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148. Bobbi Millsaps | 15 years of CrossFit

148. Bobbi Millsaps | 15 years of CrossFit

On today’s episode Fern sit down with Bobbi Millsaps. Bobbi has been part of the CrossFit space since roughly 2006. Bobbi has done it all within the community from seminar staff, to Games Judge, working on the administrative side for HQ and previously owned a Crossfit Affiliate. They discuss so much from how Bobbi found Crossfit, what it was like back in 2006. What it was being invited on to staff and how the Crossfit community as changed. But a topic that we haven’t heard about is, how for some owning affiliate can make them fall love out of coaching. Bobbi dives deep into this, hoping you can learn from her experience. You guys are going to want to take notes on this one. Bobbi is a great member of our community. It’s fantastic to have her on the podcast.  

Timestamps:

(6:48) Crossfit back in 2006 
(11:38) The style old level 1
(15:48) Dancers moving into Crossfit 
(19:25) The old Level 1, Bobbi going through it.
(21:43) Sickness, Wellness, Fitness Continuum
(25:09) Crossfit making the Military Fitter.   
(29:57) Doing Fran on Bobbi’s Level 1 
(32:44) Doing Fight Gone Back for the first time. 
(34:25) Interning for Staff and finding her love for Crossfit and coaching
(36:46) Starting an Affiliate 
(40:28) What would you do differently?
(43:53) Opening an affiliate back then, with the idea it would never be a viable business.
(44:11) The Cons of opening an affiliate – resenting coaching.
 (49:37) When Bobbi wanted to stop coaching. 
(53:19) Passion is great, but when it’s free it’s a shelve life. 
(56:11) Being too transparent 
(58:20) What would you do differently?
(1:03:25) Selling the box 
(1:08:45) Wanting to help people is not enough

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Fern:
All right, everybody, welcome back to the best out of their day ferne here. I'm here with one of my favorites, Bobby Millsaps. So let's think about this yesterday and I was trying to figure out like how I would describe you. So I used to work. I worked with this dude in Iraq and he was a master chief EOD tech. And he was he was like this pretty iconic dude in the community. And his name was Jerry Holmes. But he was a universally known as Jerry motherfucking Holmes. Such such to the point his business cards had Jerry M-F Holmes on it and it was in his signature block. And I was like, I feel like I feel like that would be appropriate to talk to. Like that would be Bobby's name, like Bobby motherfucking Millsaps. Like, I think that would be appropriate.

Bobbi Millsaps:
That's, uh, that's pretty rad, that's all. Except that nobody.

Fern:
Well, the thing is, like everybody I think everybody would be like, yeah, that is Bobby, right? That seems appropriate. Yeah. No, but yeah, I'm super stoked to have Bobby on. So I'll give you guys a real brief snapshot.

Fern:
So Bobby kind of. Two thousand six roughly started Crossfit,. So she's been 14 years almost at this point in the community. Seminar staff has judged that the game's numerous years has been intimately involved in the administrative side for HQ and testing things like that, but just has been really, really entrenched in Crossfit, since the beginning. Like before it was Crossfit,, an affiliate owner for many, many years. So she has a lot of insight into a lot of different things with regard to Crossfit,. You feel at level, at the HQ level, all that stuff and yeah. And I just genuinely do enjoy talking to her. So this is gonna be fun. But so we were just we were just literally just chatting for about 20 minutes for a hit record, but. So you live on the country now. So like you super into horses and all that stuff, but like, what was your. Dance was your background?

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yes.

Fern:
And then. So if anybody's ever been to a seminar with with Bobby, who's lovingly of referred to as Bobby Jo in many, many instances, good mover like most dancers are, oddly enough, not oddly enough. But super flexible, really good squat, stuff like that. What? How long did you dance for?

Bobbi Millsaps:
I started when I was five years old and. I finish right before I turned 20, so 15 years, years. Yeah.

Fern:
Well, I always I'm always curious as to what kind of dance.

Bobbi Millsaps:
So I went to a pretty strict school dance academy where the the lady that ran it, she was a.. She's from England and she went to the Royal Ballet School in England. And her name was Mrs. Freeman. And we were all required to start with ballet. Only so pretty. Ya know pink tights, black leotard, hair in a bun. Just not like you can just show up even at five years old. So you had to be kind of groomed into being able to do other styles. So I started with ballet and tap and then moved in to jazz, contemporary classic jazz.

Fern:
What is contemporary?

Bobbi Millsaps:
It's like Mott. I don't know if you're familiar with modern dance.

Fern:
Is there is this is this interpretive?

Bobbi Millsaps:
Not yes and no.

Fern:
Is this out of Will Ferrell when he's got the streamer from or from old school and he's like,.

Bobbi Millsaps:
No that. I don't know what that is. That's comedy.

Bobbi Millsaps:
So I guess I should rephrase some maybe not contemporary. We started with modern dance. So Martha Graham and Alvin Ailey in that type of movement. It's a lot more athletic than people might think and it takes a lot more strength and just ability to put your body into some some odd positions.

Bobbi Millsaps:
But contemporary would be more kind of what they would call like lyrical dance or, you know, where you're just dancing, you're feeling it's clearly dancing your feelings to a song like what you would see on that show. So you think you could dance what most of them are doing when they're dancing to like love songs or.

Fern:
Okay. Yeah got it.

