you’ll find plenty of Eastern European staples here.

Patel Brothers – 2610 W. Devon Ave

Patel Brothers specializes in bringing regional Indian ingredients to Chicago including dry goods, frozen foods, and a wide variety of fresh produce.

Middle East Bakery & Grocery – 1512 W. Foster Ave

Not only will you find all the staples you need for Middle Eastern and Mediterranean recipes here, you’ll also find an array of authentic homemade foods such as hummus and Zaatar bread. Additionally, you’ll find a great selection of molasses and condiments.

Pete’s Fresh Market – multiple locations

While more of a traditional chain grocery store than a local market, the Pete’s on Cermak (2526 W) has a phenomenal selection of Latin American and Mexican staples along with a well-stocked butcher and an envious produce selection.

Old World Market – 5129 N Broadway

At Old World Market you can find a wide variety of specialty foods and ethnic spices, particularly those needed for African dishes, most of which will come in bulk bags at good prices.

Go forth and try! Let us know what you think and where some of your favorite markets are!

Bonus content: Argyle Night Market

Mid-July through August you can venture to Argyle Street between Sheridan and Kenmore, Thursday evenings from 5-9 PM for an open-air farmer’s market and street food fest.

Complimentary Injury Screenings Presented By NovaCare

Don’t let an injury slow you down! Take advantage of a complimentary injury screening, courtesy of NovaCare, during any one of the times in May below.

  • FFC East Lakeview     May 18th, 4pm-6pm
  • FFC Halsted Street     May 19th, 3:30pm-5:30pm
  • FFC Lincoln Park        May 23rd 5pm-7pm
  • FFC Oak Park               May 24th 5pm-8pm
  • FFC Park Ridge           May 2nd  3:30pm-5:30pm
  • FFC South Loop          Doing walk-ins all month                             
  • FFC Union Station     May 17th 11:30pm-1pm
  • FFC West Loop            May 16th 4:15pm-5:30pm

Congratulations to Our Recent #trainingforlife Contest Winner, Kathy Kass!

 

We’d like to extend a huge congratulations to the winner of last month’s #trainingforlife social referral contest, Kathy Kass! Kathy is a member at FFC Park Ridge and her favorite type of exercise is weight training. She’s most looking forward to continuing to lost fat and gain muscle during her workouts.

Make sure you give her a high five when you see her around the clubs!

FFC Members: Enjoy Discounted Cirque Du Soleil Tickets!

We are excited to partner with Cirque du Soleil to offer you a 15% discount on tickets to their newest show, LUZIA, playing from July 21 to Sept 3, under the Big Top, at the United Center!

LUZIA invites you to escape to an imaginary Mexico! For more information, visit  http://cirk.me/2oYsTS1.

FYI, your promo code will already be applied using the link above.

Learn more about LUZIA by Cirque du Soleil by watching these videos:

Sign Up for the USA Triathlon & Ironman Tri Club!

Are you a USA Triathlon (USAT) member? Join the FFC TriMonster Triathlon Club and Chicago IronMonster Ironman Tri Club – the 2014 USAT club national champions!

  • FREE to join the FFC team & compete at races together!
  • Training discounts for USAT members
  • Free training plans & monthly team socials
  • Prizes for participation, volunteering, and performances
  • Group workouts and private coaching services with USAT and IRONMAN certified coaches
  • VIP race day team support at select races

Racing the Chicago Triathlon? Register at www.chicagotriathlon.com with team discount code “TMONTEAM17” to save and join team roster!

Contact endurance@ffc.com with your USAT member number and expiration date to sign up and for more information on endurance training programs and services visit ffc.com/endurance.

2017 Easter Holiday Weekend Hours

Attention members: please be aware of the following Easter weekend operating hours. Have a happy and safe holiday!

  • Friday, April 14 – regular club hours
  • Saturday, April 15 – regular club hours
  • Sunday, April 16 – all club locations will close at 3:00 PM
    • 7 AM – 3 PM: FFC East Lakeview, Gold Coast, Lincoln Park, Oak Park, West Loop & Park Ridge
    • 8 AM – 3 PM: FFC Halsted Street, Lincoln Park, Old Town, South Loop & Union Station

 

Help Support Team FFC At the 2017 Spin to Break the Cycle Event!

