Frequently Asked Questions
What's the catch? Why are you sharing so much?
It's not a scam. I can promise you I'm real, my gyms are real, the numbers I've mentioned are real, and the Profit and Loss statement I'll send you is real. Take a look at our websites and social media pages. Stop in at my pharmacy. You can even visit beautiful Gillespie, IL, home of one stop light, a Subway, and a Dairy Queen. I've written for the Personal Training Development Center, Personal Fitness Professional, Bluff!, Fight!, and a handful of smaller media outlets.
This is an unserved need in the market. If you look at the fitness business coaches available right now, they all help only studio gym owners and most only help studio gyms that are already established. No one is helping traditional gyms, and almost no one is helping aspiring gym owners that haven't opened a gym yet. And that's a shame because 1) gym owners typically need the most help during the first two years of business. 2) despite what the other fitness business coaches say, traditional gyms still do very well.
So this is nothing more than service that fills a void in the market.
What type of gym is this? What does it compare to?
It's a 24 hour gym model. The size and scope is very similar to a Snap Fitness. We are much smaller than a Gold's or a Planet Fitness. View it by clicking here.
We recommend spaces between 5,000-7,000 square feet. It needs to be large enough to have a spin room (~600 sq ft), a 24 hour room (~3,500 sq ft) and a classroom (~1,500 sq ft).
What's the best location for this type of gym?
Small communities. Specifically, we recommend communities between 3,,000 - 15,000 people.
For example, the P&L you'll receive from us is for our gym that's located in a small, rural town in Illinois with a population of 3,190 with a median household income of $40,521. It has one stoplight, a Subway, and a Dairy Queen. You can view it by clicking here.
Because our model is so efficient (it only requires 39 staffed hours per week), we don't need a huge market. In fact, we'll probably be the only gym in town. Most franchises will overlook these smaller markets. That's great for us because these smaller markets are perfect for those looking to make a low risk investment that can provide a steady profit with very little effort.
What's the total cost?
Our fees are simple. It's $349 per month with a 24 month contract. That's it.
That gives you our entire playbook on how to start, operate, and grow a HomeTown Gym. Much like a franchise, it gives you access to our startup checklists, twice monthly calls to make sure you're on the right track, unlimited email support, equipment recommendations, policies and procedures manual, and anything else you need to operate your gym. You won't have to worry about pricing, creating membership contracts, determining class times, creating marketing materials, figuring out staffed hours, or creating class workouts.
Overall, the total investment for a gym like Ageless will be between $75,000-100,000. That varies due to the size of the building and the cost of the remodel. The bank we work with typically requires $20,000 down on a $100,000 loan.
What's the difference between this and a franchise?
If we're looking at a continuum of how you can start a gym, opening a gym on your own would be on the far left, coaching would be slightly more to the right almost at the 1/2 mark, and a franchise would be at the very right.
Compared to a franchise, our coaching provides more value in the form of freedom and financial independence. With a franchise, you get a business-in-a-box. The entire business is already done for you. You just have to set it up. If you're brand new to entrepreneurship and just looking for a business to start with little thought, a franchise is probably what you're looking for. Unfortunately, the downside to a franchise are the costs (upfront and ongoing), the limitations, and the long-term contract.
With us, we give you the exact same engine, tools, and support a franchise gives you except we also give you the freedom to customize or improve it as much as you want. We firmly believe that most entrepreneurs start a business because they want to create something of their own, an extension of their values and personality. We don't want you to lose that artistic moment. So we give you everything you need to start and grow a gym so that you can focus all of your efforts on making it your own. And better yet, we make it affordable. Extremely affordable. And we don't lock you into a 10 year contract.
I don't want to open up a gym like Ageless. I want to open up a studio gym. Can you help me with that?
I can but I won't. There are a handful of really, really good coaches that can help you operate a successful studio gym. Bedros. Pat Rigsby. Pete Dupuis. Mark Fisher. Thomas Plummer.
I try to stick with what I do best - small, 24 hour traditional gyms.
With that said, no one has ever said that you can't create a studio gym inside a 24-hour gym. In fact, it can easily be done and could be very, very profitable. It's definitely something to think about.
I know nothing about business. How can I make this succeed?
All you need to have is an ideal location, a willingness to learn, the desire to help people succeed, and the ability to roll your sleeves up and do some work during the first year (although you'll still be able to keep your regular full-time job). Our training will give you all of the business skills you'll need to run a successful gym. You'll get our entire playbook - the systems, processes, and tools we've used, tested, and tweaked over the last 9 years Like a franchise, it's a business-in-a-box. However, once we help you put it together and you get used to operating it, you can customize it in any way that you want. That training continues as every month we'll make sure you're up-to-date on the latest fitness business trends.
If it makes you feel any better, I only had one "business-related" course in college, and it was directed at managing a pharmacy. When I opened Ageless, I had zero business experience. However, I had a voracious appetite for learning, read every business and marketing book I could find, found mentors, and continually tested the systems we used until the gym started running like a well-oiled machine. Of course, you won't have to go through those years of trial and error, as I did it for you.
I know nothing about fitness. How can I make this succeed?
Again, all you need to have is an ideal location, a willingness to learn, the desire to help people succeed, and the ability to roll your sleeves up and do some work during the first year (although you'll be able to keep your full-time job too). We give you all of the business systems and training you'll need, and we can point you in the direction for fitness and nutrition training. I didn't go to school for fitness. In fact, the only "college course" I had on fitness and nutrition was only 2 credit hours. I read books, took at-home certifications, and because I had a passion for fitness, continued my pursuit of more and more credentials until I had so many letters behind my name it looked like an alphabet.
Or, you can hire someone with fitness experience to run your gym. There are thousands of trainers looking for work. You could easily focus on the business side of things, while your manager focuses on the fitness and nutrition side of things.
This doesn't look like I'm going to get rich quickly. Will I?
No. This is a low risk, moderate reward opportunity. It's not designed to get you rich quickly. It's designed to get you rich slowly with minimal risk. A gym like Ageless can be started for less than $100,000. With enough equity, $20,000 in cash is all you'll need to put down and the bank will finance the rest. Our goal is to make that initial $20,000 back within 12 months. Thereafter, that initial one-time $20,000 should provide you with $30,000-$70,000 annually, with little effort on your part (less than 15 hours per week). Although that return won't allow you to quit your day job completely and retire somewhere tropical, it will allow you to cut back, take a few more vacations, and enjoy life beyond the typical 9-5.