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Monday, April 3, 2017

Fitness center moving into larger space in Annandale

Pablo Amaya and Rachel Martin in front of the new PR Performance Fitness location. 
PR Performance Fitness is moving to a new larger space at 4111 John Marr Drive in Annandale, It is expected to open within the next few weeks.

The fitness studio was launched by Rachel Martin and Pablo Amaya, who formerly worked at the Pro Maxx Fitness gym, two and a-half years ago in an office park off Evergreen Lane in Annandale. Their new place a storefront formerly occupied by Healthway, which closed in 2013. 

The new larger space will allow them to offer more services and reach more clients.

They are planning classes in fitness training, fitness boxing, kick boxing, yoga, cross training, performance stretching, and total body sculpting, A new “yoga lean” class will start this summer.

They will also provide one-on-one fitness training, nutritional counseling, stretch and flex assessments, and motivational coaching. 

Amaya has excelled at many sports. He played professional soccer on El Salvador’s national team, rhen after a knee injury, switched to boxing and won an amateur-level Golden Gloves tournament in 2007.

For his next goal, “I started bodybuilding to find a new way to push myself,” he says. During his first competition, a Max Muscle event in Woodbridge, he came in first place in two categories: body building and classic physique.

Amaya has also done Olympic weightlifting, power lifting, 100-meter sprinting, kickboxing, and attained a second-degree black belt in martial arts.

Meanwhile, he pursued a career in physical therapy and earned certificates in personal training and athletic training. As a trainer, he focused on fitness for people over 50. At one point, he gained 80 pounds on purpose so he could join his clients in losing weight together. Amaya is particularly proud of one client who lost 130 pounds in 13 months.

When the new fitness center opens, Amaya plans to work with children at risk of obesity and help them adopt a healthier lifestyle. He also plans to lead an acting class to teach kids how to express themselves.

PR Performance Fitness will continue hosting boot camp sessions at the field behind the Annandale Fire Station on Columbia Pike and provide corporate wellness retreats for employees 

The studio will have some exercise equipment, including treadmills, exercise bikes, cardio machines, and kettlebells. It won’t offer memberships like a regular gym, though. Instead, clients can pay for classes and training sessions on an individual or package basis.

Amaya believes you don’t need heavy equipment to stay fit. “We will teach you how to use your own body anywhere you go,” he says.

Martin plans to present seminars “to get the community learning about health and fitness.” She wants to educate the public about things they can do at home or on vacation. “It’s a matter of moving the right way,” she says

Her goal is to teach kids how to jump around, get seniors to learn how to get out of a chair, and everything in between.

Amaya plans to get back into bodybuilding when the new fitness center is up and running. “I want to compete to inspire people to change their lifestyle,” he says. With the right motivation and skills, “anything is possible.” 


  1. Congrats to Pablo and Rachel. It is great to see a small business take its time, see success and gradually grow. Hopefully with continued success they can one day take over the Pro Maxx Fitness gym. It was renovated into a beautiful gym but apparently was not managed well, and the space has basically been empty for years. I much prefer more boutique-size gyms and will definitely check out their offerings.

  2. I truly miss Healthway and resent (yes, RESENT) the way they were forced out) but am glad to hear that this space will finally be put to good use again after all these years!

    I am, and always have been, a DIY, solo exerciser, but wish Amaya and Martin well. It looks like they have a lot of good things going on!

  3. I have taken classes with Rachel over the past couple months and she is fantastic. Several of my neighbors go to her morning boot camp. I wish Rachel and Pablo the best of luck in the new location. I'm sure it will be a success.