Category Archives: Uncategorized


Why is personal training so expensive?

I am often asked why personal training is so expensive?  There are a few things that come to mind…..

1: What is your definition of expensive………..We all have our own definitions of what expensive is.  If you work part time making minimum wage your definition of expensive maybe very different than someone who was born with a trust fund and unlimited finances.  But let me ask you this…. how often do you get a starbucks cup of coffee, eat out or order drinks at $7.00/drink?

2: How much do you value your health………Lets stick with starbucks, eating out and ordering drinks analogy…..

  • One cup of starbucks a day at $3.25 x31 days = $100.75/month and that’s if you only go once a day
  • Eating out 3 lunches and 2 dinners a week….avg $15/meal x 5 meals a week x 4 weeks = $240.00/month
  • Drinking while out…… 3 drinks 2x per week….. $7.00/drink……$168/month
  • TOTAL: $508.75/month in coffee, eating out and drinks/month
  • PERSONAL TRAINING: $50.00/hour 2x a week = $400.00/month

3: You clearly have no clue how much work it takes for your trainer…….Often we see the cost of that per hour price…. what we don’t see is the HOURS of work that goes into the behind the scenes to create that ONE HOUR!  Hours specifically thinking about your needs and writing plans, reworking plans, researching plans….it’s so much more than just that hour sticker price.

The next time you wonder why something is expensive, step back and think about all the behind the scenes or ask yourself (or your trainer) WHY?


If only we talked to ourselves the way we talk to our children

In the last year my daughter has really become a little adult moving into her ‘three-nagers’ and having more understanding of the world.  She’s beginning to grasp her own emotions and comprehend her self-esteem.  Over the last two months I have really began to notice how I talk to her and holy shit!!!! I am WAY more positive and supportive of her than i am of myself.  WHY?

  • I’m constantly reminding her that failure is a part of learning and that’s why we have to continue to practice.  I convince her to avoid giving up and continue to work through the frustrations. (what if you mess up, everyone will judge you, maybe i just shouldnt try, its safer….. or I’ll never get this, I quit…. it’s too hard….etc)
  • I’m constantly reminder her of how beautiful and precious she is no matter what she’s wearing or how her hair looks. And make up…..NO way is she wearing makeup because she’s perfectly pretty just the way she is. (i look like a cow in this, my hair is a mess, i shouldn’t even leave the house etc)
  • I’m constantly helping her learn new things, like counting, letter recognition and honestly all basic life skills.  And when she stubbles and answers with the wrong answer I teach her that being corrected and criticized doesn’t mean I love her any less, it just means I’m trying to help her get better. (i’ve read 3 articles i should know it all, I’m too busy to sit and learn all this, I’ll never be smart enough to reach the next level)

And that’s just 3 quick examples of how positively I talk to her….. with the how i would talk to myself following it. I think I’m going to start talking to myself like my 3 year old self.  I was much nicer to her.


Am I enough

One of the things that I am terrible at is being my own biggest critic.  Doesn’t matter what it is, I am always analyzing if I am good enough, smart enough, pretty enough, strong enough, working enough, loving enough, really insert any word and add enough.

It’s been a rough few months really trying to change that thought pattern and to say it frustrates my husband is an understatement.  He is accepting and loves me exactly as I am and constantly tells me what ever I do is enough.  But it is hard to hear that when I’m always criticizing myself.

It’s what has helped me achieve the highest level of multiple sports and helped me continue to run a successful business 6 years later.

It’s also what has added imense amounts of stress as I’m not sure there are many days that I feel enough.

I am constantly working on it, and there are good days and bad days.  And the practical logical side of me knows that feeling not good enough is a negative emotion, and the opposite of what I strive to teach others.  that being said, practice what you preach, and I am working on doing that everyday.

But it’s important I remain authentic and honest.  I struggle and its real!


Affiliate Owners: To Coach or Not to Coach

6 years ago I decided to spring board off my trip to the CrossFit Games and open my own affiliate.  Why did i decide to do that?

