DiscoverHALO Talks: Elevating Wellness
HALO Talks: Elevating Wellness

HALO Talks: Elevating Wellness

Author: Pete Moore

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Entrepreneurs in the Health, Active Lifestyle and Outdoor ("HALO") sector sharing their stories.
386 Episodes
If you own a boutique or big box fitness club in a mall, you're good to go, right? Everything will be perfect moving forward, right? Maybe not so much, according to Francine Miley, Founder of WELLthmanager, head of Partnerships & Business Developments for Honeycomb, and real estate veteran specific to the HALO sector.  In our latest episode, we'll explore the direction of retail, the advantages of incorporating wellness, the hurdles faced by landlords and tenants, the incredibly important power of partnerships, and more. Don't miss out on key insights from this industry leader that could transform your business! "It is truly about curation. And I know that word is overutilized, but it really is! If you're curating a community and bringing different services, classes, modalities, you need to be weighing that out and ensuring that you're giving that whole holistic approach," states Miley. Drawing from her experience in marketing, brand development, and strategy, Francine has worked closely with real estate investment trusts (REITs) to create innovative solutions for the sector. Her journey began when she was working with Westfield, focusing on the integration of wellness concepts into their properties. Taking a holistic approach, Francine effectively curated a unique blend of fitness, wellness, and medical offerings for the malls, helping to create the "HALO Effect" that benefited everyone involved. As the pandemic hit, Francine saw an opportunity to take her expertise in curating communities and started her own consulting firm. Now, she helps brands maximize their potential in consumer-facing retail opportunities by promoting flexibility, collaboration, and strategic partnerships. In this episode, Pete and Francine discuss:  The future of retail through exploring in-store versus digital experiences. The growing trend of incorporating wellness offerings into shopping venues. Challenges both landlords and tenants encounter in an evolving market. The crucial role of collaborations in creating viable HALO sector opportunities. Consider partnering with landlords or taking advantage of off-hours to optimize rental space and increase revenue. Click here to download transcript.  Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:  and don't forget to check out the HALO Academy for Executive Education opportunities.
Our guest for this episode is Brendan Sullivan, co-founder of ZAMA Health, a sports psychology SaaS platform for the athletic community which provides access to digital tools and clinical support to help improve physical and mental health outcomes. Sullivan shares his passion for mental wellness and how ZAMA can help improve exercise adherence and member engagement outcomes. He also discusses the importance of addressing emotional and mental health issues to improve engagement and retention in the fitness industry. He states, "Over 80% of the reason people actually work out now is their mental health . . . ranking above weight loss and physique. It's really becoming more about community and mental health than it is about just fitness. For most companies, it's very difficult to build a medical practice, and it's not their core business. It's highly regulated. And so rather than them trying to develop themselves, we see ourselves as this add-on to any of these organizations."  Pete and Brendan also bring up the critical need for personalized and thoughtful approaches to motivation and the stages of change model. They explore the idea that personal trainers (after proper training) could possibly be considered part of the care team for individuals interested in improving their health.  He continues, "At the end of the day we're really more working with mid to higher tiered gyms where members want to go to the gym and work out . . . We're trying to help solve engagement and retention issues that they're having. When you look at the data, whether you're a competitive collegiate athlete or a regular fitness goer, the majority of the reasons people have issues working out are very similar. It's body image issues, self-efficacy issues, eating disorders, anxiety, motivation. Our clinicians have been trained to meet and address the needs of that community, increase the likelihood of attaining their fitness goals, and also help with member retention." Clearly there is a tremendous value (and need!) to incorporate clinical health services. Be sure to reach out to Brandon at ZAMA to learn more.  Some Key Moments:  Discussion on motivation and the industry's attrition rate [00:05:15] What brands ZAMA works with and their sales cycle process [00:08:19] Discussion on making therapy services similar to a gym membership fee [00:10:26] Plans for insurance companies to reimburse members for their memberships [00:12:23] Click here to download transcript.  Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:  and don't forget to check out the HALO Academy for Executive Education opportunities.
