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Gym owner fears second shutdown after Philadelphia announces new restrictions

Philadelphia announced that gyms will close from Nov. 20 to at least January 1.

TAYLOR, Pa. — New Jersey, New York, and Philadelphia have all begun tightening restrictions again, leading many people here to worry that Pennsylvania will be next.

So far, Governor Wolf has not announced any new statewide restrictions. 

However, the owner of 10X Fitness in Taylor fears a second shutdown is coming.

People who work out at 10X Fitness do not recall the months of this past spring fondly when gyms statewide were shut down. 

"It sucked. I mean, a big part of my life is the gym, working out helps me mentally, physically obviously. So it would be really bad if it happened again," said 10X Member Malik Draber.

Owner Daniel Cronauer says he and other gym owners have learned how to operate safely in the past six months of being open again.

"We've gone through probably a thousand gallons of Lysol at this point, without exaggerating. I mean, our staff but also our members, no one wants to lose a good thing. We lost the gym back in April and May, and no one wants to lose it again, so it's like, whatever we need to do to keep it open, we're gonna do it," said Cronauer. 

Cronauer says he hopes officials who may be considering a second shutdown, instead trust business owners to protect their customers and trust individuals to make their own decisions. 

"Everywhere in life, you have this calculated risk, right? When you get in the car, you're assuming some sort of risk driving to work, little bit of danger, but you gotta go to work," the gym owner added. "Everyone who's coming to the gym chooses to be here; they don't have to be here. They're choosing to say, 'hey, my mental health, my physical health is more important to me than the slight risk of getting the coronavirus."

In May, 10X Fitness was hit with fines and citations when it re-opened before Governor Wolf gave the go-ahead. 

Then, and now, Cronauer cites mental health as a primary reason for wanting to keep his doors open; his customers seem to agree.

"You can always stay active at home, but not every house is that great to be in 24/7," said Dan Cohowiczm, a member of 10X.

"Let's face it, we're all depressed right now. It gets dark at 4:30, and it's cold. People need a way to get some kind of outlet, and for the people who aren't in the gym right now, I would encourage them actually to come," Cronauer continued. 

Philadelphia is the only place in Pennsylvania to put new Covid-restrictions in place.

Cronauer was if the governor orders gyms including his in Taylor to shut down again if he'd try to stay open again.

He said he'd have to evaluate his options.

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