Everyday is a competition at Iron Tribe Fitness.
There are no treadmills or exercise bikes — just free weights, rowing machines, pull-up bars, and most importantly, a coach and team to drive the workouts.
“You put forth more effort in five minutes of our workouts than most people do in 45-minute workouts,” owner Forrest Walden said.
The gym opened two Hoover locations this year: Hoover (on Montgomery Highway) in January and then on Alabama 150 in March.
“We saw the transformation [Iron Tribe was bringing] in the communities where we had locations, in Homewood, Mountain Brook, on 280 and Downtown Birmingham,” A: 150 Iron Tribe manager Matt White said. “A lot of our members had been asking us to create Iron Tribes in Hoover.”
The new Hoover locations are also the largest and have the best quality equipment of all the Iron Tribe locations along with the same coaching you will find at any location, according to White.
“We have tremendous people in our classes, both in terms of the community that is being built and the results we are seeing,” White said.
The Hoover location on Montgomery Highway already has around 100 members, and the AL 150 location had 53 at the end of its first six weeks. Each gym can only have 300 members, and White estimates they will be full in another six month. He encouraged people to join soon.
The center of each class is a high intensity Workout of the Day (WOD): running, rowing, Olympic lifting, power lifting, or some combination of those things. No two WODs are ever the same.
The regimen appeals to those who love competition. Everyone’s score from the workout is written on a marker board and is listed online. A male and a female winner are awarded each day.
“We talk about performance, not aesthetics,” Walden said. “When you focus on performance, aesthetics come.”
Those who come to Iron Tribe, especially female participants, gain confidence, according to Walden. A lot of people make career changes because they start facing their fears. Others stop smoking. Everyone has newfound energy, he said.
Although the workouts are intense, Iron Tribe does not cater to just young, in-shape athletes. They have more clients over age 45 than under and welcome business people and the stay-at-home moms and their families. Clients from age 6 to 72 complete exercises scaled to their levels.
“It’s rare that someone doesn’t get a family member involved,” Walden said. “We have quite a few families where both spouses and their kids are involved.”
Iron Tribe also encourages a Paleo Diet Lifestyle to go with the exercise: meats, vegetables, nuts, seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar.
With a background as a personal trainer and in the fitness business, Walden discovered the group- based functional movement workout program five years ago and started doing it out of his garage with friends.
Building on his experience with Fitness Together franchises, he moved from his garage to build an innovative business model for the fitness experience. He started a Homewood gym in 2010 and has since opened locations around Birmingham.
“It’s like a playground for adults,” Walden said. “I have never had anyone not say, ‘I feel like a kid again.’”
Those new to Iron Tribe start with a 12-session, month-long Iron Tribe 101 class that teaches fundamental workouts and the terminology used in the classes.
“From there you can walk right into an Iron Tribe class,” Walden said. “I feel like everyone loses 20 pounds in that first month.”
To get involved with Iron Tribe, call or go online to schedule an initial consultation.