New gym opens in Shell Lake

Jill Dunlavy, owner of Shell Lake’s newest gym, is excited to share her passion for fitness with interested community members. The gym is located on Anderson Avenue in Shell Lake’s Industrial Park. – Photos by Danielle Danford

Danielle Danford | Staff writer

SHELL LAKE – Live Fast Fit Free is a new 24/7 access gym in Shell Lake. Located at the end of Anderson Avenue in Shell Lake’s Industrial Park, behind T & T Tool, the facility is open. Jill Dunlavy, gym owner, is excited to share her passion for fitness with community members.

“I think the main thing that sets us apart is the quieter space tucked back by the woods and it’s just a different option,” said Dunlavy. Her main goal with the gym space is for it to be an unintimidating space where anyone can come in and exercise at their own level.

The gym features a cardio room with treadmills, elliptical, recumbent bike and a spin bike. A separate strength room has TRX trainers, a rip trainer, dumbbells, kettle bells, medicine balls, slam balls, barbells, rings, pull-up bars, plyo boxes, and a rower. Upstairs is a separate room for stretching or yoga.

The gym also features security cameras throughout the facility for security of its members. Dunlavy believes the gym is an affordable option to achieve or maintain fitness goals. The gym offers a variety of options for training from small group classes, one-on-one training with Dunlavy or personalized fitness assessments.

“Everybody is going to be a little bit different; everyone has to experiment on themselves. You are the expert of you. You need to recognize what’s working or not working,” said Dunlavy.

Dunlavy wanted to open the gym to give people in the community another opportunity to train and take care of themselves.

Dunlavy and her husband, Leo, have lived in Shell Lake since 2003. Since that time, Dunlavy rekindled an interest in health and wellness.

“We have always been a very active family,” said Dunlavy, who has two kids ages 11 and 7 with Leo. Dunlavy stayed at home with their children, which led to her working out at home where she developed interests in a variety of fitness routines like strength training, running and yoga.

“I have always been interested in it and fascinated by fitness so it became a hobby that I have been playing with,” said Dunlavy. In the last year, Dunlavy decided she wanted to share her passion for fitness but was limited by the lack of physical space for it at home.

When Leo purchased the building at the end of Anderson Avenue for his work office, Dunlavy seized the opportunity to use some of the building space for the gym of her dreams.

“I want to give people the skills and confidence to know how to use the equipment and the excitement for it, and then they can come and do it themselves,” said Dunlavy. This is the choose-your-own-adventure inspiration behind the gym. Dunlavy wants to inspire the passion for fitness in the gym’s members.

Following her desire to share her knowledge and passion for fitness, Dunlavy took classes on triaging others in physical fitness. Dunlavy is a certified CrossFit level 1 trainer; however, the gym is not a CrossFit affiliate, yet. Depending on the local interest in CrossFit training it may be an option in the future.

Dunlavy also completed a nutrition class, building on existing experience as a leader and receptionist with the Weight Watchers program in the past. Dunlavy decided to take the nutrition class to better help her gym members achieve their fitness goals.

Dunlavy also has 20 years of experience as a coach in several sports. Dunlavy has coached alpine skiing in Montana and Duluth. The last 10 years she has coached with the Blue Hills alpine ski race team. She also has experience as a youth athletics coach in softball and golf.

Dunlavy has a handful of small group training classes going for the month of May. Classes offered include a basics barbell class and intro to TRX. While she is excited about the gym, Dunlavy emphasized that her children remain her focus.

“I have worked really hard to be available for my kids,” said Dunlavy. Since the birth of her first child, Dunlavy has worked from home to be with her children. The class times reflect this focus; however, moving into summer when school is no longer in session, Dunlavy expects evening class schedules may happen.

Reflecting her personal experience as a working parent, children are welcome to join their parents at the gym.

“As a member parent, if you want to bring your children in with you it is 100 percent OK, they come in for free. If they’re coming in to work with you and watch you be healthy they don’t have to pay to come,” said Dunlavy. However, paying members are required to be at least 16 years old.

To stay up to date on current class schedules and future open house dates and times, check out the gym’s Facebook page by searching Live Fast Fit Free at or on the gym website at Dunlavy can be reached via email at

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