Wabash CrossFit gym under new ownership

By Mandy Underwood

Jenna Hovermale, the new owner of Wabash CrossFit, believes that this new venture is a way for her and her family to help the community accomplish overall health.

“For us, Wabash CrossFit is more of a community, and we took it on more as a ‘let’s see what we can do for the community and for the gym members,’ rather than something that we need in order to support ourselves,” she told The Paper of Wabash County.

Jenna is originally from Arizona, and moved to Indianapolis in 2011 to work for the National FFA Organization after being an agriculture teacher for some time.

She met her now husband, Mark, while living in Indianapolis and together they discovered the world of CrossFit.

The definition of a CrossFit workout is constantly varied functional movement. It is a type of exercise that helps the exerciser improve everyday functional movements so that they can do daily tasks with more ease.

In 2015, Jenna and Mark moved closer to Wabash, settling in Denver in order to be closer to family as they began having children.

Jenna now works as the Chief Operating Manager for the Belgian Draft Horse Corporation of America and Mark works at the Chrysler plant in Kokomo.

“I ended up at Wabash CrossFit because I was just looking for a new CrossFit gym, so we have been here for four years,” Jenna said. “And at first, Mark took some time off from CrossFit because he just couldn’t figure out with his work schedule how to make it work and it was about a year ago when I told him ‘Why don’t we have a date night, where we go do a workout and then go out to dinner and we can have your parents watch the kids.’ So, he came in and I kind of thought that if he just comes back and just tries it once, he will remember why he loves it, and he did it, and of course he remembered why he loved it, and he has been coming ever since, and now we own the gym.”

Previously, the gym was owned by Jakae Swope.

“Financially, a CrossFit gym is just not the most profitable business, and so Jakae came to me and told me it just wasn’t going to work out anymore for her to maintain ownership as a full-time venture,” said Jenna.

Jenna and her family were not ready to say goodbye to this important aspect of their lives.

“This place has been a home for us. Ever since my kids were born, they’ve been coming with us to this gym,” she said of the CrossFit gym.

“My husband works the evening shift, so he would bring the kids into town since there is child watch here and we would get to do a workout with each other and then I would go back to work. So, it has just been an outlet for us and a way for us to spend time together so we just couldn’t see the doors close.”

Wabash CrossFit currently has seven trainers, including Jenna, who rotate on a monthly schedule and teach classes to members.

“Everyone who trains here also has a full-time job, and with the variety of trainers, that has been really nice so that nobody who trains here is getting burnt out by training every single class. So, we really have a variety of people and personalities in here to give our members something different every day,” said Jenna.

Jenna also stressed that anyone can do CrossFit.

“We just started offering a fitness side to our gym because CrossFit has this perception that it causes injuries, that you have to be fit to do it, and so we started offering this fitness side so that instead of doing the CrossFit workout, we offer a fitness workout,” she said.

“We are trying to get people to see that there is another side, and we just want to help improve people’s functional movements so that in their everyday life, they are able to do things like lift up a bag of dog food or be able to put firewood into their stove and that’s really the purpose of CrossFit. You’re not in the gym doing curls, because there is really nothing to a curl that improves your everyday movement. We want to show the community that there really is something for everybody here. We want to focus on the whole health and not just how a person looks in a mirror. You’ll see all different shapes and sizes here working on their health.”

Currently, there are two memberships available at Wabash CrossFit.

People interested in trying CrossFit for the first time will get their first visit for free.

A first-time visitor can expect to go to a class, see the workout of the day written on a board, learn from the trainer how to do the movements and then everyone in the class goes through the workout. Modifications can be made for anyone.

“A lot of times, people modify the workouts, so today, there was a movement called ring dips, and ring dips are a very complex movement so somebody might do pushups instead of ring dips,” said Jenna.

In honor of the new year, there is a buy one, get one free special running from now until Jan. 31. A new member can bring a friend and get two memberships for the price of one, or if a person wants to come on their own, they can buy a month membership and get the second one free.

“We are very community oriented and want to make sure everyone is getting what they can from it.”

Wabash CrossFit also offers a first responder discount, making their membership fee only $60.

The gym is currently partnering with Downtown Nutrition owner Lindsay Heck to provide cardio drumming classes every Thursday at 6:45 p.m. This class is open to the public and is $5 per class.

An unlimited membership is $100 a month if you do auto pay, $110 if you pay in person, and people with this membership can come as often as they want, and family members can be added on for $50 a month, and kids workout for free. This membership also gets members into the cardio drumming class and the upcoming yoga class for free.

For people wanting a more limited option, there is a three day a week membership, which is $85 a month, or $75 a month if the member opts for auto pay.

“There are no contracts, but if you miss a class, most times, someone from the gym will contact you to make sure you’re okay and see if there is anything they can do to get you there, even if that means coming in during a non-class time and helping you get your workout in,” said Jenna.

Classes are offered at 5 a.m., a 9 a.m., 12 p.m., 4:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.

Some more new changes coming in the near future include a yoga class and a kids program for kids aged two and up, which will include a lot of gymnastic style exercise.

Posted on 2020 Jan 07