2017 SPIN TO BREAK THE CYCLE

  • 100 BIKES
  • 500+ PARTICIPANTS & SPECTATORS
  • 1 GOAL: CREATE STRONGER, SAFER, AND HEALTHIER COMMUNITIES

Daily, the presence and pressures of violence, divide, and poverty impact the health and wellness of our communities and our youth. The perceptions of what is possible are impacted by current circumstances. This does not need to be our city’s story, we are one Chicago and together we can break the cycle and invest in the future of Chicago’s youth – creating stronger, safer, and healthier communities.

With Spin to Break the Cycle, an hour spin workout can help ensure ALL of Chicago’s youth and ALL of Chicago’s communities have access to the power of sport and play – will you step up to the bike?

SUPPORT TEAM FFC!

SPIN TO BREAK THE CYCLE EVENT OVERVIEW

Date: Saturday, April 8, 2017
Location: House of Blues Chicago (329 N. Dearborn St.)
Time: The first session arrives at 8 AM. A new session arrives every hour through 12 PM. The event ends at 3:00 PM.

WAYS TO GET INVOLVED: JOIN FFC IN MAKING A DIFFERENCE

ATTEND A CHARITY RIDE WORKOUT AT FFC

FFC will be hosting in-club fundraising classes to help raise money for Spin to Break the Cycle!  These classes will be open to members and guests. Visit this page to RSVP for one (or BOTH) of the following classes!

SPIN AT THE HOUSE OF BLUES

Whether you are an avid cyclist or a first time rider, this event is a unique and inspiring way for you to get active in making a difference:

  • Hundreds of riders taking over the House of Blues
  • Top spin instructors to lead and encourage you
  • DJ spinning a music mix sure to keep you inspired
  • Rejuvenation area with free massage
  • Post-Spin Reception with  a complimentary drink, appetizer buffet, games, and more
  • Free tech fabric event t-shirt and gift bag
  • Fundraising rewards with the opportunity to earn airline certificates, sports tickets, and exclusive experiences

There are just 2 steps to join

1) Register to Spin: Choose to join the team and session of your favorite FFC instructor or choose one of the other sessions and join the FFC Community Champions Team!

  • 8 AM: FFC Team Jennifer (Jennifer Dahl)
  • 9 AM: FFC Team Bill (Bill Bower)

Can’t make it to one of those sessions? Choose any session and register as part of team FFC Community Champions.

>> As a partner, FFC offers our members $5 off the $25 registration fee with promo code FFC2017

2) Raise Money: Once you have completed the registration, you will be redirected to the fundraising site to set up your individual fundraising page under the FFC team of your choice (be sure to select your team from the drop down menu to join that team). As a part of the event, you are committing to raise a minimum of $250. It’s easier than you think, and World Sport Chicago provides you with tools, tips and support to help make your fundraising efforts successful.

DONATE  

It’s tax-deductible, plus the process is fast, easy, and secure! Every contribution goes a long way to help break the cycle to create a stronger, safer, and healthier Chicago. You can click below to donate to a specific team:

ABOUT THE IMPACT

Spin to Break the Cycle sponsors and participants take part in more than a memorable fitness event – they join together to make a difference:

Formed in 2007 as the living legacy of Chicago’s bid for the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games, World Sport Chicago has a deeply rooted understanding of the way sport and play can help meet the challenges our youth and communities face on a daily basis.

SPORT AND PLAY ARE:

Proven tools for the physical, cognitive, and social development of youth.  

A catalyst for bringing people together, creating understanding, and promoting Civic Engagement (leadership, community surveillance, volunteerism, empowerment and ownership for their future).

At World Sport Chicago we see every child’s and every community’s potential and we have witnessed first-hand the way sport and play can help unlock that potential. In stepping up to the bike you are helping ensure ALL of Chicago’s youth and ALL of Chicago’s communities have access to the power of sport and play. We are stronger together and together we can make a difference.

For more information on World Sport Chicago and Spin to Break the Cycle visit http://www.spintobreakthecycle.org

Want to VOLUNTEER or have QUESTIONS? 

