Maddie and I made the announcement a few months back that we’d be opening a gym in Farragut North, but it dawned on me a couple days ago that we’d never really explained in-depth the question “what is 202strong?”. And more importantly, “why 202strong?”.
Because when Maddie and I originally started planning out 202strong, we didn’t want to be just another CrossFit Affiliate. There are over 10,000+ affiliates worldwide. And to the lay person, they are all interchangeable. Most people go to an affiliate because it’s the most convenient to where they work or live. And that’s fine. But we want more than that. And as we were planning 202strong, we kept asking ourselves questions like, “what would make someone drive out of their way to come workout at 202strong?” and “what can we do better than everybody else?”.
Below I hope to answer the question “what is 202strong?” and other questions you might have.
One of the smartest women I know once told me that self-talk was a sign of intelligence. I hope she’s right, because the older I get the more I catch myself having silent conversations with myself. And for whatever reason, these conversations typically take the form of Q & A’s. So below is an in-depth, Q & A interview with myself, about 202strong.
What is 202strong?
Surface level, 202strong is a boutique CrossFit facility (coming to Farragut North in the Fall of 2014). Most CrossFit facilities resemble garage gyms — for practical reasons (location, equipment needs, etc) — and we wanted preserve this feel, but upgrade it by including showers, locker rooms, towel service, toiletries, TV Screens to track workouts, a front desk, a bar for people to hangout, and a massage room.
Digging deeper, 202strong is the culmination of everything Maddie and I have learned from coaching thousands and thousands of hours, playing high school & collegiate sports, and experimenting on ourselves — movement matters most. Whether your goal is to look good naked, get stronger, run a marathon, live pain free, play with your kids, excel at a sport, increase your energy, or just be more fit — knowing how to, and being able to move properly — is the #1 priority. Everything else we do in the gym relates back to this, no exceptions.
What makes 202strong different from regular gyms?
The things that make 202strong different from regular gyms are the same things that make any good CrossFit Affiliate different from other gyms. The sense of community, the camaraderie, the fact that people notice when you don’t show up. On a daily basis, most people never receive any positive affirmation. When you step into a good CrossFit Affiliate, you are constantly receiving praise, and not in a patronizing sort of way. The praise is given because you earned it. You tried something new. You picked up a new skill. You pushed yourself a little out of your comfort zone. And once you’re part of a good community, people recognize and acknowledge that.
Ok, so what makes 202strong different from other CrossFit gyms?
Like I said before, we are boutique CrossFit facility, which immediately separates us from the majority of CrossFit Affiliates out there. We’re on a lower mezzanine, we still have barbells, dumbbells, kettlebells, pull-up bars, rings, etc, but we’ve upgraded the feel. Made it a bit more clean, a bit more contemporary.
Not to purposely piss anybody off, but the barrier of entry for opening a CrossFit Affiliate is pretty low, and the barrier of entry for becoming a trainer is basically only $1000. I know a lot of coaches whose only concern is how hard you’re breathing after a workout. Like that’s the only thing that matters. And it’s just not true. Yes, there is a correlation between how hard you work and your fitness, but it’s absolutely not the main factor.
So the real difference lies in our approach towards fitness. Movement matters most. I think we do a really good job of gracefully balancing what people want [the feeling of working hard] versus what people need [functional movements, increased strength across joint range of motion, fixing postural positioning, clearing any joint or tissue restrictions]. And the results we’ve had with our clients up to this point show our approach works.
Why the name, “202strong”?
A lot of time was spent thinking about the name. “202” because it’s the DC area code and since we are located in the heart of the city, we wanted something that would identify DC. Maddie and I both grew up right outside of DC (Maryland side) and I think anyone who grows up in the DC suburbs, whether on the MD or VA side, spends a lot of time in the city and is very proud of the culture and diversity the DMV has to offer.
“Strong” seemed like a natural fit — at first because of the typical cliches you hear in the fitness and CrossFit community: “strong mind, strong body” and “strong is the new skinny”. And the more we thought about it the more we realized “strong” transcends the typical cliches and encompasses everything people look for in their lives. Strong family, strong community, strong careers, strong resolve. It’s not a dominant thing, but a confidence thing.
So I guess what it comes down to is the name 202strong resonated with us, but also comes across ambiguous enough to be left up to interpretation for the needs of our members. We all want to feel like we belong to something bigger than us, and we believe people will be proud to associate themselves with 202strong.
How does a membership at 202strong work?
We have three different options for individuals to become members at 202strong.
1) Monthly group class memberships
2) Private session memberships
3) Punch card group class memberships
Each membership option comes with it’s unique set of perks for our members. For example, all members have access to our locker rooms, showers, towel service, and Wodify access (performance tracking software), private forum, nutrition challenges, and excellent coaching. Monthly and private session members have access to open gym hours. And those are just some of the perks people will receive.
Who is 202strong for?
Everyone has the right to know how to move properly and pain free. So everyone. But not necessarily. Anyone — no matter what fitness level — will fit in and find help and success in our community. However, if you are of the mindset that more always equals better, or you aren’t the type of person that is OK with being humbled, than 202strong isn’t for you. And that’s OK. We want the fit to be natural, not forced. But, if you are up to the challenge, you’ll have the best coaches, a great facility, and amazing coaches at your disposal.
In one sentence, can you sum up what 202strong is all about?
202strong is the movement oriented, results driven, approach to fitness you deserve.