Bobbi Millsaps:
And this is layman's terms. But yes,.

Fern:
I was think more like that kind of like weird almost a hippie that like we'll call it.

Fern:
You know, what's the word like strange were like they're dancing or like, what are you doing right now? Like, I mean, there's some really there's a song in that person's head, but it's not what Im listening to.

Bobbi Millsaps:
They're just they're O F P, they're listening to their own song. Yeah. So we were pretty restricted to more like classical styles of dance. So I didn't. It wasn't like hip hop or cheer or anything like that. It was very, very traditional.

Fern:
And we tried to take Logan to a ballet class. The second we tried to put tights in a leotard honor, that was that was the end of ballet class. She was not having it. So.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Not having it.

Fern:
I don't think I don't think, you know, traditional dance is gonna be in her future.

Bobbi Millsaps:
That was kind of that was like my first exposure to, too, as I got older. When you were in high school, a way to pay for your tuition, because if you're at a competitive level, things get really expensive. And a way to pay for your tuition is to pay your dues by assisting with the little kids classes.

Fern:
So like, is it like an assistant instructor? Kind of.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. Yeah. Which, you know, essentially when you first start is kind of a lot like interning on seminar stuff. You just.

Fern:
Shut your mouth and do as you're told,.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Just run around and, you know, try not to let anybody mess things up, which with little kids, it is really fun to see little kids when they first start to find a beat in dance or. Start to kind of learn to memorize steps. I think anything like that is good for kids. Any any any sport where you're required to memorize movement patterns and repeat them over and over. I think that's it's great.

Fern:
Yeah. I like Logans definitely not there. Like she definitely falls in that interpretive dance category that I was describing earlier. Just like you do. You kid. She. So then so let's talk a little bit about a year into your entrance. So 2006 is a different time than most people probably don't even can't even comprehend what Crossfit, was back then. Yeah, it is dated. Definitely no longer resembles that today.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. Yes. I mean, yeah,.

Fern:
I guess the community, I guess I should be more specific like Crossfit, and it itself, the methodology, the delivery of like that hasn't really changed much at all.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Right. So I was kind of just thrown into it. My husband, Brandon, his bill at the Marine Corps at the time had a lot to do with developing new combat condition program for the Marine Corps and. They've just started researching a lot of different forms of functional fitness and a. Crossfit, was kind of referred to them through another subject matter expert that they use for. The only way I know how to say is like stalking, like human stalking and all that stuff they went through tracking and whatever. And so one of the guys that they knew, Hunter Armstrong, he knew Dave Warner and Nick Nibbler of Crossfit, North. I think they might have been maybe like the fourth Crossfit, affiliate or first Crossfit, affiliate. Something like that.

Fern:
Yeah. When you're Crossfit, affiliate is named after a cardinal direction, you're probably pretty hard, pretty high on the list as far as affiliate numbers.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. So they went up to Seattle, Crossfit, North and as Brandin and like one or two other dudes. And he called me and said, this place is like a big playground for Grown-Ups. I was like, what do you mean? He's like the like cargo nets. And there are these plates that you can drop and they bounce. Hang in. There is ratings like it. It's crazy. He then he was trying to explain to me that he won a T-shirt for going sub 10 in a workout called helen. And I didn't even know if that was it.

Fern:
Shit. That's pretty good. Back in the day.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. Two thousand five. They gave me a t shirt and it was like a little party. It was like a little sketch of like a submarine. It just had the number like 10. But then like two days later, he was still out there. And he called me and he was I I am so sore I can not get out of bed. He was like, but I'll tell you right now, this shit is the real fucking deal. And he came home and he was like. Doing it, atwitter during lunch breaks, what? But where they were. Was a training battalion. So they just trained a lot. And coincidentally, at another schoolhouse on t.v.'s, the base school in Quantico. Where Brian, Sean Tosh and Todd Whitman and they somehow get together a friend and a couple other dates and they would just start trying,.

Fern:
All three of them were there at the same time.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. At the basic school. So Tosh and.

Fern:
I did not know that.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. Torsion Todd were over it. I see. Got your options. Cause your instructors over there. And then Brandon was an instructor at the Mace. The Martial Arts Center.

Fern:
Okay,that cool. Yeah. They both got on the podcast. Guess that's. I didn't realize they were all there at the same time. That's really cool.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. Jimmy Letchford was somewhere around there. She feels like he worked for the war-fighting lab maybe on my inside Quantico. But the pool. I don't know if you've ever been to the basic school at Quantico. Yes. You know, it's like main out the FBI academy and all that stuff in the middle and the basic school and the pool is shared by all the school houses and training entities on the basic school. And so they would take like barbells and plates and throw them in the pool. They would try to do like underwater Fran and all just all kinds of craziness and.

Fern:
Sound safe.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. And then throughout their continued Brandon's continued kind of development and tried to come up with new ways to keep, you know, Marines fit for combat and develop that program. Coach invited him to a level one. And it was in San Diego back when there they were like almost three days long and all the SME's would come. Coach Burgner They would have someone come out and talk about rowing and talk about them.

