As we sit down to celebrate completing 4 full years of Alaris Fitness Successes, I wanted to share a few things with you:
1) The name “Alaris” is an old Latin word meaning “of the wing, wingman, or cohort” – I landed on this name after digging through an old Latin Dictionary that my grandfather gave me when I was in college. I wanted to name the gym after a “feeling” and not after me – because this isn’t about me, it’s about the people I wanted to help. My undergraduate degree is in Medieval Studies, and I always appreciated how my family never let me feel weird about choosing that. I think I still have that dictionary too.
2) Alaris almost didn’t happen. The morning after my grand opening, the girl I was subleasing from informed me I had to move my equipment out by noon or she was going to lose her lease as well. I moved everything out, and went home and cried for a solid 2-3 days. I was calling everyone I knew, frantically trying to find a space. I decided to start hosting classes at SBCC – thank you Raquel and Jen for always showing up to those first few months so I felt like I had something to work for. I probably would have been back at a desk if it wasn’t for you. I found this space from a tiny dojo who could no longer afford the rent, but they still train there in the evenings because I knew what it was like to lose my space.
3) It’s hard to believe that one can simultaneously feel anguish, fear, happiness, stress, relief – IN THE SAME MOMENT…but that’s basically what running this business has been like on a daily basis. I love it, I hate it, it feeds my soul, it sucks the life out of me…yet I still want to wake up at 4:45 every morning to get people moving.
4) A good friend/successful business owner once told me “everything changes in year 4 – grind it out until you get there” – now that we’re round the corner on year 4, he’s right. Things are changing, and this year is going to be amazing. We’re growing our staff, expanding our programs, more people are catching the kettlebell and running bugs. For the first time, I feel like we’re on solid footing to knock this year out of the park in a really BIG WAY.
5) I never opened this gym with the intent of using cheap marketing tactics and BS lies to get people in. I’ve always stuck to the idea that we do not want to try and attract people with promises of dramatically changing lives, losing a ton of weight, etc. The culture we’ve built in here has more to do with living your best life through ability, surprising yourself through small successes, and celebrating those around you. And we’ve done just that. And I’m absolutely in love with it. I feel like we’re the little gym taking on the fitness world, telling it to go screw itself because we don’t need it’s approval to feel like what we’re doing matters. I’ve worked hard to establish this lane in Santa Barbara, and I feel like it’s gaining traction. Fitness does not mean we’re aiming for a specific body type, a specific time not he board, etc. Fitness is about showing up for yourself because you are worth it.
Alaris is the culmination of a lot of hard work, sweat, tears, and hugs. The culture we have developed around changing how we look at fitness is awe inspiring With all of this, I also want to sit back and thank every single person who has walked through our doors to lift, stepped onto the field to run, and allowed me to guide them from afar. YOU make Alaris Fitness the gem of a gym that it is, and I thank you for being you, for showing up for yourself, and for making my heart full.