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It Takes One to Train One

Awaken Your Inner Athlete at D1 Training

Article by Elizabeth A. Lowry

Photography by Elizabeth A. Lowry

Originally published in Loveland Lifestyle

As you drive by D1 Training’s facility on Fields Ertel, you may think it’s just another boring gym full of rows of treadmills, stair climbers and recumbent bikes. But take one step inside and the thing you’ll be struck by most is the sheer amount of open space. 

Instead of cardio equipment, you’ll find a large expanse of green turf replete with football field markings and surrounded by inspirational words, plus workout equipment such as exercise sleds, battle ropes and plyometric boxes.

The brainchild of former Denver Broncos recruit Will Bartholomew, D1 was born out of his need to rehab after sustaining a career-ending knee injury during a 2001 training camp. Will sought a way to recover and optimize his performance in a way similar to the training he received while at Division 1 schools. Finding no such program, he created his own. 

While at first D1 focused specifically on youth training, it has evolved into a facility that is truly for anybody, says Chris Witzgall, co-owner and GM. 

“We can modify any of our workouts to any level,” Chris says. “For someone just starting to work out, we can modify either strength or boot camp workouts. Our coaches can modify any of the movements for [an] injury. Any age and any level, we can take a workout and make it apply to them.”

Youth Training

Seeking to build a healthy mentality as well as strength and endurance, D1’s Scholastic programs are held in either group or individual sessions in eight-week cycles—so the participant can see progression throughout the weeks.

D1 is also big on building character, with a focus on the inspirational words painted on the facility’s walls. “We talk about what those words mean to you—not only as a potential athlete but for life,” Chris says. “It's more than just about the physical aspect … it’s about the character aspect too.”

Eleven-year-old Andrew says he enjoys attending D1 workouts because the trainers “make the workout fun and they are funny.” He says the sessions have improved his leg strength. 

“I love pushing the sleds—last night they had me push the sled with weights, and my dad and my basketball coach said I must be doing box jumps because I actually get off the ground when I jump!”

Adult Training

When you first show up to D1 for an assessment, there are a few questions. “We ask where you’ve been, what you’ve done, what you want to get out of the program … what’s your goal and how we can help you get there,” Chris explains. 

Adults can choose from four training programs (boot camp, strength, D1 overtime, or D1 1-on-1), or, once you are familiar with the workouts, you can come to an open gym session to complete the posted workout of the day.  

“I chose D1 because I was looking for more than a gym—I was looking for a family … one that would hold me accountable, one that would push me, one that would be with me every step of my fitness journey. I definitely found that,” Vince (26) says. 

“To anyone who wants to leave a normal gym environment where you are doing workouts out of habit, or to anyone who feels lonely or out of place when walking into a gym—you are welcome at D1.” | 9573 Fields Ertel Rd. | 513.434.1992

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