What if everything you thought you knew about happiness was wrong? Follow the journey of a former private equity professional who discovered the shocking truth behind proactive health and how to truly find meaning in life. But, as he navigates this new path, he's faced with difficult questions and challenges that leave him with no easy answers. In this episode, Pete and Ted discuss:  Recognizing the significance of proactive health measures and the benefits of acting preventatively. The difficulties in establishing incentives that encourage healthier ways of living. Grassroots initiatives focused on nurturing wholesome habits within communities. The connection between mental health, sleep, and relationship-building in cultivating proactive well-being. Cultural and policy hurdles that impede lifestyle changes for better health. Teddy Daiell helps CEOs and investors with buy-side deal sourcing, growth strategy, and strategic finance. After honing his strategy and private equity expertise at Bain, Charlesbank, and Wharton’s MBA, Teddy has advised more than 40 Proactive Health companies like Precision Nutrition (Health Education), MDVIP (Preventive Primary Care), True Food Kitchen (Nutrition), Talkspace (Mental Health), and Wellbeats (Exercise). Daiell is now on a mission to tackle the cultural and policy barriers to proactive health. Born and raised in Brooklyn, Teddy had a successful career, but he realized early on that he wasn't really fulfilled. His unique background and passion for promoting healthier lifestyles make him an insightful guest on this important topic. Basic Nutrition Education One of the core components of promoting proactive health is basic nutrition education. By providing individuals with access to accurate and actionable information about the food they consume, they can make better-informed decisions about their well-being. This should be accessible to people of all demographics, as it can have a profound impact on the overall health of communities. Daiell highlights the value of basic nutrition education and how offering weekly sessions on nutrition and behavior change can have a significant impact on individuals and their families. By equipping people with the knowledge necessary to maintain a healthy lifestyle, they are more likely to make informed choices and prioritize their well-being in a sustainable manner. Opportunities for Impactful Proactive Health Many opportunities exist for impacting proactive health, from mental health to sleep and relationship building. Addressing each of these areas through targeted interventions, incentives, and education can lead to a more comprehensive and effective approach to improving overall health and wellness. By focusing on these, healthcare professionals can devise strategies that cater to individual needs and foster sustainable change. Ted is bullish about the potential for impact in these areas of proactive health. He stresses the need for personalized wellness solutions in mental health, optimizing environmental factors for sleep, and adopting preventative relationship coaching. Daiell advocates for a more holistic approach to proactive health, where individuals, businesses, and healthcare systems work together to prevent illness, incentivize healthy behaviors, and promote a better quality of life for all. Current Ecosystem of Healthcare Examining the existing healthcare ecosystem is vital when discussing proactive health. Understanding the numerous economic factors and stakeholders involved can help healthcare practitioners identify areas of potential improvement to further drive the adoption of healthy lifestyle choices. Unfortunately, challenges arise as the capitalistic nature of the system often rewards short-term gains over long-term health improvements, leading to a bias against proactive health measures. It is often difficult to create a business model around proactive health, especially since established players, like health insurance companies and the pharmaceutical industry, have significant monetary incentives to maintain the status quo. Daiell and Moore suggest that finding ways to monetize the health benefits of proactive health could motivate customers to adopt a healthier lifestyle and reduce the need for costly medical interventions. Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:  and don't forget to check out the HALO Academy for Executive Education opportunities.
From former NFL quarterback to business leader, Christian Ponder's journey took an unexpected turn when he realized the lack of community for athletes in their post-sport lives. With his new venture The Post, he's created a space where athletes can thrive once again. And--perhaps not coincidentally--he finds that the same soft skills that made them successful on the field are now driving their success in the business world. What led Christian to this idea (that's quickly picking up steam across all sectors of the business / recruiting world?) Listen to learn more.  Ponder joins host, Pete Moore, to share his insights on the correlation between athletic mentality and success in business. After playing in the NFL for the Minnesota Vikings and San Francisco 49ers, Christian transitioned to the world of finance and now runs The Post, a leadership network exclusive to athletes with many cues learned from the highly respected YPO organization. He's passionate about helping fellow athletes leverage their unique qualities and experiences to achieve success in their post-sports careers. He emphasizes the importance of tapping into qualities that make someone a great athlete, such as discipline, determination, and work ethic, as these attributes can be directly translated to achieving success in the business world. In this episode, Christian and Pete discuss: The significance of cultivating an exclusive network tailored for athletes involved in business ventures. The need for the Head of Player Personnel (aka: Human Resources!) to look aggressively at organizations like Christian's (and others) when bringing on more team members.  The relationship between an athletic mindset and accomplishments in the business sphere. The Post's dedication to supplying useful tools for athletes making the shift into entrepreneurship. The importance of conducting a thorough self-assessment to identify personal strengths before embarking on a post-athletic career. The value of physical meetup spaces vital for fostering a sense of community and networking opportunities. Being an Athlete One of the main topics touched on is the notion of being an athlete and leveraging the qualities that make one successful on the field paralleling those that help excel in the business world. Ponder highlights how society often attaches a negative stigma to the term "athlete," leading many to underestimate their abilities outside the realm of sports. He believes that these unique individuals possess the grit, determination, and drive necessary to forge a successful career after hanging up their cleats, so long as they are given the right opportunities to do so. Christian points out that athletes have a wealth of valuable skills that can be directly applied to the world of business, making them highly attractive prospects for potential employers. He mentions examples, such as Fortune 500 CEOs, C-suite women, and US Presidents, who often come from an athletic background, reinforcing the point that the qualities of a successful athlete are indeed transferable to other areas of life.   Click here to download transcript.  Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:  and don't forget to check out the HALO Academy for Executive Education opportunities.
