Chicago Insider: River North Trainer Jennifer Reed

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River North Trainer Jennifer ReedCrossfit coach Jennifer Reed tells us why just north of downtown, in Chicago's River North neighborhood is the only place she'll call home in Chicago. (Hint: the weather is involved.)

Name, Age, Occupation:
Jennifer Reed, 30, Owner and Coach Atlas CrossFit

Neighborhood: River North

Abode: Two-bedroom condo

How long have you lived in River North? I've lived in Chicago for 4 years and River North the whole time. I thought about moving, but I realized I could always just venture out to other neighborhoods but keep my base here.
What do you love most about River North?

Convenience. It's downtown and I have everything I need in walking distance; restaurants, stores. Plus it's only 6 blocks away from where I work so I can walk there which is really nice. Though I must confess I get a cab if it's really cold. I know that's bad as a trainer but it's Chicago! Having everything really close is a huge plus for my neighborhood.

Do you talk to your neighbors?
Yes, I know everyone on my floor. It's all young, single people on my 28th floor, which is nice.

Best kept secret in your area?
Streeters Tavern. There is a basement bar with ping pong that is a blast. Also the Scott Patrick Salon on Oak Street is the best salon in the city. A very small clientele so it's very intimate.

Favorite way to spend a Saturday night in River North?
I would say dinner at Sunda. It's Asian-fusion and the best restaurant ever. And then usually out for drinks somewhere like Bull and Bear, a fun traders bar.

What's it like living on the 28th Floor?
The views are amazing! I can see miles down State Street and have a sliver-view of Lake Michigan. I have floor-to-ceiling windows that wrap around so I have city views all around me and am surrounded by city lights at night which I love!

Chicago's winters are infamous, is it hard to operate an athletic facility? Most of our Crossfit workouts are outside in the summer and inside in the winter, obviously. We do have to make changes for the weather, which means six to eight months a year we are inside but being in Chicago we are used to it. Everything adjusts for the winters!

It's not just a workout, it's Crossfit. What should people know about Crossfit?
I think its the future of functional training because it's results oriented and performance based. The retention rate is so great because our concept of fitness is measurable, we prove the fitness results. People stay motivated because they constantly see results and there are ways to measure how far they have come. Crossfit is growing at a rate of 1 percent a day, it's incredible. The best workout!

People tend to be fanatical about Chicago, so what do you love about it? I love Chicago for the people and the summers. I think its the best place in the world in the summer. I travel a lot in the winter, but I find Chicago a great base with tons of opportunity, young professionals and great mid-western attitude.
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