Every day, I set time aside for some daily motivation. Whether it's meditation or getting a sweat on, routines are essential to being a successful entrepreneur. Just like any other aspect of my life, sometimes my routines can fall in a rut, which is why I was so inspired when talking to the founders of Shred415, Tracy Roemer and Bonnie Micheli, who have developed a fitness plan to help build invigorating fitness routines.
These ladies have truly created a health and beauty movement for all you ladies out there to get behind. Check out what they have to say about taking risks and building confidence.
Time to lift up your butts and spirits, ladies. Make it a lifestyle. The donuts can wait...
LM: Tell me about how Shred415 started and what your inspiration was?
TR: Before founding Shred415, I had over two decades of teaching and business management experience in large and small gym concepts. Bonnie had a decade of teaching and management experience in the boutique fitness space on top of another decade of fitness-related business experience. We met in Chicago in 2006 as neighbors, and found we connected quickly and effortlessly.
BM: We started to find ourselves complaining about the lack of high intensity training concepts in the city. So, with no place to go to get the sweat-inducing workout we both craved, we decided right then on the spot to create our own.
TR: We wanted to break our classes down into separate segments to keep everyone engaged, focused and motivated. By creating an instructor-led class that was broken down into four 15-minute segments, we could keep the energy high while providing a manageable, heart pumping, fat busting workout.
LM: What was the boutique fitness industry landscape like when you decided to create your own concept? How have consumer trends impacted your business?
BM: HIIT was growing in popularity, but instructor-led concepts weren't easily accessible or available. We saw a gaping hole in the market and decided if we couldn't find what we were looking for, we would fill it ourselves.
TR: Consumers' overall sentiment and passion for fitness has completely transformed over the past decade. Having an experienced instructor motivate you to push through a 45-60 minute class can give you the boost you need to reach your goals.
LM: How did marketing efforts impact the growth of your business in the early stages?
BM: Since we personally funded our first studios, everything in the beginning was grassroots-oriented, and word of mouth brought most of our early customers through the doors.
TR: Brand ambassadors also became a crucial part of our strategy and we began recruiting moms from local schools to host their own private Shred415 classes. This created truly organic awareness for our brand.
LM: Why is the structure of your class more effective than others on the market?
BM: We combine the best worlds - cardio and strength. The fast-paced intervals spike your heart rate up and drop it back down again, which keeps your metabolism in over-drive for the rest of the day.
LM: How many locations do you currently have and where are they?
TR: We currently have nine locations open throughout Chicagoland, St. Louis and Indianapolis.
LM: Are you planning on continuing expansion? How?
TR: We're aiming to sign 30 agreements by year's end and would love to have a presence in markets such as Denver, Phoenix, Charlotte, Northern New Jersey, Miami, Dallas and Atlanta.
LM: What have you learned so far on your entrepreneurial journey? What advice can you share to others who may be looking to take the leap into business ownership?
BM: Three words: GO FOR IT! If you can clearly see that there's a void, fix it! The second you hesitate, your odds of giving up increase dramatically.
TR: Once we started growing, people would always tell us how lucky we were to be thriving, but luck had nothing to do with it. It's about taking the risk.
LM: Are there any parallels between the way you lead a Shred415 class and the way you run your business?
TR: When I'm leading a class, I want everyone to work out the way that I work out - with determination and focus. The same goes for running the business - I want everyone to work hard and to leave thinking, " What can I do better next time?"
BM: Energy also plays a large part in both places - when you create a happy, positive, high-energy environment, you naturally motivate people.
LM: What (or who) do you think the biggest influence has been on the evolution of your company?
TR: Bonnie and I are both highly self-driven individuals, but we've effectively evolved as a company because of how we drive each other.
BM: Shred415 wouldn't be anywhere near as successful as it is today if either of us had ventured out on this dream alone - we have been each other's personal support systems throughout this entire journey.
LM: What is your overall vision for the brand?
TR: We took every step we could think of to make our concept easily accessible to busy parents and busy professionals.
BM: As long as we can continue playing a part in helping people reach their fitness goals, we'll be achieving something far greater than we could have ever imagined.
LM: The overarching lesson from our conversation? Make healthy living a lifestyle. Work with what you've got, and own it. Be in control of your future. Their glimpse of inspiration has made my morning that much better.
Now drop and give me 20!