EBENSBURG – Although each of them has a full-time career, Ashley Archangelo-Gray and Logan Gray wanted to find a way to share their love for health and fitness with others.
More than a year later, the Ebensburg couple said they’ve formed a family of members at their gym, Legends Strength & Fitness Warehouse.
Opened in June 2015, the 4,500-square-foot facility at 324 Tanner St. provides open weightlifting space in addition to training programs and 10 coaches who teach classes like kettlebell, boot camp, yoga, pilates, interval training, cross training, kickboxing and partner workouts.
“We really do have something for everybody,” Archangelo-Gray said.
Archangelo-Gray, a teacher at Richland Elementary, taught fitness classes at Ebensburg’s Young Peoples Community Center for 10 years and coached a competition cheerleading team there for five years.
She wanted to find a way to get children interested in fitness, which lead to “Lil Legends,” an annual camp that gets kids moving.
This summer, 45 students age 4 through 13 divided into three classes based on age and participated in workouts, games and skill practice to build strength, conditioning and coordination.
“Really it’s just about building their confidence,” Archangelo-Gray said, by focusing on each participants’ individual needs, which may improve their performance in team sports.
The Grays, both CrossFit Level 1 certified trainers and USAW Sports Performance coaches, have also placed a focus being involved in the community where they grew up.
“It’s all about giving back,” said Gray, a structural engineer by day who’s also a coach for the gym’s barbell club.
Last fall, the couple organized a benefit event for breast cancer awareness, where local sponsorships, T-shirt sales and a daylong workout competition collected money for Barbells for Boobs, a nonprofit organization that provides mammograms for men and women who can’t afford them.
This year’s Oct. 1 event will benefit the Joyce P. Murtha Breast Care Center, where some Legends members have actually gone through treatment during their breast cancer battles.
Legends also began providing a scholarship to a graduating senior at Central Cambria High School, the Grays’ alma mater.
Qualifying students must plan to enlist in a branch of the armed forces and exhibit a passion for health and fitness.
Through a Memorial Day event called “the Murph challenge,” participants competed in a 1-mile run, 100 pull-ups, 200 pushups, 300 squats and another 1-mile run to raise $850 for this year’s scholarship, which was awarded to Tommy Opdenhoff.
In 2017, Legends plans to sponsor Pony League baseball and has planned a summer picnic, Valentine’s Day couples workouts and a Christmas party for members.
“We’re a family gym,” Archangelo-Gray said, thanking members who support and volunteer to organize community events. “We all just kind of come together."
“We’re thrilled the community has supported us,” Gray added. “Our members are excited to be here.”
At 22 weeks pregnant, Archangelo-Gray said she intends to continue working out and teaching classes for as long as she can to instill the importance of a healthy, fit lifestyle in others and help those striving to reach personal fitness milestones.
“Our goal is for you to get a membership and be here as much as possible,” she said.
“We’re a supportive community who keeps each other accountable.”