Two Actors Are Sitting Pretty with Their Gym-on-Wheels
For struggling young actors, Hollywood is truly the land of opportunity: the opportunity to watch the ones with work tool by in their Rollses. So when gorgeous Ann Turkel, 35, who had just split from Richard Harris and was getting by with guest shots on Fantasy Island and other series, spied handsome Hans Buhringer, 31, an Austrian nutritionist, singer and actor, at a party last summer, it was love at first sight—and business at the second. “My manager told me two-thirds of his clients were ready to slit their wrists because they’re behind in their car payments,” Ann says. “He told me I had to have another business so I wouldn’t starve.” Since Ann, a svelte 5’10” and 135 pounds, had lots of showbiz pals, and muscular, 6’3″ Hans had his Ph.D. in nutrition from Vienna University, the couple decided they would provide Hollywood with the convenience and privacy of a gym-on-wheels that brings its service to the home or studio door. “If you’re well known, people stare at you in a gym,” Ann explains.
With his credit and her savings, the pair, who now share a rented home overlooking L.A., bought two customized vans and some $30,000 worth of equipment, including Universal exercise machines. They also hired assistants and dubbed themselves “Now or Never.” Since the March launch they’ve signed up a list that has included Rod and Alana Stewart, Valerie Perrine, Linda Evans and agent Swifty Lazar. Already they’re mulling several franchise offers and have designed their own warm-up suits.
Oh yes, their thrice-weekly one-hour sessions work out to about $50 per—payable in advance. That, says Turkel, is healthy for business.