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Family-owned Gym Helps People Succeed In Health & Fitness Goals

Writer / Angela Cornell
Photographer / Jubilee Edgell

It often doesnt take much to empower someone else. A kind word, an encouraging nod, lending someone a sympathetic and non-judgmental ear or making a helpful suggestion can all go a long way to helping someone else.

Sometimes, empowerment requires a lot more effort. Tiffany Hernandez, for instance, empowers the people around her through the services, programs, and products offered at Hard Knox Gym, which she and her husband, Seth, opened in late July.

Hard Knox Gym

Weve always been into fitness,” Tiffany says. We wanted to help people in a way that wasnt in a hospital setting.”

Tiffany, who grew up in Michigan, moved to Knox when she married Seth, a Knox native, three years ago. It didnt take long for her to fall in love with the town. Its pretty cool to see how this little area can come together for people,” she says. I fell in love with the little place.”

Owning a gym has been a dream for Tiffany for some time, but it wasnt until recently that it could become a reality.

One day, I looked at him and said, Lets open a gym.And he said, Okay!’” she explains. We kinda went in blind. Weve been learning as we go, doing the best we can, figuring out the best way to do things, making our people happy, and giving back to the community.”

Tiffany has loved watching the community come together for health and wellness, creating a unique culture inside the four walls of the gym as individuals try to beat their personal records.

“The people have been amazing,” she says. “Just seeing the camaraderie here, seeing strangers or people who have known each other their entire lives, celebrating everybodys separate wins. In a sense, were all winning together.”

Everyone who comes through the doors are interested in getting and keeping their health on track. Some have been working on that for years, others have never been to a gym before.

Hard Knox Gym

They told me, It doesnt feel intimidating here. It feels like a family,’” Tiffany says.

Guests at Hard Knox Gym have dozens of equipment, ranging in style from cardio, circuit machines, to plate-loaded machines. There are also several types of classes offered, like the ever-popular high-intensity interval training (HIIT), as well as kickboxing, jujitsu, wrestling and more.

Between 8-6, Hard Knox Gym also has tanning beds available. For those who want a little extra, theres also a fitness trainer and a nutritionist on-site.

One of their most popular amenities is the juice bar, Hard Core Juicers, that sells a variety of healthy drinks, offering pre-workout drinks, smoothies, coffee and more, run by Tammy Jacobs. The smoothies are all made with fresh ingredients and are available to members and non-members alike.

Shes been a huge supporter and part of this business,” Tiffany says. She makes them with real bananas, strawberries, snickers, and other kinds of things. A lot of the recipes shes come up with herself!”

Between 8-6 they also offer childcare for anyone up to 16 years old. I really want to offer parents the chance to come work out, even with little ones,” Tiffany says.

As a community-focused venture, Hard Knox Gym will be offering some charity events, like a food drive around Thanksgiving and a powerlifting competition in December to raise money to buy toys for kids in the area.

We want to give back to our community, so were going to be trying to think of ideas and events to come together there,” Tiffany says.

For the Hernandezes, the gym is a way to benefit their community in a new and unique way. Its a lot of support and help. We want to see this community get better as a whole,” she says. Ive had people say that were saving lives here.”

As time goes on, Tiffany hopes the gym will continue to thrive. I want to see the same faces I see today five years from now. I want to see them still working on their goals and being a part of something that I feel is bigger than themselves. It gives people a place to come to not only lift, but also to socialize.”

Hard Knox Gym is open 24-7. Check them out at 2616 S. US 35, Knox. For more information, call them at 574-207-5441 or email Hernandez at tiffany@thehardknoxgym.com. You can also check them out online at facebook.com/hardknoxgym.

Hard Knox Gym

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