With calorie-laden holiday meals about to hit dinner tables everywhere, it seems couple Stephanie Farquhar and Alfio Carroccetto opened their Wesley Chapel fitness business at the optimal time of year.
Pura Cycling, which threw open its doors two weeks ago, is an indoor cycling studio where members can burn upwards of 500-800 calories per class. It is located in The Shoppes at New Tampa plaza at the corner of State Road 56 and Bruce B. Downs Boulevard.
Unlike a traditional gym, the pair say, there are no so-called meat-heads or frustrating lines for equipment.
Such facilities can be “very intense, scary,” Farquhar said. “We wanted more of a laid-back vibe.”
Added Carroccetto: “But we will still kick your butts.”
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Pura offers low-impact, high-intensity cardio and strength building classes carried out in a group setting with dimmed lights and pumping music. Riders of all levels are welcome.
Making things easy for customers to come and work out is a top concern. There are no long-term contracts to sign and riders can sign up online for classes up to 10 days in advance.
Classes are held in the mornings and evenings.
“As we grow, we will add more,” Carroccetto said.
The slim-and-trim pair have always been into fitness but both are first-time business owners. Farquhar has a background in marketing while her other half taught biology at Freedom High School up until the end of last year.
“The hardest part … is getting the guts up,” Carroccetto said of opening the studio. “We both left our careers to just get started.”
Pura offers not just classes but a fitness program to provide personal fitness evaluations. One of their resources is a cookbook to help members better reach their goals.
In addition to human health, Pura is concerned with the health of the planet, too. A portion of sales from unlimited-level memberships is donated to the Osa Conservation Organization, a nonprofit that says it's committed to “protecting the globally significant biodiversity” of Costa Rica’s Osa Peninsula.
The region is home to more than 5 percent of the world’s biodiversity, Farquhar pointed out.
The studio's Costa Rican influence is felt in another way, too. On the wall is the popular phrase “pura vida” along with a kapok, a stately, tropical tree with a gnarled and impressive root system.
“We wanted it to represent our roots of health,” Carroccetto said, referring to the benefits of cardio fitness on the heart.
Address: 1822 Bruce B. Downs Blvd.