Lessons For Life And The Gym

3 min read


Six years ago, in September of 2009 I hosted my first bootcamp class at Bishop Park. It was contract work and I had to do it all: recruit, plan, execute, and show up to teach. I was essentially renting space from them. Fifteen people signed up for that four week commitment. I was elated! On the last day, I had one person show up. That person received the cheapest personal training session ever.

I was discouraged that everyone flaked out. Was it my fault? Am I a horrible trainer? What could I of done differently? I could have been defeated and quit. But I didn’t. I held another class and at the end I had three people finish! I continued this, kept holding classes and kept my head and spirits up.

After a year I had to add an additional class time, and the next year, another. By 2011 I actually had to go rent space at two additional locations. The people kept coming back! I stuck to bootcamp mostly but added yoga and a kickboxing style class. My classes were growing.


You should know that I was doing this for fun. I also I worked 40 hours a week for a United States Senator during the day, covering 25 counties in Northwest Arkansas. I would wake up at 4am to teach a 5am bootcamp, shower at Bishop Park and jump in the car to be in Fayetteville for a 10am meeting. I’d grab lunch on the road and be back in time to teach my 5pm, 6pm and 7pm bootcamp classes. I did this four days a week. I worked hard and I loved it.

When I was growing up, I remember my mom and dad say that if you want to love your job then you need to find something you love to do and figure out a way to make money at it. I didn’t even realize I was not working; I was simply doing what I loved.


In 2012 the light bulb came on! I realized that there were many small bootcamp or yoga studios in the area, but you had to go to each individual place and pay the separate fees. There was not one place that offered a little bit of everything. That’s what I wanted. I love bootcamp, but I also want to do yoga, spin, strength training, kickboxing, barre, pilates, and more. I get bored with the same thing and my body doesn’t get challenged.

So I came up with a business plan. I met with a city official and handed it over. That’s right, I didn’t want to do it. I had a full time job. I wanted to help them get it going and keep teaching the classes. They were not interested. So I took it to a local gym owner. They said it was a “bad idea” and that “I would be out of a job in three months.” I’ll never forget those two conversations. At first it made me second-guess myself. I quickly got over it. It fired me up even more. I decided that I was going to do it.


I started to look for a building. A big building with air conditioning in Saline County is harder to find than you’d think. It took a year to find one. On November 9, 2013 McClure Fitness opened its doors! Officially we are about to celebrate our second anniversary. Unofficially, I’ve been working at this business for over six years. Today, we employ 20 wonderful people who are all strong physically and mentally. They are excellent trainers that specialize in different areas. We offer over 60 diverse classes, seven days a week.


In fitness, and in life, don’t hold back. Living in your safe zone will never foster growth. It’s time to let go of whatever is causing you to hesitate. Now’s the time to take action!