World Sport Chicago is here to help. 312-861-4840 or spin@worldsportchicago.org.

 

April Spa Specials

Spring has sprung and it’s time to say goodbye to the winter weather, indoor blahs and same old routine.

Spring Restoration Massage

Enjoy refreshing massage therapy for body and mind.  Receive 5 30-minute massages for $265 (save $60).

Offer expires April 30, 2016. Packages may not be shared and all massages expire one year from date of purchase. This offer not available at FFC Park Ridge. No two discounts apply.

The Spa Rebate is Back!  

Get $10 in Spa Bucks for every $60 spent on Spa services in April!

Spa Bucks will expire May 31, 2017. $60 is service price not including tax and gratuities.  This offer is available at FFC Park Ridge.

Message from the RDs: Spring Clean Your Nutrition Habits for the Summer – Chelsea Rice

Spring is the time to prepare for those summer months ahead. Even though spring days may still be gloomy and cold, before you know it the sunshine will be out and everybody’s windows will be open. Many of us work so hard in the winter months to achieve our health goals by the summer, but that doesn’t mean that everything should be forgotten when that warm weather hits. Below are 5 nutrition tips that will keep you on track with your health goals, no matter what time of year it is!

Spring clean your kitchen.

We are all guilty of having those foods stocked away in our kitchen that we have been trying to avoid all winter. Take the time now to organize your refrigerator, freezer, and pantry. Throw away all the food that has been sitting there too long or may be expired. Do you have any leftover treats from the holidays? Get rid of it! If it is still safe to eat, don’t feel the need to throw it away. You can always donate it or give it away to others that could make good use of the food.

Pre-plan your meals.

Spring and summertime schedules start to get busy with extra-curricular activities and events. Plan your meals and snacks around your schedule. Make a shopping list with healthy foods that you can eat through the week. Go grocery shopping at least once a week to restock those fresh foods and ensure you won’t stock up on a lot of processed products.

Eat seasonally.

The fresh produce that you missed all winter is soon to be back in season! Chop up some fresh vegetables for an easy snack throughout the day. Keep a fresh fruit bowl at your home and office to pair with meals and snacks. Most importantly, make sure to eat the rainbow! Bring color to your plate by incorporating a variety of produce, instead of continuing to buy the same fruits and vegetables.

Think outside of the box.

When planning activities, think outside the box. Even though Chicago has many fun events revolving around food and drinks, there are also so many activities to do in the sun that are great for our health. Go on a long walk or bike ride on the lake, take a rooftop yoga class, or join a sports league with friends. These activities will not only keep you active, but social as well!

Hydrate often.

Start off your day by drinking a glass (or two) of water. Keep hydrated around or at each meal, and don’t forget to bring that water bottle to the gym with you! Carrying a water bottle with you at all times is a great way to get into the habit of always drinking water. Struggling to drink plain water? Add fresh fruits and herbs to your bottle for a different flavor (and great added benefits!). See my personal favorite infused water recipe below!

Strawberry, Basil, and Cucumber Infused Water (Yields 1 Serving)

Ingredients

  •    3 basil leaves
  •    2-3 strawberries, sliced
  •    3-5 slices cucumber
  •    Water
  •    Ice

Directions

Combine all ingredients in a large glass. Let sit for at least 15 minutes. Enjoy!

April Complimentary Injury Screening Presented by NovaCare

It’s almost marathon season, everyone! And that means it’s time to take extra care to stay injury-free. Head into your closest NovaCare this month for a complimentary injury screening during one of the times below!