Perhaps you've heard that The Little Gym is "only about sports and games," and that it does not foster social development, or that it does not promote cognitive development? Nancy Bigley will be here to bust these myths and share the truth about the franchisors comprehensive, holistic approach to development! Nancy is a highly experienced, dedicated franchising expert who brings her passion for health and wellness to her current role as the CEO of The Little Gym. She has over 30 years of "in the trenches" experience in various franchise industries. Her love for fitness and wellness led her to join Unleashed Brands, the parent company of The Little Gym, where she now focuses on helping children develop physically, cognitively, and socially. Nancy aims to create a lasting impact on the lives of children from as young as four months old. The Value of The Little Gym The Little Gym offers an affordable option for parents seeking a comprehensive growth experience for their children, with programs typically priced around $110 per month. Investing in programs that promote healthy and holistic development in children ultimately has a significant impact on their overall well-being, academic achievement, and personal growth. Bigley focuses on how their programs emphasize consistency, cultivate good habits, and instill a sense of discipline in children. "Our franchisees do an amazing job of embracing the families and handling things; we take care of the kids and make things happen," she states. Building Confidence Confidence is a critical component of a child's development, as it shapes their ability to face challenges, problem-solve, and engage in healthy social interactions. Fostering confidence in kids helps them develop self-assuredness and a positive self-image, enabling them to cope with various situations and establish fulfilling relationships with others. Nancy spoke about the critical role confidence-building plays within The Little Gym's programs. She explained how their curriculum is designed to support children in developing confidence through movement-based activities, emphasizing the importance of creating a safe and supportive environment for every child to succeed. Through this approach, The Little Gym encourages well-rounded development in children, not only in terms of physical ability, but also in cognitive and social aptitude. In this wide ranging discussion, Nancy and Pete also touch on:  How The Little Gym prioritizes physical, cognitive, and social development for well-rounded growth. The secret behind a continuous enrollment program. The significant role of socialization in fostering children's mental health and wellness. The power of community building among families attending The Little Gym. How technology enhances customer experiences in today's fitness franchises. Download complete transcript here.  Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:  and don't forget to check out the HALO Academy for Executive Education opportunities.
At the height of her career in Manhattan advertising, Francesca Sipma began to feel burnt out and unfulfilled. She had no idea this restlessness would eventually end up being the catalyst for an unexpected journey: Her discovery of an immensely powerful practice, one that would lead her to leave her career and start her own business, Mastry. Through this groundbreaking modality, she now works with top companies like Deloitte and Google to help empower employees to reach their highest potential. What transformative effect does this practice have? And why is it so revolutionary? Through her extensive study over the years, Sipma became a breathwork expert, which can be thought of as an experiential therapy that helps break psychological patterns and release subconscious blocks. Francesca has since trained over 80 breathwork coaches worldwide and founded Mastry, a company that focuses on self-mastery and mental clarity.  "Mastry allows you to tap into altered states of consciousness, expand different areas of your brain, and truly connect to your purpose," she states. Breathwork and Mastery: Unlocking Mental Clarity and Creativity Breathwork--as a general practice--is a powerful practice for unlocking mental clarity and creativity by enabling individuals to release their subconscious blocks and reprogram limiting beliefs. By engaging in breathwork sessions, people can achieve a heightened state of mental clarity, which allows them to explore new ideas, think more effectively, and enhance their decision-making skills. This improved mental state is beneficial for professionals looking to boost productivity, collaboration, and empathy in the workplace. Mastry provides customized breathwork sessions that combine hypnosis and binaural beats to help individuals break psychological patterns and connect to their highest vision. Sipma's breathwork methods are designed to offer potent and tangible benefits in just one session, promoting an ongoing commitment to the practice for lasting positive change. In this episode, Pete and Francesca discuss:  Enhancing performance and mental clarity using breathwork techniques. Discovering the synergy of hypnosis, binaural beats, and breathwork for personal development. Improving corporate wellness outcomes with tailored session plans. Utilizing data-tracking for noticeable mood betterment. Pricing and future expansion projections in the industry. Click here to download transcript. Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:  and don't forget to check out the HALO Academy for Executive Education opportunities.
