Well, another year is in the books. The Christmas tree is in the yard, and the decorations are packed away for another year. Life is back to normal. We find ourselves with a brand new calendar and a blank slate, filled with opportunities to enjoy life, take on new challenges and expand our horizons.
Being at the crossroads of a new year, many of us only take stock of the last couple of months, which are not always the ones we want to use to evaluate the whole year. In November and December we may have overindulged in ways that don’t make us feel good about ourselves on the morning of January 1. Which explains the surge in gym memberships and Weight Watchers meeting attendance. We feel bad, and it is easy to forget about all our successes of the past year.
I suggest you turn your calendars all the way back to January of 2014 and celebrate all those wonderful experiences that may have slipped your mind during the holiday hoopla.
For me 2014 was a year filled with many changes and new beginnings. As I look back twelve months, I was preparing to embark on a new career with equal amounts of excitement and uncertainty. The optimism with which I launched my business was briefly doused when a man from a faraway country told me that I had illegally taken his business name and needed to change mine. Disappointed but undaunted, I did so and kept driving forward. In the past 12 months I have created a brand for Boomerang Fitness Training – a name that I like much better anyway – that has become synonymous with senior health and fitness in my local area. My first big victory as an entrepreneur was secured.
I have had the opportunity to meet some pretty amazing people along my first year’s journey – both fitness professionals and clients – who have inspired me and continue to do so every day. There are too many to name but here are a few examples:
- A client who at age 47 completed her first 5K ever.
- A friend who also happens to be my trainer, whose passion for obstacle racing has pushed me to train harder and improve my race performance.
- A client who is 90 years old, who hikes and works out every day and looks like he’s 65.
- A gym owner who has offered to let me run a program for Boomers in his facility and has provided every possible support to help me succeed.
- Local retirement communities and rec departments who have hired me to teach classes to their residents and local seniors.
- A client with MS who is determined to use diet and exercise to treat her condition rather than take medication.
There are so many more, and I feel so fortunate to have gotten to know every one of them. It is what makes my job so much fun and worth celebrating every day.
I’d like to be able to say that it has all been smooth sailing, but that’s just not true. I have had a few setbacks along the way, beginning with the drama of changing my business name after just having invested a significant amount in marketing materials and website development.
I also fractured my foot while trail running last spring, which put me solidly out of commission with clients and my
own workouts for several weeks. However, it served as a good reminder that I need to take extra care of my body if I want to keep working as a fitness trainer. Fortunately I only missed a couple of weeks of work and skipped one race that I had planned to run. I still got to complete 3 others. Could have been much worse.
I had the opportunity to learn about the ebb and flow of my business when (not surprisingly) many of my clients and prospects vanished during July and August. Despite having a lot of time on my hands, I did not spend it lounging on the beach, much to my chagrin. I kept plugging away, looking for anyone who would like to exercise during the summer. Besides me, that is. My takeaway was that summer is a good time for trainers to take a mini-break and actually enjoy some down time. Things do pick up again in the fall. Lesson learned: Summer is beach season for everyone, especially trainers.
With a solid foundation under my feet, I look ahead to 2015 to continue to expand my business, learn some new things, take on some new challenges, meet some more people, and have fun. When I look back at this blog post a year from now, I know that I will have even more to celebrate.
As your first day of the year winds down, take a moment to celebrate your successes of 2014. I am sure there are many. I promise that you will sail into 2015 with considerably more optimism with that wind at your back.