headquarters, by Axis Labs Athlete Josh Black #joshblack #axislabs #ammonblack #innerstrengthfitness

Chance of a Lifetime! My Experience at headquarters, by Axis Labs Athlete Josh Black

A few weeks ago I had the chance of a lifetime! I was given the amazing opportunity to go to headquarters in Boise, Idaho! I felt like Charlie Bucket and I had found the golden ticket and I was going into the factory. I was there for three days participating in photo and video shoots for the upcoming program Pillars. Out of the whole country, and all the members on BodySpace, picked two men and two women to participate in this project. I feel honored and truly blessed to have been one of those chosen and to be able to share my transformation story, and be a part of the forthcoming Pillars.


I was the local guy, the rest were flown in from Maryland (Antonio Wright), North Carolina (Ginger Jernigan), and Colorado (Pam Brown). All of us went through a transformation and played a huge part in our success.

I was so impressed with the Antonio, Ginger, and Pam’s stories and how far they had come. To hear them talk about their lives, the challenges they faced and overcame, along with their success was truly empowering and motivating! It was only three days but we bonded and became friends. We may be from different parts of the country but we all had one thing in common, we all have a passion for fitness and health.

Walking in the Front Doors just moved into their new facility and man was it nice! Across the front of the building in huge black letters with blue background is As I went to open the front doors I noticed the handles were barbells. The front lobby had a custom built motorcycle from Orange County Choppers. I of course took the opportunity to jump on it and take a picture. The last thing in the lobby was a wall full of clear panels. The panels were full of signatures from all the employees and people who had visited the facility. Yes I got to sign it! There is a sign in middle of the panels which reads. “We commit to changing lives and become our best selves”. As you leave the lobby and walk into the main building the next thing you see to is the gym! It made a huge statement to me that the gym was the first thing you see when you enter the main building doors. On the outside of the gym there was another sign that reads, “Life is a gift, one that should not be taken for granted. Fitness is a call to take your life to a higher level. Set a goal. Follow a plan. Track results. Stay Motivated. Motivate others. Repeat. To move mountain you first have to move muscle. Change your body, change your life”. Staff

From the moment I walked in the doors, the staff at was awesome! They made me feel like I was a superstar. Lisa Hawkes the Digital Publishing Project Manager made me feel very welcome and made sure I knew exactly what was going on and what I was supposed to do. For all three days there was a detailed production schedule. Lisa led us up to wardrobe where we got to pick out B-Elite clothes. At the end of the production we were able to pick out one B-Elite outfit to keep. They also gave us a gym bag full of goodies. Score! Brandon Poe, the Executive Producer gave us a tour of all three stories along with the history of He explained what it was like to work for this amazing company. We were able to sit down with Mr. Montz, the head of the BodySpace program and share feedback with him about the BodySpace. We were given a sneak peek at was coming up in the future and how the site was going to change. It was very exciting to see all the staff and how hard they were working. They were collaborating as they attacked the projects they were assigned to. They had areas separated that were their think tanks. The walls were covered with inspirational books along with whiteboards and pens to write down ideas. As a teacher I really appreciated the conduciveness of the learning environment. As I was sitting in the think tank for the last part of the video shoot, I picked one of the books off the shelf to read, it was The 4-Hour Body by Timothy Ferriss, yes I am going to buy it so I can read the rest.

Ryan DeLuca Founder and CEO of

We were even given the unique opportunity to have a sit down in the conference room with the founder and CEO of Mr. Ryan DeLuca. Yes it was a little nerve racking to sit across from a man who has built a huge empire. I quickly became comfortable as he spoke to us and shared his feelings and experiences. He took the time to ask for our feedback. He shared his story of how he started out of his garage! Truly amazing story! I went home that night and was describing Ryan to my wife and these words came to mind: laid back, well spoken, friendly, sincere, humble, ambitious, and caring. We were told by several employees that the guy remembers everyone’s name and details about all of them. He also has an open door policy to come in and talk with him pretty much whenever you want to. That’s pretty impressive when you have 500+ employees! We were also told the he is constantly self educating by listening to books in his car. Side note, if you are an employee at they pay you $50 to read a book and turn in a book report, two reports a month max! They also reward employees for exercising and making healthy choices along with transformation challenges. You can earn credits along with paid time off. Needless to say it was obvious to see why the company is on top and why their employees love working there. The last thing that I thought was really cool was that Ryan and I graduated high school the same year. 1996! I think he has had a little more financially success than myself. ;-) I better get on it!

Lights, Cameras, Nervousness!

I have had fitness photo shoots before, I have made videos before, but man I was nervous. My nerves were quickly put at ease as I got to know the production crew. They were so laid back and they had a lot of fun with what they were doing, in turn I was able to have fun and be myself. An example was the second day we had a little down time before the photo shoot, a few of us decided to go into the break room and play a few rounds of ping pong. Though I lost, ;-) I had a great time and got a good sweat going on. I was told they have ping pong tournaments at lunch. They also had a huge flat screen TV with Xbox in the corner. I would have a hard time getting much work done. ;-)

Conclusion-My life has and will continue to change

Looking back at this experience I am in awe that I was so lucky to again be picked. My life has and will continue to change forever because of it. I am excited to be a part of the BodySpace program and in turn I feel like my story and experiences will hopefully help to motivate many, many, more people to change their lives. When I think of it in that perspective of being an example and helping others, my heart is full of joy because serving others and feeling like I am making a difference is a huge reason why I am so passionate about fitness. This is the same reason I am an educator/teacher. Though bodybuilding and fitness is seen by outsiders as a very selfish sport, because you really are self-absorbed in your body, workouts, nutrition, etc. Though it may seem very self-absorbed sport and community, it is very much the opposite. Yes fitness is part of my career but it is much bigger than that. For me personally it is about fighting against obesity and other unhealthy lifestyles that are effecting the whole human race. Like the sign said outside of the gym at, it’s about helping others to take their lives to a higher level. Because fitness improves every aspect of your life.