Rachel Begun, a respected nutritionist and dietitian, has a wealth of experience in the food and nutrition industry. With her Master's in Nutrition Education and background in PR, Rachel has developed a unique skill set that blends science-based nutrition knowledge with powerful communication strategies. Her expertise has led her to work with global food service manufacturers, food and wine retailers, and natural food brand startups. In recent years, she has transitioned into executive coaching, focusing on helping founders and executives build strong company cultures and effective leadership. Begun found herself at a crossroads when two female entrepreneurs she was working with asked her to be their coach. Although initially hesitant due to lack of coaching experience, she became very intrigued by the impact her powerful questions had on the way founders viewed their own businesses. This set her on a path of self-discovery, led to many coaching certifications thereafter and now her current focus is on helping entrepreneurs build credibility through "vulnerability and transparency." The Importance of Coachability Coachability, an essential aspect of personal and professional growth, entails openness to feedback, introspection, and a commitment to positive change. Entrepreneurs who demonstrate coachability are better equipped to navigate the complexities of their industries and the internal workings of their businesses. A receptive attitude to coaching positively impacts an entrepreneur's ability to learn from others, align with industry trends, and adapt to shifting markets. Rachel emphasizes the value of coachability among entrepreneurs, pointing out the need for individuals to be willing to put in the work and engage in honest self-assessment. Coaches can help provide valuable insights, but ultimately the impetus for change should come from within the individual. By being coachable, entrepreneurs can identify barriers to success, refine their problem-solving skills, and build stronger businesses poised for long-term success. In this episode, Rachel and Pete discuss: Discovering the key role of coachability and introspection to consistently advance your entrepreneurial journey. Grasping the power of vulnerability and transparency in order to establish stronger relationships with stakeholders. Emphasizing the importance of critical problem-solving skills and its impact on sustainable business growth. Understanding the need to hire complementary talent in order to build a dynamic and proficient team. How coaching can help overcome personal barriers and enhance success in the entrepreneurial world. Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:  and don't forget to check out the HALO Academy for Executive Education opportunities.
After being diagnosed with Crohn's disease, Celina Semente, a stubborn yet determined (former!) fashion major, decided to take matters into her own hands, changed her field of study, and embarked on a journey of self-discovery to heal her gut and help others as a holistic health coach. With a hat tip to Mike Pesca, host of the Gist podcast for the initial intros--and a happy client himself--Celina is now a highly skilled health coach whose experience with Crohn's continues to fuel her passion for helping others. With a degree in Nutrition and Food Sciences from Montclair State University and a holistic health graduate degree from Georgian Court University, Celina brings a wealth of knowledge to the world of holistic wellness. Her dedication to understanding the root cause of symptoms and promoting a healthy lifestyle has led to countless success stories among her clients. As an advocate for self-care and personalized health solutions, Celina is the perfect guide for individuals seeking to improve their overall well-being. The Role of a Health Coach Health coaches serve as supportive guides and mentors for individuals seeking a comprehensive and personalized wellness solution. They work closely with clients to establish a thorough understanding of their unique health concerns, needs, and preferences. By developing tailored strategies that focus on nutrition, lifestyle, and mental well-being, they empower their clients to take a proactive and informed approach to healthcare. Health coaches not only emphasize the importance of maintaining healthy habits but also ensure accountability, thus helping individuals stay committed to their wellness journeys. In the episode, she highlights the distinctions between her role as a health coach and her previous experience as a personal trainer. She emphasizes the need to listen to one's body and understand its unique responses to nutrition and lifestyle choices.  Pete and Celina also discuss: 1. Discovering techniques to help control autoimmune conditions through dietary and lifestyle adjustments.  2. Understanding the power of being your own health advocate and conducting personal research. 3. Insights into the holistic healthcare approach, covering nutrition, lifestyle, and mental health elements.  4. The significance of personalized health plans and enhancing gut health using whole foods.  5. The advantages of health coaching for individuals, employers, and gym settings. Click here to download transcript.  Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:  and don't forget to check out the HALO Academy for Executive Education opportunities.
After her husband and son became ill, Michelle Zipper (practicing out of the Well Center in Westchester, NY) fiercely pursued a career in Functional Diagnostic Nutrition, determined to find answers and help others, unlocking a powerful inner strength and courage as she faced the challenges of balancing her business ambitions with her family's needs. Michelle has spent over a decade exploring the world of holistic health and functional medicine. With a background in graphic design, her passion for wellness began when her husband was initially diagnosed with Lyme disease, and she took the reins in healing him with nutrition and lifestyle changes. Her expertise grew as she also dealt with her son's autoimmune struggles, leading her to pursue further education in health coaching, functional diagnostic nutrition, and obtaining a Master's degree. Through her diverse experiences, Michelle has become a champion for listening to the body and creating personalized protocols for her clients. At the Well Center, she combines her love for community and wellness, offering invaluable support and resources to her clients. "Your body can tell you everything if you really just stop and take the time to listen," she states.  The Importance of a Holistic Approach to Health Understanding the intrinsic connection between various systems and aspects of the human body is crucial for optimal health. Implementing a holistic approach that factors in nutrition, sleep, exercise, and stress management can directly impact overall well-being, while also reducing the risks of developing chronic diseases. By addressing the root causes of symptoms rather than merely treating individual issues, people can build a solid foundation upon which they can improve and maintain their well-being. The Well Center tends to focus on creating personalized protocols for each client, based on their unique needs and specific bodily systems. In this episode, Pete and Michelle discuss: 1. A more holistic approach to health through functional medicine and nutrition.  2. Understanding the crucial role of a clean, nutrient-dense diet in building a wellness foundation.  3. The ever-increasing importance of wellness technologies such as infrared therapy (check out HigherDose's offerings!) and cryotherapy.  4. Uncovering challenges in pricing services and insurance coverage for functional testing. 5. Recognizing the significance of personalized protocols and referrals as effective marketing strategies in the HALO sector. Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:  and don't forget to check out the HALO Academy for Executive Education opportunities.
