If you’ve ever had the experience of consistently working out at a gym or taking a class at a fitness center, you probably know that it can be a great place to meet people. Once you get past the initial awkwardness (Wait, how does this machine work again?!), you’ll find other folks who are interested in the same fitness goals and can help keep you accountable (and have fun) along the way. And while Madison is loaded with appealing outdoor exercise options, there are also plenty of indoor places to get your heart racing if the weather doesn’t cooperate or if you’re just not the outdoor type.
Princeton Club – What started as a small health club on the east side of Madison has grown into the largest area health club company (with nine different locations) and has been named “Best in Madison and Dane County”. Placing an emphasis on convenience, Princeton Club sites are open 24/7 and members can join classes at any time and for no additional fees.
Prairie Athletic Club – The Prairie Athletic Club (known locally as The PAC) is Wisconsin’s largest single recreational fitness club with over 250,000 square feet of facilities, including an outdoor water park during summer months. The PAC strives to provide outstanding customer service and programs for members of all ages.
Anytime Fitness – With over 20 area locations of this national chain, you’re sure to find a convenient location near you.
Harbor Athletic Club – This Middleton-based club has a large facility open 24/7 and a smaller studio open fewer hours.
Capital Fitness – If you live or work downtown, this might be the place for you.
Planet Fitness – A national company that bills its clubs as “Judgement Free Zones”, Planet Fitness has three area locations and offers free training to members.
TFW – Training For Warriors, a national organization, has one location in Middleton. The TFW offers itself as a resistance movement in a society “designed to make, and then keep, us sick and unhealthy”. Its program aims to build community and encourage members to “burn fat, build muscle, and feel good”.
Functional Integrated Training – Based in Fitchburg, F.I.T. believes that everyone is an athlete and can master the 5 Pillars of Athletic Excellence: Training, Recovery, Nutrition, Hydration, and Motivation.
Monkey Bar Gym / Caio Terra Academy – Headquartered in Madison, MBG takes a unique approach to fitness in today’s world: no machines, minimal equipment, and reliance on the interwoven trio of natural body movements, plant-based nutrition, and restoration yoga. Affiliated with MBG, the Caio Terra Academy (formerly known as BJJ) specializes in jiu-jitsu.
The Inspired Mat – If you’ve heard of the goat yoga craze and been longing to try it out, this is your chance! It’s even family-friendly so you can take the “kids” along. (See what we did there?)
So there you have it: A list of local places to help get your blood pumping and your scale moving. And who knows? You might just meet a friend (or several) in the process.