  • FFC East Lakeview – Thursday, April 13 4-6 PM & walk-ins
  • FFC Halsted St – Monday April 3, 4-6 PM & walk-ins
  • FFC Lincoln Park – Thursday April 13 5-7 PM & walk-ins
  • FFC Oak Park – Wednesday April 12 3-5 PM & walk-ins
  • FFC Park Ridge – April 4 3:30-5:30 PM & walk-ins
  • FFC South Loop – walk-ins
  • FFC Union Station – Wednesday 4/19 12 – 1:30 PM​ & walk-ins
  • FFC West Loop – Tuesday, April 18 4:15 – 5:30 PM & walk-ins

Join Team to End Aids (T2) for the 3rd Annual Spin to End Aids Fundraiser! -4/22; 11 AM – 2 PM

 

SPIN TO END AIDS – Saturday, 4/22; 11 AM – 2 PM

Join TEAM TO END AIDS (T2) for the third annual SPIN TO END AIDS fundraiser. SPIN TO END AIDS will host riders raising funds and awareness on behalf of the AIDS Foundation of Chicago. Whether you are an alumni or curious about the T2 experience, enjoy music, friends, food, drink and swag.

Registration is only $15 in honor of T2’s 15th year and includes 2 studio spin sessions (12-12:50pm, 1-1:50pm). Attend either or both of the sessions. A fundraising option is available and appreciated.

  • Saturday, April 22, 2017
  • 11 AM – 2 PM
  • FFC Lincoln Park 939 W. North Avenue, Chicago

Schedule of Events:

  • 11 AM: Check-in opens
  • 11:15-11:45 AM: TEAM TO END AIDS info session – learn about our 2017 Signature Events and endurance training program
  • 12:00-12:50 PM: SPIN hour 1
  • 1:00-1:50 PM: SPIN hour 2

 

Join TEAM TO END AIDS (T2) – RUN PROUD in our 15th year!

Over the past 14 years, TEAM TO END AIDS (T2) has trained 6,000 athletes and raised $11 million benefiting the AIDS Foundation of Chicago and HIV/AIDS-related community charities.

Whether this is your first race or your fiftieth, T2 offers world class training programs for running and triathlon premier endurance events. T2 is about the journey as much as the destination. RUN and TRI Proud with FFC Coaches, T2 staff and athletes. Together we will help you train, fundraise and celebrate life, making your T2 experience unforgettable.

Learn more and register: T2EA.org

Sign Up for the Rock N’ Roll Half or Full Marathon with Team Bright Pink!

Embrace Your Inner Rockstar with Team Bright Pink – No Instruments Necessary!

Start working on your air guitar skills – Team Bright Pink has new charity race opportunities thanks to the Rock N’ Roll North American Marathon series! How does free FFC training, one-of-a-kind community and a VIP race experience sound?!

Join Team Bright Pink for a Rock N’ Roll Half or Full Marathon today! Sign up for the Rock N’ Roll Marathon Series, or learn about other fundraising opportunities like the Bank of America Chicago Marathon or Chicago Half Marathon at TeamBrightPink.org.

March Open House Madness at FFC – March 16 – 18

Invite your friends to see what it means to be an FFC member and join us for 3 Days of Madness during our March Open House Madness event! 

From March 16 – 18* join us at our 10 FFC clubs across Chicago for special bootcamps, fitness demos, nutrition seminars, free samples, live music and much more! Stay tuned for information on registering your guests and a detailed schedule of events for each club.

*FFC Union Station’s 3-Day Madness is March 15 – 17. All other club events are March 16 – 18.

Click here to register your guests!

Win #trainingforlife During Our March Refer-A-Friend Madness!

Friends don’t let friends work out alone! Enter our giveaway and refer your friends with your personalized referral link via text, email and social media before March 31 for the chance to win training for life! 

Click here to get started!

March Spa Specials – Recovery is Key

Hey workout warrior! #trainingforlife comes with its rewards… but it can also bring on soreness and inflammation afterward. Stretching pre-and post-workout is a crucial step in preventing DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness).

That said, improper stretching or not stretching at all can can elongate your recovery time and potentially prevent you from rebounding and sticking to your workout routine.  Just as the best results from exercise come from repetition and frequency, so come the best results from stretching and proper recovery.  

Add staying hydrated, using ice when needed, and peppering in regular massage therapy and you’re sure to keep your workouts on track. If you’re not sure which stretches will maximize your time and benefit your routine, don’t take chances and risk injury, find a massage therapist in your club and ask for help!

Not that you need it, but here’s a little incentive to get a massage this month…  for a limited time, get two 90-minute massages for only $219 (reg. $250). Plus, buy this package, and get a 60-minute facial for just $59. Your winter skin will thank you!