Fern:
I don't think everybody sees the well-oiled machine that is the level of military these days to day course. It's very much, you know, it's structured but very, very seamlessly run. But it used to basically resemble a conference is by the best way I would explain it like it was just it was this conglomerate of people that would show up and talk about their thing.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, I think from the time between the time when branan went to his level one in the town that I went to mine, they had tried to maybe cut that down a little bit. Like we didn't have the big we didn't have a bunch of Assamese at our course. But Elite Buddy Lee was our course in 2006. Yeah, back back then it was I think it was almost like a three day event. And you.

Fern:
Workout like 10 times.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. You worked out a lot. And at that time, brainand met Coach Burgner, my partner who invited the Marines that were at the course back to his house to just lift in his garage. And somehow out of all that, it came about that, hey, you guys should come to our Olympic lifting course in San Diego in September. So when Brandon started Crossfit,, he was you know, he's like the foundation is with the lifts. He was just kind of drill that into my head and drilling the non movements into me and. So essentially for like six months when he got his first exposure to Crossfit, and then when I went to coach earner's course in San Diego, I had never put my hands on a barbell. Only worked on the non movements and then the clean and jerk and snatch with a PDV pipe filled with sand in our basement in our townhouse in Quantico.

Fern:
Did you get fitter?

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, yeah, yeah. I got fitter. I wasn't really doing Crossfit, with intensity because the dancer in me thought that everything needed to be perfect. So I was that analogy. You guys give the level 1. We give at the level 1, about every movements. Perfect. And what do we want him to speed up or what? So I went to the. I went to the Olympic lifting gig in September 2006, and that was the first time I checked in for registration. I met Nicole, Nicole, Carol and I'd only ever seen her in the videos rainin and I would watch on Crossfit, dot com. You know, just like everybody else back then. I would watch him at work.

Bobbi Millsaps:
We'd watch him on our dial up Internet whenever, you know, we had time and I was like. Kind of star struck, you know, checked in, and because she had known Brandon and the community was still pretty small, but she gave she just gave me the biggest hug and else like, wow, these people are are really nice. And at my Olympic lifting course that back then, I mean, it was kind of like the all star list, right? It was Coach Burgner, let it at Rancho Boyne Vista High School, the high school where he used to be the coach strength conditioning guy. And his daughter Sage was there running, you know, the demo for him. Amy and I was there. Greg Evros there. Let's see who else. Oh, Dave Castro is there and then participants that are going through the course were like me. My husband, Brandon Todd Whitman, went through the OL course at the same time. E.C. went through the same OL,.

Fern:
Oh ya!

Bobbi Millsaps:
And. And I was. I was just hooked. That the first time ever to touch a barbell. And I was like, this is kind of my new ballet, you know. That's cool. Yeah. And I just fired me up, too, because we weren't even really doing workouts or just lifting. And so any time somebody would improve in their technique, you worked out on a platform with a group of like three people. You just get so fired up for other people just to show them improve their movement.

Fern:
did you pick. Did you pick up the list pretty quickly? Because generally dancers are quick studies because they have better awareness, body awareness than other people. But they're not. They're not generally great at like. Once you give them a load, like they're just like they're not the strongest, I guess is the way.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, that and that is exactly that's exactly the case with me when it was light loads or empty barbells PDV. Yeah, I picked it up really, really quickly. But there was a disconnect in me having the ability to understand that. I mean it seems oddly enough to extend my hip to to generate that power. Because with dance, even though you're you're extending your hip for a lot of the powerful movements, you're not even you're not thinking about it. Everything is generated from your core legs and and all that stuff. But we spend a lot of time in partial squat positions, non-state actors. And so too rapidly just extend so you can. Move an object. It didn't translate for me.

Fern:
Like dance. I mean, like. And it should because it's a very fluid kind of. But it generally, like, lacks aggression.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Oh, yeah, it's very, very slow with the lift slow up, pull underneath for the receiver position, snatch slow to pull underneath, cleans. Everything that I did was almost like a it was always power cleans, power snatches. I had a hard time like driving underneath the bar in jerk's because I did make it so fluid. It was very slow. It was almost just like a jump band press and lightly fall underneath that.

Fern:
You are that person that was my one. The soft feet to the ground. They're just like my feet. Just like you can't hear their feet or all. They just kind of like very gently get to the ground. The feet.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. But not overcorrection that is having because back then I don't think most of us could see good movement versus bad movement and we could we could execute it to a certain degree, but we didn't really know how to correct it very well because it was still so new to us. And at that time the only, you know, brilliant people were the people that had really just worked under Greg Santacruz, like, you know, Nicole and Annie and Michelle Moots and all those folks. And then the SDM eats. Right. And so when you have one of your peers who's kind of learning as you're learning, it said, oh, just be more aggressive with your feet, that turns into just the good old donkey kick dog you. Now, maybe if I'm Loud with these wooden shoes on this wooden floor, that is aggression. That sounds man.

Fern:
If I smash my feet on the ground harder, that will translate into lifting heavy weights.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Oh ya and it never have. Never. Yeah. So from there I guess. Brandon was still working with coach on a lot of that stuff, and coach invited me to come to a level one. And so I went to my level one in Boston in October 2006, and I had no idea what to expect. I had no idea what was going on. Brandon was like assisting kind of back then.

Fern:
You're there attending. So you've done. You've done that lifting. And then now you're attending the level 1 .

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yes.

