Alex Harbin everybody. Alex Harbin.


Ex football player turned personal trainer. Lululemon Ambassador. A driver of positivity in the Cincinnati community. 


I waltz into the spacious Iron Sharpens Iron gym and am immediately greeted by a booming, enthusiastic voice shouting HEY MOLLAAAYYYY! The stress I walked in with immediately dissipates. I smile from ear to ear. And maybe blush a bit. 


Mer showed up about 10 minutes later (are y’all noticing a trend yet?).  We stared at the treadmills and ropes that were staring right back at us, until Alex came over to greet us, pump up the jams, and put us to work. 


THRIVE is a fast paced and tabata based HIIT class that incorporates ropes, core, focused strength, and treadmill work. In true tabata fashion, we did 4 minutes of work of two exercises (think: 30 seconds of bicep curls, then 30 seconds of overhead press, 4 times) then 1 minute rest. We moved through ropes, to abs, to arms, to treadmill, 2 times. 40 minutes total. The class was perfect for someone that wants a super quick and efficient workout, and for those who like a team atmosphere. There were a lot of high fives and words of encouragement flying around (I even think Mer and her new gal pal were counting down reps with each other). 


After class, we had the opportunity to sit down with Alex to learn more about how he got here. A collegiate athlete turned pro, he eventually found himself sitting at a desk wondering if this would be the rest of his life. He quickly realized that this wasn’t for him, and so in 2010, his trainer suggested he become a trainer. And so it began. Fast forward to 2013, Alex opened up his own personal training gym, Iron Sharpens Iron, with fellow Elder High School grad, John Andriacco. Their focus on community is evident in the way they treat each and every person that walks through the door, and that community feel translates organically into the group fitness training. Rather than compete with the person next to you, they promote personal competition: being better than the last time you trained.


Iron Sharpens Iron offers private and semi private training, athletic development, group fitness and boxing. Check out their schedule here. First class is free!


More importantly, please get on social media and start following them. I immediately felt like a part of their community just from liking them on Facebook and Instagram. 


Also, if you’re wondering where they got their name: Proverbs 27:17: As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.

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