Mark Moyer is (clearly!) our long lost, Brother from Another Mother! He is the Founder and CEO of the Win Again Academy and the author of Win Again: Turn Athletic Success Into Business Success. He shares our desire to help provide athletes with the resources and connections they need to transition to a life outside of sports when that time comes. His ecosystem will help current and former athletes discover their identity beyond sports, develop the structure needed to succeed again, and receive the tips, strategies and actionable advice that allows them to WIN AGAIN and be elite in their next great career.  Mark's expertise lies in connecting them to business leaders, entrepreneurs, and investors. By leveraging their unique skills and abilities, he helps pave the way for countless athletes to excel in various entrepreneurial endeavors. His dedication to bridging the gap between sports and business makes Mark an invaluable resource for athletes seeking meaningful and fulfilling careers after retirement. Transitioning Athletes into Post-Sports Careers For many professional athletes, retiring from their sport means venturing into uncharted territory to find a new line of work. Often they possess transferable skills that could make them competitive candidates in various industries, such as adaptability, communication, performing under pressure, and tenacity. However, discovering these skills and knowing how to use them can be daunting without proper guidance. Moyer values the importance of establishing relationships between athletes and business professionals to ensure the successful transition of athletes into the workforce. In this episode, Mark and Pete discuss:  1. Discovering strategies that help ease the transition from sports to corporate life for athletes. 2. Uncovering the unique skills athletes can bring into the business world. 3. The importance of establishing connections between athletes and entrepreneurs. 4. Exploring the role of the HALO sector in addressing critical health concerns in society. 5. Stimulating pro-athlete investments in a wide array of industries. Click here to download transcript.  Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:  and don't forget to check out the HALO Academy for Executive Education opportunities
In this engaging podcast, our guest Brian Socolow from Loeb & Loeb, LLP shares his insights on the psychological and legal components to consider before jumping into a private equity deal in the "post-COVID new normal." With a focus on protecting and monetizing technology ideas in the sports and health and wellness industries, Brian reveals the checklist of factors to consider when seeking investment or selling a company. He also offers valuable advice on legal protection, insights for entrepreneurs seeking capital investments in sports, navigating due diligence, and much more. This is a must-listen for anyone in sports law, private equity, or the HALO sector. Socolow states, "Businesses that protect their intellectual property and form a clear, compelling corporate story are more appealing to investors . . . Fostering honest communication and setting expectations is essential when transitioning from entrepreneur to employee or board reporting – an invaluable mindset shift that can make all the difference." Click here to download transcript.  Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:  and don't forget to check out the HALO Academy for Executive Education opportunities
Mike Geenen is the Senior Director of Investments at EPR Properties. EPR is a 25+ year old, publicly traded REIT with $6.5B in investments, 350+ assets across 44 states and Canada, with more than 200 partners and tenants. A REIT is a real estate investment trust which owns (and sometimes) operates income-producing real estate or related assets. These typically include things like office buildings, malls, apartments, hotels, resorts, self-storage facilities, and so forth.   Geenen states, "We bill ourselves as the diversified experiential REIT. And what that really means is that we focus on investing in real estate venues that facilitate out of home, leisure, recreation and social experiences . . . The majority of our investments outside of the theater business are with independents that are not necessarily private equity backed. We're in a bit of a niche market for the most part." EPR is also the largest owner of movie theater real estate in the country since the theater space is their legacy business. They also own most of the Top Golf's in the states, and are interested in holding things for long term. They don't work like the typical private equity model of holding for 5-7 years. EPR's portfolio also includes ski areas, theme parks, and more. Mike is (rightfully) proud of the relationships he's built with his 200+ tenants and borrowers, as they were able to work together during the pandemic without having to go into any kind of litigation.  Mike believes in the power of long-term partnerships and was passionate about his mission to provide capital to businesses that fit the "EPR model."  In this episode, Pete and Mike discuss:  1. What it means to be a “diversified experiential REIT” and why this model is attractive. 2. How EPR manages concentration risk and diversification within its portfolio of 350+ assets.  3. What some of the benefits are of working with a REIT as opposed to working with a private equity firm. Click here to download transcript. Other episodes you'll enjoy around real estate:  David West:  Jeff Roseman:  Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here: 