Fern:
Okay

Bobbi Millsaps:
And Brandon was kind of assisting with running groups a lot. It's a lot different than it is now. But yeah, I just I had no idea what was going on and I hadn't really even done like a full Crossfit, workout because a lot of what I did was just learning the movements. I don't really. I never had intensity or anything like that. Ya know.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Coach did every lecture and a lot of it. Was pretty over my head, I saw my notebook from my level one and I have words that are circled that were reminders for me to go look those up and in a dictionary.

Fern:
Well, I mean, in all fairness, I still feel that way when I listen to him talk sometimes.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. But it was a dose, man. But it was cool. Like you walked in and the community was still so small. I feel like I'd seen so many of these people just. Here and there and just meet him through Brannagh intervening third coach in a walk into the course. And, you know, obviously coach was there. Nicole there, was there Dave was there. Limpets Kelly Moore, Greg Ahmanson and Jesse Widdy there. There were just a lot. And then taking the course at the same time was a John Gillson and I did our level one together.

Fern:
OK.

Bobbi Millsaps:
So there was not a ton of structure in terms of well, it didn't seem to me like looking back on it. You know, how. Now we have the you know, we have our lectures and our timelines and our schedules and material that needs to be presented. It was a lot of Greg just. Being brilliant brain is brain dumping on everybody. Yeah. And like you couldn't get enough. Like I said, he could have been reading the phonebook and out like this is the smartest thing I've ever heard in my life. I'm sold. And I feel like really.

Bobbi Millsaps:
The one thing that really stuck out to me. In the lecture and at the time, I don't know if it was supposed to be the what it was fitness lecture. It was him talking about. I can't remember. But I just remember him really talking about.

The sickness, wellness, fitness continue. And. I was just dumbfounded and kind of like that makes total sense when he explained how fitness is a hedge against sickness, like you have to pass. You will pass through the parameters of like biomarkers of normal before you get sick.

Bobbi Millsaps:
And I'm like, man. Like being an athlete my whole life and just being exposed.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Even after I stopped dancing, I went into the fitness world, teach an aerobics group fitness. But I always worked. Always, always worked out. Always lifted and did some form of fitness. But I just remember thinking like, well, like, this is why we train. It never occurred to me before that, right? Like everybody thinks you're training mostly for ascetics or to lose body fat, but you don't really know why you want to lose body fat. You just know that you don't want to have body fat because it's not attractive or whatever. You don't want high blood pressure. I don't know why you don't want to up at that time. I don't think I knew how blood pressure markers really were. I was pretty. Ignorant to the sciency part of everything?

Fern:
Well, I think I think most people were honestly. I think back at that time in my whole life I was an athlete, but it never occurred to me that you would train. To be fit for your health, right? It was always like,.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah,.

Fern:
I have to be the best at the sport. And then post athletics. It was just to to essentially just not be fat like

Bobbi Millsaps:
just maintain. You're like, I'm at I'm in a maintenance phase now, basically, which.

Fern:
But it wasn't ever. It wasn't ever. It never crossed my mind to continue to chase something else after it. From a fitness standpoint, which is like, maybe I could be fatter than I was in college. You know, the way we think about fitness now. Yeah, I don't think that was weird. I think that's kind of how everybody viewed it. It wasn't a health. It was almost like. It was almost like you were just doing it to. Kind of not be sick, but not necessarily to be healthy. If that makes sense that.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. Correct. And I feel like it is also one of those things where there is never a correlation in my mind to working out eating healthy and and like not getting. Heart disease, and I don't know why, I don't know why never associate it working out with. Sickness in general?Ya know, because I mean. We just weren't taught that in school or. Whatever. And when you're an athlete growing up, most of your stuff is like, hey, I'm doing this to be better until I wear out whatever it is I'm competing in. But like you said, when you're an adult, you're still trained and you're just basically training to maintain at whatever level you can.

Fern:
It was largely static. I mean, if you think about the 80s and aerobics and just the current, let's pretend like Jazzercise probably hit its peak. Yeah, it like it's. It was all based on physique. It was purely aesthetic. Yes. Cause like you want to look this way. But it was never driven is like this is going to be beneficial to your health long term. Just like you don't want to be sloppy looking basically.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. Yeah. And I think you know when. When Brandon whole mission with the Marine Corps and working with Greg, when all that came about, it was essentially questioning. What good is it going to do, a Marine or anybody in the military in. In a combat situation, if they can run an 18 minute, three mile run time, be able to do 20 strict pull ups and how of many crunches and like each military branch has their own fitness test, but.

Fern:
They're all they're all very they're the same flavor flavor with just a slight tweak.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. And so I think that that's really why Crossfit, was so big with the military so early on. Because, you know, it generally it genuinely was. Making people healthier and fitter. To be able to. Stay alive in combat.

Fern:
I mean, Toshi's talked about that on numerous occasions when he started doing that and like playing rugby with his with his guys in his platoon and his squads and stuff like that. And then it's it's interesting that at the ground level, people understood it. Like whatever that was almost fifteen years ago.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah,.

