Alexis Madayag is traveling around the United States meeting Vagaro business owners and learning about the ways they support the unique needs of the individuals they serve. Alexis is deaf and doesn’t let that get in her way of living life to the fullest. In this segment of Alexis on The Road, she met the folks at Ruane Fitness & Nutrition in Omaha, Nebraska. 

Ruane Fitness and Nutrition is a CrossFit business looking to improve people’s physical & mental health. I drove about 20 minutes from downtown Omaha and arrived at the studio where I met owner and personal trainer, Scott Ruane, who introduced himself, showed me around, led me through a great workout and offered advice for other businesses. 

 As I stretched before starting the workout, Scott explained how I should use the exercise equipment for best results during a leg day. He communicated with me by writing on the whiteboard and gestured to correct my form. 

More fitness equipment at Ruane Fitness & NutritionMy workout consisted of jumping rope, riding a fan bike, weightlifting and lunges. In only 30 minutes, Scott had me try a number of different exercises I had never done before. The goal was that I burned at least 260 calories. And, let me tell you, it certainly felt like it. 

Scott gave me a customized workout routine to do at home that consisted of deadlifts, hand-release push-ups and air squats. All the sweat was worth it, because I left there feeling energized & empowered! 

At Ruane Fitness & Nutrition, they motivate clients to keep going and support everyone’s journey, no matter how different that might look. That can be life changing. It was easy to view and select class times on the Vagaro app, and during my workout we easily wrote back and forth on the whiteboard, so communication was never an issue. After my visit, I asked Scott some questions about his business experience:

What was your inspiration when starting your business? 

I worked at Life Time Fitness for 10 years, and knew that I wanted to start my own business someday. I had always believed it would be at the 10-year mark, and after about nine & a half years, God swung the doors of opportunity wide open and we started making plans to leave the comfort and safety of Life Time Fitness to try the adventure of running our show. I left Life Time at 10 years to the day to start my own personal training business. At first, I was training out of someone else’s gym, but through many trials and tribulations, it became VERY clear that we were supposed to open our own facility and take another risky step of not only working for ourselves, but being gym owners! We have been operating Ruane Fitness & Nutrition for about four years now and it has been an amazing experience! It has had its share of bumps in the road, but overall it has been so wonderful! 

How does your business support the unique needs of different individuals? Is there anything you do differently than other businesses like yours? 

We are basically a one-on-one CrossFit gym. We do not have the name-brand CrossFit in our gym name or signage, but all of the trainers at my gym teach & practice the methodology and are all certified CrossFit instructors. We are also Russian Kettlebell certified instructors, which adds a whole other element to our unique training style and techniques. I personally have five other nationally recognized personal training certifications, including a few corrective exercise based certs, and of course, my Precision Nutrition Level 1 Nutrition Coach certification. So, along with the high-intensity functional training that comes from CrossFit and Kettlebell training, we also work to correct people’s movement patterns and provide high-level nutrition coaching. One of the main downfalls of the class setting of CrossFit is that it can be hard to see everyone exercising and performing safe movements. With our unique approach to one-on-one personalized sessions, you are getting the same amazing benefits from high-intensity exercise with the added benefit of one-on-one coaching to make sure you are safe and doing the movements & exercises that are right for you. 

How does Vagaro help your business operate efficiently and grow? 

It is amazing having Vagaro be in charge of my monthly recurring payments, my weekly appointment schedule and, of course, the added benefit of them sending out automated text messages to all of my clients 24 hours in advance for their appointments. The number one thing I love the most is not having to run my clients’ payments every month; that saves me SO MUCH time & energy, and is truly priceless. I also love the ease of use with the entire program, especially the calendar. 

Has the pandemic changed the way you think about the services you provide your customers? 

We have had to pivot and do more online sessions. Thankfully, we are not doing those much anymore with the pandemic seemingly winding down (hopefully). But we still offer that as an option for those who are out of town, or for those who don’t feel safe doing in-person sessions yet. 

Any advice you would offer other business owners who are just getting started? 

My advice for people thinking about starting their own business is: HAVE A PLAN! It is harder than you think it is going to be, and while it does come with a lot of freedom and a much higher earning potential for most, it has a lot of drawbacks in that it requires A LOT of work, seemingly never-ending work. Owning and running your own business is not 9–5, it feels 24/7 at times, and it requires that you draw boundaries, or you will lose your mind! Vagaro gives me back so much of my time. 

Make the jump, but make sure you look before you leap, and have as much of a plan as possible, but also expect the unexpected. All of that sounds clichéd, but there is a reason those sayings are so popular—it’s because they are true and wise! It’s harder than it sounds, but it’s worth it! 

P.S. If you own or manage a business that charges rent and fees, learn more about how you can do that with Vagaro’s new Automatic Rent & Fees feature.