In part 2 of this anniversary special, we ask Brad and Amy about their decision to open their own box.
Did you ever imagine owning a box would be in your future? What were your goals before CrossFit came into the picture?
Our goals were to try to stay in shape and look good in a bathing suit. We really did not have a fitness goal per se, but tried to get to the gym at least 3 days a week.
Brad: Prior to CrossFit, no, I would have never thought of owning a box, but after a few months of CrossFit I was convinced I was called to open a gym. I have never looked back.
Were you all-in from the get-go, or did you struggle with making the decision to open a box?
Amy: After less than a year of coaching, Brad and I started discussing opening a smaller gym that was affordable. Because the original CrossFit box was part of a Globogym, a lot of our friends could not afford it. We talked about opening a “Ford” dealership because we were currently at a “Cadillac” dealership.
We also believed that the city could handle another CrossFit gym (there were only 2 boxes at the time) and we could tap into the market and make it available for many more people that truly needed it.
We did struggle a little with the decision, deciding if we could do it on our own. We considered bringing in a partner to help us. Our confidence in ourselves wasn't real high and we thought we would benefit from help.
As it got closer to making the decision, I heard a clear message on the radio from Dave Ramsey, a very knowledgeable business man. He said “The only ship that sinks is a 'partner'ship”. That was all we needed to hear and the decision was made by Brad and I to go for it and take a leap of faith. AND WE NEVER LOOKED BACK!
Brad: All in!
When did you, and what prompted you to, start thinking about opening your own box?
Brad: We began spreading the word about a fun crazy workout that everyone should try but we were hit with the roadblock of cost. We wanted to make it available to more people. We wanted a more authentic gym layout and location.
What happened that helped you know it was time to take that leap and make the investment in yourselves and in the community?
What fears did YOU have about it? Did your family have objections/hesitancy?
Amy: We trusted the program and believed that CrossFit was one of the best fitness models around. However, we were nervous about opening a gym. There were a lot of people that did not know what CrossFit was. So many had a preconceived notion that it was too much for them to handle. Many of our first months were spent explaining the program and convincing people to give it a try.
We sold some assets to invest in the business and we hoped that it would be a great investment. My original goal and fear was to meet our first month’s rent. I had a certain amount of members that we needed to do so and, by the grace of God, we met our goal.
Our family was very supportive. They knew we were adamant about the business and trusted we knew what we were doing. We did get some feedback from our renters when we told them what we were doing. They thought we were crazy! Ironically, they are some of our most loyal members now.
How did you announce your intentions to open a box to your family - kids, siblings, and parents - and friends? What were their reactions?
Amy: Our friends and family knew how much we were eaten up with CrossFit, so it did not come as a surprise that we wanted to open our own gym. They were hopeful for us, but probably a little concerned that we would be successful because CrossFit was such a new business and Tyler had so many Globo gyms already.
Coming up in part 3 ... our members! Click here to read part 3.