Fern:
But it's still taking that long. So I was just in San Antonio at Lackland Air Force Base. So we did a level one.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Fern:
At the Air Force base there. And it's it's really cool to see the higher ups like the Oб is the people that have the ability to really make change there have bought into this idea of of long term health and fitness and they're trying to serve really. But as a no. Lachlan is is the basic entry point for all airmen of Air Force. They all go through basic training and Lackland Air Force. It's a really big base, but they are investing a lot of time and money into basically really bringing these brand new airmen and like giving them the tools for health and wellness. On day one, because what they're looking at, which is something we look at, is can we reduce the long term costs? That is the long tail of service members being sick and like what are they, life insurance, long term and like what? Like disability payments and all of that stuff. So they're really starting to look at that really, really hard. And and it was cool because like everybody there was super stoked. It was a 50 some odd person seminar and everybody there was like in it and it was great. So,.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, it's it's pretty awesome to look back. We used to do a lot of military courses and I think that's starting to come back.

Fern:
The Air Forces like we we will take these as frequent as we can make them happen.

Bobbi Millsaps:
I think it's kind of back especially, you know, I can't really speak to a ton of it because I don't know the ins and outs that I know now that a lot of that stuff has come to light with the NSCA and just the basic slander of our program that just really shut us in a bad light for for government organizations. I think now that that's kind of over and done and I think we're going to start moving back into those spot. I remember doing a course in at Fort Leavenworth, which I believe. Correct me if I'm wrong. I feel as if the army war fighting for something.

Fern:
That's pretty sure. I think that's a joint base. But it's it is it?

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, it is joint because there was a. I know there was a Marine. He was kind of. Instrumental in bringing it there, but we did a couple there and.

Fern:
I've Only worked there once.

Bobbi Millsaps:
It was like our second one. This was back in maybe like 2009, 2010, and there was a kernel that went through level one. And at the end of the workout on day one, he ask if it was OK, if he if he spoke to everybody and he just kind of stood it up on a cloud box in the middle of this gymnasium and talked to all those soldiers going through the level 1 one and the staff. And and he was really fired up. He was like, this is going to save lives. This is going to make people fitter. It's going to make people happier and healthier like you. It was pretty awesome. And and that's kind of the feeling that I think most people get when they go to the level one. It's certainly the feeling that, A, that I had it mine, even though I remember doing in Fran at the end of day one right away. I remember at lunch asking Brandon, what workout are we going to do? And he said, Fran and I started crying. I started crying. And.

Bobbi Millsaps:
He was like, it's fine, you could scale it. I cried because I said, I can't do pull ups. You know?

Bobbi Millsaps:
And I've been trying to get like one dead hang up for months, so much so that I ended up tearing an ab like split straight up and down. And it gave me like a little hernia. I would just get on the pull up and just straight and straight, strict. I didn't even know tore thing. You know, it it was just my fault because I would just like try so hard so many times a day. I'm just going into that level one because I knew that we're probably going to have to do a pull up. So we do. Fran and I remember at the time, go and do the course. Also my level one where Jennifer and Mike Petrick, all who went on to open and still currently own operate Crossfit,, Pittsburgh, two of just like my favorite people, but Jen was a lot like me. We're kind of like our husbands, our military. They're like, you can go to this Crossfit, shit with me. We're gonna do it. It's going to be awesome. And at that time, at the level 1, you didn't necessarily have to do the work out of the day. You'd didn't have to do Fran. But for me, I had to brand it was like and not yet you're doing it. You're not going to embarrass me. You're gonna do this fucking workout.

Fern:
So do not embarrass me in front of my friends.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, basically. And so I just remember getting set up with I think it was the fifty five pound bar and I made Jen Petrich ugh to this day like she's still one of my happiest memories, even though it was terrible at that moment. I'm like, you're doing this workout with me. And I didn't know her at all. I just knew it was somebody else kind of like maybe I didn't want to do this workout. I was like, you're doing it. And I remember having to scale the pull up. And it was jumping Pull-Ups. And I remember she and I side by side on this pullet bar doing jumping pull ups. And she goes she looks, um, at me in the middle of work. She's like, what did you make me do this?

Bobbi Millsaps:
Cause I wasn't gonna do it by myself.

Fern:
I'm not going to do this nonsense about myself.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. Yeah. And so I. Then the next day is just more of things being over my head, but my mind being blown and, you know, learned and not learning about what the sport of fitness actually is. Which I think is. I never thought like, oh, my God, I should actually try to be better. Every time I workout. Instead of trying to maintain like we were talking about. And we did fight gone bad.

Bobbi Millsaps:
And I'd never I had never touched a med ball. I'd never thrown one. And I got three total lowball points because my partner was a bit of an asshole, like, give it to me. I mean, clearly.

Fern:
Hey Effort. Effort. You see the effort over here.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. Yeah. So, you know, 10 foot target. I'm five too. I'd never done it.

Fern:
On a a good day. You'e five to Bobby.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Come on now. In three rounds, she counted only three total reps and the first one full well that no, because the first one I threw up and it came back down and hit me in the face and. And then and then realizing that you still had like all this time left and all these other exercises to do. Somewhere along the way, I think it was in the second or third round of box jumps. Had to stop and run outside and throw up. I was crying. Nicole was there and she was crying because I was crying. Is she? Nicole? She has. She's great with her ability to just kind of empathize. And yeah, she's very emotionally intelligent that way. And she also gets motivated seeing people. Yeah. Crossfit,, you know, and celebrate. I mean, if you think back to watching Nasty Girls, when she had a rough day, she she cried in that video a little bit. So maybe that she felt for me. She knows what it feels like to be short doing well balls and.

