I almost can’t believe it, but it has now been one year since I completed and passed my Group Fitness Certification Exam! One year ago today, I was sitting in my car frantically cramming the names of various muscle groups into my brain from the ACE Fitness blog (HUGE help too) just minutes before I went into the examination room. The test was soo much easier than I had anticipated, but it’s far better to be over-prepared than the other way around. After calling a few close friends and my parents to share the good news, I remember thinking, “So now what?”
The answer for me, was to dive right in and begin cold-calling gyms in need of a new, awesome (but not-so-experienced) instructor. It didn’t take too long for someone to take a chance on me. One week after passing my GFI certification, I auditioned at LA Fitness to teach boot camp. The audition was rather awkward, taking place in an empty studio with the fitness manager standing 3 feet in front of me, asking me to show her some of my warm up moves, 10 seconds of my actual workout, and a verbal description of my cool down. I must have done something right as I was offered a teaching gig right away! My first class was kind of in the middle of nowhere in Northern Virginia, and at 8 PM on a Monday night, so that might have been why they were so eager to bring me on!
I don’t think I’ll ever forget my first class at LA Fitness. Walking into a unfamiliar facility, asking the Zumba instructor to show me how to use the ancient stereo system, and clutching my workout on index card in case I forgot the moves. My first class was also an interesting mix of students: four women over 50 years old, one 40 year old man, and one 20-something woman. They became loyal students after that first class, and they had energy and enthusiasm for days! After about 3 months at that location, I moved on to teach a bit closer to home and at better times. I still miss my very first students, and I hope they continued to take that boot camp class!
I’m now teaching several classes across the DC area, from boot camps to strength conditioning, and I can honestly say I don’t have any regrets after my first year in the profession. Even on my worst days, teaching fitness classes is always a joy. Whether I have 1 or 20 students in a class, we always have fun, and I like to think I push my students to new heights each time. Recently, I’ve started auditioning to teach at new gyms and studios and that experience has had its share of ups and downs as well. I’ve succeeded in three auditions and bombed one with a major gym. This shows me I still have a lot to learn and tons of skills to perfect. But I’m actually looking forward to trying and failing some more!
I wrote this post not only to commemorate my first year as a fitness instructor, but also to acknowledge that familiar question that’s been creeping up in my mind lately, “So now what?” Do I try to teach more classes? Should I look into working at new gyms and studios? Should I set out on my own to market myself and find my own clients? There are so many options, which is a blessing a curse at times. For now, I’ve decided to seek out new studios so that I can meet some more students and build up a following of my own. I also hope to step up my teaching style and get better at organizing larger classes.
The good news is this time, the unknown no longer scares me. It makes me excited. Whatever I decide to do related to fitness, I know I will not be disappointed. And I can always switch it up whenever I like! So I’m ready for year 2 which will mean more blogging, more teaching, and more learning! Stay tuned for updates and class schedules if you’re in the Washington DC area!
Thank you for reading and for your support, can’t wait to see what’s next!
Wish me luck this week on my next audition!
And in the meantime,
Keep it moving!
Copyright August 2015