Exercise is a reward, not punishment

At Colorado 24/7 Fitness-Basalt, members can reach their fitness goals regardless of busy work/life schedules

By Lauren Glendenning Brought to you by Colorado 24/7 Fitness-Basalt

When Lauren Hinson finally realized that exercise was so much more than a tool for weight loss, she developed a relationship with the gym that has had positive impacts on both her personal life and career.

Hinson — manager at Colorado 24/7 Fitness-Basalt, which merged with the Gym of Basalt — became a personal trainer so she could connect with people who viewed exercise like she once did.

“I used to think of the gym as punishment; it was a place I would only go when I needed to lose weight and once I had accomplished my goal I would quit,” Hinson said. “I had hit an all-time high on the scale in about 2011 and made a commitment to myself to get to a healthy weight and stay there. I learned that if I exercised a few times a week — not just for weight loss — I actually felt better and slept better. I began to think of exercise as something that made me feel good, not as a punishment for something I ate.”

With this mentality, it’s obvious why Hinson runs a gym that prioritizes its members’ goals and lifestyles. Colorado 24/7 Fitness is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and offers about 30 group fitness classes per week throughout the day and evening to meet all members’ scheduling needs.

Busy schedule? No problem
Time is the biggest barrier to fitness, which is why Colorado 24/7 Fitness tries to eliminate this problem by staying open and flexible. Hinson said spending time on yourself, to take care of your health and fitness, is arguably one of the most important things on anyone’s daily schedule.

Some members schedule their gym sessions or group fitness classes on their work calendars so they can treat workouts just like any other important meeting.

“We are all busy, especially those who have to drive from downvalley to work in Aspen. We offer 24-hour access so that we are able to help members remove excuses,” she said. “They have the freedom to come in and get their workout in at any time of day that works for them. We have an early crowd before 5 a.m., and our late-night members who come in after 9 p.m.”

Thanks to its merger with Colorado 24/7 Fitness last September, members can also access those gym locations in Glenwood Springs, New Castle, Silt and Rifle, with access to discounted spa services at La Provence Spa in Glenwood.

With the convenience part taken care of, Hinson hopes members can focus on themselves in positive ways. She wants new members especially to remember that any exercise program shouldn’t be about quick results.

“People tend to go really hard when they are first starting out at the gym, thinking that more workouts will get them faster results, but that tends to get them burned out and they give up,” she said. “Slow and steady wins the race. Aim for 2 to 3 workouts your first couple of weeks, and get into a yoga class for some recovery. You can’t pour from an empty cup — you have to take care of yourself before you can care for others.”

Community environment, expert staff
When members walk through the door at Colorado 24/7 Fitness-Basalt, Hinson wants people to feel welcome. She said that while people might join gyms for personal reasons, she wants them to stay for the community.

“Our gym is a great example of that! Group fitness helps people push harder than they normally would because they are working out together,” she said. “We push harder in front of people than when we’re alone, and it’s great to get encouragement from our amazing instructors.”

The staff includes a variety of backgrounds and fitness experience, including NASM-certified personal trainers who can help with weight loss, building strength, recovering from an injury and sports-specific training. These trainers can work with clients of any age and fitness level to achieve their fitness goals.

Group fitness classes run the gamut from the Bodypump barbell class to GRIT, a 30-minute high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workout. The gym also offers indoor cycling, dance, yoga and Pilates classes. All classes are included with all memberships.

Whether you’re using the free weights and barbell area, weight or cardio machines, or enjoying a group class, Hinson said the environment at Colorado 24/7 Fitness is relaxed, fun and inclusive. Members cheer each other on and many even form friendships at the gym and hold each other accountable.

“We love new people, and we pride ourselves in being able to adjust to beginners and push the advanced members further than they thought they could go,” Hinson said. “It fulfills me so much when I hear a member of my classes say that they have become stronger, they can ski longer, and they feel great. Exercise will make you look great, but it makes you FEEL even better.”