Welcome to #HOMETOWNHUSTLE – a SweetwaterNOW exclusive series where we highlight hardworking individuals at local business in our community.
This week, I had a chance to catch up with Cooper Palmer. Cooper is the owner of the local CrossFit gym Iron Cowboy CrossFit where they provide personal training, small group classes, kid classes and a one-of-a-kind fitness experience.
Cooper was inspired to open up Iron Cowboy CrossFit for many reasons. For a few years, Cooper had been coaching CrossFit and personal training while he was in college studying Kinesiology. During that time, he witnessed first-hand how the CrossFit model, if operated properly, could be the best way to strongly impact a large group of people in a positive way.
I want to change people’s lives, bring them the best hour of their day, and change how they think of health and fitness. This was the best vehicle for me to do that.— Cooper Palmer
Since 2016, that’s exactly what Iron Cowboy CrossFit has done for the local community and CrossFit enthusiasts who are visiting. The mission of Iron Cowboy CrossFit has alway been to make people happier, healthier, and stronger.
As with every business, the success of Iron Cowboy CrossFit didn’t come easy. Cooper and his team have worked hard throughout the years to create a welcoming atmosphere and successful program.
“We arguably have one of the nicest CrossFit facilities around the country and not many people realize that unless they have traveled to other CrossFit gyms.”
Photos by Kaylee Hughes
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One of the biggest challenges they have faced is changing people’s preconceived notions of what CrossFit actually is.
“People believe things they have heard, or what they see on the internet. Some of it is great, like most things though, it gets misinterpreted. We try to battle this by providing the best service we can to those who are willing to give us a shot. If done well, those members spread the word, and we begin to change that stigma. The best thing we recommend is that you come and try OUR gym because every CrossFit gym can be ran differently, and we are confident our services will make that person happy, and feel like they are in good hands.”
Personally, I have also heard the mixed messages about CrossFit so out of curiosity, I had to ask Cooper to further explain the methods behind CrossFit. Just like any type of fitness program, to get positive results you must listen to the experts and execute properly.
Photos by Kaylee Hughes
“It has essentially taken the best principals, techniques, and methods from other sports and fitness programs (powerlifting, weightlifting, gymnastics, endurance sports) to make one combined program that creates an amazing, well-rounded fitness program if prescribed properly.”
Cooper and the trainers at Iron Cowboy Crossfit take pride in what they do and doing it right.
“Our coaches have a very good background of education and experience to back up what we teach, and we always continue to push ourselves to learn more to provide truly top-notch coaching.”
But what truly separates Iron Cowboy CrossFit is the experience they try to provide.
“What really rounds out our gym and makes it unique is the people within the walls, not just the coaches, but each and every single member. It’s a culture of positivity and hard work. It’s hard to explain, but if you put yourself in that environment for a month you would know exactly what I’m talking about.”
“My favorite part of all of this is the people. Helping them and becoming their friends make up my best memories.”
In addition to creating relationships with members of the gym, Cooper enjoys watching people get their “firsts” or “personal records” after working so hard.
“They get healthier; they change habits, their lifestyle and have a whole new outlook on their life. The local community is made up of some really amazing people. Thankfully I get to see a handful of them 3+ days a week.”
Being the owner of CrossFit gym presents new challenges each day and Cooper wears a lot of hats and some days he’d like to wear a little less but to him, it’s worth it.
“I never get bored because there is always something new that needs my attention.”
Throughout the past several years Cooper has learned a few lessons about being a business owner that he’d like to share with aspiring entrepreneurs.
“Truly make sure you are passionate about what your business does, or can offer. There are plenty of good and bad days of running your business, but the passion will bring you back to your “why?”
Cooper’s wife Kylar is also a large part of Iron Cowboy CrossFit’s success. She works as a full-time coach, kids coach, personal trainer, and nutrition coach. I had to ask if he had any advice for other couples that may consider running a business together.
“She loves the Iron Cowboy community, and always lends a hand if needed, and also provides her own wisdom to contribute to the business while she coaches for us, and is our nutrition coach. It’s easy for us to make a good team. It’s always been an unspoken agreement that this takes a team to make work, and she’s always been on board.”
Cooper would also like to thank the community for their support and hard work throughout the years.
“I want to thank everyone that has stepped through our doors and given us a chance to help you. We know as business owners not everyone has left us with perfect results, but we always invite people to come back and try again, as we continue to evolve and improve. Much like your fitness and health journey is a process, so is our business. We will continue to make Iron Cowboy the best strength and conditioning facility around.”