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January 7th, 2010 by John Stephens
Sierra Fitness Expansion Means More Weights, More Spinning Space
Last week we told you about Sierra Madre fitness mogul Sandy Lewis-Duval and her newest business venture, The Shabby Dog. And while Lewis-Duvall is certainly branching out into new business areas with her high-end dog leashes sold online and at her Montecito Ave. boutique, she’s not leaving the fitness business anytime soon. In fact, she’s expanding.
Much like starting The Shabby Dog boutique, Lewis-Duvall’s decision to expand Sierra Fitness during the worst financial downturn since the Great Depression is in keeping with her smiling philosophy of being “crazy” enough to take a risk when the opportunity presents itself.
“My philosophy was that a lot of these other gyms are struggling right now and cutting amenities and trimming their class offerings. So I figured that I would invest in my business and my clients. We’re not going to take away, we’re going to give!”
And give she has. Advertising itself as a place born out of a “hype-free philosophy” and providing a “non-intimidating environment,” since 1994 Sierra Fitness has been a small community gym where everybody knows your name as well as your workout routine. But the space constraints of the gym have provided some limitations to the amount of equipment and types of classes they offer. But after their recent expansion, space limitations are an issue no more.
With their new space, Sierra Fitness now has a larger weight room with more free weights and a larger cardio room as well as a new spinning studio and class studio upstairs.
The response to the expansion has been extremely positive.
“I knew it was a risk at the time, but the mood among our members is just great now,” said Lewis-Duvall.
Sandy told us that, in the past, many of her members have been women and that the lack of amenities such as a larger free-weight area may have been keeping some of the men clinging to their Gold’s Gym memberships.
“With the free weights addition, a lot of our female client’s husbands are now starting to come in and take memberships. I think that’s an aspect that we were kind of missing,” said Lewis-Duvall.
Even more popular than the free weights, however, is the wide variety of workout classes Sierra Fitness offers all of its members, all of which are included with their monthly membership dues. Classes such as Spinning, Yoga, Pilates Mat, Core Fitness, Ballet Barre, Step Aerobics, Toning Plus, Easy Does It are scheduled throughout the week, everyday from open to close. A full schedule is available on the gym’s website, sierrafit.com. And of course, the widely popular Sierra Fitness “Original” Bootcamp class is still offered. The next session starts Monday, January 11 and the eight-week session meets every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 5 and 6 a.m.
All this and more are just a few of the ways Sierra Fitness is celebrating their 15th year in the community. So tie up your pup outside with that brand new Shabby Dog hand-free leash and stop by to see what all the fuss is about. All those fit, smiling faces surely can’t be wrong.
In the words of Tom Gammill, long-time Sierra Fitness member and artist behind the Doozies comic strip, “Without Sierra Fitness, I’d be a fat, pathetic mess. Thanks to them, I’m only a slightly overweight, pathetic mess.”