In the large space that formerly housed The Shed in LynLake, a husband and wife team are opening their dream gym on May 11.
For years, Marcus and Jen Wilson have been searching in multiple states for a place to open their own gym, and a move back to the Midwest has provided the opportunity as the couple prepares to open True Grit Society, a fitness studio focused on offering high-intensity interval training (HIIT) group classes.
“It’s everything I could have wanted in a gym and more,” Marcus Wilson said.
He has been in the fitness industry for more than 30 years, often training people in his garage or in someone else’s gym. He had hoped to open a gym in the Bay Area and in their most recent home in Arizona but couldn’t find the right space at the right price.
Marcus is from the West Coast, but Jen hails from North Dakota and lived in the Uptown area for about seven years in her 20s and worked out at The Shed. When a friend from Minneapolis visited the couple last year and told them The Shed space was vacant, they started looking.
“Here we are,” Jen Wilson said.
The couple, their 4-year-old and two cats moved to Minneapolis in March, after signing a lease for the gym in February, and now live a couple blocks from their new business.
The 5,300-square-foot gym has three distinct classroom spaces. The main room is dedicated to mixed, high-intensity workouts. Four rows of TRX bands dangle from cement beams, the walls are lined with dumbbells and kettlebells that rest on shelves Marcus made himself and a group of row machines and full-body cross cycle exercise bikes sits in the back. Another room will be dedicated to spin classes and the third to non-equipment heavy fitness programming, like yoga.
Marcus Wilson said his ideal class size for HIIT is about 20 people, enough to motivate experienced exercisers but not so many he can’t keep a close eye on any newcomers. He said classes will build strength, cardio endurance, balance and coordination in workouts that emphasize fat burning.
“It’s cross training at its height,” Wilson said.
They plan to have a check-in app and tablets and will put in glass doors so people can see into the classes. They hope to create a social lobby space that fosters community with days for members to bring in children and cross promotions with other local businesses.
“I just want people to have a good time,” Wilson said.
The gym will have a grand opening celebration from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on May 11.
Where: 2814 Lyndale Ave. S., 2nd floor