Yesterday morning, I made my way to a small private gym not far from Union Square to check out Justine Gelband’s ModelFIT class. The class is held at Mushin Mixed Martial Arts, an unpretentious space that’s half padded with wrestling mats for mixed martial arts.
After a light warmup, the small class divided for either circuit training or kickboxing. I started with the five-station circuit with Gelband. Using a step, resistance bands, medicine balls, a bosu ball, a balance board, and floor station, no exercise was repeated twice. Each client was given individualized exercises as they cycled around the circuit, based on their needs and fitness level. As someone who spends much of my day hunched over a keyboard, Gelband asked me to focus on my posture continuously.
After the circuit, I went to kickboxing, led by Muay Thai trainer Joe Hernandez. Like most of the other women working out with me, I had never done kick boxing before. Although we covered very basic technique, there was a lot of action and I definitely worked up a sweat. The ModelFIT class concluded with everyone coming back together for stretching. However, Gelband’s workouts are never identical, and the ModelFIT classes incorporate elements from Zumba, martial arts, functional strength training, Pilates and yoga.
Describing the newest Sports Illustrated Swimsuit cover model as “very spunky, a real go-getter,” Justin Gelband had only the best things to say about Kate Upton when we spoke this afternoon. The 19-year-old is making a splash this week in a barely-there string bikini on her first Swimsuit Issue cover, just a year after earning the Rookie of the Year title from the publication.
When the personal trainer first met Kate a year-and-a-half ago, he says she walked in with serious goals and objectives. “I want the best trainer there is,” she told her agency, and that’s how the two started working together. Upon meeting her, Justin recalled thinking “This is a superstar.” How right he was!
The creator of a workout method he calls Model Fit says he customizes every workout and nutrition plan for each client, whether a Victoria’s Secret model, swimsuit model, or the moms he trains in his New York studio. Before divulging Kate’s fitness plan for the swimsuit shoot, he was clear that while anyone can get Kate’s results, no one should try to mimic her methods to get them.
“Get the best body for you,” he told us. “Be fit for you, don’t worry about what everyone else is doing.”
So, if you’re still curious, Justin says he and Kate worked out five days a week for the three months leading up to her Sports Illustrated shoot. “She loves movement and motion,” he said. Based on that, he ran Kate through circuit training workouts that resembled an obstacle course. He described a workout as starting with a light run on the treadmill, then kickboxing that lead to stretching with elastic bands to work her back and legs, followed by quick feet movement, work on the BOSU and core board, then step ups, and finally the use of a step ladder. (more…)