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A Time to Give Thanks in the Fitness Industry

A Time to Give Thanks in the Fitness Industry

Because we celebrate Thanksgiving this month and because I believe in being grateful for what you have rather than lamenting what you do not have, I have written down what I am thankful for as it relates to the fitness industry.

I am thankful for the opportunity to work on this publication, its website and its e-newsletter. In a small way, our staff helps you do your jobs better by publishing the news and trends of the fitness industry. It is a pleasure to hear from readers about how much a story helped them or even to hear from readers about how we missed the mark on a story.

I am thankful for the people I work with on this magazine. The other two editors on staff each have written a story that is nominated for the 2011 Eddie Awards (results due this month), and we have been recognized several times in the last few years for our stories. We also have talented print columnists, online columnists and speakers at our trade shows who write for us, giving their time generously without any financial reward. They do so because they have knowledge that they want to impart to others, and one of the greatest gifts anyone can offer is the gift of their experience.

I am thankful for the people I have met in this industry who are dedicated to a cause greater than making money—from personal trainers to general managers to CEOs to owners to consultants.

I am thankful for the variety of fitness facilities that we have in this industry today. Because we have a variety of commercial clubs (family-oriented, high-end, low-priced, studios, express clubs) and many options outside commercial clubs (the nonprofits, universities, corporate centers and municipal facilities), almost everyone can find a fitness facility that suits their needs today.

I am thankful for the members who inspire you with their courage and perseverance each day when they step through your doors. I hope you remember how much effort it takes for a person who is 100 pounds overweight to walk into your club for the first time, or for a mother of four to find time to come work out, or for a senior citizen to push past his arthritis pain to swim laps each morning.

I am thankful for the conferences and trade shows in our industry. Although some people say that trade shows are a thing of the past, I find them to be a great way to personally connect with and learn from other club operators whom you may never have met otherwise. The CEO Summit that we held at the Club Industry 2011 show was a perfect example of 40 CEOs from some of the most profitable fitness facilities networking, some of them never having met before.

And, finally, I am thankful for my health. I used to think my grandmother was silly when she offered thanks for her health, but I was too young and healthy to realize the effect health has on how well you can live your life and accomplish your goals. I see its importance now, as I am sure you do, too. And that is why the service you provide in helping others with their health has such meaning.

What are you thankful for this month? Perhaps you should take the time to let your members know and get their input on what they are thankful for. It could be an inspiring effort for everyone involved.

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