Not too long after I’d first become a group fitness instructor and personal trainer, I had a strange experience with an old friend. It’s 3:00PM on a Friday afternoon. We made plans to hit the beach for happy hour cocktails and he’s running several hours late. No text or call, presumably because of his busy schedule. Since I know he’s pretty flaky, I decide to go alone. It’s an hour long drive to the beach and if I get there early, I’ll have a nice view of the ocean from the bar patio.
As I’m driving, I get a call from you know who.
I pick up with my car’s bluetooth. “I already left.” I smiled. He is not amused. He huffs and haws trying to convince me to turn around. I won’t. “Sorry friend. The bus has left the station.”
“Some of us have to work real jobs in order to pay the bills,” he says.
I did a double take. Hater much? This was the first time I’d heard anyone say something like this about the work that I do and it surprised me. What I wanted to say was…
- I woke up at 5:00am to prepare for my day and show up for my 6:00am shift.
- I worked continuously without a break, serving 4 small group training sessions, 1 cardio class, responding to client emails, and making phone calls till 12:30.
- I do this same work 5 days a week then when I go home I plan, create, and schedule content for my blogs and social pages.
Instead, I said “Enjoy your day!” then hung up. Later that day, as I sat by the beach, sipping margaritas, I thought about it some more. I could see why my job might feel “unreal.” Getting out of work before 1:00pm on a Friday to hit the beach is one of the many perks many people never get to experience. But here’s the truth:
It is no mistake that I chose a career path that is both fulfilling for me spiritually and beneficial for my well being. I took the time to explore what I love, what I am good at, and what will ultimately pay the bills. I put in the WORK to find the path I am on now.
Being a fitness professional is physically demanding and can often be emotionally taxing too. I had to work at becoming an skilled, engaging instructor.
- I took specialized trainings to teach dance fitness, TRX, yoga, and a whole slew of other formats.
- I had to tear down and rebuild my diet to support the amount of activity I do on a daily basis.
- I implemented a daily routine that includes a supportive sleep schedule and other habits to keep me energized and avoid burning out.
- I write, re-write and practice my routines before I teach almost every single day.
- I continue to attend auditions so I can get hired at new studios and gain more experience as a group fitness instructor.
And I am so grateful to be able to say that I love what I do. I wish for everyone who is dissatisfied with their jobs to find a path that creates happiness, not only in their lives but in the lives of others too. But for now, I don’t fault anyone for feeling a little jealous. I’d be jealous too 😉