I always knew starting a gym during lockdown was going to be a challenge but that didn’t stop me!
Back at the beginning of lockdown I started to think about the possibility of starting up my own gym. I had just been forced to start training my client via Zoom and I had to take on a second job working at Tesco to help pay the bills during this tough time.
I have always been a hard worker in my own eyes, I enjoy my job and always have wanted to keep pushing forward in my career. So it felt only right after 5 years working at my base at JustGym, that it was time to take the next step.
I worked hard and saved everything I had to make sure I could do this right, because after all you only do this once and I wanted to start off with a bang!
After saving enough money during lockdown I went hunting for the perfect property for the new HQ, this had to be just right otherwise there was no point settling for anything less. I wanted the gym to be close enough to Saffron Walden so my clients didn’t have to travel far, but at the same time be in a good location so there was enough parking for everyone.
What first attracted my eye when I saw the ‘Cottage’ was the character. It wasn’t just another warehouse, offering a larg empty space but instead a building which invited you in with its homely feel. The Cottage offered a good size reception area for people to wait before their session and then a large ground floor space which would be enough to provide a high standard service with a wide range of equipment.
Another benefit of this building was the 2nd floor above. This provided the perfect size room for the other half of this business, ‘Injury Recovery Centre’. Over the past year Olivia & myself have worked together with over 17 different clients, helping them back from injury or keeping them fit and healthy during their own fitness based challenges. Therefore it would be stupid not to continue this partnership at the new base.
Over the summer I spent every minute of the day when not working, at the cottage making it suitable for my clients in September. This meant turning it from a basic office space into a modern, fresh looking gym. Walls were taken down, new flooring laid and plenty of paint on the walls, to make this space look tip top!
I invested into the best equipment for the gym, picking kit I felt worked well with not only the service I wanted to offer but also the space I had to play with. I choose rack systsems which were tall or could be attached to the wall, so it didn’t take up floor space. I picked cardio equipment which wasn’t bulky and free weights (dumbbells, slam balls, kettlebells) which didn’t take up too much space. I thought long and hard when it came to which machines I needed in the gym as I knew they would take up the most space, so I pick a cable machine which could fit nicely in the corner, and a lat pulldown machine which could also be used as a seated row. My best find was the Bulldog Gear folding squat rack! This allows me to fold away the rack when not needed and opem up the gym floor, but even when out the rack is very shallow and doesn’t take up much room at all.
After two month into the gym, it is only going up in the world, with more new clients joining up each week and my gym being spoken about more and more in the local areas, I couldnt think of a better start!
Which takes me onto the reason for this blog… Gym Owner of the Month!
I am so proud to be picked as ‘Gym Owner of the Month’ as I feel my story could really motivate and show people that anything can really be achieved if you really want it! Don’t be put off by the past or what is going on around you, but instead go with your gut, you will know if its the right thing to do or not, and if you do decide to go ahead, never look back!
I really feel this is just the first achievement of many at the NEW Aptitude Fitness HQ, and I cant wait to see what else will come up in our jounrey.
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