Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and fitness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Sophie Manfredi, Owner, Personal Trainer, and Nutrition Coach of True Conditioning, located in Vancouver BC, Canada.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

True Conditioning is a boutique Personal Training and TRX Group Fitness Studio located in Steveston, BC. Our mission is to help women of all shapes, ages, and sizes to uncover their true fitness potential. We believe a workout can not only change your body but your mind. Start celebrating what your body is for and what it can do today.

Tell us about yourself

Hi everyone, my name is Sophie. I am a National Level Olympic Weightlifter, Personal Trainer, Nutrition Coach, and overall fitness Junkie. As a former competitive swimmer and varsity rower, exercise and competition has always been a part of my life.

I love pushing my limits and taking on new challenges, and I hope to make exercises something others love to do as well. ⁠Before I started True Conditioning with my now-husband Ryan, I was inspired to become a personal trainer after joining the Under Armour What’s Beautiful Contest – a competition to redefine the female athlete. I declared to help ten women step outside their comfort zone in pursuit of a fitness goal with the hopes of being selected as an Under Armour Ambassador.

After documenting one of the most inspirational stories, I was selected as a Motivational Champion out of 14,000 women. I was sent to Camp Sweat in Florida to train with nine other women at the IMG Academy.⁠After returning from Camp Sweat, I came back with a newfound mission to help empower women through fitness and health. My goal was to create a space where women of all shapes, sizes, and fitness levels could come and work out without feeling intimidated.

I believe all women should feel comfortable and confident in their bodies, and I hope to inspire others to step outside their comfort zone so that they may uncover their true fitness potential. ⁠⁠After eight years of working in the fitness industry, I hope to continue to build upon my original mission and share my passion for barbell training with others to help break the stigma that weightlifting is just for men, in order to help women discover how strong they can be – inside and outside of the gym.

With an all-female team behind me, I am so grateful to have the opportunity to wake up and do what I love every single day while making a difference in the lives of the people I touch.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

I think one of the biggest accomplishments I have experienced as a business owner is seeing the growth and impact True Conditioning has made in the community over the last eight years.

From starting the business with just my husband and me to now employing a team of over 20 people, I am so proud of the culture I created down to my amazing team of female trainers and the supportive people that make True Conditioning such a special community to be a part of.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

One of the hardest things that comes from being a business owner is the never-ending responsibility. As I continue to look out for the well-being of my gym, community, and staff, it can be hard to fully shut off and relax. But over the years, along with the help from my trusted employees, I have been able to find balance and enjoy the best of both worlds.

Navigating Covid-19 was especially difficult, but thanks to the support of my team and our ever-supportive community, we were able to make it through and come back stronger and more connected than ever before.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Start before you're ready.
  2. Have a clear mission and vision for your business (i.e., What is your WHY?)
  3. Prioritise and put your people first.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

"Don't be afraid to go out on a limb. That is where the fruit is". If there's anything I've learned over the years, it is to trust your gut and to get comfortable being uncomfortable. Having upgraded our facility three times in 7 years, I had to push my fears and doubts aside every time and stand behind my vision for the business.

I truly believe if you have a clear plan and are willing to work hard, success will follow.

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; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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