*Offer expires on March 31, 2017. Both massages must be used by July 31, 2017. No two discounts apply. Offer not valid at FFC Park Ridge.

Message from the RDs: March is National Nutrition Month! by Amy Silver

I’m not sure who designated March as the month to celebrate nutrition, but I always find it to be perfect timing. New Year’s resolutions are getting harder to keep up with, but hopefully some of your lifestyle changes have become habits by now. What better time to celebrate food and its ability to give us energy, excite our taste buds, and even show someone we love them? Food has so many roles in our lives, and here are some new trends to look out for in 2017:

Plant-based meals and snacks – I always tell my clients to consume protein and fiber every time they eat, because these two components keep your blood sugar stable and your hunger at bay. Wouldn’t the perfect food, then, contain both of these components? Enter plant-based proteins. Think beans, lentils, peas, nuts, and seeds. These foods contain both protein and fiber, along with various other nutrients, making them a nutrition powerhouse. Food companies are catching on, and you’ll begin seeing more items like roasted chickpeas, bean chips, and more varieties of nut butters.

A focus on gut health – Happy gut, happy life, at least that’s what the research is showing. More and more research is showing that gut health is linked to our immune system, our weight, and even our mental health. In 2017, you’ll begin seeing more foods that contain probiotics on the shelves, similar to kombucha and yogurt. Also, dietitians are working with specific elimination diets, like the low FODMAP diet (check out the recent blog post here!) to help people take control of their gut health. Along with probiotics and individual care for your dietary needs, don’t forget about the fiber needed to keep your gut healthy! Stock your fridge with fruits and vegetables to feed those healthy bacteria.

Lower sugar options – The sugar secret is out. There is added sugar in almost 70% of packaged items in stores today. Now that consumers are aware, food companies are going to try to pull you in by labeling their foods “low sugar.” Don’t fall for their games again, do some digging yourself and look at the ingredients label of any packaged product. Does it have 5 or less ingredients, and ones you can pronounce? Are they replacing added sugar with artificial sweeteners (not a good thing!)? Is it real food? Some brands will pass the test, and some won’t, but at least you’re in control.

Need more help picking out the latest trends at the grocery store? Sign up for an individual grocery store tour with your club’s dietitian today – just stop by the office!

Sign Up for the Stridekick 3-Day Madness Step Challenge!

Join the Madness!

Get moving with Fitness Formula Clubs & Stridekick and join the FFC 3-Day Madness Challenge. Hit your goal of 15,000 steps before the challenge ends on Saturday, March 18 at 3 PM, head to a Chicago FFC club location and show your completion to an FFC team member to win at the big dance. What you win:

  • FFC guests will win a free 1-week membership to any FFC location of their choosing
  • Current FFC members will win a free personal training session!

Must be at least 18 years old and present a valid photo ID with an Illinois address to redeem prize.

We are partnering with Stridekick, which integrates with Fitbit, Jawbone, Garmin, Misfit, Apple Watch and Withings. No fitness tracker? No problem! Connect your smartphone to track your steps by downloading the Stridekick app from the iTunes or Google Play Store.

How To Register for the Challenge

  1. Text ‘ffc17’ to 27126
  2. Follow the link texted to you
  3. Download the Stridekick app from the iTunes or Google Play store
  4. Log in or create a Stridekick account and connect your tracking device
  5. Get moving! You’ve been added to the challenge.

* If you don’t see the challenge appear on your dashboard search “ffc17” in the magnifying glass field.

Questions or need Help?

Email stridekick.team@stridekick.mail.intercom.io or select ‘Need help? Message us here’ in the More tab of the mobile app!

March Complimentary Injury Screenings by NovaCare

Stop by any of our NovaCare rehabilitations in the month of March during the times below for a complimentary injury screening! What do our complimentary injury screenings include?