Because coaching was absolutely intoxicating……and guess what….. 6 years later I am more hungry than ever to learn and coach and share knowledge.

But there is the balance when you’re the ONLY owner to run the business and that’s where things can get slippery.  Why?  Because owning an affiliate isn’t just slapping some movements up on the board, sipping a cup of coffee and walking away.  gretchen-coaching


  • Managing the budget and reconciling accounts
  • Managing member relationships
  • Marketing and advertising
  • Programming
  • Websites and social media
  • Community Outreach
  • Writing Programming
  • Managing the programs you offer
  • Managing a staff and payroll…..and the taxes….oh don’t start me on the taxes
  • Cleaning the facility
  • Designing new gear……because lets face it YOU want new gear, but sure say it’s for members
  • Planning member socials……and attending them……
  • Hosting events, seminars, competitions

Should I go on or do you get the point?  Something tells me you see where I am going with this.  The question can often become, when do I stop coaching and focus on running the business?  My answer to you….. ONLY YOU KNOW…..for me I will never leave the coaching floor because that’s what i love!  Does it mean the business doesn’t run as smoothly as it could, certainly, but it runs a lot smoother than if I were miserable everyday.  So instead I juggle all the tasks of running a business while coaching 1/2 of the entire calendar.

I left corporate america not because I hated my job and office work, but because I LOVED coaching, being on the floor, developing relationships and being a part of someone else’s success. Seems silly to leave corporate america only to create a corporate job, at least for me………

So don’t force it, you want to coach – COACH!  You want to run the business – RUN THE BUSINESS!  That’s the beautiful part of being the owner of the affiliate, it’s yours to decide how you want to run it.


It’s hard to move forward……

This past weekend was my first powerlifting meet since losing my daughter Hope in June.  The entire week leading up to it I was a mess, mentally, emotionally and physically.  I wanted to abandon the idea of doing the meet because it was just too much…….

  • ‘I shouldn’t be doing this meet, I should have a 3 week old’
  • ‘I’m not as strong as I should be’
  • ‘I’m not in the weight class I should be in’

And when it all came down to it, it was a long list of bullshit excuses that I was trying to use to hide from reality.  The reality that life has HAD to move on.  The reality that a shitty fucking thing happened to me. The reality that no matter what I did the world was moving on.f5249aaf8827b92114a3dc9e7659eb6d

So I called my mom and explained that I needed her support incase I lost my balance and crumbled into a 1,000 pieces.  She of course agreed to come and support me.

I was good until my third lift……. it would be a PR lift…… and I felt so overwhelmed with guilt……guilt?  really?  But i squatted the 250lbs bar, PR, and immediately began crying.  I was so excited and yet couldnt shake a sense of guilt for being so happy, for having moved on, for having joy.

I know it sounds weird, but if you’ve lost a child you get it.  After that i was able to relax and ENJOY the rest of the day.  It was freeing to make myself face reality.  It’s not easy to do, and I’m still sad just about everyday, but I am not letting that define me or determine who I’ll be.

It’s so hard to move forward, but I will keep making myself do it.


Coming back to life

It has been 5 months since we lost our daughter and I am JUST starting to feel like I am coming back to life.  I’m starting to feel like I can make it through a full day without crying (most days), I can train without guilt, and I am truly happy running my business.10061-your-love-makes-me-feel-so-alive

The energy in my life a result is really rocking and rolling.  My husband and I can finally have conversations that dont just involve me crying ending in screaming.  I truly enjoy having my daughter around and it’s not a chore to care for her.  I am much more involved in my gym community and it feels good to reconnect.

Losing a child is the WORST thing a parent can go through, and I am far from healed and ok, but I am ok with breaking down because I know I have so much good in my life.  It feels good to start feeling alive again.


