New Year, New Gym: Looking Back, Looking Forward
It's been an eventful couple of months. The most salient development has been Greysteel's relocation to a new training facility, about a mile from our old shop at Farmington Junction.
Greysteel got its unofficial start in 2012....in my garage. I worked on my own training, and developed some rudimentary coaching experience with close friends and family. By the end of the year, I had the Starting Strength Coach credential and knew I wanted to open a gym.
Now, it's important to understand that this reflects very poor judgement on my part. Opening a new gym, without significant business or fitness industry experience, was a really, really stupid thing to do. In my whole life, I'd never even come close to running business. Not so much as a lemonade stand.
But I found a cheap space in a ramshackle old building that made the Paper Street Soap Company look like the Taj Mahal. My gym was a little under 400 square feet. It was a closet with two platforms. Cheap racks. Not the worst bars....but not the best, either. Cold in the winter, hot in the summer. And it leaked.
Frank lifts at the old Greysteel, ca July 2014.
The rent was cheap, which was good, because my starting budget was pathetic. I had no paying clients, and in retrospect I have no idea why anybody would even contemplate going to such a shithole to train. I figured Total Doom was 3 months away, tops.
And then I started to get clients, because Starting Strength is A Thing, and people want to be coached and to get strong. And those clients brought me other clients, and the next thing I knew, I was busy. So when another, larger shithole became available at the PSSC, I moved the gym down the hall to "nicer" digs, spent the money from membership fees I'd been hoarding and not paying myself, and invested in some good equipment.
With three platforms for semi-private coaching instead of two, nice equipment, and some room to spread out, we started getting more clients, holding more Starting Strength Training Camps with our sister gym Black Iron Training, and....growing. Really growing. Before I knew it, I was coaching full time and had stopped seeing patients at the hospital.
My Mom does not understand. So by the end of 2017, it was time to step up again. Greysteel deserved better than the Paper Street Soap Company. We found a space we liked, and with the help of my wonderful clients, we moved our gym in one day. We were up and running in three. With a few decorating tips from Rip, we've made it home. What a wild ride it's been...and it's not over. Bring it on, 2018. Enjoy the video.