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Gym Owner Gives All Equipment To Members So They Can Workout From Home

The small business owner is also keeping all staff on deck, ensuring that they remain employed and keep getting their paychecks even if the gym is closed.



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(TMU) – As all too many of us are aware, it takes firm self-discipline to get in shape and stay that way. Indeed, while many of us may try to make it out to the gym or stick to a diet plan, obstacles ranging from our jobs, school, family responsibilities, relationships and social life can derail our exercise routines altogether.

And now, with gyms across the country closing due to statewide lockdowns, many people are seeing their fitness regimes simply melt away.

But Drew Whitted, the owner of the Be Strong Gym in Bloomington, Illinois, knew that it would be better that his equipment is put to use rather than languish in a shuttered gym. After all, why let the equipment simply collect dust, benefiting no one and certainly not his members who were working hard on their fitness goals before the public health crisis?

Be Strong Gym

In a spirit of generosity and trust to his gym’s members, Whitted decided to tell members that they were free to sign out over $40,000 worth of workout equipment that they could take home and use, free of charge, throughout the duration of the state’s physical distancing and stay-at-home orders.

Interview with Tish and Drew, Be Strong

When Gyms were deemed uneesential businesses in Illinois, Drew Whitted knew he wanted to continue to support the community he built through his gym, Be Strong. He lent out OVER $40,000 worth of equiptment to his members Free of Charge so they could continue their health and fitness journeys even while sheltering in place. Drew also committed at the very beginning to continue to pay his employees until the Shelter in Place order is lifted. To join the Be Strong Community you can reach out on Facebook, Instagram, or at Be Strong offers four virtual workout options daily. Whether you have zero gym equiptment or a full gym set up there is an option for you.The story of the generousity of Be Strong has captured national attention from huge news outlets like CNN, Daily News, and People. You can hear more of the story here: #blono #bloomingtonil #normalil #rhendywithremax

Posted by Rhendy Bradshaw,RE/MAX Rising on Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Whitted told members:

“We don’t want anything left in here. If our members can’t come in and train, we want you to take it home and keep training.”

After all, if there’s one thing that can help prevent the virus from spreading, it’s a healthy population that engages in routine exercises – and the last thing Whitted wanted to see was his members missing out on their workouts just because the studio had closed.

Roughly 80 members of Be Strong Gym accepted his offer, taking home barbells, weights, rowers, mats, and exercise bikes. Whitted described this as “awesome,” telling CNN that his members “cleared the gym out in under two hours” while his staff helped them find exactly what they’d need for the long stay home.

“I really encourage members to take things home that they loved, and they knew they were going to use every day,” he said.

Now, the gym is holding online training sessions every day, ensuring that the now-virtual gym can help members stay fit while at home.

Paulette Cocco – a member of the gym who borrowed a barbell, weights, and a heavy wall ball – was floored by Whitted’s generous act. She said:

“He had recently put a lot of money into getting new equipment  … I mean, his equipment is really beautiful, so it was a big sacrifice.”

The small business owner is also keeping all of his staff on deck, ensuring that they remain employed and keep getting their paychecks even if the physical gym is closed to the public. Whitted said:

“My staff will not miss a single dollar for their paycheck for as long as it takes.”

Stay Strong Be Strong Thank you for the support TV-10 News

Posted by Drew Whitted on Thursday, May 7, 2020

The online workouts they offer have also kept the community spirit alive for members like Cocco, who said:

“So you see people posting their pictures and their workouts and makes you feel … pressured, almost like ‘I gotta get my workout in because, you know, Judy got her workout in, I need to too.'”

Whitted is also proud of the fact that he’s helping bring families together during the collective ordeal being experienced across the world. He explained:

“Now I see a whole family, getting through this shelter in place, getting through this tough time doing these workouts together, bonding together, becoming healthier and happier together as a family unit.”

Whitted is also positive that every piece of equipment will make its way back to the gym once quarantine measures ease up enough to reopen because members will doubtlessly be excited to workout together as a community again.

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Good News

Keanu Reeves Praised As Video of Him Offering Seat to Lady in Subway Resurfaces



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Keanu Reeves is an actor who has long been loved by audiences —and not necessarily due to his acting skills, but due to how nice the John Wick star is.

And now, Reeves is once again earning praise as a “true gentleman” after resurfaced video footage shows Reeves giving up his seat on the subway.

