The Collective: Where Fitness, Passion, and Community Converge

Fitness is in their DNA

In an interview with Jeremy Jones and Luis Galindo from The Collective, we explore the journey of this fitness haven—from its roots as Funktional Fitness to its transformation into a community-driven fitness space at Epicenter in Gilbert. Discover the inspiration behind The Collective, its unique approach to fitness, and the diverse offerings that extend beyond the gym floor. Jones and Galindo share insights into the importance of aligning passion with positive change, making fitness accessible to all, and fostering a welcoming community. Join us for an inside look into The Collective's philosophy and how it aims to empower individuals on their health and fitness journey.

Let’s start with Why… Why create The Collective after years of success as Funktional Fitness (FunkFit) in downtown Gilbert?
We’ve had a relationship with the Johnston family for years, so when we learned about Epicenter, we knew we wanted to be part of it. It made sense because we have a lot of members in Agritopia and this area. Plus, as a local small business, we felt like we fit the vibe of Epicenter really well and could serve more people in Agritopia and the surrounding communities. When we connected with the other Epicenter tenants, we felt like we were all very like-minded and wanted to be a part of what the Johnstons were building.
Tell us about The Collective.
This is not just another gym, but an alignment of our passion for making a positive difference by changing people’s lives through health and fitness. We feel that fitness is in our DNA. The Collective focuses on three aspects of fitness: Train, Ride, and Recover. Training in one-on-one or group fitness classes allows our members to gain “functional” fitness and strength for their everyday lives. Riding in our group cycle classes helps improve cardiovascular health while our members have a blast with our Coaches. And last, but not least, we recently added Recovery to our repertoire by offering 3 cold plunges and a traditional sauna. These three elements help someone get in better shape physically and also mentally. We love hearing stories about physical gains as well as our members feeling more confident, developing great friendships with others, getting promotions at work, and performing better in every aspect of their lives.

What type of training do you offer?
Training is available in group classes or one-on-one. Sometimes it’s easier for someone who’s new to start in a one-on-one setting to get familiar with the exercises, so when they join the group classes they are more confident. We’re able to train most ages and fitness levels. Our exercises can be adapted for the beginner as well as seasoned strength athletes. We have 18 year olds training here and we have men and women in their late 60s and early 70s as well. As far as the movements, we focus on five fundamental movements of pushing, pulling, squatting, hinging, and carrying weight. We also train with some rotational exercises. The goal is to be functionally strong for life and movements like picking up our kids, playing with grandkids, working around the house, etc., without getting injured. We also work on grip strength and balance, which studies have shown to help as we age.

How often should someone train with you?
We recommend two to four training sessions or classes per week, but of course, some of our members do a lot more, based on their goals.

How does riding play a role for members at The Collective?
Riding (Cycling), as we like to call it, is a fun, engaging experience where our members can sort of turn off their brains and the outside world and enjoy the intensity of a cardio workout with an energetic Coach who will ride to a theme or music genre to take it to the next level. Our cycle classes are 30 or 45 minutes and also pair well with the strength classes.

I’ve trained and cycled and understand the value of both, but I’m not as familiar with the recovery offerings. Can you tell me more about that?
A sauna can help your muscles recover from the stress of life and challenging workouts. A lot of people have been in a sauna, so they know how it can help relax and enhance their sleep. However, not as many people are aware of the health benefits from being in a cold plunge. It can help the body recover after a workout, but it also has mental benefits like helping people overcome their fear and creating a positive mental state while elevating their energy for the day. Additionally, these recovery methods are fantastic for increasing energy and focus, building resilience and grit, enhancing your mood, and boosting metabolism. At The Collective, we recommend, based on scientific studies, 60 minutes of heat and 12 minutes of cold therapy per week. Many of our members will achieve that through three 20 minute sauna sessions and three 2-4 minute cold plunges. The heat helps the body wind down, which is great toward the end of the day to improve sleep, and the cold helps wake it up, which is great at the beginning of the day.

So, what you’re saying is that whether I’m a novice or if I’m in great shape already, there’s a place for me at The Collective?
Yes, we can help anyone get started who wants to improve their health and fitness. Everyone is welcome, and every fitness level is catered for.

What else is happening at The Collective?
We also have the OH-EIGHT Fuel Bar, which is more than just another smoothie bar. (We started FunkFit in 2008, hence the name.) We offer organic fresh fruit smoothies, which make great post-workout nutrition, and also delicious meal replacement shakes. Anyone can stop in to try a smoothie – member or not. They’re also available to be ordered online and picked up in store or via Uber Eats or DoorDash.
For full, pre-made meals, we have partnered with Chef Phoenix. They offer a new menu weekly of convenient, clean foods, in correct portions and nutritional makeups for different health goals. They can be ordered for home delivery, or if orders are placed by Friday, they can be picked up for the week on Sunday or Monday, here at The Collective in Epicenter.
We also have a retail space featuring our own branded apparel and clothing from lululemon as well as local favorites Iconic Arizona and other clothing lines. In addition to the clothing, we offer our own pre-workout from our Alchemist Supplements brand and Liquid Chalk, which helps with grip strength during training.

Any final thoughts we should share with our readers?
Start with simple movements; we help our members take the first step toward their goals and keep moving until they reach them. We know working hard is important, but so is rest and recovery, so we program rest into the workouts. A community of people is part of The Collective experience. We recently shared an amazing transformation story from Reed Fox, who worked out and got his nutrition dialed in to change his life. It’s stories like Reed’s that fuel our passion for what we do because not only did he change his body and mind, but he connected with other people on a similar journey and that helped him along the way. We want to do the same for more people here in Gilbert by helping them get 1% better every day.

How can we contact you?
3150 E Ray Road, Unit 126
Gilbert AZ 85296
Instagram: thecollectivegilbert