MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO)IT! FACTORY in Northfield manufactures strong bodies, minds and friendships.

It is a completely new concept for a gym; a place where physical fitness meets mental wellness.

Owner Cindy Boyum works with her teammates from the inside out.

“It wasn’t just going to be a fitness place. It was going to be a whole look at your person that comes in. Not just diet and exercise,” Boyum said.

After years of coaching others in sports, life and wellness, Boyum was at a crossroads in her own life.

And in that moment, when she sat and visualized her future, she created the IT! FACTORY.

“My philosophy here is how alive do you want to live your life, and how can we as a community support of people – from coaches to teammates – support you on that, whatever it is?” she said.

She calls that your “it” — whatever you are working toward and whatever makes you special.

“Here we try to help people either rediscover or discover for the first time what they’re really passionate about and want to have in their life,” Boyum said.

But do not be fooled by philosophy. The workouts are hard.

“I’m huge on the mental edge,” she said. “Physically, you can do many, many more things. You’re more capable than you know. But mentally, your body starts to check out before you’re even done.”

As I found out, Boyum goes to that mental edge with you.

“I will take you there. You’ll get uncomfortable, but I promise I won’t leave you there alone,” Boyum said. “We support people in what they want in their life without us defining that for them or assuming we know what they want.”

She says that is what causes a shift in the way people see fitness and, more importantly, the way they see themselves.

“I never thought that I would be able to run a 5k. And thanks to Cindy and her philosophy about, ‘You can do anything,’ I’ve been able to run 5Ks,” Julie Pritchard said.

Zandra Malecha says IT! FACTORY has given her a whole new perspective on fitness.

“Growing up in sports, you know, I was always active and stuff. But this has become kind of a passion for me,” Malecha said.

The IT! FACTORY is not just a gym, but a community where people support each other through physical, mental and emotional growth. That is the “it” factor here.

“It’s been really neat to see people push past limiting beliefs at that mental edge,” Boyum said. “They’ll come in and say I’m getting much more physically fit. But my mindset, emotional and mental balance is so much better. I always get a big smile on my face because I know that that’s where it all starts.”

If you do not live near Northfield, the IT! FACTORY is also mobile. Click here for more details.

Your other favorite group workouts are Wholesome Health Club in North Branch, the Art of Strength in Edina and Studio ME in Minneapolis.