After punching the clock at their corporate jobs every day without giving it so much as a black eye, Heather Prenatt and John Prenatt decided to let go of their frustrations and pursue their true passion: fitness. During the one-hour CrossFit sessions at CrossFit Friendswood, the duo leads students in a total-body regimen that may have them swing from gymnastic rings, hop on and off plyometric boxes, and raise chins high on pull-up bars. While adults perform the varied routine, tots can play Xbox and Wii in the kids’ room.
During good weather, they sometimes take the training out to the parking lot to push, pull, and heave weights under open skies. The functional movements of CrossFit's ever-changing exercises make everyday actions easier and safer, such as climbing stairs or launching the kids to school using only one arm. The program also helps increase lean body mass and burn calories even after the workout. Because the system was designed for everyone, Heather and John have CrossFit Kids sessions as well, which incorporate all the same elements, just scaled down to meet the abilities and fitness levels of children and teenagers.
Music floods over the sound system as dancers on their tiptoes grip a ballet barre. A wooden floor supports their moves as they stare into a mirror, which reflects their perfectly pointed legs and angelic halos. At Center Stage Studio, owner, founder, and director Temi Woodley captains a team of instructors who lead dance and fitness classes in a noncompetitive atmosphere. Youngsters and adults alike can attend a wide variety of group classes, such as Zumba, hip-hop, two-step, and spiritual praise dancing. The studio also opens its doors for private dance or fitness lessons and birthday parties.
Tell us about your business.
At CrossFit Propel, we strive for perfection in every aspect of our work, and stop at nothing to support the health and fitness needs of our members. We relentlessly provide our members with the tools necessary to develop into the best version of themselves through our safe, fun, and effective fitness program.
What makes your business stand out?
We have over 7,300 square feet of air-conditioned gym space with state-of-the-art facilities and equipment. We offer over 11 classes a day Monday–Friday, and are open seven days a week. We are the only CrossFit gym in Texas that has the WODTime application, which allows users to interact with fellow members and view the gym's leaderboard throughout the day.
What inspired you to start or run this business?
CrossFit Propel came into existence through an organic relationship that grew between both owners, Minh and [me]. We met through CrossFit, and fell in love with the community and how it helped change people's lives. Through time, we saw the need for a well operated and managed gym that was dedicated to improving not only people's lives, but how the message of CrossFit was being delivered. Our focus is on instilling courage into our clients so that they will be inspired to be better than they were the day before. CrossFit Propel is, and always will be, in the business of encouraging people.
What is your most popular offering?
Our world-class Beginning Series helps break the misconception that CrossFit is strictly for hardcore exercise enthusiasts or athletes. The CrossFit Beginning Series introduces individuals to the foundational movements and exercises typically seen in CrossFit workouts. We ensure clients have everything they need to meet their fitness goals in a safe, effiicent, and effective manner. Whether those clients are looking to get back into shape or they have an extensive athletic background, we strive to include everyone.
What’s your favorite part about your job?
For us, its helping people! That's all we're about! We want to encourage, motivate, inspire, and transform people into the best version of themselves possible. CrossFit does more than change a person's physical appearance; it changes and improves an individual in every aspect of their life. People become better family members, better employees at their jobs, better emotionally, and better spiritually.
If you saw someone running down the street with a sledgehammer, you would most likely think that person was crazy, but that's just another day in the life of the coaches at CrossFit Armada. The coaches—all of whom are certified across multiple CrossFit modalities—believe that the road to physical fitness is not paved with repetitive sessions on the treadmill. Each day welcomes a new workout of the day, which may incorporate one of more elements of gymnastics, weight training, and cardiovascular conditioning using equipment such as free weights, climbing ropes, and gymnastics rings. One day, students might do pushups and swing kettlebells within the 10,000-square-foot gym, and the next, they might venture outside to run or pound massive tires with a sledgehammer until they agree to personally train them. The workouts are intense, but scalable for all levels of athletes from professional athletes to absolute beginners.
In addition to traditional CrossFit classes, the coaching team also leads specialty courses such as CrossFit Endurance and CrossFit Olympic Lifting, as well as personal-training sessions.
In Body Evolution's recently renovated gym, rows of traditional cardio machines whir alongside an updated aerobics room and an indoor basketball court. To inaugurate their new square footage, the trainers kicked off a variety of classes, which include Zumba, boot camps, various forms of yoga, and cardio salsa. When not leading personal-training sessions or doling out nutrition advice, the staff keeps the doors unlocked 24 hours a day for all-night access to the circuit- and strength-training equipment. Ramping up results, the staff plugs patrons into a machine-assisted metabolism test that helps make nutritional recommendations such as, "Stop trying to eat this machine." To get families fit together, the gym's Kidz Zone incorporates play and health into programs such as the Wii Fit workout.
At CrossFit Graffiti, owner Shondria Williamson and her team of coaches lead groups through the no-nonsense CrossFit program, an approach to fitness that incorporates movements from across the fitness spectrum, including running, power lifting, and gymnastics. Inside the fully equipped facility, participants lift and jump, push and pull, grunt and growl through high-intensity classes that unfold around the ever-changing workout of the day, which can be anything from squats to dumbbell swings.
To prepare gym novices for the rigors of taking a CrossFit class or arm-wrestling a robocop, the facility offers a fundamentals program and high-intensity boot camps.
Owner and head coach at Universal CrossFit, Eric "Big EZ" Henry draws from his experience in freestyle wrestling, amateur boxing, parkour, and his time as a Marine to lead his students towards the fitness promised land. Along with a cache of coaches comprised of college athletes and members of the military, Eric teaches the tenets of CrossFit, pairing them with nutritional counseling to keep bodies from shriveling up into prune-like versions of themselves. Based on the CrossFit philosophy of varied movement at high-intensity intervals, instructors lead pupils through a huge range of moves that pull from weightlifting, gymnastics, and metabolic conditioning to help improve stamina, strength, and the rest of Universal CrossFit's 10 elements of fitness.