Paddle and HIIT the Beach with Crosstown Fitness

Wanna throw shade at your same ol’ summer workout routine? Join Crosstown Fitness and Chicago SUP for a blazing combo high intensity interval (HIIT) and Stand-Up Paddle Board (SUP) class on gorgeous North Avenue Beach Chicago this sunny season.


Crosstown Fitness, a HIIT training gym with 2 locations, West Loop and North side, houses some of the best trainers in the city and no class is ever the same. Chicago SUP is Chicago’s original Stand-up Paddle Board outfitter. They have 2 paddle ports on North Avenue Beach and Diversey Harbor.  This perfect partnership is 3 years strong and is still walking on water.

Betina Gozo, Nike Master Trainer and Director of Fitness at Crosstown Fitness, leads a sweaty, sandy and sizzlin’ HIIT sequence to heat things up before you cool it down with the calm cardio of paddle boarding. Betina starts class off with sand running sequences, such as short sprints, butt kicks and high knees. She then moves on to body weight training like bear crawls, push ups, or 1 legged paddle dead lifts. If you didn’t know, running and exercising in sand helps strengthen weaker muscles in the legs and is lower impact than running on pavement. Come for a few weeks and you’ll shore to be feeling like Sponge Bob Svelte Pants.


After you HIIT the beach hard, it’s time to paddle! Ok, so what is SUP? It’s a beachy blend of Surfing and Kayaking, where you stand on a wide surf board and use a single bladed paddle for momentum. SUP challenges your core, balance and is also low impact. However, with all these benefits, you may still feel a lil’ crabby about paddling for the first time.

Fear not! Chicago SUP staff are friendly and ready to help you feel like a fish in water. When we stepped up to the board, staff members gave an overview of the paddle parameters and techniques. They also loan out water proof phone holders so you can safely selfie your way through the waves.  Chicago SUP staff provide Baywatch like support, eyeing the tides by your side as you paddle. If you’re feeling shaky about your sea legs, you can always kneel or straddle the board to anchor yourself with more stability.


After you serenely sail around Lake Michigan and dock your board, drift into Castaways for a drink or chill at Green City Market in Lincoln Park to refuel with fresh farmer’s market produce. Your perfect summer Saturday is planned–you’re welcome!


Every Saturday, 8:30-9:30 a.m. (weather permitting) through October


Chicago SUP stand, North Avenue Beach Chicago. The SUP stand is south of the Castaways boat and the volleyball nets.

Sign Up:

Shell out $25 for a sandy bottom adventure or a 10 pack pass is $220! Members can get wet with sweat for free. Check out Crosstown Fitness website to purchase and for more package options.

Other High Tide Tips:

Wet to Wear? No shoes are needed for the workout. Wear a swimsuit or sweat wicking clothes that dry easily (*you may fall off your board*).

There are cubbies for your belongings at the Chicago SUP hut but don’t bring anything too valuable.

Finally, everyone wants to be at the beach ( Nikki Minaj says), so parking may be tight. You can access public transportation, park near Lincoln Park zoo, but come early to make sure you have time to score a spot for your vehicle.

*Thanks to Marissa Joseph and Dana Hartung of MJPR for hosting us and for the pictures of the event.  We were offered a class for review but were not compensated for our opinions.*