Health

Five Places to Get Pumped This Fall

Want to lose weight? Start lifting some. Why it’s time to ditch the cardio and head straight to these five strength-training specialists.


Art by Jeannie Phan

For the beginner
AMP Fitness

Chances are that you won’t return to lifting if you limp out the door massaging a pulled muscle on day one. Enter AMP’s 30-day Superhero University, which offers ’round-the-clock support and education to ensure you’re doing every movement with proper form. The monthlong curriculum starts with a one-on-one session to develop a program just for you, followed by personal and team training sessions as well as kettlebell intro classes.

30 Court Sq., Boston, 617-320-0090, ampfitnessboston.com.

For the lifelong learner
Achieve Fitness

Whether you want to hike the White Mountains or just get down on the ground and play with your children without pain, owners Jason and Lauren Pak have created an environment where asking questions is encouraged and learning inside the gym leads to better movement outside of it. Sign up for the custom plan and receive a weekly semiprivate personal training session that covers everything from overhead squats to Olympic weightlifting exercises such as the clean and jerk.

42 Merriam St., Somerville, 617-616-5801, achievefitnessboston.com.

For the skeptic
Core

Owner Tony Gentilcore prides himself on coming up with variations that make the daunting dead lift fun and manageable. Do barbells look scary? He’ll have you perform the same exercise with a smaller kettlebell. Known for his love of ’90s hip-hop, Gentilcore can accommodate up to four people in his pocket-size Brookline studio, keeping the energy high even during 6 a.m. training sessions.

250 Cypress St., Brookline, tonygentilcore.com.

For the time-strapped
Boston Underground Strength Training

At Boston Underground Strength Training, your body is the machine and you’ll learn how to safely and efficiently operate it like one. Equipped only with the essentials—barbells, medicine balls, free weights—this spot’s 12-person strength camps are designed to get you in and out fast. The metabolic workout program, which features bursts of movement followed by recovery time, remains the same for four weeks so you can track your progress over time.

235 High St., Waltham, 781-373-2199, bostonstrengthtraining.com.

For those seeking a challenge
Precision Powerlifting Systems

Lifting heavy things up and setting them back down is way more fun with a little friendly competition. If you’ve ever wondered whether you have the chops to compete in the sport of powerlifting—where the goal is to best your rivals in the squat, bench, and dead lift—join the Precision Powerlifting Systems team. Led by coach Kevin Cann, 35 men and women of all ages and abilities train together at RX Strength Training, with the goal of stepping on a platform to compete one day.

50 Tufts St., Somerville, precisionpowerlifting.com.