  •  A physical therapist or athletic trainer will perform an orthopedic screening
  •  Education regarding your injury
  •  A plan of care, and/or a physician referral, if needed

FFC East Lakeview 3/23 4 – 6 PM

FFC Halsted Street 3/22 4 – 6 PM

FFC Lincoln Park 3/7 5 – 7 PM and  3/30 4-6 PM

FFC Oak Park 3/15  3 – 5 PM

FFC Park Ridge 3/7 3:30 – 5:30 PM

FFC South Loop 3/16 4 – 6 PM                      

FFC Union Station 3/23 12 – 1 PM

FFC West Loop 3/21 4:15 – 6:00 PM

NovaCare Park Ridge is Now Open!

NovaCare Rehabilitation is now open inside FFC Park Ridge! Call and schedule a complimentary injury screen today at 847.720.4165. Want to check out the facility? Join us for our open house at Park Ridge on March 15 from 5 – 8 PM!

Help us celebrate March Madness in our new center! Attendees will enjoy a tour of the facility, complimentary injury screenings and receive a goody bag to take home. Come out and meet Center Manager Beth Ure! Please RSVP to 847-720-4165.  

cycling time trial

Calling All Cyclists! Sign Up For The 4th Annual Chicago Time Trial Cup!

Calling all new and competitive cyclists! Fitness Formula Clubs indoor cycling time trial race series is back with the 4th Annual Chicago Time Trial Cup (CTTC) – a two-event indoor cycling race series featuring time trials of various distances for local cyclists to test their fitness while riding on simulated courses in the FFC Endurance Training CompuTrainer Studio (ffc.com/computrainer)! Sign up for one event and compete to win prizes, or sign up for both races for the chance to become the overall series champion! All you need to do is bring yourself, your bike, and your personal best!

Choose from one or all of the following events*:

  • Sunday, March 12, 2017 – Draft-legal 30 km Road Race: Men’s and women’s heats of eight will race in “drafting mode” to mimic the benefits of drafting in an outdoor race.
  • Sunday, April 9, 2017 – Individual 20 km Time Trial: ride fast, friends!

Register online at  ffc.com/time-trial!

NOTE: All events will be held at the FFC Lincoln Park Endurance Training Center (ffc.com/computrainer). You must bring your own bike to each event. 

*Participants will sign up for waves throughout the day of each event. Anticipate at least 1.5 hours per race including check in, setup, warmup, and cooldown. Parking will be validated for up to 2 hours, so plan accordingly. Avoid parking fees by leveraging free nearby street parking. $30 per event or $50 for series.

For questions or to sign up, contact Coach Dan Dziubski at ddziubski@ffc.com.

Mommy & Me Movement Workshop – Saturday, 3/18; 12:15 – 1:30 PM

Join us at FFC West Loop in the Group Fitness studio on Saturday, March 18 from 12:15 – 1:30 PM for the Mommy and Me Movement Workshop.
It takes babies up to a year to learn how to walk. They earn this skill through each developmental progression – tummy time, rolling, sitting, rocking, crawling, standing, and squatting. These progressions are our body’s natural resets. When we are in pain or healing, these resets restore our body’s natural movement. As a mom, these resets promote healing of the core and pelvic floor.

West Loop trainer Suzanne Ko created this workshop to teach moms how to help their babies with the developmental milestones while also making time for movement. She will show you various tummy time variations, as well as teach you how to roll, rock, and crawl with your baby.

Carrying for our baby is also physically demanding! Learn how to safely move with your baby, utilizing proper breathing and alignment cues.

  • Price: $30 FFC Members, $40 non-members
  • RSVP to Suzanne Ko at sko@ffc.com. Payment before day of workshop is required.
  • Recommended minimum age is 2-3 months. Please bring some of your babies toys. Mats will be provided.

“When my twins were 6 months old I was looking for places where my babies could plan, learn and socialized with other babies. Mommy and me workshop offered me all of the above and also the opportunity to workout while playing with my kids. This was a great push to me to come out of my pregnancy shell and be more active and playful with the kids. My babies always enjoy coming to the workshop and love rolling, crawling, rocking and squeaking along with their friends. Last but not the least, I feel Suzanne is the most appropriate trainer for the workshop. Being a mother herself she knows just the right mix for fun and activities for moms and the kids. She is very patient with the babies and tries to teach both Mommy and baby something new in her class each time. I love spending time at this FFC workshop and will definitely recommend it to all new parents!”

