Eddie Avakoff grew up in the Bay Area as a swimmer and water polo player. Water polo lead him to UC Santa Barbara, where he played as a freshmen. Something magic about that school, because he fell in love with living a fit and active lifestyle: running on the beach, surfing, rock climbing, etc. and went on to earn a degree both in advertising and exercise/sports studies. While in school, triathlons took over as his sport of choice and pursued a sponsored career out of college. In search of a facility that could accommodate to his style of training, which yielded zero results, he decided to open a facility of my own. So he can train myself in a unique domain and also share this style of fitness to others.
Novice to professional and everything in between, this style of hardcore, team-driven training appealed to the masses. The atmosphere lights a fire in just about anyone, as motivation is found amongst the murals, awe-inspiriting members, and even the music.
Eddie got started opening Metroflex in Aug 2010 with his colleague, Chris Albert. They spent 4 months carefully planning the gym on paper and raising funds. Together, they moved to Long Beach in Jan 2011 knowing absolutely no one in Southern California. They had only one goal: Build a bad ass gym. And so that’s what they did..
What makes your gym different or unique from other commercial fitness gyms?
EA: Unique atmosphere is really what makes this place so much different: from the wall art to the music to the equipment to the way we use the equipment itself.. It’s a different culture here. People come here to TRAIN, not exercise. People can’t wait to get in here when they wake up in the morning, because this gym is their sanctuary. It is their place of trail and self-discovery.
Members here all have interesting stories and warm personalities. We treat each other as if we’re all members of a collective team. Because at Metroflex, that’s exactly what we are: Teammates.
Since 1987 where Metroflex was founded how did the gym develop to the reputation it has today?
EA: Metroflex Gym (the original in Arlington) certainly had an illustrious reputation before I ever became involved with the name. But I do think that the Metroflex LBC’s involvement with the fitness community, both through tangible example and cyber exposé.
You featured several videos in your website that you provide several activities for your clients to keep them engaged such as having mini competitions and games within the gym for clients to participate. Can you explain what inspired you to conduct these exercises in your gym? What did you aim to achieve with your clients?
EA: These were all games that I would have played with my buddies. So why not include members and of the gym. If they joined this chalky warehouse in the first place, they must be somewhat on my level. Usually bringing in new members to games and events opens up their personalities. People who once walked around the gym somewhat timid or quiet, now act as themselves and we get to see some remarkable and very outgoing personalities.
How has it been assisting others with their fitness? What are the most frequent request you get from your clients? How do you address them?
EA: I love helping people with fitness. Goals in particular don’t really get me fired up one way or another: I pride myself on being competent to accomplish ANY request the client may have: gain weight, lose weight, run a marathon, pick up 500 lb, etc. I am confident in my knowledge for all aspects of fitness and have performed the task myself at least once in my life. So I can say that I have real world self-experience, something many trainers lack these days. I usually address my clients in a casual demeanor. No one wants to get yelled at day in day out for months on end. I treat my clients the way Id like to get treated, and the same way other professionals that I deal with treat me: calm, cool, knowledgeable, and positive.
We had the opportunity to work together to create and launch a new website for Metroflex Gym. Can you please describe the development and production process with the NMI team? How was your overall experience working with the team and were your expectations met during our time working together?
EA: The NMI Team was awesome. Totally transformed my web page; went from looking like a high school project to an legit professional business. Not just small business professional, the polished look and precise functionality of Natalie’s Web pages is literally that of a top tier company, like Hurley or Starbucks. Was thrilled from the get-go, and Natalie and her team have been running with my site ever since. Diligent updates and support when seldom needed.
Can you tell us more about your products, ebooks, and trainings? Any up and coming seminars?
EA: Writing some more ebooks, but really giving them a lot more detail and thought. The last ones were more or less guides, where-as this one is going to spell out each movement and provide plenty of visual demonstrations. Expecting over 6x the amount of content and training programs.
I am currently building a second gym in the OC Area, so busy with that.
Big events coming up are Oct 4-5 Powerlifting Event (over 200 total lifters) and also Dec 20th Christmas Party, which I really hope the entire NMI team can attend. Were gunna have games, an obstacle course, lots of charity events there, and even a strongman competition.
What are the gym’s future plans and goals?
EA: To take over the world!!!
Hahaaha, no really, I want to brand OCR (obstacle course racing) more in the gym. I want to finish building location #2 and set that one up for success too. Really want a total of about 5 gyms around so cal one day…
Any shout outs?
EA: I love you Lauren Abraham
Lastly, where can we find you on the Internet?
EA: Considering my girlfriends profession, you don’t want to know….