Monday, July 1, 2013

Becoming: Part 1

It's been 6 months since I took the exam to become a personal trainer. Six months of highs and lows, trying to promote myself, dragging pounds and pounds of gear around from location to location, and oh yeah- trying my best to create ass-kicking, enjoyable workouts. People often ask me how my Little Engine that Could business is going. Here's what I'll say:

To quote Adam Sandler's character in the 1994 comedy "Mixed Nuts": It's a work in progress. It may never be finished. 

But seriously. It's been a real learning experience for me. I knew in the beginning that my biggest challenge was going to be marketing myself, and that has proven to be true. I enjoy training people- in groups and one-on-one. When I'm out running I construct workouts in my head and then I come home and test them out. I get excited over new gear I buy and spend hours in my back yard trying out new exercises. I do tons of research- reading fitness blogs and watching countless Youtube videos of other trainers, trying to learn all that I can.
For me this stuff is fun! And getting to share that knowledge with others is where is all comes together. The part I hate is the business side. (Which stinks, because I am a business and I ultimately want to be successful- on a small level, at least.)
All of my clients thus far have come to me either by social media or word-of-mouth. Luckily I have a great network of friends who have been very supportive of me, either by attending classes or saying nice things about me on the internet, and for this I am so SO grateful. Still I find myself having anxiety over getting enough people to attend a bootcamp and worrying about how it will look if I only have 2 people at a class.

Deep breaths. Baby steps. I am a work in progress.

A few weeks ago I met up with my friend Ambrose, who I trained under for over 2 years before deciding to take this step on my own. I expressed to him my frustration and worry over possibly having one person show up to what is advertised as a "group"  workout.  He proceeded to give me the greatest advice. He said something like:  "So what if you only have one person? You give that person the best, most awesome workout you possibly can- and that one person could become one of your biggest cheerleaders." 
He is right, and I have taken that advice to heart. Although I admit I will still probably always stress over the marketing side of this whole endeavor- I realize that I need to have patience. As well as persistence. So while I'm wishing I had more people at my classes, I still give 120% planning and executing every single workout- whether I have 2 people or 20 people. (Ha-like I've ever had 20 people!) I also have to keep in mind that this is a part-time gig for me. My #1 job is still my family. I'm not teaching classes to pay the bills or put food on the table. I'm doing this because I enjoy it and I think I have something to offer.

So with that in mind,  I will go forth and continue this work in progress.