For some reason I must’ve zoned out on this one. I was taking my regular morning constitution yesterday while enjoying the sounds of Beethoven’s 6th symphony and praying/meditating on the moment and the day ahead. Some deer and a fox were spotted and we had pleasant conversations about…well…who cares about that. The point is I realized I have been in the fitness industry for 10 years now! In most circles 10 years in a reason to pause and raise a glass (of smoothie) in celebration of this accomplishment. And 10 years in this business is definitely something to celebrate!
Let me briefly take you back to where it all begin waaaaaay back in 2005 when rock was young….
I became certified (after saying I would never get certified) to teach spinning and Pilates classes. After teaching a few spinning classes at Celebration Fitness in Florida I was promptly canned over a voicemail by the manager at that time who NEVER gave me a clear reason why. The most I got out of her was “You go out of town too much” as this was when I was still doing professional theater although not as much with a few shows a year..some which required me to travel to other states and perform my ass off while charming my female co-workers. Everyone gets canned at one time or the other but over a voicemail and then not returning any calls and hiding when I came to chat was just too much for this guy. It motivated me like nothing else and galvanized how much I really loved being in this industry and how far I want to progress. I’ve always been very bold and motivated. Over the years some people have been a problem and attempted to delay or sabotage what I do…I just go right over them. Get outta my way, lazy ass! HAHAHAAAA. ⬅️Then I laugh just like that. Diabolical laughter clears the soul. I got it from The Spanish Inquisition on Monty Python.
Anyway, Sean Vigue Fitness was canned and regrouping. The manager that fired me with so much tact felt very bad (or guilty) after I wrote very nice letters to her bosses and co-workers and offered me an olive branch (which I very much appreciated) of contacting the fitness manager at Team Disney regarding teaching there. I had to wait out her getting canned before I could teach at my beloved Celebration Fitness once again. I contacted Team Disney and pushed for a Pilates class despite the manager repeatedly saying, “Maybe we should start your class in a few months when the new year begins.”. Nope. No time like the present. Strike now. A few months is an ETERNITY in this business. Hit it. Plank it. I have to do it now! Get to the CHOPPA!! Do you understand how I live and how I’m either a delight to work with or a total nightmare of efficiency and Monty Python quotes?
It was opening night for Pilates. I was nervous. I was sweating. I was ready. My first Team Disney class = 0 clients. Not bad. I can only do better. My second Team Disney class = 1. BooYA! Magnificent! It’s time to celebrate. I drove right to Target and bought myself a couple DVDs. Which ones I can’t remember. Let’s say one was “Smokey and the Bandit” you Sum Bitch! I knew this was the start of something exciting. I live to be excited and inspired. What could the future bring?
A few classes later some ladies who worked at Disney’s Animal Kingdom came to Pilates and after class they offered me a contract to teach at their cast services building. Such lovely ladies. That’s how it works. You network and you expand. You meet people and you all want to partake in the Pilates. The Pilates is gold. The Pilates is the Glengarry account. The Pilates brings all the clients to the yard. Of course, you have to be able to teach class too and I constantly focus on improving my teaching skills. So, I began teaching at Animal Kingdom and that opened the door to many, many other places on Disney property: Imagineering, Disney University, Feature Animation, Golden Oak, Ft. Wilderness etc for over 8 years. Good times. I racked up over 2000 classes just on Disney property with cast members from all over the park in various roles and responsibilities. I was also teaching Pilates, yoga and spinning at schools, businesses, homes, hospitals, dance companies, resorts etc
Well, this lead me to purchase a Flip camera 6 years ago and I entered into the hallowed world of workout videos which enabled me to encapsulate my classes and fire them out into the world. I shall save those stories for another blog. My morning walk made me realize how much I LOVE and am grateful to God and to YOU for these opportunities. I’m never one to complain (unless you pull on my ear buds, I HATE that) and this realization literally took my breath away. Running a fitness brand, especially when that brand is yourself, is a 24/7 heart and soul commitment. Either give 100% or do something else. There is hardly a time when I’m not thinking about new workouts, books, blogs, networking, classes etc. It never stops and I’ve discovered recently that it’s ok. Sure it can overwhelm and crush me sometimes but I take breaks. Right now I’m fixin’ to take Addie for a walk (fact: Addie doesn’t like walks very much) and read some “Killing Patton”, “Opera News” and “Badasses of the Old West” on the deck to clear my head. But…it always comes back to how I can get more people moving in a fun, genuine and challenging way.
BTW – I have no hard feelings about being fired by said manager at Celebration Fitness. In life we all have to face these kinds of things and it’s how we REACT that really make the difference. I chose to keep moving forward and learning and that was the BEST choice. No complaints here.
Thanks for listening, my friends. My heart is full.
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