September 17, 2020

Goal Setting – How I Became a Fitness Instructor

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Goal Setting - How I Became a Fitness InstructorHave you ever had a goal that you just thought would be too difficult or crazy to achieve? Or maybe you want to change an aspect of your life for the better. Goal setting has always been important to me, but this year was year I decided to really take it seriously. Which really helped me achieve my goal of becoming a fitness instructor.

What made this year so different? Well, for starters it has to be one of the craziest years on record. 2020 came with so many emotions that it was easy to feel out of control. By focusing on the little things I could control, gave a small sense of relief. Additionally, just like getting a dog during this time it was a way to have a positive association with the pandemic: coming out on the other side a better version of myself.

Goal Setting : Deciding to Become Fitness Instructor

Each year I start with a blog post about the upcoming year’s goals. Last December, I felt I wasn’t as healthy as I wanted to be, wasn’t getting the right amount of sleep, drinking more than I wanted to, and just not feeling my best. I knew I had to make some changes but those are more easily said than done.

I was also setting goals for my business at this time as well. In fact, I started FBM in April of 2017 with the intention of having a flexible, income producing business of my own that I was passionate about. While I have grown my income year over year, I haven’t come close to my desired (yet sky high!) targets. I knew I needed to invest more to make FBM better, but also needed guaranteed payment. Rather than, write a blog post see what happens.

When you’re running a business as a one woman show, it’s hard to step back and look at things from a high level. It’s so important but usually something that gets pushed to the wayside. What makes it necessary is that you examine what is working, what isn’t, and the why’s behind those answers.

At the end of last year during my reflection period, I started writing about all the things I wanted:

More money. More energy. Feeling healthier. An updated site. Removing that overhanging feeling throughout the day of when am I going to workout. Having time to post and work on FBM.

The first conclusion I made was that I needed to start my day earlier. I knew that would be the most productive and if I didn’t work out in the AM, I just wouldn’t do it. But I’ve been down that path one too many times of telling myself that if I set the alarm, I’ll do it. I finally realized that I needed an outside commitment to hold me to it.

Why I Became a Fitness Instructor

From here, I starting asking myself: Well, what if you were an instructor? What if instead of going through the process of finding time to exercise, you were obligated to a boss and clients to do so? What if you were getting paid to workout, rather than pay for it? It all started taking shape.

I have been taking classes via ClassPass for a long time now. I’ve realized being in a group class and told exactly what to do motivates and keeps me interested. So this wasn’t completely new to my routine, habits, and lifestyle. It really felt like the perfect fit that would also optimize my time.

Additionally, my interest in health and wellness has only increased throughout the years. I use safe and non-toxic beauty products, strive to eat a balanced diet, and take steps to ensure my personal well being is prioritized.

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My Steps to Becoming A Fitness Instructor

Way back in January, I DMed one of my favorite instructors at a local studio, seeking her advice on how to kick off the process. I thought it must have sounded so cliche, like everyone who works out every day at the beginning of a New Year’s resolution and then the gyms are back to normal by February.  But she was extremely gracious and helpful.

She told me how she received her training from another studio and I should connect with the owner. It was so crazy because I had met the exact person she was referring to a fun event a few months back! I felt it was meant to be!!

After connecting with Natalie and telling her my interest, the next step was to do a mini audition to see if I was a good fit for the studio. I performed a mini routine, on March 11, literally days before everything shut down. Right before I did it, I received a call that our annual school fundraiser that I’ve been working on for months may be cancelled.  I was so happy to pass, but felt this sense of impending chaos.

After that, the studio shut down, schools went virtual, and everyone was locked in their house. Everything went on hold for weeks. It was something that was still on my mind, but there were more pressing items to focus on.

During this time, it was so inspiring to see the pivot of creative entrepreneurs.

Natalie quickly started providing online classes. Also during this time, the studio was rebranded from Xtend Barre to the MVMNT Society. This change meant that I didn’t have to go through the Xtend Barre certification process, which I heard was pretty expensive and time consuming. Instead, Natalie recommend I check out Barre Intensity. 

One of the positives to come out of the pandemic was that businesses were offering amazing deals on classes and online learning. Barre Intensity had a great promotion at the time ( this is now May in my timeline) and I seized my moment. I signed up for the comprehensive training.

I watched all the required material – even asking for the time to do so for Mother’s Day! Then, I quickly took the test for fear that if I waited too long, I would forget everything. Thankfully, I passed!!

But I wasn’t done yet. Next, Barre Intensity requires you to observe and take classes. This was easy as there were many online classes and even some posted on their Instagram page. I spent many days on the porch at the lake this summer doing full on classes!

The last and final piece of passing is submitting a full length video of yourself teaching a class. This was a big challenge for me. I wasn’t used to memorizing a 55 minute class, giving cues and motivation and hitting all the Barre Intensity milestones. Then when I finally felt ready, I had a million technical difficulties with sound, recording, you name it.

At this point it’s August.

My original goal was to be certified and teaching by September, you know, when the kids were supposed to be back in full time school. I felt like I made it this far, the goal was still within reach.

I told myself that I got all the kinks outs with those first tries.  So I asked Jeff for some help with logistics, locked myself in a room and knocked it out. After, I felt I did pretty good and was confident in submitting it for review. (That’s when I learned the Video file was too large so I signed up for a Venmo account and that worked. There may be a better way, but maybe having this option was something I needed for the future, who knows).

To make this long story short. I passed!!!

I informed Natalie and the team at the MVMNT Society and we worked through some co-teaching classes. On Wednesday September 16, I taught my first class solo!!!!


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Tips for Goal Setting

I know on these personal blog posts, I can ramble on and on. But if you and I were sitting face to face over a glass of wine, I would tell it the same way.

In the spirit of Hamilton… How does a 40 year old mom, with no health, fitness, dance experience, during a global pandemic become a fitness instructor? Well, sometimes the odds are against you and it doesn’t make perfect sense. But if you want it, here are some tips for getting to that goal.

Write Them Down + Say Them Proud:

Whatever goal you want, you need to be in the mindset of your end game.  Give the goal power by putting it out in the universe. If you have trouble saying to a friend – or even a stranger for the time being-  that you want to run a marathon, start a cupcake delivery business, or create a blog then you won’t give it your all to achieve it.

Know That Set Backs Are Part of The Process:

I know, sometimes you just wish you can snap your fingers and get what you want. But seriously, those bumps in the road will make you stronger. Just imagine if Taylor Swift gave up after criticism. There will always be a naysayer, a failed attempt, a bad day, or a one star  review in your journey. Best to get them over with and move on.

 Keep Moving Forward:

Give yourself time and grace to accomplish your goal, but focus on moving towards it. I felt this process of becoming an instructor was inch by inch. I never made a grand leap but I didn’t stall. Break about each baby step to get you there. Cross each off and celebrate each victory.

No One Will Want This As Much As You:

Don’t assume everyone around you will be doing everything possible to make you succeed. Let’s say you want to go completely vegan overnight. Do you think it will fly serving a 100% plant based meal at dinner the next night? Either you need to advocate for your goal or find a way to fit it in. This one is hard because you imagine your loved ones lining up to make things happen for you. But it’s not their dream, it’s yours.

Well, thanks so much for listening. I hope whatever it is that you want to achieve, you put a plan in motion now.

Wishing all your dreams to come true!




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