I'll know more tomorrow, maybe a good night's sleep will do the trick?
Things have been very busy at work (which is a good thing) with new evals each week and great sessions happening "each client-all day-every day." To be honest, as we come to the start of the holiday season and the close to the year, I can't not think back to all that's happened in 2009.
We started the year with Francesca running a 3:39 marathon and qualifying for the Boston Marathon (an absolute UP moment for her and I as her coach.) Privately, I was spinning inside as we made necessary staff changes and dealt with a falling economy. February, brought us to the IDEA Conference and the APEX of my concerns about the future. My 401k was 1/2 of it's all-time high, my property taxes just went up. We had clients who were unsure of their $$ thus didn't renew their sessions. It really was the perfect storm both personally & professionally.
However, in February I also came to meet Todd Durkin. Todd has been called a "Legend, Guru, Best Personal Trainer in America, Coach & Mentor." He's many things, but most of all he's "humble" and a (former) "Jersey Guy." He now makes his way in San Diego training the NFL Elite. We hit it off immediately & agreed to keep in touch. Shortly thereafter, Todd invited me to join his "elite" Mastermind Group. A collection of the best 20 Fitness Professionals from around the country. How could I refuse? This gave me access to the best and brightest in our business; the give and take exchange of ideas & issues was just what I needed!
March, April & May had me training for my IRONMAN. Work was picking up and our newest Trainer "Lori" was emerging as a Great Fitness Professional. I was increasingly optimistic about the future! We began a long and comprehensive search for another fitness professional to join what was now our "TEAM."
June introduced us to 9 applicants, 5 interviews, 3 follow up interviews, 2 finalists & 1 "Anthony Lopez." I'll simply say "Anthony is an OUTSTANDING Fitness Professional" he has been more than we hoped for.
July. For me personally, IRONMAN. 22 years, 13 hrs & 57 minutes. What more can I say? I saw a goal to completion; that's more than most! Professionally: We were ROLLING!
In August, September, October we were performing significantly GREAT-GREAT sessions. We were always GOOD at what we did but NOW things were different. We ALL were GREAT Fitness Professionals. There were no "weak links" on our TEAM. We all knew it too - which only made us better each day. We were pumped! I took out an Advertisement in the Suburban Essex Magazine. The Ad Rep came to meet with me and walked into our facility. She looked around and said "WOW, this is really nice!!" I replied with thanks and began to explain what we do.
She tells me about the "Best of Essex Awards" and how we should be nominated. We ask our clients to nominate us and they do. Next thing you know; out of 100 nominees, we are a top 10 finalist. Perhaps the biggest "change" this summer was the awakening of Francesca's talents. Perhaps, stirred by a dinner we shared with Todd in August? She began devouring books and ideas; quickly she became a very-very different person. Someone with supreme confidence in herself and he abilities. No longer was she "my wife" but now she was 'Her own person.' Maybe-just maybe, I was a good influence?
November & December. We are named the "Runner Up" in the category of "Best Fitness Center" in Essex County. But we are the TOP Vote in the category of "Personal Training Studio."
Out of 100 others and all larger than us in #'s "I'll take it!" THANK YOU to all of you that voted!! My brother Gary (also my business partner) has been AMAZED at the difference in the last year. He comments on how much more energy and positivity their is in the facility along with the increased TEAMWORK we all have. For Gary to say it says much (as he clearly is the more reserved of us two!)
In addition to the great things going on at Fitness 121. We have exciting things going on "outside."
I will be speaking this March in San Diego at a (Invite Only) Conference for Fitness Professionals. Additionally, I will speak at my former college ESU to the Exercise Science Department.
Francesca is going to a photo shoot this Saturday in NYC to get some media shots for her guest spots on FOX News & CNN Headline News as a "Fitness Contributor." (It's a long story, but obviously an exciting one!) I will let you know when she is on!
As we approach the New Year, I wish to thank those who read my BLOG. It is for you that I scribble this dribble. For those of you that are our clients: Thank You. I promise you - that 2010 will be the BEST YEAR yet. We have some exciting things going on: Pilates, Golf Fitness, Nutritional Consultation, Life Coaching and More. Also, in need of BIG "Thank You" are Bobby, Rob & the rest of the Fitness 121 TEAM. You guys are simply awesome and our success is the direct result of your efforts and passion. Thank You!!
To all the rest who find my BLOG, I leave you with this.
"It's not just Personal Training; It's Fitness 121 Personal Training."
Happy Holidays to All!