When I found out I’d be running alone for my long run this morning, I knew I needed a plan. There was only one thing that got me out of bed this morning at 6AM for 8.5 miles by myself: the beach.

It takes me 22 minutes to reach the lake from my house when I head down Oakton. That leaves 36 minutes of running along the lake, and with the exception of a few private residences, I run most of it along the shoreline. Today I made it all the way to Northwestern’s landfill before I had to turn around to get back in time for my husband’s minyan. Along the way I had to hop a few fences, climb over rock formations and trudge up sand dunes. I thought about stopping my Garmin during those points, but running’s never been about time or pace for me. It’s about having fun, staying fit and finding time to think.

But if running’s not for you, there are plenty of other ways to get fit this spring. Just this past week, I received emails from three women in our community offering fitness classes. You can drop in for a trial or sign up for the whole session.

From Sunny Levi. All classes meet at 6025 N. Christiana in Peterson Park. To register or find out more call 773.870.0638 or email levisunny@yahoo.com:

Stretch n’ Strengthen Yoga,Wednesday 9:15-10:15AM
Relax your mind, breathe deeply, and let go of stress as you stretch and strengthen your muscles in this gentle yet challenging body work. No matter what your age, shape, size or stamina, you are guaranteed to improve overall flexibility, balance and posture while tightening slack and droopy areas . All muscle groups (including those you never knew you had) will experience the bliss of being stretched, strengthened and reinvigorated.
Aerobic Kickboxing, Thursday 9:15-10:15AM
Combine the intensity of martial arts with the non-stop movement of aerobics and you get this fun, fast-paced, high-impact full-body workout.  Kick, punch, squat, jump and lunge your way into great shape!  Perfect for those who love to drip buckets of sweat and train hard. No prior martial arts experience necessary.
Weight-Training/Butts n’ Guts Boot Camp, Tuesday 8:50-9:50AM
Sculpt and tone all major muscle groups using free weights, power cords and stretch bands. Exercise sets are  alternated with dynamic boot-camp interval activities that will boost your heart rate and incinerate calories. The butts n’ guts portion of this class speaks for itself!  Blaze your way to new heights of confidence and self-respect.
Power Yoga, Friday 9-10AM
Don’t be intimidated by the name…anyone can do this! Flow quickly through a variety of challenging yoga poses to burn fat, build strength, increase metabolism, and feel GREAT! Warning: this class has been known to drastically improve mood.
Taekwondo,Wednesday 8:30-9:30PM (women and teens only)
Taekwondo, an ancient Korean Martial art, is also a great form of exercise.  In addition to the cool kicks and sparring techniques, it is an amazing outlet for stress, and a fun and effective form of self defense. Tae Kwon Do training is extremely beneficial for improving coordination, flexibility, mental focus, balance, self-discipline, and perseverance.  Start as a white belt and watch your self-confidence soar as you work your way up to black!   Perhaps you’ll awaken your inner warrior or champion and compete for a title in State or Midwest tournaments. Wherever it takes you, TKD training can transform and uplift your life.
Self-Defense Workshop (6 weeks), Sunday 7-8 PM, Starting date TBA
In today’s world it’s crucial that every woman know how to defend herself. Come with your mother, daughter, sister or friend and empower yourself in this intensive six-week self-defense workshop. You will learn the fundamental skills of how to avoid being a victim; how to block an attack; how to break free from holds, chokes and grabs; how to strike with maximum strength and precision, and how to use your strong points against an  attacker’s weak points. You will also learn how to convert your body parts into lethal weapons. You don’t want to miss out on this invaluable course.
Express Aerobic Kickboxing, Sunday & Tuesday 8-8:45PM
Pressed for time? Get your cardio on in this 45 minute super-charged aerobic kickboxing class. The class may be shorter but don’t be fooled, you’ll be feeling its effects for hours.

From Erica Simon EsProFitness@comcast.net or 847.276.0072:

Sunday Mornings, starting April 22: Teens-Women 10:15-11:15AM  now at Congregation KINS social hall, 2800 North Shore in Chicago

Monday Evenings, starting April 16: Teens-Women Zumba, 8-9PM  at New Mikor Hachaim 2849 Chase in Chicago

Tuesday Evenings, starting April 17: Teen-Women Zumba, 8-9PM at the home of Elke Glenner, 6118 N Sacramento in Chicago

Thusday Mornings, starting April 17:  Teen Women Zumba 9:20 am-10:20AM now at Congregations KINS social hall, 2800 North Shore in Chicago

And in case you’re one of the few women who hasn’t checked out Frumba…
Frumba with Tziporah Gelman:
Classes meet Monday and Wednesday nights at 8:30PM at Cheder Lubavitch. Tuesday night class for Kids ages 5th-12th grade at 7PM at Cheder Lubavitch. Tuesday afternoons at 1PM and Thursday afternoons at 2PM. Classes are $12 per person. Check with Frumbachicago@gmail.com for a full class schedule.

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