Liz and Corey Hunt : Faces and Places of the Panhandle

Published: Nov. 3, 2022 at 10:59 PM CDT
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CALLAWAY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - The journey for Liz and Corey Hunt to own their own gym started years ago.

Liz had just retired from the United States Air Force, but Corey was still on duty.

“As soon as I retired from the military in Fort Walton Beach Florida, which was fantastic because of the sunny beaches, all the things, my husband got his orders to Minot, North Dakota,” Liz Hunt, owner and operator of Anytime Fitness Callaway said.

The transition from the military to civilian life isn’t always easy.

“That’s one of the most significant things about retiring from the military is you now don’t have the uniform to hide behind,” Liz Hunt said. “So you have to figure out who Liz is and man that is a whole situation.”

And the move from warm beaches to cold northern weather was tough, but it was here that Liz began finding herself.

After a year of working with Anytime Fitness in Minot, a door was opened.

“And that’s when we found out about Anytime Fitness having the Operation Heartfirst program which is a way to repurpose a vet by giving them the keys to the kingdom,” Liz Hunt said.

Upon receiving the grant, the program usually selects the location of the gym, but since the first location didn’t work out in Alabama, the panhandle came calling.

“Our Anytime Fitness corporate had learned about the devestation that unfortunately happened in Panama City from Hurricane Michael,” Liz Hunt said. “And how many small businesses to include fitness centers pulled out and had no intention of coming back. And so then they asked us if we wanted to move to Panama City, Florida, we’re like yeah.”

Once they knew the direction, Corey says it was an “all in moment.”

“One, it was a blessing, right, so we have to pay that forward,” Corey Hunt, owner, certified personal trainer, and weight loss specialist, said. “Can’t take that for granted. So, success is never not an option.”

Since retiring and now owning the gym, Liz says working out isn’t a cookie cutter approach.

She and Corey are here to bridge that fitness gap and help others.

“So one of the things I really wanted to influence by working in a gym is to make sure that I meet everybody where they’re at,” Liz Hunt said. “That’s what I love about it. That’s where my heart is. Just being able to meet people where they’re at, find out what they’re story is, and then help them along their way.”

They want to show others that it’s not just coming to the gym, it’s about creating a healthy lifestyle. That’s what makes it all worth it.

“Just listening to members that were type two diabetic or pre diabetic coming off medication or cardiac patients coming off medications for blood pressures or anything like that,” Corey Hunt said. “Those are great stories.”

From Minot to Florida, the journey isn’t done, but it’s been rewarding.

“Man it’s been a whirl wind,” Corey Hunt said. “So ups and downs, mostly ups though.”

Creating a path to help themselves and others live their best lives.