Faith at Work
Will Lantrip does not recall a time when he was not passionate about athletics. A native of Forestdale, Ala., at the age of thirteen Lantrip’s parents gifted him with a weight set. This gift created the foundation for his passion for weightlifting and body building. Lantrip reflects that, “the more I lifted and the more I exercised, the more I became a better athlete.” He started competing as a body builder around the age of 16 and continued competing on and off for years. Lantrip shares that he won several different titles including “Mr. Florida” and “NGA Master Pro Bodybuilder.”
Lantrip was a personal trainer before it became a common job title. In 1979, he was preparing for a bodybuilding competition when a young man in the community repeatedly asked him if he could work out with him. Lantrip says that after this experience, “I never stopped. I was always training, no matter if I was in college or working in the insurance business, I was always training someone on the side.” While a personal trainer at Sportsplex for 20 years, Lantrip prayed and dreamed of opening his own gym. “I wanted to give people a good price and provide a Christian atmosphere. So many people have to listen to bad music and inappropriate talk while at the gym. I decided to create a place where people come to actually enjoy their workout free of inappropriate talk,” Lantrip shares. In July of 2013, Willpower Fitness Gym officially opened in Chelsea, Ala.
Lantrip is actively using his passion for fitness to share Christ with everyone who walks into his gym. Philippians 4:13 is painted on the walls, uplifting music is played, and there is a prayer bowl where people can write a prayer request. He personally prays over the prayer bowl several times throughout the week.
Lantrip has trained a wide variety of clients. He is currently training athletes from ages 11-17, several ladies in their mid-seventies, people seeking to lose weight, and even people with special needs. Over the nearly six years of owning Willpower Fitness, Lantrip reflects, “I believe that God is the owner and I am just the manager of the gym. I feel very blessed to get to do what I do every day!”