Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and fitness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Brandy Martin, owner of Feed Your Soul Fitness, located in Denver, CO, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Feed Your Soul Fitness offers fitness, nutrition, and accountability to help people lose weight, feel better and get stronger! Our fitness is based around beginner to intermediate levels and done either in small group formats or 1:1 personal training. For nutrition, we focus on sustainable, realistic eating that does not involve fads or restrictive diets. We help people find balance with food so they can enjoy an occasional brownie, glass of wine, or slice of pizza, all while maintaining a positive relationship with food. We weave in accountability because it is the glue that holds everything together.
People in our community are either just getting started in their health journey for the first time, or they are jumping back in after a hiatus from a while back. They love our community and approach because we meet them where they are at and help them take one step at a time. We focus on celebrating small wins and teaching how to improve their lives continually.
Tell us about yourself
After I left my six-year job as a Starbucks Store Manager, which was the heaviest I had ever been and the unhealthiest I ever was, I had a massive wake-up call. I was not even 30 years old and was on the wrong path if I wanted to live a long, healthy, disease-free life. I wanted to be active, travel, and never be restricted due to my health.
After I took my Yoga Teacher Training Summer of 2010, I went full-on into multiple certifications for exercising, including spin, kettlebells, TRX, and Personal Training. Over the years, as I was teaching and training, I saw a great need within the beginner/intermediate demographic. So many classes/trainers were so overly aggressive and intimidating. With my yoga teacher's influence, I attracted people who needed a more gentle approach, and then FYSF was born.
Creating a space that felt comfortable with caring trainers that were focused on meeting people where they are at was my passion. Every single day I have some type of conversation regarding health and wellness, and it truly feeds my soul. I love helping people get unstuck and feel more confident in their journey.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
When FYSF opened its brick-and-mortar location after training out of a park for a year, we had just two people working for the company. Myself and my husband. Now we have 26 people on staff. Growing and developing a team, roles, processes, and a community has by far been a massive accomplishment. Of course, helping thousands of people lose weight, get stronger, feel more confident, and live happier lives is also a huge accomplishment!
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
While it is hard, it is also one of the best things once you can absorb it, and that is a constant evolution. Grow or die. Nothing can stay the same; otherwise, you can't grow. So finding a balance of growth yet settling into processes that just work. Growth has its own pulse, and it changes, so you have to be in tune and present. They don't call them "Growing Pains" for nothing, but the pain is worth it as you look back at how far you have come!
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Provide excellent customer service no matter what. That is foundational. Without superior customer service, you won't get any type of following.
- Be ready to change. Don't get set in your ways. Change is hard, but the quicker you realize something is not working or serving the greater good, the quicker everything can improve.
- Don't be afraid to ask for help. Asking for help can feel very vulnerable and sometimes leave you feeling like you are not good enough or you are a failure. It's the opposite, in my opinion. When you ask for help, you are eagerly looking for another fresh perspective and ready to improve.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
Last, I would just say that "This too shall pass"- not just for the "bad" stuff but also for the "good." Take nothing for granted and know that there is a percentage of the "stuff" that is out of your control, and that is ok!
Creating, building, growing, and developing a business is not for the faint of heart. It will challenge you in every way you could or could not imagine, but there is nothing more rewarding. Seriously, working for yourself and creating your own path that you are passionate about is one of the best gifts of life. Enjoy it!
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email email@example.com; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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