“I’m Just Living the Dream”

In 2005, Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson starred in the hit comedy Wedding Crashers. I was in college then and thought the movie was hilarious. I’ll admit though, I still laugh pretty hard at many of the one-liners from that movie. But the one-liner that probably became the most widely used since that movie came out is one from Will Ferrell. Ferrell’s character Chaz describes his life of picking up women at funerals as “just living the dream” to Wilson’s character, John Beckwith. Now, I don’t know that Chaz and the rest of us live by the same moral code, but many of us use that phrase as a default response when someone asks us how our day or life is going. I know I do at least.

But seriously, I am.

2018 marks our 9th year as a CrossFit affiliate, and my 11th year as a CrossFit Trainer.

I took my Level 1 CrossFit certification in 2008 with Level 1 staff like Chris Spealler and Pat Sherwood. I affiliated in 2010 while working for a local company who saw a bright future ahead for a young professional.

I have no idea how many coaches are left from that certification class or how many affiliates are still around from 2010. I know in the online chatter and podcasts I listen to, there aren’t many 9+ year affiliates anymore.

In the St. Louis area, there are only 3-4 gyms who have been around as long or longer than CrossFit MetroEast and they’re all on the other side of the river.

I was just talking to a potential client about our gym the other day during their initial consult. They were telling me how professional our staff was, how nice our website was, and how clean and welcoming our facility was. They were amazed by the one-on-one consult we did with everyone. They said, no one else around held a candle to what we were doing.

And then…they chose to go somewhere else.

I write this to you to tell you regardless of how long we’ve been around or how different we are from the other gyms in our area. People still choose to go somewhere else. And honestly, that’s ok.

After 10 years in CrossFit and almost 15 in the fitness industry, I’m ok with not being everyone’s first pick. I’ve heard no countless times, and I’ll hear no countless more.

My first job as a personal trainer was at THE Gold’s Gym. As a young fitness enthusiast and big fan of Arnold, I grew up dreaming of working in gyms like Gold’s. Now, I probably wouldn’t be welcomed there ;). I’m so thankful for my time there though. They gave me an amazing education in sales, and an opportunity to start training people. But the most valuable lesson I learned was a quote I’ve said so many times in the last 15 years…

“Some will. Some won’t. Someone’s waiting.”

I’ve said that to myself. I’ve said that to my wife. I’ve said that to staff, interns, and even college students when I guest speak.

Those 6 words have carried me through good times and bad.

At times I’ve rephrased them in my head to something like, “no one will. No they won’t. No one’s waiting.” Because frankly, sometimes it felt that way.

You see, I didn’t get into fitness because I started CrossFit and fell in love with it enough to start a gym. I don’t have another full time job on top of trying to run my gym part time. I’m not a corporate America drop out turned gym owner.

When I was 15 years old, I could have told you I was going to own a gym. I would have told you what my major in college was going to be (athletic training). I could’ve told you how to workout to get big, or strong, or fast, or lose weight. By the time I was 17 I was writing training programs. At 19 I was selling 10k a month in personal training. By 25, I was managing 4 fitness centers and overseeing a staff of other fitness professionals. And by 27, I was starting my dream…my own gym. You see, CrossFit MetroEast wasn’t the dream. Fitness was. Helping others pursue it was. Training people was. CrossFit MetroEast just became the vehicle. But it’s a great vehicle. It has given me the opportunity to spread my love of health and fitness to the masses. And we’re nowhere close to finished.

As I sat down to sign my 9th affiliate agreement. The person who said no went through my head…and then that famous quote came in with it. But this time I rephrased it once again.

“So many will. Very few won’t. So many are waiting.”

And that’s the truth, so many have said yes to CFME and for that I am grateful. You have all fueled my dream. And I owe it to you to make sure I keep the dream alive. For the few that won’t, that’s ok, we’re not for everyone. For the so many waiting, come on in… let me show you my dream. It’s not glamorous or fancy. It isn’t some fad or shiny new product. It’s just a 15 year old kid living out his passion for fitness and joy for helping others.

Always waiting,

Coach Josh

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