|By Courtney Llewellyn|
Reminder Assistant Editor
AGAWAM The motto of Anytime Fitness is "different by design...better by comparison." Michael Pease, who will be opening the first full fitness center in Agawam, wants residents to know and believe in that motto.
"I've been looking for what people need and what they want," Pease, part owner of the gym and head of personal training, told Reminder Publications, "and this is it."
Anytime Fitness, which will be located at 200 Silver St. inside the Agawam Crossing, is a 24-hour fitness club that offers massage therapy, state of the art strength and cardio equipment, personal trainers and access to any of the over 1,000 Anytime Fitness clubs located across the U.S. It was dubbed one of the hottest new franchises of 2006 by Entrepreneur Magazine, as well as being one of the fastest growing and lowest costing franchises.
Pease said there are currently about 20 Anytime Fitness centers open in Massachusetts, and he plans on expanding the franchise into Westfield too.
"I guarantee people will be impressed," Pease said. "It's the natural evolution of what people want. It's not a volume gym. We charge a little more [for membership] to get responsible adults. We go for quality, not quantity." He said the average membership at an Anytime Fitness is between 600 and 1,200.
The state of the art equipment is provided by Star Trac, and the cardio machines offer iPod connectivity and personal viewing screens as well as USB charging stations for media devices. Pease also noted the KoKo Smartrainer as a highlight of the gym's equipment. The machine offers the same kind of workout a person would get if he or she were working with a real personal trainer.
The equipment isn't the only benefit of the fitness club, however. Because it is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, its security level is high. "It's the Fort Knox of fitness centers," Pease said. Members are given a key fob when they sign up for memberships and that fob works as a security access card to the facility. The security system includes real-time cameras and emergency lanyards for members.
That key fob is also the access card to any Anytime Fitness across the nation. That reciprocity is included in the price of membership.
Anytime Fitness is for adults only. The minimum age requirement for members is 18. "It's a really friendly place for an adult-oriented experience," Pease stated.
Construction is taking place now for the new gym and Pease said he'd love to have it open by October, "but it's a broad window." Presale of memberships will begin Aug. 23 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., with presales taking place between then and the opening every Monday from 4 to 8 p.m., every Wednesday from 8 a.m. to noon, every Thursday from 4 to 8 p.m. and every Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Silver Street location. Membership rates will be reduced during the presale, and Pease said the monthly membership "costs less than a cable or a cell phone bill."
"People are going to want to switch [from their current gyms] when they see what we have to offer," he added.
"We believe our 24-hour Anytime Fitness will be a great addition to Agawam and the Agawam Crossing in particular," owner Lindsay Fairchild said. "As a lifelong resident, I am excited to be the one to bring Anytime Fitness to my hometown."
Pease shared that sentiment. "I can't wait to work out at my own gym," he said.
To learn more about the Agawam Anytime Fitness, visit www.clubsanytime.com/agawamma.