Get to know your neighbor: Strength and fun in the ‘fitness family’ |

Get to know your neighbor: Strength and fun in the ‘fitness family’

Blair Bracken
Citizen Telegram Contributor
Ashley Gavito, owner of 1211 Fitness, loves training with her clients, who she affectionately refers to as her “fitness family.”
Blair Bracken / Contributor |

When you first walk into 1211 Fitness, you’re not immediately intimidated by an expansive amount of training equipment, or massive muscle men that make you feel like a bug.

The first thing you hear and see when you walk in is the owner, Ashley Gavito, and she’ll greet you with a warm hello and a hug.

“We’re family here,” Gavito said with a smile.

Born in Glenwood Springs, Gavito grew up in New Castle and went to Rifle High School. Having lived in the area pretty much her entire life, Gavito developed a sense of community and it’s obvious through her work that she does what she loves.

She studied marketing in college and moved to Rifle to raise her two sons — her pride and joy.

After working for several years as a customer service representative at the Rifle-Garfield County Regional Airport, Gavito decided to follow a passion that became overwhelming: fitness.

If you drive down West Third Street in Rifle in the morning, you might see a group of dedicated individuals running laps with determination in their eyes and a smile on their faces.

But no smile shines brighter than that of Gavito – who will be seen proudly running with her crew, which she fondly refers to as her “fitness family.” Fitness has been a way of life for Gavito and in March 2013 she officially opened 1211 Fitness.

Her fitness family started out small with only a few regular clients, but it didn’t take long for the business to really get going. Now, it has people in and out of her gym all the time.

“We started working out in a park for a while, and our numbers were small there, and then once we opened our doors at our first facility it grew more and now it just keeps growing and growing,” Gavito said.

Running the businesses requires dedication, and some sacrifice when it comes to time with her children, because, as Gavito explained, “I love training, but the business side can be hard for me.”

An average day with Gavito starts at 5:30 a.m. with class at 1211 Fitness, then a rush home to get breakfast going and to get the kids off to school. She then heads back to the gym for more classes, before returning to school to pick up the kids, make dinner and come back to 1211 Fitness for the last classes of the day.

Prior to being interviewed for this story, Gavito had just finished a class and a couple of her “fitness family” members were sitting and talking among themselves. A nearby wall is covered with signatures from members of the fitness family.

Watching members of the fitness family challenge and push themselves is Gavito’s favorite part of the job. It’s all about getting people passed the intimidation factor, she said.

“People see cross training on TV and say ‘I would never do that,’ but here, we don’t necessarily do cross training, we do a variety of stuff,” Gavito said. “A lot of cardio, a lot of gymnastics and a lot of weight lifting … (It’s) more of a family atmosphere here than just a regular gym. We all know each other’s kids and we do everything with each other on the weekends, so we get to work out and it’s fun and we get to be fit together, but it’s more of the relationships than it is the workouts. Some of the most supportive and amazing people are here in the gym. It’s the best thing to be surrounded by every day.”

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