COMMUNICATE with your members

One of my favorite things to do is have conversations outside of class with my members.  They don’t have to be long conversations and I don’t have to go out of my way to do it.

speak-listen-communicate-betterIt’s often stopping at the gym on a night I am not coaching.  Or simply staying after my last class of the day to connect to a member about their goals, their nutrition hell maybe even just about their day.

The value you create as a coach, mentor and friend is far beyond any paid for service, or marketing dollars.  The majority of the time your members are in your gym they are there to unwind and destress.  Sometimes that 5min of time you took at communicate with your members could be the little slice of heaven in their day they needed.  Try it……I swear….. you’ll never regret breathing into your community!


Being The Boss Is FAR From Easy

The misconception that once you own your own business you’re on easy street could NOT be farther from the truth.  If anything it just made all your hard work that much harder. How?

Because regardless of what happens good or bad people are looking to you as the reason it went that way.  Yes it’s great to smile and take pride when things are going well, but what happens where you’re struggling?  It all lands on you……You’re the first to be criticized by outsiders and the last to be paid.4

The last 6 years have certainly gotten interesting with 5 gyms opening within 7miles vs being the only one for 30miles.  The work is the same, the success is the same, what’s VERY different is constantly trying to evolve as a coach and a business.

We’re constantly talking to our members and figuring out what they want and need and doing our best to bring it to the table.

What have we added this month?

  • Ladies only lifting class
  • Kettlebell Conditioning Classs
  • HIIT Class (high intensity interval training)
  • find out more on our website

Learning to love my body again

Many of you are aware of the hell my husband and I have had to face the last several months now having lost two children, one at 22 weeks and one at 7 weeks.  Anyone that’s had to go through a pregnancy knows the effects that it has on your body and your hormones.

Pre-preganncy I sat at 148lbs……. I currently sit at 165lbs……and with no baby to show for it.  I have sacrificed my training, by diet and my body to create life.  A sacrifice I was more than thrilled to make. And one that is difficult to swallow now as I look in the mirror.

I see the after math of the hell my body has gone through the last 9 months.  The muscle lost.  The fat gained.  The training ability almost non-existent.  I have such negative emotions wrapped in what I see in the mirror because it’s a daily reminder of what we’ve lost.  A daily reminder of what could have been.  A daily reminder of what will never be.

I force myself to look at myself everyday, and force myself to say nice things about the body that I have.  I force myself to try to accept there I am at as it wont be where I will end up.  I am learning to walk in the shoes of my clients a little more each day as I struggle to love my body again after my body failed me.

So here it is…… here is my body……. the body I am learning to love again….img_4141



Managing Miscarriages – a skill I NEVER wanted

This of course is not the way I anticipated sharing the news of our most recent pregnancy…….but after a long night of lots of stress and little sleep, we confirmed that we lost our most recent pregnancy just shy of 8 weeks.

Miscarriage at any week is a difficult blow…….. this one hits my husband and I extra hard after having just lost our first child at 21 weeks in early June.  We had planned on waiting until after our wedding on August, 21st to try, but managed to be one of the few that got pregnant on birth control.

We accepted it as the universe’s gift to us after taking Hope so early.  We were a little terrified everyday, but a little more hopeful everyday we were having a smooth pregnancy.  img_4114

Wednesday morning I had some slight spotting that increased through out the day into heavy bleeding and the passing of a few clots.  Confirmed this morning…… we lost the baby.  The pure devastation one feels as a mother is indescribable….. losing not one, but two pregnancies, and back to back.

Tears have been flowing for hours now and the decision to put all things babies on hold seems like the only choice.  The emotions involved with the high of the excitement around finding you’ve conceived met with the extreme low of losing a pregnancy take a toll on you mentally and emotionally.

Why share this?  Because this is real life.  Really shity things happening to really good people. Because miscarriage isn’t something to be ashamed of, or swept under the rug of shame. Because if I can help just one person open up about their loss then it’s worth it.  Because I have a support system that will keep me from falling into the dark.