…at Anytime Fitness HQ
I get this question a lot and it’s about time I write a blog post on it! I think this is a really interesting story and it definitely parallels generation Y. It all started, way back at the very beginning stages of Fit Foodie Finds and my love for social media. During my sophomore year of college, I got a membership at the local Anytime Fitness near the University of Minnesota. At the same time, I was taking a New Media and Culture class, where I learned all about social media and how it was going to be the next best thing. We were encouraged to follow our favorite brands and role models on Twitter by the instructor and it was then that I decided to follow Anytime Fitness. At the time I didn’t even have an FFF facebook page and I think I had a total of like 14 Twitter followers.
Just as I was getting the hang of the “tweet thang,” Anytime Fitness tweeted THE QUESTION: What’s your favorite breakfast?
Of course I responded with OATMEAL!
I got a favorite from AF and that was that. I wasn’t expecting anything else, so I went on Twittering. About 3 weeks later I got a DM from Anytime asking for my email because they loved my blog (and the fact that I was from Minneapolis and went to the U of M). They wanted me to write for Anytime Health AND be compensated for it. That was something I never EVER thought would come from blogging. Being paid to do something I love: recipe creation and photography.
It turns out that the Anytime Fitness Headquarters is based in Hastings, Minnesota, right down the road from me-about 30 miles south of Minneapolis. Sweet, I really had no idea.
After about a year of blogging and recipe creation for AF, I got an unexpected invitation to attend their Annual Conference. Heck yes, a free trip to a place I’d never been! I was flown out to Washington DC and little did I know….I was presented an inspiration award for my healthy living blog in front of over 1,000 people from Anytime Fitness! It was like my 5 seconds of fame! I got a really cool trophy and got to wear a 2i (2 inspire) ribbon on my name tag.
The conference is where I truly fell in love with the brand. I met the founders, owners, trainers, managers, etc.
So- the conference was the October of my Senior Year and I just knew AF was where I wanted to work post graduation. Operation: let’s make this happen. I asked what their internship opportunities were like, and the Social Media Director, Andy, and blog content manager, Amanda, took me under their wing. During my internship I just so happened to be stationed in the “executive office.” Don’t ask me why…but I got to know the founders really well, which is what really solidified my wanting to be employed by AF.
I interned for about 5 months and when it came time to seal the deal, I just brought in some peanut butter balls. HAHA JK, I went through a few interviews and that was that. I had 2 weeks off from graduation to my first day of work and BOOM. I was a workin’ woman. My first position was Social Media/Online Communications Specialists. It was a little bit of a lot of different, and I found myself really enjoying the social media marketing side of things. I just had my 1 year “official” anniversary at work this past week and my role is very different now than when I started. I just updated a new page in my menu bar about what my role is like at Anytime Fitness. CLICK HERE to read that.
I wanted to share this story to show the power of social media and how important your online presence is. You NEVER know who is watching or what kind of opportunity will come your way. That is why everything you post, write, and share should come from your HEART. I like to think I am the same girl offline as I am on.
(PS: I am currently in the car on the way to New Berlin, WI on my Verizon Hot Spot. Seriously, the most amazing feature on my Android.)
What a great post! Are you planning on coming the Healthy Living Summit? Either for work or for yourself?
Heck yes!! For both 🙂 I already have it on my cal and we’ve talked about it at work. Are you going?!
That’s such a great story. I tell my students things like this everyday. (I am a full time career counselor outside of the blogging world. ) Social media & who you know can be tools when it comes to job searching!
You’re a rockstar!! Also that’s awesome you did this post from your phone? I think that’s what you’re saying?
Let’s hang out soon yes??
I used my phone’s hotspot..so I did it on my laptop. That would be MAJOR SKILL if I did it all from my phone! YES. OMG WE ARE NEIGHBORS NOW.
Amazing! Thanks for sharing Lee! Still want your job 😉
That is very cool how you were able to get your dream job. I guess in a way I got my “dream job” just out of college as well…teaching physical education. However, my passion and dream has shifted to the fitness world. Currently I am teaching PE/Aerobics and Health at a high school but I also just acquired my NSCA-CSCS certification and it is my pursuit to enter the fitness world. I also started my blog back in February. Working full-time and having a baby on the way has made it a challenge but with school out now I have been able to do a little more with it. I have slowly started a twitter account, a pintrest page, a youtube channel, a facebook page, and my next goal is instagram. I guess my biggest question is how do I really get myself out there to more and more people? I get so excited to see a comment on my blog from someone other than my mom! 😉 I keep telling myself that it takes time and the more I put myself out there the closer I will get to where I want to be but I appreciate the opportunity to ask someone who is having such success. Way to go on following your dreams! 🙂
You are doing everything right! Fit Foodie Finds is 3 years old and went without comments for almost a year 🙂 Keep commenting on other blogs, joining groups online that have similar interest, and most importantly- KEEP BLOGGING. Just keep doing it. People ARE WATCHING.
Good luck with your baby and everything else! I can tell you are passionate 🙂
Just plain love this story!!! None of this stuff was there when I was in college – in fact my computer class had punch cards! 😉 So happy for you! Inspiring story & good one for all people to read!
I LOVE stories like this. Truly amazing how social media brings people together nowadays. Keep on tweeting – who knows where it will take you!!
That’s awesome! I love the way social media has really made the world that much smaller – in a good way! We’re able to connect with people, brands, etc all over (AND in our own backyards). It’s kind of crazy all that it can do!
Love this story. you’re amazing, Lee!
PS – say hi to Wisco for me! 😉
Super inspiring Lee!! 🙂
Very cool! Connections are really everything and you never know where you will make them! I’ve made a ton of connections through my fitness classes which I never expected!
Seriously! It’s about who you know. That is one of the things I love about fitness 🙂
Wow, such a great post! Very inspirational & it shows that just because you don’t think anyone is paying attention to you or your blog, no matter how small it is, you just never know what can/could happen! That is so amazing how you got your position & your start at AF. Thanks for sharing that story! 🙂
On your way to New Berlin… why hello neighbor (I’m in Oshkosh – my sis lives in New Berlin). 😉
LOVE IT!! Such a small world. I’ve never been to Oshkosh, but lots of my friends went there for school 🙂
**Going on Twitter Now…** Tweeting a marriage proposal to Ryan Gosling** – Ah haha ha ha!!! 😉 Maybe in 3 weeks he will accept!