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Contact the HIT Center at 904-475-9600
log onto their national website at

   I guess running around in the yard as a kid, playing every kind of sport imaginable with the rest of the kids in the neighborhood could technically qualify as my first shot at “working out.” I spent a lot of time “working out” as a kid, as my mother used to tell me “go outside and don’t come home ‘till it’s dark.”

From there it was organized recreation sports at the local fields, high school and college teams and a couple of short stints at “semi-pro” ball.

And then, nothing.

And that’s what happens to so many people who’ve been active all their lives, and all of the sudden their organized team activities end and they’re lost. I ran a bunch, played pick up whenever I could, got involved in lifting, but none of it was ever the equal of the workouts I did preparing to play an organized game.

That’s where the High Intensity Training or HIT Center fills the void. I’ve been involved and have seen thousands of others get formally trained, hire experts and have their trainers standing by when they’re “working out.” But none of it compares to what the HIT center can do.

It’s pretty spartan when you walk in the front door, just across the street from the Avenues theatres on Phillips Highway. A few treadmills and some bikes in an office park setting with a few sweaty people milling around. That’s until you see somebody at work, and you walk outback to the warehouse that’s been converted to a giant field house. Fieldturf on the floor and all kinds of gadgets that allow the trainers to tailor your workout to your specific goals.

I met with the Executive Director, Aaron Marston who put me though a battery of tests. A Bod Pod, to give me an accurate weight and body fat percentage measurement. A VO2 max test, to determine my lactate threshold and finally a Wingate test to measure my lower body power.

A five-page printout was on the table during my consultation with Aaron, when he asked a simple question: “What are your goals?” I told him I’d like to cycle faster, run harder and if I could lose 5 lbs. in the process that’d be fine. “That’ll be easy,” Aaron said with confidence. I must have given him a quizzical look because he quickly added, “easy to come up with a plan to get that done. It’s going to be hard work for you!”

Not exactly what I wanted to hear, but at the same time, exactly what I wanted to hear. I’ve been pushed by trainers, but nothing like a HIT workout.

I was impressed by the scientific approach Marston took to achieving my goals. The numbers don’t lie and it was obvious that despite all of the miles I’d ridden, the kilometers I’d run, and the weights I’d lifted, I could be getting a lot more out of it.

The HIT center represents, as their slogan suggests the “fusion of science and sport.” On their logo it says, “When you’re done playing games,” but I think it should say “Harder than it looks.”

Aaron has designed a specific program to help me achieve my goals and I’ve already seen some movement in that direction. How hard is it? As hard as you want to make it. You can fake your way through anything, but if you follow the routine as designed, you’ll see results. When I’m done my workout (all one-hour by the way) it’s the same feeling as going through a hard practice in an organized environment.

And that’s not by accident.

Marston is a former athletic trainer at Marshall University and a college level soccer player as well.

The workouts are specific to your goals, but are (at least mine are) based on heart rates and explosive performance. Every one is also “functional” in nature. Instead of a million crunches for abdominal strength, my workouts include actual sports-related abdominal movements against resistance that simulate the twisting and turning that’s necessary from your core strength in order to increase performance.

I’ll admit, it’s not for the faint of heart. In fact it’s “harder than it looks.” But then again, anything worth achieving involves a little sacrifice. A program usually lasts 6-8 weeks of 2 or 3 times a week, one hour each. The HIT center is competitively priced against other personal trainer workouts.

I’d highly recommend the HIT center if you’re looking to move your workouts to the next level.

You can contact the HIT center at 904-475-9600 or log onto their national website at www.hitcentersinc.com.

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