With her unique perspective as a historian and deep roots in the fitness industry, Natalia Petrzela, Ph.D embarks on a mission to uncover how fitness has gone from a "suspect" activity in the early days, to an essential part of modern life, leading to the crucial question of how we as an industry can make it more accessible to all. "I think we've got to find a way to talk about obesity, health, and morality that isn't just about like, well, 'you look that way, make better choices,' because I don't think that's fair. We have to make it easier to work out and to eat healthy food," she states.  Natalia is a historian and professor at the New School in New York City. She is the author of the newly released book Fit Nation, The Gain's and Pains Of America's Exercise Obsession. Natalia has always been curious about how the fitness industry has changed and evolved. She "found" the gym as a teenager, leading her to become certified and take a deep dive into the industry. Through her extremely thorough research, she uncovered a narrative of how fitness had gone from a weird subculture to becoming a mainstream activity embraced by many. And while choices and willpower are important, there are many other structural factors that make it difficult for certain people to make those choices. Fit Nation brings her two passions together: History and fitness. This is the story of how the industry has changed and how it can continue to grow. It should be required reading for anyone in the HALO sector. In this episode, she and Pete discuss:  1. How our attitudes towards fitness have changed over the last 50 years. 2. What are the connections between physical fitness and mental health. 3. The challenges that exist for those from lower-income backgrounds when trying to lead a healthy lifestyle. Click here to download transcript. Other episodes you'll enjoy: Jim Owen:  Connect With Us: Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here: 
When Matan Gavish, a former Special Forces commander in charge of combat training, discovers the "silent pandemic" of rising sexual assault against women in urban areas, he repackaged his Krav Maga skill set to empower a reluctant and fearful audience to learn to take back their safety. He is the Founder of FITHIT in NYC and is passionate about solving this problem. Gavish states, "Somewhere along the line, it became crystal clear to me that there is a problem, a real big one that is not being addressed by anyone, and I have the skillset to solve it. And that is the problem of sexual assault against women in big cities. It is it is being referred to as a 'silent pandemic.' It does not get the attention that it deserves."  Gavish found himself in a unique position to potentially help address this. He worked hard to "repackage" Krav Maga into something that would be attractive to those least likely to enjoy or want to partake in the activity. He came to realize that most of his target audience's fears were mental, not necessarily physical. After removing the 'contact part' in the beginning and helping reframe a customer's definition of what a "fighter" is . . . he found that he was able to help alieviate these concerns within an hour of training. His logo and old name--Krav Maga Academy--were also a part of the barrier to entry. He rebranded to FITHIT with the word "Fit" first and "Hit" second to emphasize that it was a fitness experience with the added benefit of learning serious self-defense at the same time. In this episode, Pete and Gavin discuss:  1. How the problem of sexual assault against women in big cities be addressed and (possibly) improved. 2. How the martial arts can be (re)packaged to help to attract the least likely client for self-defense. 3. What the FITHIT experience is and how it can it help people build self-defense skills in a safe and fun environment. Click here to download transcript. Other episodes you'll enjoy around self-defense:  John Mirrione:  Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here: 
Jarlo Ilano is a martial artist, physical therapist, and entrepreneur. He is the Managing Director of GMB Fitness, and has been at the forefront of the 'alternative fitness' movement for over two decades. At the age of twelve, Jarlo found himself in karate classes at the local community center. As he grew, he explored more martial arts and fitness-related activities. After his parents encouraged him to pursue physical therapy, Jarlo began to see the potential of combining his own passions into a PT career. With the help of mentors, he eventually started GMB Fitness with partners Andy Fossett and Ryan Hurst. These guys are the "OG's" in this space, and have been at it longer than most. No hype. No nonsense claims. Just good, solid, progressive, well-balanced programs for all levels. Through the ups and downs of the business, Jarlo has stayed the course and found success in the industry, inspiring others to make meaningful changes in their lives to help them reach their goals. He states, "In terms of success, we always knew we wanted to change the way people look at what fitness means, what exercise means, and make it really meaningful to them, so that they can continue on, they can get better and not feel like they're just spinning their wheels. We can get better, we're getting older, but we're changing the goalposts. We're working towards what really matters for us, whether that's performing better at a particular sport or just . . .being a good overall person! That's [one of] our metrics for success. We see our clients saying, "I didn't think I'd be able to do this!" And they're doing it right! And they're going to keep doing it for years." In this episode, Pete and Jarlo discuss:  1. How to scale a business from 6-20+ employees and making the "hard decisions." 2. The advantages of physical therapy for fitness, performance, and overall well-being. 3. The importance of mentors and the value of mentorship for entrepreneurs in the health and fitness space. Click here to download transcript.  Other episodes you'll enjoy: Dr. Layne Norton: Dr. Joel Fuhrman:  Connect With Us: Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:
