You and I are alike....
We both have a passion for fitness, or at the very least, of helping people achieve health and happiness.
We both have been bitten by the entrepreneurial bug. Owning a small business has always been a dream we hoped would one day become a reality.
We both want to control our own destinies, and we know we can't do that working a 9-5 for someone else.
We both aim to make a difference in not just the lives of the ones we love, but also in the communities we live in.
We both are doers. While some may sit on the sidelines and "talk" about answers, we believe what you do matters more than what you say.
Am I right?
Yet, even having those dreams, values, and desires, you still don't own a gym.
It's not for a lack of options. You can:
- Buy one of the hundred different fitness franchises.
- Open a gym from scratch.
- Find a partner and open one together.
- Find one for sale and buy it.
- Start training people out of your garage.
Why do you not own a gym when you're dreaming about it every single day?
I'll make a guess. It's probably due to one of three reasons:
- Lack of finances. Franchise gyms cost +$200k while even small studios can cost $75,000. Banks usually won't make a deal unless there are equity and cash involved.
- Lack of experience/knowledge. You have more questions than answers. You might be confident in your fitness abilities but not your business abilities. Or, you might be confident in your business abilities but not your fitness abilities. Or, you may have no idea how to read a P&L, how to perform a squat, or how to market a gym.
- Lack of confidence. Opening a business is risky. You can easily lose +$100k during the first 2 years without the right game plan. And what makes matters worse, usually your loved ones and friends aren't supportive of your dream which causes you to constantly second guess yourself. Just when you think you're ready to pull the trigger, you take a step back and "wait for another day."
So, what should you do?
- Stop and tell yourself it's just a dream?
- Hire a fitness coach?
- Take a business class?
- Grab a handful of business and marketing books and spend countless hours in the library improving your business acumen?
- Just dive in head first without a plan or strategy?
All options. Some good. Some bad.
But I think I have an option that you probably haven't thought of, and it just may be your best one.
I want you to think small. Really small. Think about how many members you'd need to be profitable. Think about a model that would allow you to do what you love, but also, step away when you want to and still make money. Think about the lifestyle you desire.
Do you have your answers?
Because if I'm right again, I bet a gym, just like the one I started 10 years ago, can provide you with everything you want and more.
- It's a gym that's open 24/7, 365 days per year, but only needs to be staffed less than 40 hours per week thereby keeping your biggest expense, payroll, at a minimum while giving you what you really desire - freedom.
- It's a gym that's affordable to start and even more affordable to operate - no inventory, a small payroll, and recurring revenue via long-term contracts.
- It's a gym that's located in areas with cheap rent, a surplus of available buildings, and little if any competition.
- It's a gym that fills a void in a market that the big guys overlook because a franchise with all of its fees and expenses can't survive there.
- It's a gym that can morph into anything you like. You can work full-time there or just a few hours per week and keep your regular job. You can keep it as an automated 24-hour only gym, or add personal and small group training so it's more like a studio. Or, if your passion is athletes, you can spend your time training athletes while the 24 hour part of the gym brings in an automated stream of income.
- It's a gym that's more than just a gym. It can easily become the center of its community, impacting people far beyond its four walls.
- Most importantly, it's a gym that has been successful in a town of 3,200 for almost 10 years now and a town of 5,000 for almost 4 years now. Read about their success stories by clicking here.
I call it a HomeTown Gym. And even though I co-own a personal training studio and a pay-per-class spin studio, I think it's the best model to use to start a gym.
Want to learn more? Go here.