Fern:
Getting smashed in the face.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Box jumps getting smashed and you know, so. Yeah. From then on I was sold. We had we drove to that gig from Quantico. We had a good like, I don't know, maybe 10 hours back home and. I was so just just pumped. Yeah. And then I don't know what happened, we got invited to go to another level one in May of 2007. And in Golden, Colorado. And they asked if I would like to assist and try to like help coach groups and get evaluated. And I didn't really know what that meant at the time. And so the first part of the course. One of the people evaluate me was Pat Sherwood and. Then the second part of the course and the one who gave me kind of my final email was Mike Minium of Crossfit, Oakland. But at that course, going through their level one it was that was Spillar, Chris Bieler, Dennis Marshall.

Fern:
OK,.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Becky Harsh. Yeah. And it. It was. At elevation, it was a humbling experience, you know, just in general to even just have to walk and talk at the same time. But that was a dose of a weekend in that I kind of just found my niche. I'm like, hey, I might not be able to move a ton of weight. And I know I'm not the best athlete here. But damn, I really love coaching and. I just got invited to do a private military gig at Weapons Training Battalion in Quantico that summer. And then from then on, the rest is history. I got to they asked if Nicole e-mailed me and said, Hey, I heard you did a great job. Do you want to come down to Jacksonville, Florida? That was September 2007. And that's where I met Mike G. And Jenny and. Yeah, it was it was awesome. And then the rest is just kind of for me, the roses. History. Yeah.

Fern:
How long after that did you guys start your affiliate?

Bobbi Millsaps:
So that was September when I came on staff September 2007. I was not in any kind of over affiliate's situation until July of two thousand eight. We moved to Columbia, South Carolina. Brondon was an all star selection recruiter in Columbia and one of the guys who had gone through a level one. We got to know him really well and he asked if I would like to come in and run as Jim and I had no experience running and affiliate. No experience, really, even coaching outside of the level one. Yeah. So I was kind of a reverse, right. I started on staff before.

Fern:
Yeah.

Bobbi Millsaps:
I was coaching at affiliate and I don't think that was. That was pretty common at that time, honestly, like a lot of people were opening affiliates as far back in the day.

Fern:
Yeah, totally not like today where, you know, it's just happens every day, basically.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Right. And so. Worked at Carolina Crossfit, and helped bring in and took over. I remember you took over programming for the affiliate in January of 2009 and we opened our affiliate in Northeast Columbia, South Carolina in June 2010. So, yeah. So at the time I was working on seminar staff and working at this affiliate downtown and.

Bobbi Millsaps:
We. Would always just kind of. We always had a garage gym setup. Even though we we had an affiliate to go work out. But it was about twenty, twenty five minutes away. And so even those folks or even the owner of that gym, we would have people over to our house. We would do workouts, drink beer, hang out and then work with Crossfit, HQ picked up enough to a degree that I was working with testing. I started doing the testing stuff and accreditation stuff in 2009 and still working gigs and I just didn't have the time to be able to make it into the downtown Columbia area to workout at that gym. And so as an outlet, because I just couldn't let it go. Just start coaching people out of work or frosch. And it just got big enough that we were like, should we move into a space? And then we decided no. And then Brandon was just driving home from work one afternoon and he pulled into this industrial complex and. He went to open the door to one of these, you know, one of the little complex areas, and it was unlocked, but it had been abandoned. So we went on to find out the people had skipped out and Brandon contacted the landlord, the people that managed it in that facility, and they gave us a really great rate on it. The next thing you know, I guess we have like an official affiliate location or not our garage anymore.

Fern:
So this is where I have so many questions because yeah. So you guys open June 2010, I think. I think the I don't know the exact time frame, but it's like we opened ours like around November or October of 2009.

Fern:
And the list of shit that I've done poorly is. Far longer than the list of things I've done, right? Let's put it that way.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah,.

Fern:
But I always like to ask people in like, what are some of the things like if you could if you could go back in time, what would you do differently?

Bobbi Millsaps:
I will stop. Let me start with like what I think we did pretty. OK,.

Fern:
OK.

Bobbi Millsaps:
We didn't go in all.

Fern:
Meaning like?

Bobbi Millsaps:
Meaning when we had our garage gym, we we had two have like we just made it a point to have two of everything, you know, one female.

Fern:
Right you didn't drop me 20 GS on equipment.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Right. And so when we moved into the space, we basically just upped that to where we had five of everything. And we programmed so that we could have our classes in a way that we were able to stagger heats or run more than one he did, because also at that time there wasn't like Roge wasn't huge. I mean this is two thousand ten.

Bobbi Millsaps:
You couldn't get equipment back then. No, people don't understand that. But like it wasn't like the Roge was not even a thing then. Like, I don't think they really like. I mean in 2000 and 2009 maybe I remember like being in some field in Ohio and like Bill and Katie like running around like just like. They were just hauling equipment around.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, yeah. So we got we were in being in Columbia, South Carolina. We were just about an hour south of Charlotte, North Carolina. So we would go up there because muscle driver was up there and you see you could get stuff from muscle driver and we could go there and pick up instead of having to have it shipped. Or you could just walk through their warehouse and look at their scratch and dent material and scratch and dent. I mean, there was barely there was nothing even wrong stuff. And then we had to order custom racks. We had one rack. So kind of like, you know, a lot of what Roge does for grow mushrooms now where it's, you know, the pull up bar rig with just, you know, for one barbell. And we custom ordered about five of those. So, well, for so we had one going into it and then we ordered four more. I remember on our opening our grand opening day, we did fight gone bad, but we only had one rower. So we did fight gone bad with burpees instead of rowers. And then I would say rowers were the most expensive piece of gear as a new affiliate owner to be able to have enough of something to be able to run workouts with.

