Legal Up Fitness

Why do you want to start your own business as a fitness professional?

What’s your why?  I mean, why do you want to start your own fitness brand or business?

I mentioned in my introductory post about how this past summer, I got caught up in studio hustle.  I was an employee at 3 different studios (2 were essentially the same, just different locations).  I thought of myself as just an employee, trading hours of my time for an hourly or class payment from the studio.  I got caught up in the hustle for classes and it completely took over everything about my life.  

As an employee, my income was based entirely on how many hours I could put in at the studios and I just started working more and more.  There were days I was teaching 9 classes on the same day.  From 5 am until 11 and then come back and teach from 4:30 to 7:30.   There were 72 hour periods where I didn’t see my kids at all because I was getting up so early, then be gone until just before they went to bed.   Sometimes, they weren’t being picked up from their summer day camp until close to 8 at night.  My sleep was suffering because of these horrible early early morning hours while also working at night. I started suffering vocal fatigue and stress.  Weekends started sucking because I was either working or planning to work the next morning or trying to plan my next lineup of classes.  I was always tired.  I taught 9 classes on days when I was really really sick, but getting a sub was impossible.  I wasn’t getting to do any of my own workouts.  I was surviving on a diet of bulletproof coffee (’cause I’m keto), protein bars and energy drinks, only to come home and scarf down the leftover crust from the frozen pizza my kids had had for dinner (’cause I’m keto). Oh and that online business I was going to do?  It wasn’t happening.  I barely had time to sleep and wash my leggings.   Does this sound familiar to any of you?  

It was exactly the opposite of what I wanted when I had dreamed of becoming a Pilates instructor.  By mid-summer, I realized I was deep in the studio hustle–which is where fitness instructors are hustling from studio to studio, trying to capture all of the 17-35 dollar classes they can to make a living.  During the time I was working the most, I added up the paychecks of the three studios and realized that although it was the most I had made as a Pilates instructor, it was still less than one paycheck from the desk job I had left–and a tiny fraction of what I made as an attorney—yet I was exhausted and working so much more.  I knew then that  I needed to break out of being paid by the hour from a studio as my only source of income. I needed to think of myself as something more than just an employee.

I’m not suggesting that we all up and quit the studios.  I’m still an employee of one studio because, well, it’s fun.  I enjoy it.  I’m just talking from my own experience when I was working as an employee for studios so much that I didn’t have time to start making money for myself.  And I know that there are other teachers who are doing the same thing–working crazy crazy hours.  My why is that I want to make a living, a good living, without working horrible hours.  I want to see my kids and have a flexible schedule.  I still want to still pursue my love of Pilates and fitness and I don’t want to go back to a desk job that would require me to wear real pants with zippers or, even worse, panty hose.  

What’s your why?  Say it.  Say it out loud.  Do you want money?  Not just, I want to not be living under the poverty level, but like, I want MONEY.  Do you want freedom?  Do you have a damn good message that needs to get out there and help people?  Do you just think you’re smokin’ hot (and you are) and if that one chick can be pulling in 6 figures just from endorsements, you should be too? You don’t have to justify your why to anyone.  You just have to sing it, believe in it, print it out, remind yourself of it everyday and keep pursuing it.  Everything is possible when you know your why.