Eve Nasby is the President of Band of Hands, a company now in 11 states with a disruptive business model that helps small business owners manage their staff without having to worry about the administrative burden of being the "employer of record." She has over 30 years of experience in the staffing industry and is passionate about helping businesses succeed.  98% of businesses in America are small businesses-those with less than 50 employees. And (putting it mildly), staying on top of the latest rules and regulations (like California's AB5, Gig Worker Law as a recent example), is extremely onerous and time consuming. Eve experienced this herself when she owned a small business and struggled to manage her staff and keep up with all of the paperwork. In an industry that's so old and staid, BOH is poised to blast off! She states, "You've got to surround yourself with people that aren't 'Yes people,' that are going to challenge you, challenge the way you think, and challenge the way 'things have always been done in the past'  . . . that's what I'd encourage all your listeners to do. Go to somebody that you wouldn't normally ask for advice, somebody that has no idea about your industry, go and ask them a question!"  With white glove service and a team of highly experienced, SHRM-certified, HR professionals BOH provides employees on the platform with benefits, financial stability, and one 1099 (not 15 different ones at the end of the year) . . . never mind the tremendous number of benefits to employers once all the headaches are off their plate. This is an absolute game-changer, especially for the HALO sector.  In this episode, Eve and Pete discuss:  1. How Band of Hands helps small business owners mitigate HR and other risks so owners can focus on their passion. 2. What advantages Band of Hands offers over traditional staffing agencies and payroll companies. 3. How Band of Hands created a seamless and flexible platform for employees to move between different employers. Contact Eve at 619-244-3000 to learn more and get started!   Click here to download transcript.  Resources: Learn more here: Other episodes you'll enjoy around taxes & HR:  Adam Taplinger:  Connect With Us: Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here: 
After decades of success in the fitness industry, George Jackson created TG-The Gym in 2018. It represents the next step in his career and a distillation of all he has learned. TG is an umbrella organization offering a license to independent gym owners with a tremendous number of benefits and proven business model that's readily deployable.  George is a well known, long-time industry veteran who started with Gold's Gym around 1983. He's gone through multiple iterations over the years, taking what is useful and constantly refining his model . . . and it's working! Peter San Nicolas is the The Gym's first licensee. He's another industry pro who decided to rebrand his facility to The Gym-Ramona and he joins us on the podcast as well.  George states, "Starting the brand in 2018, we just saw an opportunity, especially for people like Peter. You know . . . independent guys that would now have an opportunity to be supported with a bigger group. As Peter knows, I'm never gonna tell him what to do, but if he comes to me and asks, 'Hey, George, what do you think about this?' Or, 'Hey, George, you're doing it this way. Can you tell me more about that?' Obviously I can help. My goal is really to support each of these independent operators and Peter is a great one! I'm so fortunate to have him as our first, because I don't think I could have found a better first licensee in terms of somebody who has been doing it since 16 years and who also competes as a bodybuilder." TG-The Gym is open to licensing its name and is doing a discovery day during IHRSA 2023. If you're an independent operator with 10,000 square feet or more with a strong focus on results, bodybuilding, body transformations, and serious fitness, definitely contact George to discuss how a rebranding to The Gym, along with all ancillary revenue opportunities and cost savings could be a fit. ( In this episode, George and Pete discuss: 1. The unique licensing agreement that TG-The Gym has created to help independent operators rebrand and take their businesses to the next level.  2. The multiple, ancillary benefits that come with joining TG and the potential of a grand reopening into "The Gym." 3. The advantages of being part of a team and how it can reinvigorate members, employees, business partners, and communities. Click here to download transcript.  Other episodes you'll enjoy around franchising & licensing:  Jim Donnelly:  Todd Wadler:  Connect With Us: Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here: 
Dr. Sal Arria is one of the Founders of Lionel University (formerly ISSA College of Exercise Science), and an educational leader in the fitness industry. He's been around literally since the inception of the personal trainer education space. He continues his life-long mission of creating highly educated fitness professionals to help people change their lives. Sal had a serious wake up call many years ago when, after presenting his plan to a Vice President of a very large insurance company, he was met with the conversation stopper, "Sal. Stop and do the math on this! It doesn't work for me!" Sal promptly threw $100 on the table and walked out. The very real reality is the fact that the medical insurance industry doesn't make money from healthy people.  Arria states, "Could you imagine walking into a physician who spent eight years in college, many years in residency and say, 'Hey, I earned my certification . . . I took one class.' You can't do it! A single certification is great for entry level, but think about nursing as one example. You've got your LVN's, the entry level. But then there's the RN, the Surgical Nurse, and the Nurse Practitioner. The greater the level of responsibility, the greater the level of education needed . . .  