Fern:
I mean they probably still are be honest with you.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, that's the one thing that we just would kind of. As finance is allowed, we would always just go and buy. It was always a rower barbells and bumper plates.

Fern:
Yeah,.

Bobbi Millsaps:
But we everything was very, very slow and methodical and we never brainand I didn't open an affiliate to make money. We both had jobs. Use an active duty Marine at the time. Use a use a gunny. He's an E7 and I was working full time. I was working pretty much full time for Crossfit, with testing and helping Nicole with accreditation stuff. And then I was still working a decent amount of gigs, sometimes three a month.

Fern:
So on that note, because this is always an interesting. Kind of discussion, because there's a lot of people that that opened affiliate's at that time without with no real intention of making it a viable business. They could live off of. Do you think that was a pro or a con for you guys?

Bobbi Millsaps:
So that leads into my cods. We love to coach so much that it just. It just seemed like the next step for us to just be able to have our own place and during programming and just coach and have a good time. But the missed the major mistake that we made in that we didn't need the money. We basically just needed to make rent, which is pretty easy to do. Yeah. And we owned everything outright cash. So we never did. We didn't go into debt to buy equipment. Yeah, we undervalued our time. And so whereas at the time most Crossfit, gyms I being on the West Coast, it was just a totally different point than it was on the East Coast, but also in in the South and Columbia, South Carolina, where it's hard to get people to understand that, hey, there's this new, you know, functional fitness is where it's at. Like you can pay $30 a month and go to Gold's Gym and swipe a membership card. And they they honestly won't know if you're dead because you're getting auto drafted every month. We we were hesitant to charge. What we felt we were worth.

Bobbi Millsaps:
And we went like the exact opposite to a point to where we charged. I think it was seventy five bucks a month. For. For our membership, we had no contracts. We checked everything with and we just did everything through pay, pal, and. You're your gym will grow, but our goal also wasn't to like grow. We didn't want to be huge. So it's like, oh, we probably should have priced higher if we valued our time in that more people is no more responsibility. And we both still had full time jobs. We were never open during the middle of the day. We would do like the 6:00 a.m., 7:00 a.m. and I think like a 9:30. And then we would open back up at 4:00 or 4:30 and then go until about 7:30, 8:30. We were always closed in the middle of the day because brainand work downtown. I worked in middle of the day and chargin seventy five bucks a month. Great. I think it was helpful. And I got. The message to more people. Yeah. But at a certain point, you almost start to resent the fact that you have to go in. And Coach, I wish it were true.

Fern:
I wish more people would talk about that openly, like that's a real. Yeah.

It is a real thing. When? When you don't value your time in a way, and I say you don't value your time because you really don't like it. If you have a certain skill set and you're great at what you do. Your time is valuable when you're coaching other people because it's not just about how how well you coach. It's about how much you give a shit. And we really gave a shit because we really love to train people.

Fern:
Yeah.

Bobbi Millsaps:
And so we weren't just invested in coaching them. We were. And we genuinely loved these human beings. Like, if I didn't see them, I would text them, call. I'm like, Hey, where have you been giving shit? When we didn't see him the next time, we were constantly doing like, you know, I think it was Thursday nights. We do thirsty Thursday. So after the last class of the night, we'd go out to dinner with whoever want to go have some drinks. You know, we would do. In in March, we'd always do like March Madness, Madness, basketball tournament. We'd go take everybody, go golf, kid, play golf didn't matter. We just go and have fun. Just a lot of events because our community was so tight knit at the time.

Bobbi Millsaps:
And we genuinely love them. But at the same time, when you are. Only charging a certain amount of cash, you know, you're not taking a paycheck. Everything that you make, you're putting back into the facility so you can borrow more gear because you have more people because it means you're doing something good. Yeah, but when you start so low, it's very difficult from then on to increase your prices and members talk. Right. And so if you have your core group of like 30 people that have been with you since the beginning and they've the paying. Seventy five bucks a month, it's really hard to then say, OK, well, now our rate is like one twenty five. And then that new person wants to know why this person has to pay. Well, can I please just get back because my kids start school and.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, you have this sport coming up and then you find yourself trying to come up with these creative ways to figure out a way that you can only charge them. Seventy five. Well, if you only come three times a week, I'll let you have it for seventy five. And then it shuts a giant shit show of trying to manage a business which has no interest in doing.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, and neither did Brandon. At the end of the day, we were just coaches who were really shitty business people. And I hated having the money talk with anybody, so I'd always make brandon and do it. And I just. I just. I get uncomfortable with all that in it.

Fern:
How long along roughly before you kind of got. I don't want to say salty, but before you started to get a little salty about it, before you like, I don't really love this anymore. Like, I don't want to teach class.

Bobbi Millsaps:
I would say in. Towards the end of 2011, and I'll tell you why.

