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Larry Wintoneak Is Hardcore About Fitness

Larry Wintoneak has always had a passion for fitness and it shows. When most people are hitting the snooze button at 5:30 a.m. for an extra 15 minutes in bed, he is already at Hardcore Fitness for the first training session of the day.

“I’ve been doing Hardcore Fitness for about nine years. Once I left the Klippers as the head coach I thought I would start a little business.  I found an 800 sq feet space in the back of Bodyfit and started training hockey players at that time. I guess my love for fitness goes back to my Thunder Bay Days where I was born and raised. When I was there, I had the opportunity to train some high-end athletes, one being Curt Harnett our Canadian Olympic Cyclist. His dad approached me and asked me to hang out with him and push him so to speak and that’s how this all started, my love of fitness and training people.” 

What spurred Larry on to open Hardcore Fitness were a few phone calls from athletes asking him if he would help train them, which he was happy to do, all for the cost of a cup of coffee. “I liked helping these young guys out, some were starting in Midget AAA (Shayne Neigum and Sean Flanagan) and the Western Hockey League, like Derek Dorsett. These guys have played here locally and have then moved on to bigger things and I’m proud I’ve played a little part in that.”

As interest caught on with not just athletes but the general public, Larry quickly outgrew the 800 square foot space he was in. “People approached me about getting involved and I felt it was something I could do. So, I provided the program and was there to help train them, to make sure everyone was doing it safely and correctly.” Larry continued to grow his clientele, and after considering a space in the Kindersley Mall, an opportunity on Main Street opened up and he jumped on it–4800 square feet of beautiful space!

Larry spends hours creating his programs, which is something he enjoys doing as it’s how he’s lived his life, “I’ve just continued the lifestyle of taking care of yourself, when you’re a coach if you talk the talk you gotta walk the walk.” Along with his programs, he also focuses attention on planning and implementing the perfect workout design, offering both indoor and outdoor classes. With his equipment already perfectly spaced out to give his clients the best possible workout, this also worked in his favour when COVID hit as they complied with regulations, thereby causing little disruption to everyone’s workout.

Always on the lookout for the latest fitness equipment, when Larry heard about the TrueForm Running treadmill he knew it was something he wanted his clients to experience, in fact, Hardcore was the first gym in Saskatchewan to house TrueForm. “With the TrueForm, you are the machine. When you are running on it, you are powering it, there is no motherboard or motor. It has a curved base and helps to correct your posture. TrueForm allows you to maintain that connection with your muscles at any speed. The curve treadmill is the way the industry is moving,” says Larry.

Never one to sit still, not only does Larry divide his time between Hardcore and training the Junior Klippers and younger athletes, he has also recently joined Joel down at Supreme Source for Sports. “I went in there one day and the next thing I knew Joel was giving me an opportunity that was just too good to pass up. He knows I split my time with the gym and my athletes and he has just been so understanding. I’m really thankful to him for that.

“Whether it be on the ice or off the ice at Hardcore I love helping our adults or young athletes. It goes much deeper than just giving them instructions on how to train or skate. It’s about making people feel good about themselves. Pushing them through their comfort zone. A lot of this is about the mental toughness (not giving up on yourself) you develop when you step through those doors. For those young athletes, these are life skills that they will carry with them forever.

Anyone interested in what a workout looks like can take a look at both Facebook and Instagram, where you will find videos and photos of the various types of workouts Larry offers. Of course, you can always pop down to Hardcore Fitness, and try a workout, drop-ins are welcome. “I’m just grateful for all my clients who have stuck with me. With them, they have made this dream come true.”

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