A Reflection on Year 1 of Thomas Fitness Consulting
Wow! It was a year ago today that I had my last day at my corporate job. Little did I know what lie ahead and all of the time and energy it was going to take, (but I was warned)!
I spent the first few months decompressing after I left my job and was able to take on a few clients right away along with teaching/subbing classes. I decided to take this break after busting my butt marketing in the insurance business and being burnt out on a desk job. I am so glad I did as things are picking up now and I am starting to feel the tides turn.
Below are a few tidbits I learned this year I thought I would share:
A reliable tribe that advocates for you is your ultimate support system.
I am really fortunate to have an amazing network and people that "get it" because they deal with people in sales, service, marketing or human resources (and they are just good people)! I have had really amazing support from them. They were some of the few that showed up to my special classes when I thought no one would show. The advice I had from another business owner was "keep showing up. Eventually they'll figure it out!" This is is starting to happen and it's because my crew is supportive in the best way they can be with showing up to events, referring people to me and some becoming clients themselves! Thank you for all of the likes, comments, shares and showing up in your own way to support me-even if from afar. I do see it and I appreciate the love.
You cannot go to every networking event.
I really don't mind networking but it's also exhausting sometimes, especially now that it's an extra effort for me to do my hair and makeup (I never wear makeup anymore getting up at 4 a.m.) and donning something more than workout clothes. I have met some new people this year I need to follow up with and therefore, am not so sad that I cannot network as much as I used to with bringing on more evening clients. I also have to weigh the cost as a business owner and the audience that is going to be at the networking event. If it's a topic or audience I can somewhat identify with, I'm in! Otherwise truthfully, I enjoy being at home with my husband and dog when I am not coaching.
I need 28 hours a day.
I know I need to do more email marketing, trust me, I used to preach it at my old job! However, they had everything created for them from our parent company-I am doing this on my own because I don't like cookie cutter marketing for the fitness industry. As you can see, I have stepped up my social media game. Next is email marketing (and possibly hiring a virtual assistant by year end).
Education has been huge this year as well-not just from a training/fitness standpoint but also learning more about marketing as a small business owner and entrepreneur. I have found some really fun groups online to help with this and met more women business owners from all over, which has been great bonding!
Finding a way to stand out in a saturated market can be tough.
I'm not going to sugar coat it-there are a lot of personal trainers in the world and in Cleveland. I like to think I am different in my approach in that I onboard my clients like a new employee with helpful resources, a formal contract, a thorough physical assessment, access to their workout progressions and I listen to their pain points always. If I do not know the answer, I find it by researching, speaking to one of my wellness partners , discussing with other trainers at the studio or in my Facebook groups with trainers from all over the world who have seen it all.
In June, I will be the only coach in northeast Ohio to complete the Certified Pre/Post-natal Coaching from Girls Gone Strong. No other Pre- & Postnatal Certification in the world is as evidence-based and interdisciplinary as CPPC as it was developed by 16 world-class women’s health professionals who are at the top of their game including pelvic health physiotherapists, OB/GYNs, psychologists, doulas, pre- and postnatal experts, and PhDs in psychology, exercise science, and molecular biology. Every unit (all 5 units with 22 total chapters) was created and reviewed by no fewer than six of these experts. By the way-once you have a baby, you are always post-natal!
I am also hoping later this year into early next year to take my coaching online to help those in other states and countries!
This year has been a whirlwind and the last 6 months went very fast.
Do I have any regrets? No way! With being home more we got a dog in August! I am able to go grocery shopping during the day and I can schedule appointments at less popular times. The flexibility is great-especially with the fact that my family doesn't live in Cleveland and we have to travel or they visit.
I am really looking forward to making further strides in year 2 with Thomas Fitness Consulting in continuing to produce quality content and helping more people with their fitness goals. If you have any fun ideas or feedback for year 2, I am all ears! firstname.lastname@example.org
THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART!