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Iron Roots Strength & Co. coming to Fountain Hills

Sep 02, 2023

The Evans Family is set to open a CrossFit gym in Fountain Hills (Photo submitted by Bonni Pearson)

It’s just before noon on a Friday in Fountain Hills and Amaya Evans is in the garage getting her workout in for the day. It’s nearing 106 degrees and the floor fans are blowing at helicopter speed to keep the hot air somewhat breathable in the makeshift CrossFit gym. Above her, a flag is pinned up the wall that says, “Sore today, probably sore tomorrow.”

Evans, who recently signed to play beach volleyball for South Mountain Community College, is used to this grueling heat because it’s the way her parents, Julie and Dietrich Evans, have worked out for the past decade. This year, however, the Evans family is gearing up to start working out in their brand-new gym in Fountain Hills, one that marries their passion for mobility and joy of community-based learning into a family-owned and operated facility. Best of all, it’s got air conditioning.

Iron Roots Strength & Co. is the newest gym to set up shop in Fountain Hills. The gym will offer small group classes in CrossFit, Kettlebells and Sweat. While the doors are yet to open (expected grand opening by the end of the year), the community is already signing up online and over the phone to be part of something new and exciting.

“We’re happy to offer Fountain Hills an option for group fitness so that people don’t have to drive to Scottsdale to find it,” Julie said, a mother of seven student athletes, who has also come back from two major surgeries.

Her husband and high school sweetheart, Dietrich, who was drafted in 1992 out of high school by the San Fransisco Giants and in 1993 by the San Diego Padres, had his professional athletic career cut short when he was hit by a car in Peoria, but that didn’t stop him from reaching his dream of one day opening a gym.

“I’m 48, I mean, I’m really turning the corner to 50 and I feel better than I ever have and it’s 100% because of my regimen, to our discipline,” Dietrich said.

Iron Roots is a CrossFit affiliate run by qualified CrossFit and Kettlebell coaches. Julie said the priority of their gym is to look out for the safety of individuals. Its purpose, on the other hand, is to help people achieve their mobility, strength and agility goals.

“Mobility is a gift. If you don’t use it, you lose it,” Dietrich said. “Sooner or later, health is going to be your number one priority. If people would pay more attention to it now, it wouldn’t be such an urgency later on in life.”

Collegiate swimmers, volleyball players, tennis players and Olympic lifters, the Evans are a family of athletes descended from athletes. According to Dietrich, he and Julie have surrounded themselves with people that are “either better than us or as good as us,” and want the same for their kids.

“We’ve had a lot of collegiate athletes in the family as role models for us,” Julie said. “We knew that our kids would follow suit, so our motivation was not just to preach, we wanted to walk the walk and talk the talk.”

With their new gym on the cusp of opening its doors to the community, Julie and Dietrich have plans of offering corporate memberships, bootcamp training classes and training workshops specifically focused around students. For now, they just want to instill in their children and their community that the path to success is consistency.

“We really do want to inspire people to just start,” Julie said. “Because we know that once they start seeing changes, then they’ll be able to keep that momentum going.”

To find out more about Iron Roots Strength & Co., visit, follow the Facebook page @Iron Roots or call 602-760-8797.

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