Louisville Magazine

FEB 2019

Louisville Magazine is Louisville's city magazine, covering Louisville people, lifestyles, politics, sports, restaurants, entertainment and homes. Includes a monthly calendar of events.

Issue link: https://loumag.epubxp.com/i/1074882

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Page 32 of 111

30 LOUISVILLE MAGAZINE 2.19 SPACES Here. Just west of the airport, amid a maze of squat warehous- es, stands the Factory Gym. Tagline: "Hardcore since '84." Theme: BIG — 17,500 square feet, Big Ass-brand fans overhead, big-ass dumbbells (up to 170 pounds!) on racks, 200-pound spherical "Atlas stones" in a cor- ner near 500-pound tires for flipping. Add up all the weight plates and free weights in this place and it's a hefty 20,000 pounds. Many here don't just tote water bottles to hydrate; they clutch gallon jugs. The snug front lobby contains a refriger- ator stocked with supplements, across from a small front desk. Behind that desk is a shelf lined with more supplements and a plastic doll that's a cartoonish hulk of human in the hue of spray tan. He's goblet-shaped, with a beefed-up torso and arms that miniaturize his lower half. Walk toward the gym and pictures of the doll's real-life counterparts line the walls. The men and women are all glorious- ly bronzed and chiseled. The arm of one woman in a sparkly blue bikini exhibits an Where's the Beef? entire mountain range of muscle. These are pictures of Factory Gym members — except for one. "He's not a member," says manager Ray Nusseibeh, pointing to a black-and- white image of pre-Terminator Arnold Schwarzenegger. Every few moments in the gym, a tinny, dramatic CLANG! announces the completion of another set of reps. A strip of artificial turf marks where sleds piled with weights are pulled. Herculean-types stand in the center of a 450-pound iron square, lift and then go for a little walk, maybe adding some weight on the second go. Speedy metal music plays through speakers, and the smell of sweat and musk is no surprise. The Factory Gym used to be on Hurst- bourne Lane. After a brief closure in fall 2017, it reopened here in a former tire warehouse on Allmond Avenue. Three little promenades of black cushiony floor separate orderly rows of cardio machines, weight machines, seven different bench-press stations and eight squat racks. "A normal gym might have two," Nusseibeh says of the last. "Gimme all the weights!" reads a shirt worn by a brawny, intense man squatting 425 pounds, his cheeks puffed out and lava-red as he dips for squat number four, five, six. He settles the bar back into place and gives it a stern slap. (I later learn he can squat 800 pounds.) A "F*CKING DEDICATED TO THESE GAINZ" shirt belongs to a young, bearded powerlifter cinched in the middle by

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