A new year is nearly upon us, meaning it's time to make those annual resolutions of losing weight, hitting the gym and exercising a little more. After gaining a few pounds from those holiday dinners of roasted turkeys, stuffing and pumpkin pies, it’s only the next logical step to take. But in these tough economic times, expensive gym memberships don't sound too appealing. But no worries—these local gyms and fitness centers are offering end-of-the-year deals that will help you get lighter without lightening your wallet - plus, by starting early, you can avoid the January crowds for a little while. You'll pay so little, you probably won't even feel too guilty once you inevitably stray from your New Year's resolution (come on, who are you kidding?).
Lakeshore Athletic Club
Lakeshore Athletic Club has been one of Chicago's premier health clubs since 1972 and for good reason. It offers more than your typical workout options of dumbbells and treadmills. We're talking yoga, pilates, kickboxing and cardio classes, an aquatic area, indoor and outdoor tennis courts, even fencing and rhythmic gymnastics. Normally, new members enroll for $250. But for this month, $99 and the regular monthly membership dues can get you all that LSAC has to offer.
Know No Limits
One or two-year membership commitments can be daunting. Know No Limits offers a solution to that problem. This Andersonville fitness center offers $75 pre-paid monthly membership fees that include access to all strength-training machines, free weights, ellipticals and Stairmasters, locker rooms and showers. If one month is still too long, $15 daily passes are also available. Or pay $85 for a set of 10 classes and workout visits of your time and choice. Classes include cardio boxing, circuit training and yoga. Body cycling classes are available five times a week.
World Gym (Uptown)
While some prefer the lone company of an iPod while working out, others prefer having a partner to help spot those heavy weights. If you're one of the latter, the World Gym may be for you. This month's promotion includes a buy-one-get-one offer where new members can give a free enrollment membership to a friend. In addition, the friend also gets three months free—possibly a nice little holiday gift. Now you can run side by side on the 352-foot (1/15th of a mile) astroturf track. Other perks include a variety of cardio equipment, tanning, steam and sauna rooms and a rooftop pool—for those few who end up continuing their New Year’s resolution into the summer months.
Crunch (multiple locations)
With cardio striptease, pole dancing, anti-gravity yoga and bootcamp classes, Crunch offers unconventional and innovative work out programs. Two locations (North & Sheffield, Streeterville) invite DJs to provide live music and fresh beats to get anyone going on their workouts. The North & Sheffield location also offers a 3-floor funslide and a lounge area decked with a fireplace. And as a holiday deal, those joining in December get $10 off their monthly dues.
Fitness Formula Clubs South Loop
Fitness Formula Club's South Loop location is expanding. It’s added new studios for spinning and Pilates, and set new areas for strength and core training (as well as adding more strength and cardio equipment). Now the gym is just looking to fill these new spaces with active bodies. FFC is offering those joining before Dec. 15 a $149 enrollment fee (it's normally $350) for a 12-month agreement. Those signing up for a 2-year membership can enroll for an even lower price of $99. To top it off, both December and January are free.
This University Village gym and boxing center offers some special deals until February 28, 2009. The $95 initiation fee will be waived for both general ($55/month) and combat ($95/month) memberships, and you'll receive a complimentary personal training session with any new membership purchased. Students will also receive 10 percent off all memberships.