COVID-19 pandemic inspires two Southeast Kentuckians to open 24-hour gym in Whitley County

Whitley Weights
Whitley Weights(None)
Published: Sep. 4, 2022 at 6:21 PM EDT
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WYMT Weekend Edition News at 11 p.m.

WILLIAMSBURG, Ky. (WYMT) - The pandemic was a catalyst for many Americans to start a project or business they have always wanted to, which is what happened for Tanner Broughton and Lauren Lambdin of Knox County.

“When COVID really hit, especially for Southeastern Kentucky, health, diabetes, everything, especially mental health right now with COVID, seemed to decline rapidly and people weren’t doing the proper things to keep their health in check,” said Whitley Weights Co-Owner Tanner Broughton.

The two nurses, who had never owned a business before, decided to take a chance in opening Whitley Weights on August 20th. The business is a 24-hour gym located in Williamsburg.

“With me having a fitness background and Lauren being from Whitley County, logistically, it made sense with a gym not being here to kind of migrate this way and to open up a gym and to help people out with the whole fitness scene,” said Broughton.

Broughton added it was crucial to open a gym that anyone, on any schedule, can access.

“With the travel nursing as well, we had both worked third shift, so we were working 7:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. and I would like to see that out of the gym so I can kind of tailor it to people in a similar situation as me,” he said.

Whitley Weights has partnered with other local businesses and organizations, along with a personal trainer, to create an individualized approach to fitness.

“You can do nutrition consults, macro counseling, the one-on-one coaching sessions, literally anything fitness we have here, so we strive to make it a one-stop shop,” said Broughton.

Both Broughton and Lambdin said they feel grateful for the support they’ve received since their grand opening, and for anyone looking to try a new venture, the pair have some advice.

“I say go for it. Full send. No risk, no reward,” said Broughton.

“Utilize every resource possible. We’ve called everybody who owns businesses. All my friends who own businesses, all [his] friends who own gyms, we’ve worn everybody out,” said Lambdin.

Whitley Weights is located inside the Cumberland Regional Mall in Williamsburg. You can call Whitley Weights at (606) 627-5948 or visit their Facebook page to learn more about membership options and services.