I’ll never forget my first indoor cycling class. I was twenty-something, in incredible shape and needed to change up my routine with something new. I had no idea didn’t what to expect. It was a 5 a.m. class, which brought out (ahem) an older crowd. I remember thinking, “This is going to be easy,” with a bit of a sneer. HA! Little did I know that Grannie would leave me in the dust!
It was a challenge, but I loved it and since then, I’ve always try to incorporate indoor cycling into my routine. The city has prime options, but we “suburbanites” suffer. I’ve found that the big box gyms often didn’t have the type of atmosphere I’m looking for with their terrible song choices, lackluster trainers and outdated equipment.
Luckily, the suburban fitness studios are finally catching on to the needs and wants of their patrons. Enter WheelPower Studio, the best-kept secret to hit the Northshore. Owned and operated by three local moms who knew what it took to stand out amongst the competition. They wanted a place that felt like a community, and offered a child-focused activity center and state-of-the-art technology and equipment.
Wheelhouse is expected to open in Spring 2016 in Deerfield and it will be the crème de la crème of indoor cycling studios.
One of the most impressive aspects of Wheelhouse to me is the technology and real-time performance system. Little perks, such as online sign-ups for class and health performance stats emailed post-class, are a big time saver for parents on the run. You get in, you get out and you get on with your day!
Feeling a bit competitive? At any given time your performance data can be used during class for races. The cycle stadiums are equipped with multiple flat screens to display the progress of those that opted in to participate. How cool is that?
This high-end boutique studio will also offer sculpting classes using TRX, slide boards, freshly pressed juices (which you can also reserve online) and luxurious amenities in their blow dry bar. And, don’t forget about the kiddos! The childcare center is the perfect place to drop off your little one while you break a sweat. They offer drop-in rates or a punch card for their loyal followers.
Dying for this place to open? Me too. Check them out online for more details on their opening date and to take advantage of their Big Wheels (early bird membership perk).
Need to fuel up after class? Here are my top three recommendations, 10 minutes away or less.
2532 Waukegan Road, Glenview
From breakfast to lunch, Fitness Café serves up smoothies, salads, quinoa bowls and more. They promise healthy food without breaking the bank. I love that everything on their menu is $10 or less.
With fun names like the Pull-up (turkey breast, Swiss cheese, tomatoes, lettuce, turkey bacon and reduced fat mayo), Cross-Trainer (Lettuce, black beans, sweet corn, reduced fat Monterey cheese, secret sauce, BBQ chicken and more) and my favorite, Namaste (Organic quinoa, grilled chicken, spinach, parmesan cheese, and homemade pesto), they carry their fitness shtick throughout their menu. They even offer a kids menu in case your little one comes to class with you.
2071 Tower Dr, Glenview
Fresh Wrap has 20+ sandwiches and wraps to choose from. My personal crave-worthy wrap is the autumn wrap (spinach, grilled chicken, goat cheese, dried cherries, Granny Smith apples and almonds). It’s so good!
Purple Sprout Café
341 E. Dundee Road, Wheeling
This vegetarian/vegan café and juice bar offers breakfast, lunch, desserts, microgreens and more. Some of my favorite menu items include: the Fountain of Youth juice blend (apple, kale, celery, lemon, ginger, parsley), the gluten-free crepe stuffed with a chickpea/veggie scramble and coconut raspberry macaroons. The prices are super-affordable for using all organic, plant-based products. Be warned, if you have any wheat, soy or tree nut allergies, this is not the place for you.
Stephanie went from poppin’ bottles to poppin’ juice boxes when she made the transition into parenthood. Follow along on the adventures of her stroller squad: hubby Marcus, and daughters, Sophia and Gianna.
See more of Stephanie's stories here.
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