Ruined by Florence, Spring Lake fitness gym rebuilds, watches Hurricane Michael

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The old saying goes that nothing worth having comes easy. With that in mind, all the elbow grease and sweat equity the owners of Evolution Athletics have put in is beyond rewarding — even though Mother Nature has decimated what they’ve created.

Two months ago, Evolution Athletics opened its new building to incorporating new businesses, such as Cactus Coffee, a yoga studio, and co-working space; all the while keeping the flagship enterprise, a CrossFit gym, intact.

Then in September, Hurricane Florence crept its way across the Carolinas.

The huge and slow-moving storm dumped a record amount of rain and made the Little River swell to records heights. The gym sits on the banks of the river.

“The Little River has been such a blessing in bringing in so many families together and adventures, and when we saw it swell up and heard the predictions, initially we were skeptical and that there had never been flooding of that extremity here before,” says Izdihar Eaton, co-owner of Evolution Athletics.

The water crept into the building and crested at five feet inside the facility. Worse, the water stayed at that height (or near it) for three days. When the waters receded, everything under the roof of the massive building was destroyed or deemed useless.

To add salt to the fresh wound, Hurricane Michael (or what will be left of it) is taking aim at North Carolina, and the idea that the Little River could rise again is a very real possibility.

“What can you do? Mother Nature is in charge no matter what you do,” said Mike Birky, owner of Cactus Coffee.

Since Florence, the rebuilding has gone non-stop. Gym classes have resumed, and Eaton said the building will be back to its original glory by October 27 – whether Hurricane Michael gets in the way or not.

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