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4 Hot Workouts Coming to Chicago

We’re all in the same boat. It’s super cold outside and the delivery Chinese food containers are piling up. Check out these new exercise options coming to Chicago to get you out of the funk and breaking a sweat.

1. SoulCycle


Construction recently kicked off on Chicago and the Midwest’s first SoulCycle on the first floor of 1225 Old Town (above), set to open early this year. It’s a high-intensity mix of cycling and dance that’s hugely popular in places like NYC and LA, making it a perfect retail tenant within the 250-unit luxury apartment building. (Developed by Hines, JDL and Northwestern Mutual, it was sold to Heitman for $157M in 2013.) SoulCycle also plans another location within Related Midwest’s 504-unit luxury project OneEleven in the Loop later this year.

Celebs associated: Oprah, Katie Holmes, Lady Gaga, Chelsea Clinton

Try this if: You can shell out $30 for a single class; enjoy aspirational pep talks; and prioritize a killer playlist to stay motivated.

2. First Ascent


Late last year The Missner Group and JV partner Baker Development Corp broke ground (above) on the new 25k SF fitness facility for First Ascent at 3516 N Spaulding in Avondale. The new building will include a 60-foot-high climbing area, the tallest indoor climbing wall in North America. First Ascent also just announced a 14k SF indoor bouldering (rock climbing minus the ropes) gym in part of the old Borders space at 4718 N Broadway in Uptown. Both facilities feature a $75/month membership and will open in late summer.

Celebs who like climbing: Kristin Bell, Lea Michele, Jennifer Aniston

Try this if: You’re not afraid of heights; you’re focused on building upper-body strength and stability; and you like a mental workout.

3. Millennium Dance Complex


It’s the Hollywood favorite that’s been going strong since Britney was singing “Hit Me Baby One More Time.” Millennium Dance Complex, repped by Mid-America Real Estate VPs Andrew Becker and Michael Wexler, just signed a 7,790 SF lease for a franchise at 1000 W Washington Blvd in the West Loop. (Baum Realty Group’s Doug Renner and Trevor Jack repped ownership.) At Millennium’s first Chicago location, you can expect classes ranging from beginner to advanced depending on your dance experience. Single classes in LA cost $15.

Celebs associated: Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, Usher, Jennifer Lopez

Try this if: You’re a student of music video choreography looking for a workout better than you get at the club (minus the booze calories).

4. Crunch Fitness


Thanks to a partnership between Crunch Fitness and BDA Sports Management, which represents Chicago Bulls star Joakim Noah, the beloved big man will be opening five Crunch locations (16k SF to 25k SF) around Chicago. It marks the brand’s first return to Chicago since its 2009 bankruptcy filing, under new ownership (New Evolution Ventures and Angelo Gordon). In addition to helping Noah plan his second act, the gyms (rumored locations near the United Center and Major Adams Community Center) should have some baller equipment and class offerings.

Celebs associated: Besides Noah, you’ll find NBA stars in other cities (Klay Thompson, Chase Budinger, Darren Collison) hopping on the Crunch franchise wagon.

Try this if: You’re a Bulls fan getting back in shape, since 30 minutes on the treadmill endorsed by Joakim Noah is that much cooler.