There’s a fitness studio that picks you up from work and gets your groceries

When I first caught wind of Flex5 opening uptown, I thought it sounded a tad over-the-top. The holistic fitness and wellness studio launched in January and has spa and studio space on two floors of the Charlotte National Building on East Fourth Street. Its website boasts amenities including: state-of-the-art yoga and fitness studios for one-on-one coaching and small group classes; spa center for therapeutic massages, Reiki healing, Ayurveda coaching and nutrition guidance; and, get this, concierge car service, dry cleaning/laundry and groceries pick up for uptown clients.

That last part threw me off. It’s one thing to be treated to a cool lavender towel after a yoga class, but who needs to be waited on hand-and-foot by their fitness studio when it comes to transportation and household needs?

I trekked over to Flex5 in the middle of the work week to check it out. It was quiet except for one client who popped in for a training session. And I quickly found out that luxury isn’t the point here. It’s convenience. More specifically, convenience offered to clients who are struggling to undergo a transformation in their lives.

According to Flex5 co-founder Petro Martynyuk, when people come here, they are often at some sort of breakdown point or pivotal point with a serious desire to change.

To start, new clients fill out an extensive health history form and complete a fitness assessment, after which the team designs a Flex5 plan based on the five principles of strength, conditioning, flexibility, nutrition and spirituality.

The amenities themselves are meant to take the additional stressors out of clients’ lives while they’re training. The concierge service gives people time to train, shower, change and make it back to their desks in a lunch break.

Two private bathrooms on the fitness level are equipped with a shower and mirrors with inspirational notes.


Clients can drop off their clothes at the gym and pay a preferred corporate rate through 2U Laundry. And they can order groceries online at Harris Teeter for a Flex5 team member to pick up.

“We’re really trying to think how to make our clients’ lives easier, so it’s a continuous change,” said Martynyuk, who opened the all-inclusive studio along with Darla Lilleberg. Both are certified as ACSM CPT and AADP Holistic Health Coaches.

Petro Martynyuk and Darla Lilleberg at the Flex5 launch party

They pointed out that their supportive approach turns to discipline when it comes to training and nutrition, an element guided by the book “It Starts with Food.”

Their motto: #BeTheChange.

Training room

Training room

Yoga studio

So far, they train about 60 client hours each week.

Massage room

Spa lounge

One client, Brian Basham, chief meterologist at Fox 46 Charlotte, recently enrolled in the program and is publicizing his progress. His goal: To “lose 45lbs by November 2016, build strength and endurance, improve nutrition.” His motivation: To “be able to run around with kids without feeling like it is an issue and go on a European tour with his wife Megan in the fall of 2016.”

There’s no set timeline for clients, though. It’s all based on individual needs, said Martynyuk, adding, “Our job is done when we really empower somebody to make changes to the point where they don’t need us.”

He said for individual “TLC” packages, 80 percent of clients get a 20-pack to start with, and sessions average out at $65 an hour. Flex5 is now on Class Pass as well.

Photos: Katie Toussaint, Flex5