On September 14th, VetFran member Anytime Fitness announced “Operation HeartFirst” during its annual conference in Scottsdale, AZ,. This new initiative is designed to help more military veterans open their own franchised gyms. The initiative will provide veterans with a combination of funds, resources and support to help them open and operate Anytime Fitness clubs.
The gyms will be similar to standard Anytime Fitness clubs, and they will be open to veteran and non-veteran members alike, but the gyms may also feature special amenities for veterans like “Rally Point” social spaces and opportunities to learn more about other veteran services.
Anytime Fitness has partnered with Derek Weida, a veteran of the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division, to assist with development of the initiative. Weida served three deployments in Iraq between 2004-2007 and will begin operating an Anytime Fitness club in the very near future.
Moving forward, Anytime Fitness, which estimates that 10% of its current franchisees are vets, hopes to name at least one “Operation HeartFirst” recipient every year. Details surrounding this exciting initiative are in the works.