Ali Witherspoon

Ali Witherspoon leads a regular boot camp on Hollywood beach. His Fitness and Lifestyles Expo will feature classes, seminars and an "ultimate athlete" competition. (Michael Francis McElroy/Sun Sentinel / April 25, 2013)

To some people, fitness means bulging biceps and a flat belly. To others, it's being able to walk along the beach without having to sit down and gasp for air.

Recognizing that there's a spectrum of fitness needs, Hollywood trainer Ali Witherspoon has lined up the Fitness and Lifestyles Expo Saturday on Hollywood Beach.

"We put it on for people that might be searching for something new or different or to begin," says Witherspoon, who has run a boot camp on Hollywood Beach for 16 years. "It's a chance to try what might resonate with you, something you might like."

Because he is coordinating the event, Witherspoon, owner of the PerFit Center in Hollywood, will not be offering his classes. Instead, he has invited other instructors to teach free classes.


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Options include:

Two ultimate-athlete competitions, which start at 9 a.m. and cost $50.

Among the 19 events in the Ultimate Athlete Challenge are the bench press, dead lift, standing shoulder press, squats, push-ups, planks, vertical jump, 100-meter and 800-meter runs and tests of agility. A three-minute recovery period will follow each event.

Witherspoon says with a growth in races such as the Spartan Dash and Tough Mudder, along with CrossFit events, the time is right to offer a competition that accurately measures fitness required to participate in sports such as football, basketball, swimming and mixed martial arts.

"The foundation of all those sports is in the training, and with the competition craze, there's a segment of people that will gravitate to this type of event," he says. "I think the time is right to launch it."

A slightly scaled-down version — for those people who can't or don't like to run — is called the Ultimate Strength Athlete competition. Events include bench presses, squats, planks, push-ups, pull-ups and dips.

People wishing to enter just one event, such as the bench press, can do so for $20.

Free fitness classes will begin at 8 a.m. and include yoga, kickboxing, boot camp, aerobics and CrossFit. The one class that charges is a 3 p.m. Zumba class, which is asking $10 each for the No More Tears Project (NMTProject.org).

The Presidential Physical Fitness Challenge for children will take place from 9:30 to 11 a.m. and will be conducted by FLIPANY (Florida Introduces Physical Activity and Nutrition to Youth), a nonprofit created to help people be more fit and eat healthier. The organization will direct children through exercises and award the presidential certificate to those who complete them.

Seminars include a nutrition lecture with Cat Lanciaux, information on Kinesio taping to treat injuries, and platelet-rich plasma therapy, which involves removing blood from a patient, and then re-injecting the platelets into an injured area.

The Fitness and Lifestyles Expo will take place 8 a.m.-6 p.m. at Charnow Park, 100 Connecticut St., in Hollywood. Go to FitnessAndLifestylExpo.com. An afterparty will begin at 9 p.m. at the Big Easy Bar and Grille, 1925 Hollywood Blvd. TheBigEasyBarAndGrille.com.

NSortal@SouthFlorida.com