Witer / Jennifer Magley

A massive tire, rope, sled, chains, punching bag, pegs in a wall. All are stations at Survival Fitness, the spacious gym at 12955 Old Meridian St. Suite 102.

Survival Fitness focuses on High Intensity Interval Training, an exercise strategy that alternates short periods of intense anaerobic exercise with less-intense recovery periods.

“Our classes are challenging,” says owner Josh Kuklak, “which is why we decided to go with the name Survival Fitness.”

A North Central graduate and competitive power-lifter into his early 30s, Kuklak began working to make Indiana, named as one of the most obese states in the nation, a healthier place. He began by coaching and working with children in 2006, but shifted his attention to adults clients in 2008.

“I decided it was a better focus for the adults.”

“Our gym is unique in that we provide a personal approach, and know all of our clients by name, Kulak says. “Our clients are our family, and we take good care of them. If someone has an injury or issue we know what modifications are needed and keep a close eye on them.  Our workouts are carefully planned so that the experience is challenging, but safe.”

Kulak talks about a client who needed assistance after a major stroke. A fitness family was she needed.

“The doctors told her she wouldn’t walk again or be able to do much” Kuklak recalls.

But after a few years of training at Survival Fitness, not only is she walking but now functions beyond her doctor’s expectations.

“It’s amazing to watch someone make such incredible progress from such a dim foresight from what the doctors had said,” Kuklak says.

This thriving, can-do survivor mentality is one that Kuklak wants to keep growing in the Hoosier state,

“We have found that the people in Carmel have a strong desire, and know the importance of exercise and nutrition,” Kuklak, says. “We want to continue to provide the best training possible for our clients and future clients.”

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