Six Explorer readers will have the opportunity to transform themselves in body and mind in 2012.
Applications are being accepted now through Nov. 30 for the “Anytime Fitness Challenge,” a special program sponsored by the owners of two local Anytime Fitness centers, one in Oro Valley and the other in Marana.
The six participants will receive a one-year membership at the participating Anytime Fitness clubs and free personal training during that same 12-month period. The prize is valued at $3,500.
As an added incentive, the participants from each location who have had the greatest success will receive a $500 gift card to use toward a fashion makeover.
“Our goal is to spread the word that our gyms are for anyone who wants to get fit,” said Mike Urbanski, owner of the Anytime Fitness now preparing to open at 7937 N. Oracle Road in Oro Valley. “The Anytime Fitness Challenge will help participants make healthy changes in their lives.”
Urbanski and Betsy Morabito, the manager of the newly opened Anytime Fitness center at 12040 N. Thornydale Road in Marana, realize making the one-year commitment may seem daunting to some people.
However, they stress that the extra time is vital when helping people make long-term and healthy lifestyle changes.
“Unlike some reality TV shows, where the contestants are sequestered from the real world and able to devote their lives to fitness 24/7, making changes in the average person’s lifestyle is not a quick fix. It’s really not healthy to drop 50 or 100 pounds in just three months,” Morabito said.
“We’re looking for devotion and improvement, even in the slightest fashion. Our participants may take baby steps. We’re looking for forward movement in their progress,” said Urbanski, a former assistant principal and track and cross-country coach at Salpointe Catholic High School in Tucson.
Participants will get off to a strong start with the help of their personal trainer, who will personalize their workout program and guide them through the correct workout during one-on-one training sessions.
Participants will receive three training sessions a week for the first two months. Afterward, the sessions will continue for the remainder of the 12-month period, just on a limited basis.
Throughout the challenge, participants can take advantage of the many tools offered by Anytime Fitness that will allow them to round out their fitness program. The tools include:
• 24/7 access to the Anytime Fitness center they’re working with as well as to any of the 1,700 Anytime Fitness centers worldwide, a real plus if they’re on vacation or on the road.
• Use of Anytime Fitness’s Fitness on Request, a virtual trainer that enables members to work out to the video of their choice 24/7.
• Access to AnytimeHealth.com, an online journal that allows members to track their eating habits and workouts. The website also supplies them with nutritional information about food they prepare on their own as well as from restaurants and fast food chains.
• In addition, participants will receive the support of Explorer readers, who will follow the participants’ progress and lend them support on a new blog site on the newspaper’s website: www.explorernews.com/blogs.
Morabito and Urbanski acknowledge that making lifestyle changes will not be easy and it may not come quickly. However, the one-on-one guidance provided by Anytime Fitness’s personal trainers and support from Explorer readers will go a long way in helping the participants reach their goal.
“The number one reason people don’t join a gym is the intimidation factor, but our neighborhood gyms are small enough so our members don’t feel they’re just a number, and designed in a manner where people feel comfortable working out.” said Urbanski.
Men and women are invited to apply. Click here for an application form. Applications must be received by Nov. 30.
The six participants – three from each fitness club – will be selected by teams from both Anytime Fitness clubs and The Explorer.
People who would like more information can visit Urbanski’s and Morabito’s Anytime Fitness clubs. Or, they can meet the two at their booths at the Healthiest Town in America this Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Oro Valley Hospital, 1551 E. Tangerine Road.