The clip was shared by Instagram film fan account Cinemonkeys where it has since earned nearly 45,000 likes.

The video footage dates back to 2011, when it was shared on YouTube by a user of the video-sharing platform.

At the time, Reeves was already a superstar riding on the fame he earned from the Matrix, Speed, and a number of other blockbuster hits.

When Reeves notices a woman carrying a heavy bag, he quickly points to his seat and asks if she would like to sit. The woman accepts and Reeves gets up without hesitating to let her take his seat.

Reeves, ever the model citizen, then stands and holds onto a subway pole while carrying his bag.

The video has since been watched over 27 million times and was even cited in a 2019 Time magazine profile of the actor describing Reeves as the “soul mate” of the internet.

The resurfacing of the clip on Instagram once again impressed users of the platform.

“This human being’s soul honestly shines so bright,” wrote one user.

“OMG I love him in every single way,” another person commented.

His kindness knows no bounds,” commented someone else.

Keanu is set to reprise his role as Neo in the upcoming fourth Matrix film directed and written by Lana Wachowski, who co-directed the earlier trilogy with her sister Lilly. He will also return to the silver screen in John Wick: Chapter 4, which will be released in 2022.

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Drunk Man Rescues Injured Baby Bird By Sending It To Animal Shelter… In An Uber



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An injured baby bird received a new lease on life after a young man who was inebriated had the good sense to send the little creature to an animal shelter because he and his friends were too drunk to drive.

In the Summer of 2019, a small lesser goldfinch suddenly appeared by itself at the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center of Northern Utah. The center’s chairman, Buz Marthaler, was notified by a volunteer who sent him a photo.

“It was a picture of this bird, and it had come by Uber,” Marthaler told FOX13. “It was just crazy.”

As it turns out, the tiny bird – which was only two weeks old – indeed rolled up to the site by its lonesome, the sole passenger in an Uber vehicle called by concerned citizens who found the injured creature.

Among those good Samaritans was Tim Crowley, who had been “day drinking” on that Saturday before he and his buddies witnessed the little bird fall from the sky.

“Impromptu, sitting in some camp chairs, hanging out, having a few drinks when we had a visitor fall out of the sky,” he explained.

Crowley then snapped a photo of the bird and sent it to the WRCNU, which instructed him to immediately bring the bird in. However, the group obviously couldn’t drive since they had been guzzling booze all day.

So Crowley decided he’d hail a cab for the creature.

“At first it was a joke, like, ‘Hey, maybe we should just call Uber!’” he said. “Then we were like, ‘No, really. Why not? We’re paying them.’”

As it turns out, the bird – since named “Petey Uber” by staff at the rescue center – likely would have perished if not for Crowley’s quick thinking.

Marthaler remains impressed by Crowley’s move and shared the news on its Facebook page.

“While we feel we’ve seen it all and can’t be amazed by anything, there is always someone out there to prove us wrong,” the shelter’s post read. “Thank you to the rescuer who helped this little one get the care it needed in a timely manner and thank you for keeping yourself safe and others on the road safe as well.”

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Binx the Cat, Who Survived Florida Condo Collapse, Found and Reunited With Family



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Amid the tragedy of last month’s collapse of a South Florida condo building, there was a tiny bit of good news when a cat named Binx, who lived on the ninth floor of the Surfside building, was found safe and returned to his family.

“I’m glad that this small miracle could bring some light into the lives of a hurting family today and provide a bright spot for our whole community in the midst of this terrible tragedy,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava in a Friday press conference, reports NPR.

Levine Cava explained that a volunteer who feeds street cats in the area recognized the cat near the building before bringing him to an animal shelter, where it was then identified.

Gina Nicole Vlasek, the co-founder of the The Kitty Campus rescue group, posted on Facebook that a black cat had been found near the rubble of the group before it was brought to the shelter on Thursday night.

“We are so grateful to be able to help in any small way,” Vlasek said.

“All we needed was a ray of hope in this tragedy,” she continued. “Today was one of the most amazing days.. one of the survivors came to see the cat and to determine if it was her families cat and IT WAS!”

The mayor said that animal control workers are continuing to work to recover any pets that may have survived the horrible collapse.

The 12-story Surfside condo collapsed on June 24. At least 79 people have been confirmed dead, with 61 additional residents remaining unaccounted for.

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