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Keep Going: John & Tammy’s story

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One of the best parts about running a small business is taking what you are passionate about and making a career of it. That is what John and Tammy did with ABC Fitness Connection, a personal wellness gym that offers one-on-one training, boot camps, and group exercise classes. 

John and Tammy are both retired from the military and ended up meeting each other in the gym. With both of them having a passion for fitness, eating right, and overall wellness, they knew this was the direction they wanted to go with their business. 

They offered personal training on the side during weekends and nights, but when John lost his job, they decided it was time to commit to the gym full time. “We pretty much used our setback as a step up. We went full-fledged with the business and haven’t looked back since,” says Tammy.

Like all small business owners, they ran into plenty of unique challenges while opening their training center. “When we started, we started like the big box gyms, but it was more of a headache than anything, so we had to change directions, and do things our own way,” John says. 

Knowing that what they do is changing their clients’ lives is one of the biggest reasons they stick with the model they have now. “For us, we are part of the community. The people that come to our facility, they become our family, and we become your biggest cheerleader,” Tammy says. Their one-on-one model may limit the number of people they can service, but it allows them to form a closer connection with their clients and make an impact on their lives beyond just getting in shape. 

John and Tammy use those same connections with their community to market their gym. They enjoy doing presentations at schools and events and train people on healthy eating habits, total wellness, and the harm certain substances cause to your body. Sharing their expertise wherever they can has helped build trust in the community and attract more clients to their services instead of a big-name gym. 

With their combined knowledge, John and Tammy try to provide complete wellness coaching. They are looking to build their clients’ self-esteem and instill habits in them that will stick long after they stop going to the gym. “We know what our strengths and weaknesses are. He is parallel to me, in different lanes, but both achieving the same goal. There is a lot of different avenues of being well, and that is what we try to share with people,” Tammy says. 

Part of what makes their business work is that they practice what they preach. John and Tammy are both in such great shape that they have had people suggest John play professional football, even though he is almost 60 and she is almost 50. Their energy and passion for fitness shine through everything they do, even when running the business can be stressful. “It’s a roller coaster; you’ll have your highs and lows, but when you love what you do, it isn’t work,” John says.

That is why they don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. “We love helping people and helping them achieve their goals,” Tammy says. “We have seen people come and go, and they might not know who John is or who Tammy is, but when you say ABC Fitness Connection, they know.” 

If you want to learn more about John and Tammy’s story, you can visit their website abcfitconnect.com or call them directly at 301-645-0222.

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