Two new CrossFit gyms open in Blaine

Whether you have been a couch potato for years or are an active marathon runner, two new CrossFit gyms in Blaine can help you get in or stay in shape.

Erin Demlow (foreground) works out with Coon Rapids resident Lisa Kemper (background) at a new CrossFit Rigor business in Blaine at 9221 Baltimore Street NE, Suite 200, in Blaine. Another new CrossFit gym is also open at 1630 101st Ave. NE, Suite 190. Photo by Eric Hagen

Erin Demlow (foreground) works out with Coon Rapids resident Lisa Kemper (background) at a new CrossFit Rigor business in Blaine at 9221 Baltimore Street NE, Suite 200, in Blaine. Another new CrossFit gym is also open at 1630 101st Ave. NE, Suite 190. Photo by Eric Hagen

“It’s about pushing people to their limits without pushing them over,” said Erin Demlow, who owns the CrossFit Rigor Blaine location at 9221 Baltimore St. NE, Suite 200.

Richard Jensen owns the CrossFit Blaine location at 1630 101st Ave. NE, Suite 190.

CrossFit, Inc. was founded in 2000 and the company now has about 6,100 gyms all over the world, although most are in the United States.

CrossFit offers a mix of aerobic exercise, gymnastics and Olympic weight lifting. Class members will do a range of exercises from hand-stands to pull-ups to seven to 20 minutes of a metabolic workout, Demlow said.

Unlike other fitness facilities, you do not just walk in and get on a treadmill or grab a dumbbell. Class schedules are made ahead of time.

Instead of being on your own, the CrossFit class model gives individuals encouragement as if they were part of a team. There are even competitions during the year for those that want to measure themselves against other members.
“You’re surrounded by people who are rooting you on,” Demlow said.

Jensen’s first exposure to CrossFit was watching fellow troops do the workouts during his deployments to Kuwait in 2011 and 2012. He had first read about CrossFit after a 2007 deployment in Iraq, but had never seen it in person.

Once he retired from the National Guard after 23 years of service, he formed Generation Fitness, LLC.

Demlow herself thrives on competition. She was a competitive swimmer for 18 years and she played water polo for six years, including her time on Florida State University’s team.

After the Florida native moved to the middle of the desert in Las Vegas, Nev., she really missed the feeling of being on a team. Going to the gym kept her in shape, but it was not the same.

A friend suggested she try CrossFit and she was instantly hooked.

Demlow moved to the Twin Cities over a year ago and wanted to bring CrossFit to the north metro area that has largely not been exposed to this type of workout.

Most CrossFit, Inc. gyms are in the south metro. The nearest CrossFit locations outside the two gyms in Blaine are in Little Canada and Maple Grove, according to www.map.crossfit.com.

Although Jensen and Demlow both needed to be in peak physical shape to do what they did, CrossFit is not only for people who are already in good shape and extremely active.

Demlow said the workouts regiment is flexible based on the person’s abilities and goals.

“We have an amazing group of individuals from mothers of four looking for a great workout to military personnel who use our methodology to keep them on top of their game for deployment,” Demlow said.

For more information on CrossFit Rigor at 9221 Baltimore St. NE, Suite 200, visit www.crossfitrigor.com or call 612-584-8011. The website for CrossFit Blaine, 1630 101st Ave. NE, Suite 190, is www.crossfitblaine.com and the phone number is 763-786-2326.

Eric Hagen is at eric.hagen@ecm-inc.com

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