Here’s why…. 8 years ago in February, my life changed when I went to a law student conference in Nashville, TN and met… oh…. a certain Mr. Anti-Rat Race. It was love at first sight. We jabbered non-stop for nearly 3 days, were engaged in 9 months and married (counting in my head) 15 months later (May is also a good month in my book). He truly is my best friend and Prince Charming.
We were waxing nostalgic last night and remembering early in our relationship (we were still friends at the time) when I was sick. SOoooo so so so sick. And I was in my graduate apartment on the phone with him and someone knocked at the door. And there stood a delivery man with an armful of balloons and a box of chocolates. And I told the guy, “You’ve got the wrong apartment, sorry.”
The AntiRat was on the phone cracking up as I was telling the delivery guy to get lost. The poor man must have thought I was on drugs or something. He finally said something like “Is your name Elizabeth?” and it began to dawn on me that maybe, juuuusssst mayyyyybeeee, that handsome brown eyed kid on the phone might have done something romantic. (And I housed that box of chocolates in like a day, btw)
Yep. He’s my lobster. <3 (He also teases me about that “Those aren’t for me” battle I had with the delivery man. In my defense, I’d had some pizzas accidentally brought to my apartment a few times, so… okay).
So speaking of nostalgia and February… February 14th marks my two year anniversary as a Beachbody Coach. Wild.
A little over two years ago, I managed to get myself involved in this wild and crazy fitness world. My mentor, Alli Vaughn, approached me about coaching. I knew so little about it (you can read about my early exposure here). But I trusted Alli, because everything she told me about teaching had been correct. And I trusted Chalene, because she marketed her programs through Beachbody and Chalene changed my life. And I liked the discounts I could get as a coach, so I figured…
If everyone I trusted, everyone who invested in my fitness career and growth was telling me to do something, why would I listen to 99% of everything they said and decide they were shameful liars about this 1 thing?
So I became a coach. I know people do these kinds of things — they sell tupperware or makeup or candles or whatever. Fitness has always been my interest (even when I was pretty unfit, I still read all the magazines. Shape, Self, Fitness…) Fitness is an investment in yourself. I used the discounts, I got fitter. I made a lot of friends. That sounds kind of assholey, like, “Hiii, I’m soooo popular.” No, come on, I’m just a little fish in a big big pond. I just mean, fitness took me from knowing 30 people on Facebook to knowing… a lot more than that. Facebook may not be real life, but when I have a bad day, Facebook people know about it and reach out and lift me up. If I weren’t here tomorrow, people would know and miss me. (Right guys? Uh… Guys?)
Here’s the thing about fitness and Beachbody — a lot of the skills I needed as an instructor (belief in myself, perseverance, courage, empathy, loving people where they’re at) — are not skills I got in my certifications. Zumba doesn’t teach that. I didn’t learn it at my AFAA training. I sure as hockey pucks didn’t learn it in law school. Coaching surrounded me with mentors and peers who were interested in pulling me up, pushing me forward and making me grow. It surrounded me with people who needed my help and love and it gave me an opportunity to step outside of my own piddly little thigh problems and hear what other people had going on in their lives (let me tell you — lots. Life’s tough. Be excellent to each other, and party on dudes).
The wild thing about it is, I still kind of doubt that all this works. Do I really pay my bills by telling people about fitness products and nutritional supplies and shaking my booty for an hour at a time?
Yeah. I really do.
January 1rst of this year marked the beginning of the end for me. I stopped being a lawyer. I resigned from my final legal job. I’m wrapping up some files and resigning from lawyers’ list serves and filing for inactive status with the bar. Beachbody allowed me to do that. Teaching an exercise class here or there would not have allowed me to do that. Thinking strategically, listening to people who are smarter than I am and who have been here and done this, setting up a plan and working with my mentors allowed me to do that.
I don’t have to be a lawyer anymore.
I still can’t believe I’m free. More power to my happy lawyers out there — if you’re happy doing it, that’s awesome. I wasn’t. You can read about that here. Two years ago, when I was making a few dollars here and there from Beachbody, I almost quit. “No one can sustain themselves off this,” I thought, “this is bullshit and I’ve got TOO MUCH GOING ON in my life to work on this.”
When people would ask me for coaching and advice and email me and then turn around and go buy the program from Ebay or their cousin who’s a coach or just download it illegally… I almost quit. I’ll be honest. It was discouraging. It still is, I’ll be honest. It stings. But whatever, my needs somehow get met and everyone is getting fitter and happier so it all balances out.
Two years have gone by and I’ve built this into something that can pay my bills. Now, let’s be real: I have pared my bills WAY the heck back. I can’t go lease a Mercedes and not be a lawyer anymore. I can’t go to the spa every week. But Beachbody did let me get out of the job I didn’t like. And I LOVE what I do now. Who can say that? Mostly fitness professionals — we have one of the highest job satisfaction ratings. 😉
Two years ago I could have said, “Well, Beachbody won’t allow me to quit my job today, so there’s no point. There’s no guarantee I can quit my job tomorrow or next week, so why bother?” I could have said that.
I don’t know why I didn’t.
I’ve talked to so many people who HATE their jobs and want to be with their kids and work for themselves and they want a new life, a better life, and they love fitness and…. they don’t take the step. And things don’t change.
Things are different for me now. I don’t know why I took the step — faith in people like Alli and Chalene and the other people who were doing this fun and incredible thing? Hope? Sheer outrageous moronically dumb luck? I don’t know why, but I’m so thankful I did.
And I’m so thankful to all of you who made this possible (and continue to make it possible) by reading this site and giving me feedback and trying my weird little experiments and playing with me on Twitter and shopping at my store and showing up at my classes. Because you make it possible and you make it FUN.
Did you hear? Beachbody is celebrating my two year anniversary on February 14th by releasing Strawberry Shakeology??? Yep. It’s just for me! I’m totally sure of it. 😉
Have a great day fitties. xoxoxo