Get Lucky with Team Bright Pink & Upcoming Fun Run 3/23; 5 – 6:30 PM

Kiss Me, I’m on Team Bright Pink!

Who needs luck this St. Paddy’s Day when you can lock down a sure thing like free, top-rated FFC training, one-of-a-kind community and a VIP race experience? Join Team Bright Pink for the 2017 Bank of America Chicago Marathon, or any other race of your choice for all that and more!

Then, get even more green this month with a $150 fundraising credit towards your Chicago Marathon fundraising minimum. Visit Bright Pink’s booth at the Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle 8K Health & Fitness Expo March 31st and April 1st and sign up in-person to lock-in your savings. Learn more about the team at TeamBrightPink.org.

Team Bright Pink Fun Run 3/23; 5 – 6:30 PM

Join the FFC RunMonster Run Club and Team Bright Pink for an after-work info session on FFC’s Chicago Marathon & Half Marathon charity training program with guaranteed entries in the Chicago Marathon and Half Marathon! Join the info session and stay for a fun run to get ready for the upcoming Shamrock Shuffle and spring running season!

Session will be based out of newly renovated FFC Union Station local’84 Cafe on 1st floor!

FFC Union Station – local’84 Cafe

  • 5:00 PM – Check In + Meet & Mingle with Bright Pink in local’84 cafe
  • 5:10 PM – Bright Pink & FFC Marathon/Half Marathon Info Session in local’84 cafe
  • 5:30 PM – Fun Run – gather/change/prep to run outside!
  • 5:45 PM – Head out the door to run 2-3 miles!
  • 6:15-6:30 PM – back at club for stretching!

FYI:  Sunset 7:06pm

Run the Marathon for a Great Cause – Register with T2!

Register for the Bank of America Chicago Marathon with T2!

T2 participants receive:

  • 18 weeks of coach-led training beginning in June 2017 and a training plan
  • Guaranteed race entry
  • T2 training shirt
  • T2 run singlet
  • Pre-race Celebration Dinner
  • VIP race day experience
  • Personalized fundraising website page and toolkit
  • Staff-provided fundraising advice and assistance
  • Private social media group to converse with athletes, coaches and staff
  • T2 fundraising minimum: $1,700

Registration is $55 and includes all the amenities that come along with being a charity runner. The registration fee is non-refundable and non-transferable. RUN PROUD with T2! Visit http://events.aidschicago.org/site/TR?fr_id=1350&pg=entry to sign up today!

February Spa Specials

Whether it’s a well-deserved time-out for yourself or a special surprise for someone you love, The Spa at FFC will fulfill all your Valentine’s Day gift needs. From our therapeutic and restorative massage menu to our effective and luxurious facial treatments, look no further than The Spa for a present they’re sure to love. Not sure which treatment to get? – a gift card in any amount allows the recipient to choose what’s best for them!

This month’s featured services:

*Please note, these specials are not currently available at FFC Park Ridge.

Chocolate Cherry Antioxidant Facial

Experience the sensory delights of chocolate & cherry essences while reaping the benefits of the rich antioxidants in this refreshing facial!

  • $89 for 60 minutes
  • Service must be paid for and received in February

Signature 75-Minute Massage

During this customized treatment, you will enjoy 75 minutes of massage using a combination of bodywork styles tailored specifically to your needs. This massage also includes scalp and neck work for a truly head to toe experience. 

  • One for $100 or two for $190, February only!
  • Both massages must be received by March 15 and may be shared with a guest

Sign Up Now for February Unlimited Pilates Group Apparatus Classes for $99!

It’s time to get back into a routine (or even try something new!) During the month February, get access to UNLIMITED Group Apparatus Pilates classes at your club for only $99! For a schedule of classes, visit your club’s Pilates Studio or Fitness Desk. Unlimited Group Apparatus Pilates promotion available at all clubs except FFC Oak Park.

Once you have registered for the $99 Unlimited, you can book your classes via the FFC app, or with your Pilates trainer at the club. For any questions, email Kristin Strom at kstrom@ffc.com. See you soon!