I AM Driven
My name is Julie Fostin and when I grew up I wanted to be a CPA. My education is in accounting, however life had other ideas for me. Here is my story on how I was DRIVEN to become a fitness professional. It all started in 1991 at the age of 17, I graduated from high school and had taken ill. I promised myself that I would never get that sick again and for the first time stepped into a gym. Mind you, I was never an athlete in high school so this exercising thing was all very new to me. Through the years, I had many interests with in the gym setting: free weights, cardio machines and group fitness classes. As life got busier, I could no longer dedicate the three hours a day I was spending at the gym, so group fitness classes became my go to fitness fix.
Year’s later, working full time in the corporate world (not very gratifying), my fiancé’s job was outsourced. I decided to get AFAA Primary Group Fitness Certified to earn some grocery money by teaching group fitness classes’ part time. The certification was tough because I had already been out of school for 10+ years, it was a self-study course and I did not pass the first time. With great support from my fiancé and dear friend Debbie, I received my certification in October of 2006 and began to teach at a local gym Howland Place Fitness Center. However, months later, in the process of this all being for my grocery money, members started to approach me to tell me how their blood pressure was regulating and they were loosing weight due to my classes (very gratifying). This is what kept me DRIVEN to pursue more in the field of fitness.
As my passion grew, I knew it was time to take the next step and get my AFAA Personal Training Certification (brutal!) I received my certification in 2009. However, I was not very excited because I was already teaching many classes and working full time. How was I going to fit training in as well? A few months after receiving my certification the Howland Place Fitness Center owner, Matt Bettencourt approached me about coming on full time at the gym (eternally grateful!). This was a big risk for me, I was in my late 30’s, I had a good corporate job that was stable but I knew my passion was fitness and with my accounting and business background experience Matt’s business could benefit, plus I would be able to grow my personal training business! I thought to myself if I don’t take the risk now…. would I ever? In 2010, I jumped in with both feet! I figured I was going to be able ease my way into my position as the gym and take on a few clients here and there for some extra money…. BOY was I mistaken! My training business took off like wild fire. My exposure from all the classes I was teaching really helped launch my personal training.
Unfortunately, in 2013 due to tough economic times and competition from the big box gyms. Howland Place Fitness Center/Revolution Fitness closed July 31st 2013. What was I going to do? Fortunately, for me Total Fitness Clubs purchased HPFC’s membership and took me on as an employee (very grateful!) The past few years have been tough for me but very rewarding. I had to re-establish myself in a new gym but also prove that I had value to the Total Fitness owners. I now have a thriving personal training clientele, full group fitness classes and I am the Assistant Manager of Operations and much much more.
The past nine years has been a whirlwind of crazy but with all those struggles, it has helped me grow as a fitness professional. I love my job and I have no regrets leaving the corporate world to chase after my passion. Can you imagine each day as your walking into work knowing you are about to change someone’s life for the better? I would say that is pretty amazing. That feeling is what continues to DRIVE me each day to be a better trainer and instructor by educating myself and staying on top of this ever-changing industry called fitness.
If you truly love what you do even in the hard times you can stay DRIVEN to pursue your passion!