Third Expansion in Under 3 years
Cherry Hill, NJ—January, 2013— Alycia, 30 and Justin McGinley, 32, spouses and co-owners of CrossFit Aspire (www.crossfitaspire.com) at 3 Larwin Road in Cherry Hill, are the largest CrossFit gym in South Jersey after breaking through a wall next door into the former location of a mixed martial arts studio. The recent expansion has doubled the gym’s size from 5,000 to 10,000 square feet, making it the gym’s third expansion since June of 2010, when the couple started out of their Cherry Hill home’s one-car garage with only one member.
When they grew to 15 members the McGinley's made their first move in 2011 to a 2,300 square foot facility, a former deli on Old Cuthbert Road, just down the street from their current warehouse facility. Their second move to their current space was in January of this year, with 100 members. They now have over 200 members, ranging in age from 5 to 65, with 5 CrossFit coaches and two collegiate level gymnastics coaches, in addition to Justin and Alycia who also coach. Throughout the year, the McGinleys also have high-level Olympic coaches come in to teach special Olympic lifting classes. Justin has coached CrossFit athletes through local, regional and national CrossFit competitions, as well.
The additional 5,000 square feet of space will allow the McGinleys to add more equipment and run two classes simultaneously. “Considering our growth history, we are also planning to accommodate many more members in the months and years ahead, without having to move once a year!” said Alycia.
The McGinleys attribute their rapid growth to the increased popularity of CrossFit, since it was introduced approximately 15 years ago on the West Coast. “The East Coast is just beginning to experience the popularity of the sport,” said Alycia. CrossFit has become such a way of life for the McGinleys and many other CrossFit devotees that the couple even did pull ups in their wedding finery at their reception in May 2010. (See attached photo.)
“The appeal of CrossFit to so many,” said Justin, “is that it’s back to basics, using your own body and weights, pull up bars, rings, tires, and other traditional equipment and materials to move, lift, jump, push and do the things our bodies were designed to do without fancy equipment or a plush facility.”
“CrossFit classes are one hour-long, closely coached small group workouts that focus on building strength and increasing capacity for stamina, endurance, speed, flexibility, agility and power,” said Alycia. “Body changes tend to be fairly quick and dramatic,” she added. Nutrition guidance and performance tracking is all part of the program. “The intensity is what draws people in, and the variety of the workouts, which change daily, is what keeps people coming back,” added Justin. “The coaching at CrossFit gyms more closely resembles personal training, but at a fraction of the cost,” said Alycia.
“A form of training traditionally used by top professional athletes and members of the armed forces, CrossFit, is now mainstream,” added Justin. “However, it's easily modified to fit the abilities of the everyday person, from children to seniors,” Alycia added. “It blends functional fitness with a fun team environment.”
Earlier in 2012, the McGinleys launched a CrossFit Kids program for children ages 5-12. “We have student athletes who use CrossFit for sports training, as well as students who have not yet found the sport that suits them,” said Alycia.
Another milestone for CrossFit Aspire, is that the gym was the first of 85 CrossFit gyms nationwide to implement Wodify, (www.wodify.com) a custom, mobile application that allows members to stay connected to the gym from home or their mobile phone to individually and comparatively track their CrossFit performance and keep a food journal. Another South Jersey first, Wodify was developed by Haddonfield IT firm, Conigent, by its CEO and other employees who are CrossFit enthusiasts.
“Wodify enables us to grow our business technologically, eliminating traditional whiteboards and paper logbooks typically used at CrossFit gyms,” said Justin. “I was initially reluctant to try it, because our industry has a down and dirty reputation, but our members love it, and so do we. Member management features are especially helpful as we grow, including billing and scheduling applications,” he added. “Overall, this strengthens our community of dedicated members,” said Alycia.