Healthy Club Review and Two Week Membership Giveaway – Chicago Athletic Clubs

Chicago Athletic Clubs (CAC) was founded in 1980 with the clubs’ flagship location, Evanston Athletic Club (EAC).  I joined EAC my Sr. year in high school and was immediately hooked to their step classes.  Then, when I moved into the city, I joined Lincoln Park Athletic Club (LPAC) for several years when I lived on Diversey and canceled the membership when I moved further up north (Irving and Ashland.)  It was nice to go back to a health club I was happy and familiar with as the first set of club reviews for The Year of Hope and I was completely impressed with how the business has grown, but not at all surprised that the same quality and passion that went into the original club in Evanston was consistent with the current set of clubs.

Chicago Athletic Clubs currently has five locations, Evanston Athletic Club (EAC), Lincoln Park Athletic Club (LPAC), West Loop Athletic Club (WAC), Lakeview Athletic Club (LVAC), and Lincoln Square Athletic Club (LSAC), Wicker Park Athletic Club (opening Spring 2012).

I decided that since proximity to my home was important, I would focus my review on LPAC, LVAC and LSAC, all a 10 minute drive or less to my home.

Locations
Lincoln Square Athletic Club *
4662 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, 60625 • 773.529.2023

Evanston Athletic Club
1723 Benson Avenue, Evanston, IL 60201 • 847.866.6190

Lincoln Park Athletic Club *
1019 W. Diversey, Chicago, IL 60614 • 773.529.2022

West Loop Athletic Club
1380 W. Randolph St., Chicago, IL 60607 • 312.850.4667

Lakeview Athletic Club *
3212 N. Broadway, Chicago, IL 60657 • 773.529.2024

Wicker Park Athletic Club

1635 W. Division Street Chicago, IL 60622 • 312.850.4667

*Indicates clubs I tried out

Variety and quality of classes
The classes at all of the clubs were amazing.  Some of them were harder than others and not all of them were my for me.  The one consistent theme with all of the classes was that all of the instructors were completely knowledgeable about the classes they were teaching, were up beat with a lot of energy, and you could tell they truly loved what they were teaching. All of the instructors also gave low impact options, which I appreciated since I’m just getting back into working out.

Like I mentioned,  I was very impressed with all of the classes I took, so I’m sure they are all fantastic.  Of the classes I had the opportunity to take, here are my favorites – definitely must take classes!!

Zumba – Monday 6:30pm and Saturday 10:30am with Miguel.  Miguel is bursting with energy and enthusiasm.  He did a brilliant job of getting the class moving and smiling.  I was really surprised that my heart rate got up to  nice cardio zone of around 146 as an average for the class.  The class consistence of Miguel teaching us various short combinations.  He broke moves down into simple steps and also gave options for low and high impact options.  I completed the whole class, burning around 375 – 400 calories in the hour.  Woohoo!!

Step and Sculpt – Wednesday, 6:00pm – 6:55pm with Sarah B.  I wasn’t sure to expect since I’m used to a traditional step class and was really looking forward to keeping my heart rate up the entire time.  I was surprised that my heart rate stayed up during the weight lifting portion of the class, with an average heart rate of 139 during the class.

Andanza – Friday, 6:30 – 7:30  with Gloria. Andanza is a fast paced Latin/Brazilian dance class.  Completely worth taking to just unwind from the week, loosen up and practice some sexy club dancing moves.  My heart rate was in the high 130’s low 140’s the whole time.  I’m seriously thinking of joining this gym just for this class.  Gloria the instructor is incredible!

Availability and quality of equipment
All of the equipment was in very good condition and most had individual TV monitors where you could watch TV or listen to your ipod while you worked out.  The equipment even had ipod charging stations.  The weight room was clean and had a variety of weights, so that even people using the lighter weights could find what they need.

Climbing walls, pools and basketball courts
EAC, LPAC and LVAC  have a climbing wall.
EAC and WAC each have a basketball court.
EAC, LPAC and WAC each have a pool.

Cleanliness
Not only were all the clubs squeaky clean, everything from the tiles in the bathroom to the self locking lockers was very high end.

Locker Rooms
All of the clubs have free towel service and daily use lockers with built in locks (love this!)  Some of the clubs offered rental lockers where you can leave your things. All of the clubs I visited had a sauna and steam room.  The locker rooms were very clean and showers were equipped with body wash, shampoo and conditioner.  All clubs also had stations with seats, mirrors and blow dryers.

Parking
LPAC – $2 lot parking for $2
LVAC – Street or validated inside parking 3157 N. Broadway – 2 hours for $2
WAC – Valet parking or street parking in front
EAC – Metered parking on street or garage validation on Benson 2 hours for $1
LSAC – Street Parking or metered City lot next door

Daycare
Kids Clubs are available at our Evanston, Lakeview, Lincoln Park and West Loop locations.

Cost
Rates for Chicago Athletic Clubs range from $69-$105 depending on the location. They offer many discounted rates dependent on a member’s company or profession.  They encourage anyone interested to call or email so that a membership advisor can  provide specific  discount information for their organization.

Interested in giving the Chicago Athletic Clubs a try?

Comment below and let me know your fitness goals for the year. We’ll pick one winner to receive a TWO WEEK PASS to the Chicago Athletic Clubs. If you are already a member of CAC, tell us your favorite class or thing to do at the gym and you could win a two week pass for a friend!!


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One Response to “Healthy Club Review and Two Week Membership Giveaway – Chicago Athletic Clubs”

  1. Hey all!! if you are interesting in entering the trial membership contest, please enter you comment in the FB comments above. We are closing down this comment section so your entry will go away if it’s here.

    Thanks and good luck!

    Hope