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An instructor during a SoulCycle class. Photo by Joshua Bright.

7 Spots to Work up a Sweat in 2020

Our guide to some of the recent additions to the Mile High City's fitness scene.

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Denver is no stranger to transplants, but the latest surge in newbies isn’t people—it’s boutique fitness studios. Gyms from Hollywood to New York City are finally cashing in on Denver’s surplus of active, smoothie-drinking, yoga-pant-clad residents. Unsure which of the hot spots is the right fit for you? Don’t sweat it (yet, anyway). Just choose what motivates you, below, to find your new favorite place to work out.

If you’re inspired by: Candlelight and positive affirmations
Try: SoulCycle
The SoulCycle cult is real. The spin giant with 98 locations across the country (and the pond, in London) even bills itself thusly: “SoulCycle is way more than a workout, it’s a sanctuary.” Yes, bumping beats permeate the candlelit Cherry Creek studio, but your instructor’s meditations on being your best self are where the real change happens.
HQ: New York City
Class Time: 45 minutes
Calories Burned: 500–700
Cost: $28 to drop in ($20 for first-timers)

If you’re inspired by: Buff movie stars
Try: Chuze Fitness
Leave your headphones at home. At this big-box gym’s cinema setups—available in all seven of Chuze’s Colorado locations—you can run or bike to a rotating selection of flicks. Because there’s nothing weird about watching a movie while people pant heavily next to you.
HQ: San Diego
Class Time: Your choice
Calories Burned: Up to you
Cost: Gym memberships start at $10 per month (free one- and seven-day trials)

If you’re inspired by: The idea of being done in 30 minutes
Try: RiseNation
Standing mostly upright with your face this close to a VersaClimber (a vertical climbing machine) while moving your arms and legs together—and to the music—is a high-intensity interval training (HIIT) butt-kicking. But give the West Highland, Cherry Creek, or DTC location a try; a half hour here is worth an hour on an elliptical (and it’s way more fun).
HQ: Los Angeles
Class Time: 30 minutes
Calories Burned: 600–800
Cost: $28 to drop in

If you’re inspired by: Teamwork!
Try: Tough Mudder Bootcamp
“Functional training” is the buzzword during the various workouts offered by this orange-AstroTurfed gym in City Park affiliated with Tough Mudder’s outdoor obstacle course races. You’ll always be partnered up—because that’s how you conquer mammoth nets and seesawing platforms.
HQ: New York City
Class Time: 45 minutes
Calories Burned: 500 (average HIIT class)
Cost: $20 to drop in (first class free)

If you’re inspired by: Someone else watching your kid
Try: Shred415
This family-friendly Midwest transplant—with three locations around Denver and one in Boulder—offers childcare so you can focus on surviving four 15-minute intervals (415, get it?) split between awesome, not-at-all-shaky Woodway treadmills and strength-based plyometric resistance training.
HQ: Chicago
Class Time: 1 hour
Calories Burned: 600–1,000
Cost: $28 to drop in (first class free)

If you’re inspired by: The Boys In The Boat
Try: Row House
Row, row, row until you need a break—and then work some more via dumbbells or floor exercises. Every one of the six class options, including the slowed-down Restore version, at Row House’s five gyms in the Denver metro area is guaranteed to be a low-impact, full-body workout.
HQ: Irvine, California
Class Time: 45 minutes
Calories Burned: 800
Cost: $29 to drop in (first class free)

If you’re inspired by: Clear instruction
Try: F45
If you can get past their ridiculous names—Abacus, Miami Nights, Moon Hopper—you’ll find that F45’s HIIT, resistance, and hybrid classes literally take your breath away. Thankfully, every move is shown on big screens at the front of the studio (of which there are 10 in Colorado), so you don’t have to try to gasp out questions to the instructors.
HQ: Sydney
Class Time: 45–60 minutes
Calories Burned: Up to 750
Cost: $28–$30 to drop in (first week free)

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