Jenna Paulson is the owner of newly located 4K Weightlifting, at 1534 Stephanie Road, Suite 107.
Photo Amy Byres/ Observer

Seven months after opening 4K Weightlifting, owners Jenna Paulson and Mathew Erdman are lifting themselves to a new location.

This new gym specializes in Olympic weightlifting and tailoring strength programs for young athletes. This gym has about eight athletes who compete in Olympic weightlifting.

“We have two women state record-holders and then a youth male state record-holder for Olympic weightlifting,” Paulson said.

This husband and wife team began this business understanding a need for young athletes to fine-tune their skills in the weight room.

“We really started this whole thing because we saw such a need in the youth athlete market for a gym like this,” she said. “We were hearing from so many students that were being thrown into weight rooms for whatever their sport is — baseball, football, whatever — and they would come to me and be like ‘Oh, my gosh, Jenna, you should see some of these kids. They are not doing it right.”

Each member meets with a trainer to customize their fitness to their needs. This customization is applied to 4K Weightlifting’s fitness classes, Olympic weightlifting programs and youth athlete programs.


Owner Jenna Paulson, of 4K Weightlifting, monitors pitcher Austin Barela, a freshman at Cleveland High School, as he lifts weights at the gym.
Photo Amy Byres / Observer

With this in mind, 4K Weightlifting took off once it started breaking into this market of young athletes.

“Once we really started reaching out to the youth athletes to supplement their strength training, that’s when things really started picking up,” Paulson said. “Actually it hasn’t even been a year yet, but we are doing pretty well.

“We’re really thankful for all of our members and people just spreading the word; that’s the most important thing.”

Paulson and Erdman are USA Weightlifting-certified trainers. They both fell in love with fitness many years ago, leading the way to the idea of owning their own gym.

“We loved it, so we just said, ‘Alright, let’s do this,'” Paulson said.

Paulson was born and raised in Rio Rancho; so when deciding where to open a gym, Rio Rancho was a natural choice, she said.

“I think the small community aspect of (Rio Rancho) is kind of what generates better business,” Paulson said.

While starting 4K Weightlifting, she said the city made it easy for her to find information.

“The city is great. I think that their website is very resourceful and the people that they have working there to help you are great and it’s really not that hard. Being a smaller community, it’s easier to gain knowledge into what you need so those resources are easy to find,” she said.

Paulson said she is a big supporter of small businesses and being a part of that community, she is always able to find help.

“Everybody works together very well in Rio Rancho I think. If you need anything, somebody next door has probably been through it too, so you can always ask them as well,” she said.

After outgrowing their previous space, 4K Weightlifting owners decided to move to 1534 Stephanie Road, Suite 107.

There will be six individual lifting platforms in this new space and more fitness classes.

This newly added feature of fitness classes came from the inspiration of wanting to get parents involved in workouts while their youth athletes train, Paulson said.

“A lot of the time we have parents drop off their kids and they’ll just wait for them, but instead of them just sitting around and waiting, they can do a fitness class,” she said.

In addition to these changes, 4K Weightlifting has also adjusted hours to be more available to members, Paulson said.

“So now we can offer every day to make sure we are able to get the most people in here to benefit from their sports programs,” she said.

Paulson said 4K Weightlifting is about a community that anyone can join, no matter their fitness level.

“Well, I think that it is a smaller approach and a different approach to regular gyms…You get that community aspect of it because you’re going to have your set group of people that you’re working out with every day,” she said. “So you build that relationship; you build that camaraderie amongst each other; so you are not doing it alone.”

Paulson said joining a fitness class offers support and accountability.

“So that’s why I like that, too, and I try to encourage anybody; you know, just come and try it,” she said.

Free trials are available at 4K Weightlifting. For more information, visit