California Fitness Academy: ‘Embrace change’

Today my message is more than just a fitness or nutrition post. Today I speak from the heart and share a little bit of a personal story.

In 2006, I jumped on the tight rope and opened my business, California Fitness Academy in Visalia.  I was a rookie businessman, had minimal experience in the business world, and went into debt. 

But I loved fitness and helping others achieve their goals, so I said, “Let’s roll”, and opened  the doors.

My concept was to bring a “functional training” system to Tulare County, specifically Visalia.  At the time, there weren’t many comparable gyms in my space.

Once I opened doors, it was full steam ahead. The goal: get people training.

Within a few weeks, I had a full slate of sessions throughout the day. I hustled my butt off to bring people in the door. I trained with passion, intention and precision. 

This was exactly what I was supposed to do in life. I was full of vigor and eager to accomplish my business goals.

A couple months into the business, I hired my first assistant coach. This would mean increased training sessions. It was definitely a move in the right direction.

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Next thing I knew we had outgrown our original location. We were in a 2,400 square-foot office space that we transformed into a gym. But after a couple years, we just needed to expand.

In 2011, we moved into a beautiful 6,400 square-foot industrial building that we have called home for the past eight years. 

We have completed three different renovations. The last one completely reshaped our space accommodating double the clientele. 

We grew our memberships, an our staff. The business became a highly sought-after fitness facility.

After owning and operating California Fitness Academy for the past 13 years, I have decided to close the doors. This has been a decision heavy on my heart for quite some time.

After dealing with some tough circumstances within the business over the past 12 months, it was time to make a move.

As difficult as it was to make a decision of this magnitude, I am excited and eager for the next chapter in my life. I am embracing this new move as an opportunity to grow professionally and maneuver into new business ventures.

There is no fitness or nutrition strategy here. The message: embrace change.

Change may be the only constant in life. We are constantly in a state of development and evolution, and if we resist change we stagnate.

And stagnation is a scary place to live. When we live in a state of mediocrity, without ever evolving, how are we expected to truly maximize what life has to offer?

Let’s face the facts of life. We only get one shot.

We can grab the bull by the horns and live to the fullest, or we live in a state of complacency.  Unfortunately, the latter shuts us out to many of life’s most worthwhile experiences.

Reach for the stars. Do not be afraid to go after lofty goals and big dreams.

Take a risk and start that business you have always wanted to do.

Make it a goal to get in the best shape of your life.

Go hike that big mountain.

Go run that race.

Go build that relationship.

Go see what you are capable of doing!

We only get ONE LIFE.

Justin Levine may be reached by email.


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