A few months ago I was teaching and training at 3 different gyms. I was constantly on the go and eager at the chance to pick up another class.
I put everything I had into each of those gyms. I connected with the members and structured each class to best meet their needs. When an opportunity to sub or pick up a new class presented itself, I responded immediately, hoping that I was first on the list.
One of those opportunities was to run a small group training class at a big box gym. I couldn’t wait to interview for the position. I felt like the job was ‘made’ for me. I had proven myself to the members at the gym. My classes were challenging, I was able to keep them motivated through the toughest part of the workouts, and I heard time and time again ‘Great class!’
I walked into that interview with great confidence. I was going to ‘own’ this interview and help them grow this new program. Everything was going great until he said, ‘I just don’t think this is going to work because you teach and train at other locations.’
“WHAT? ARE YOU SERIOUS? You are denying me because I work other places?”
I just couldn’t wrap my head around this rejection. It would be one thing if I wasn’t qualified but I was being rejected because I worked other places.
Side note: You might think that membership rates or personal training fees are high, but believe me, those of us in the fitness industry do what we do because we have a passion for helping people discover a healthier lifestyle – not because of the money.
I was angry, I was hurt, I was disappointed and then I was just done. I gave my notice. If they weren’t going to give me the opportunity to help more people achieve a healthier lifestyle it was time to walk away.
But I walked away bitter. I walked away angry, hurt and disappointed and sad that I wasn’t going to see my front row diva again, or my tall blond who complained but still worked her tail off, or my dear friend who scheduled her workouts just to come to my classes.
Fast forward to now. That rejection was probably the best thing for me. I now realize that I was relying too heavily on established class schedules and not doing enough to personally make connections with those who currently don’t exercise.
My passion for fitness isn’t about making a profit – it’s about being an inspiration to women just like me. I love working out, but I have days that I just want to sleep in. I love the way my body feels when I eat ‘clean’, but I have days that I want a slice of double pepperoni pizza! I have days that I look in the mirror and feel like a rock star, and other days all I see is dark circles under my eyes and a sluggish form.
So I’ve put myself out there. I started recording daily workouts that people can do from home. I don’t love every shot – at times my face looks sour, my midsection looks bloated, my triceps look a little flabby…but it’s me. It’s the real me. The rejected me.
I realize the rejected me is the one that is okay with all of that.
Yes, I have a sour face – working out is hard and I don’t have to smile all the time, I’m putting in effort!
Yes, my midsection isn’t perfect – I’ve had three children. They are far more important than having a defined ‘six pack.’
Yes, my triceps droop – I continue to work on them, but just like my abs, it’s not about perfection in looks – it’s about strength.
So the next time you feel rejected, be empowered and dig deeper into the real you.