Carrie Rengers

Two Herbalife clubs to open in time for New Year’s resolutions

Empower Nutrition is opening in 1,200 square feet at the former Fresh Spa space at 2250 N. Ridge Road.
Empower Nutrition is opening in 1,200 square feet at the former Fresh Spa space at 2250 N. Ridge Road. The Wichita Eagle

New Year’s resolutions are fast approaching, and a couple of new places will be ready with Herbalife products, which are billed as “fast food for smart people.”

On Dec. 10, Empower Nutrition is opening in 1,200 square feet at the former Fresh Spa space at 2250 N. Ridge Road.

In early January, Wichita Nutrition is reopening in its new 1,400-square-foot space at 3300 N. Rock Road between Jimmy John’s and AT&T.

“What we do is train and sample products,” says Matt Wilkinson, a co-owner in Empower Nutrition.

“It’s not for storefront purposes. It’s a place for people to come and feel a part of a group.”

Wichita Nutrition owner Jesse Bourque calls it “a community center that allows people to come in for a daily membership.”

“We’re just a community center that likes to teach healthy, active living.”

In addition to offering guidance, though, a big part of the clubs – as they’re known instead of stores – is about promoting Herbalife shakes, teas and other products.

“It used to be just a network marketing company,” Wilkinson says. “In today’s age, it’s kind of freaky to say, ‘Hey, come over, and let’s have a shake party.’ ”

Customers can sample products at the clubs and then order them online with club discounts.

Wilkinson’s business is new, but Bourque’s had been at Central and Webb and had to move to make room for Jimmy’s Egg.

Bourque says at first he didn’t want to move, but he says in the end “it was definitely a blessing.”

“North Rock Road is a booming location.”

He says the new store also gives him a chance to “fix the things that weren’t going the way we wanted them to.”

Adam Clements of Builders Inc. handled both deals. Zach Zerbe of Landmark Commercial Real Estate also was involved on the Wichita Nutrition deal.

There’s still a networking aspect with the clubs, Wilkinson says. Members can recruit other members and be rewarded financially.

“That’s the whole key … is to just build a team,” he says. “We’re health coaches.”

Wilkinson says Wichita is a “wide open” market, and he expects to eventually open other clubs in the area.

“We want to become part of the community.”

Bourque says he hopes to open the first week of January, when he says potential members are especially motivated.

He says most people are committed the first two or three weeks and then crash. Bourque says he wants to help them extend that healthy cycle to more like six or eight weeks so it becomes a lifestyle.

“That’s why we call it Herbalife instead of Herbacrashlife, because we want people to maintain it.”

Carrie Rengers: 316-268-6340, @CarrieRengers

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