840 Days

Journey > Destination

You’ve likely heard the phrase – the joy is in the journey, not the destination.
The journey is where you’ll find all the bumps and bruises. You’ll experience blood, sweat, and tears. You’ll acquire new skills, you’ll meet new people, you’ll create new memories. The journey can be a day, months, or years. 

The destination is the culmination of the journey. It’s a checkpoint on the path you’re traveling.

When you reach the destination, oddly enough, it becomes a starting point for the next journey and you recalibrate for a new destination.
This is true in business and in health. The goals we set evolve over time as we learn, grow and improve. 

The Beginning

One of the biggest business lessons I’ve learned over the past 2.5 years, is that without a sustainable approach the dream will die on the vine. 
I opened Vault Health & Fitness in 2018, with the vision of becoming the third gathering place in people’s lives. They have their family, their workplace, but for many – the third place is up for grabs. We were going to bring that to life by greeting everyone who walked through our doors with kindness, love, and support. The mission was to create the best community and deliver the best results in northwest Ohio. 

I was working at Target as a store director at the time. I set the goal that I’d stay until the summer of 2019, so that we would be profitable, and that I’d never be in a position to make a decision for our community based on finances.

Near the end of 2018, I bought a gym in Cincinnati, Ohio. I began traveling to Cincinnati every week on the days I wasn’t leading the Target store. I would give the rest of my time and energy to building the business, community, and team at Vault.

By the time I reached the ‘destination’ of leaving Target, both gyms were debt free, neither were profitable, and I had been in and out of the hospital heart issues due to how I was living my life and treating my body. 

Burn Out Much?

Maybe you can relate to this with your health and fitness journey. You set an important goal that will bring about a significant improvement in your quality of life. You set a laser like focus on reaching your goal. You start working out daily, you try every type of diet imageable, you start running, and you start using supplements. You make progress, you may even reach your goal. However, it comes at a significant cost. You’ve run yourself into the ground, you’ve burnt yourself out and you haven’t enjoyed the process. 

The Next Chapter

After leaving Target, I continued to split my time between Cincinnati and Perrysburg. I continued to have high stress, low sleep, and fought the anxiety of bleeding out money every month in my ‘debt free businesses’. 
By the time 2020 started, I was exhausted, but determined to take control of my time, lower my stress, continue to develop our team and systems at Vault and start to enjoy what I was working so hard to build. When we broke even in February 2020, I knew that financial stability, less anxiety and stress were right around the corner. 

Two weeks later both gyms were forced to close due to a global pandemic. We lost 80+ members in 4 weeks at Vault and lost 500+ in Cincinnati.
With losses mounting every month during shutdown, I began selling things in my house I didn’t need, to cover utilities, food, etc while my mortgage was in forbearance.

What The Effort Is For

Can You Relate?

I imagine you’ve experienced this with your health and fitness journey. 
You’ve worked through burnout. You’ve adjusted your lifestyle. You’ve implemented habits that you believe will lead to success.

You start to see progress, you finally believe you’ll soon be living the lifestyle you’ve worked so hard for and wanted so badly for so long. 
Injury, death in the family, loss of job, relocation – LIFE. 

Life happens and the rug suddenly feels like it’s been pulled out from underneath you. You fight just to hold on. You sneak in a few workouts each month. You buy vegetables occasionally when you go to the grocery store. You’ve lost your momentum, and you’re quickly losing faith that you’ll ever experience feeling and looking your best, and simply being healthy. 

The Hook

When Vault was a simple seed in my mind, the water that grew the seed was my lack of fulfillment in running large stores for a Fortune 50 business. 

I have a gift for bringing people together in communities and teams. I wanted to make a lasting impact on the lives of people that share the same small town with me, through improving their health and fitness.

Through the years of setbacks and struggles, I’ve never doubted this was what I needed to be doing and that eventually I’d start to have stability, I’d be able to provide career opportunities for our talented team, and we’d begin to impact entire families in ways we had never dreamed when we first opened.

I hired a mentor, we rebuilt nearly every system and process at Vault, we invested in resources and tools to make the gym covid friendly, we invested in our team, we even rebranded. We put our heads down and worked with our hands and led with our hearts.

We made it to the end of 2020 without an end to the pandemic in sight.
Despite the uncertainty, we have forged a path ahead that will provide the third gathering place to our members who we love sharing life with for years to come, assembled talented leaders that are the right leaders for our community, but there was still something missing for me.

After 2.5 years of taking a financial beating to bring this vision to reality, I still hadn’t been paid. My mortgage still wasn’t being paid. It was no longer sustainable to put myself last. On January 15th 2021 after 840 days, I took my first paycheck from my work at Vault.

It wasn’t a big check, but the following Monday, the doors still opened, the lights were still on, and no one knew the difference. Except for me, as I started to feel relief and start to believe that eventually I’ll have financial stability and won’t have to sacrifice my quality of life for this dream.

How To Apply The Lesson

You don’t need to go last. I see people every week that have allowed their health and fitness to deteriorate in favor of their job, their kids, or their spouse.

You can get new clothes, a new car, a new house, but you will live in your body for your entire life. You will spend every minute of every day in it. It can’t be put last. You can’t be put last. 

When it comes to health and fitness, to be truly happy and successful, you need to find an approach for both your exercise and your nutrition that you enjoy and that you would appreciate becoming a permanent fixture in your schedule and lifestyle.

You deserve to be happy, successful and have stability. 
The journey will be long. It might take you less than or more than 840 days. 
Find what you can sustain and keep going.

If you need help improving your quality of life through your health and fitness in a sustainable way, we’d love to have a conversation with you to see how we can help through coaching. 

Book your free consultation here: http://bit.ly/VaultNoSweatIntro

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