We need our trainers to be able to go out and help change lives." And they need to be highly educated to do it! But not only that, the medical field as a whole also needs to know and feel confident that they're highly educated . . . so they can refer and partner with confidence.   All this motivated him to create a program at Lionel which eventually evolved into accredited Associate's, Bachelor's, and Master's degrees. Sal and his team have created programs which could (hopefully) give MD's, DO's, NP's, etc the confidence to consistently refer patients to fitness professionals and create a natural partnerships which could provide physicians with objective data to demonstrate marked improvements in a patient's health. But we're not there yet.  He continues, "The fitness profession is the healthcare profession! There are five key elements that, over the past 50 years, there have been more scientific and medical studies proving the domain of the fitness industry: Weight training, cardiovascular conditioning, flexibility, sensible personalized nutrition, and an active, positive lifestyle. Those five key elements are responsible for preventing and even reversing virtually every disease today."  In this episode Sal and Pete touch on:  1. Why the industry is, in many ways, fighting against a "backwards" system, and what we need to do to deal with this.   2. What the role is for skilled, highly educated fitness professionals in the HALO sector. 3. How teams of fitness and medical professionals can work together to attract more patients. Click here to download transcript.  Other episodes you'll enjoy around fitness education Graham Melstrand: Dr. Layne Norton:  Connect With Us:  Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here:
Taylor Stull, a former product manager for preventative health solutions, is the Co-Founder of Flowell, a platform that provides team-based experiences and lifestyle games to help clubs and coaches build communities and keep people healthy for life – all while navigating the challenges of helping them make good decisions for long-term success. "At the end of the day, we're working to try to keep people healthy for their whole life by helping them make good decisions. This way they can hopefully have longer, more enriching, more fulfilling lives. That's really what I'm here trying to bring to market," he states. Taylor was determined to find a way to help people make better choices after his own health journey and he wanted to pay it forward. He developed Flowell, a team-based fitness gamification platform, to bring the community together and nurture relationships, as well as motivate healthy lifestyle decisions.  Through trial and error, Taylor found that community, fun experiences, and rewards are key to long-term success and Flowell strives to provide all three. He hopes to bring people together, regardless of if they know each other, and create emotional relationships within Flowell. His passion is contagious!  In this episode, Pete and Taylor discuss: 1. How Flowell is creating an innovative solution to help people make longer-term, healthy lifestyle decisions.2. How they are leveraging partnerships, games, rewards, and community to help retain memberships and drive revenue. 3. Using creative rewards and personalized avatars to build trust and emotional relationships with members. Click here to download transcript. Other episodes you'll enjoy around rewards & gamification: Brian Mitchell:  Derek Flanzraich:  Connect With Us: Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here: 
Doug Young, currently the COO of Easalytics, faces the daunting task of leveraging technology and machine learning to help struggling fitness businesses maximize value from their existing members, and increase revenue retention - all while avoiding unintended consequences. Doug is a Connecticut-based software and AI expert who has been in the tech industry since the late 90's. He has a background in ecommerce, SaaS, and ed tech, and has been in the HALO space for a bit over four years. He specializes in customer onboarding, product adoption, and using machine learning and AI to scale businesses. Doug saw the potential of data-driven analytics in the space, but also quickly realized many people lacked the time (and knowledge) to make the most of it. With the help of machine learning, Doug was able to help business understand new opportunities and help drive value from members. The ability to discern member value (and potential member value) enabled clubs to be more proactive and prioritize their highest value customers. The Easalytics platform helps facilities become a bit more data-driven and make more informed decisions. He states, "We can use data to make something better. And it's not going to require a lot of time, because one of the things that we work really hard with our product to do is make it easy to use. It doesn't require a lot of your time to get value from this." In this episode, Pete and Doug discuss:  1. How new technologies, such as machine learning and AI, are making data accessible more accessible (and actionable!) to businesses of all sizes. 2. How analytics and data can be used to increase revenue per customer, prioritize customer retention efforts, and derive greater value from customers. 3. How anomaly detection tools can be used to spot the unintended consequences of changes in pricing and customer acquisition. Click here to download transcript.  Other episodes you'll enjoy around analytics:  Ian Mullane: Robert Jackson:  Connect With Us:   Instagram:  Facebook:  YouTube:  Twitter:  LinkedIn:  Website:  Loved this episode? Leave us a review and rating here: 
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