That's pretty fast.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Well, here's. Our situation was rather unique. But one at the time we were doing more gigs, right? So so Crossfit, seminars were up. Which was great because that means you're working more seminars. You understand that. That's all. Also, emotionally taxing and taxing. It's exhausting. And because you're on such a high and you're meeting so many people and you're staying in touch with so many people and you have such a great time meeting all these new participants, you are just getting their first exposure to this stuff. So they're pumped. They actually want to be there. And then you go back to your classes and you have some people that it's like pulling teeth just to get them to like smile or put out during the workout. But in June, July of two thousand eleven, Brannon's, Brannon's, Tomlin's up in Columbia.

Fern:
I got it.

Fern:
He had to Pete. He had a p._c.s to Camp Camplin June in North Carolina, which was four hours away. And so the downside of that was that it was all on myself. And then just one other trainer that we had groomed and all of our trainers were groomed from within. There's there's never a chance where.

Fern:
Which trainer was that?

Bobbi Millsaps:
Her name's Jen Matthews.

Fern:
I was going. I thought it was.

Bobbi Millsaps:
He was on Spygate lighter, yeah. No gear was gone. Chris slimier was gone, too. He's already living in. He's living life. Can you run some all that time? But yeah. So, Jen, she walked into our our doors on the day we opened and she was with us ever since. She's a middle school teacher. Just a. One of the best humans I've ever met in my life. She. Beautiful, intelligent. Just such a kind hearted. Genuine person, and she because she teaches middle school, she's great at dealing with varying degrees of personality and managing tough situations. You're handling tough situations. And so she for us was the one coach that we just. We knew that she would be somebody that would that would coach for us, and she did. She started coaching for us. And so at that point we had a couple that we would look to. Doc Taylor was another one. He started out with us at Carolina Crossfit,. He was awesome. We just leaned I leaned on a lot of these coaches at that time, but I can only I felt like I could only do so much into it. It was at a point to where. I wasn't even present when I was there coaching. Yeah.

Fern:
I was tell people.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah. I would say Brandon and in like maybe one month if I was lucky. But then when he would come home, he would coach. But it got to a point where people didn't even know who Brandon was and I didn't want. Yeah. I didn't even want to be there anymore because it was something that we started together.

Fern:
Yes. I always tell people. Passion is great. And if you can have the opportunity to like do your passion for living like. And congratulations. However. Passion that is done for free labor has a shelf life. Oh, yeah. And it's different for everybody. But I would tell you, for most people, the maximum shelf life to do something for free that you're passionate about, it is about five years. And then at that point, now you're salty. And then it's no longer a passion and something that actually really makes you miserable. And I think about it all the time, like we should have raised prices earlier. And for anybody bringing unfiltered on that's going through this, like this is something I realized like if you need to raise your prices, just do it tomorrow for the next person that comes in. They don't know any better. Like, just say, what's the price? You're like. It's let's just say you're at one video right now and be like tomorrow is 160 next person to watch. And that's when they literally don't know. But because you have to make that and then you need to create a plan with which to bring everybody along. And you also need to understand that, like not everybody's coming along on that journey with you. Like, yeah, you're not going to bring all all of them with you. And that's OK. It's not. It's not.

Fern:
This is not this ordeal that you think it is just like, hey, we got to move forward. We can't just stay in the past. And I got to pay a mortgage too, and all those other things. And people will people will make their decision. You just have to move along and try to work with people the best you can. But it is one of those things that nobody likes to talk about. It's just like.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Right.

Fern:
You know, I've got to raise my prices. I'm like, cool. Like, other tips that I learned is like, do it. Just do it and then figure out a way to backfill everybody that's there currently, but you eventually have to bring em all up or just do it on January 1st. Nobody's shocked when prices change January first.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Well, and so we went through that. You know, things just got increasingly more difficult because while Brandon was station north carolina.., I was still living. So I lived in South Carolina by myself for three years. And so schedules don't match up in terms of he would come home and I'd be at a gig. But in the middle of the week, I'm working a full time job for Crossfit, sometimes travel on the weekends and I'm trying to manage this affiliate that we were doing together. And I would say this, that was that was another huge mistake that we made. And we made it from day one when he was still living in the same state. We're running it together every day. Was that we were just. Too transparent with people and people, were we more or about our business? And we just treated everybody like they were our family or our friends.

Fern:
What do you really what like in what sense to transfer in a sense of.

Bobbi Millsaps:
We didn't just make decisions. And in an authoritative way,.

Fern:
Oh, you got everybody's opinion.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Sometimes opinion.

Fern:
Which is shocking because I knew for a long time.

Bobbi Millsaps:
And feeling the need to like overexplain the reasoning behind.

Fern:
Oh. Got it.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Wow. OK. So we're going to make this price increase and we would have an almost like apologize. Because, again, you have two coaches. Running a business that really never wanted.

Fern:
Kind of shocked me because that's not really your personality is the one.

Bobbi Millsaps:
I know, oddly enough, if I am, I am I am tough when I'm coaching. But when it comes to the human side, I am I am extremely sensitive. I am well.

Fern:
I mean, I know that because I've known you for a long time. But yeah. Yeah, I get it. And I have a hobby. Like there's very few people that I think that are strong at arena. I think there's very few people that are strong in that that there's a book called Crucial Conversations. But there are some that are really good in. Scenarios like that. I get it. That's definitely a skill set is developed through reps. I really think people are naturally good at it. I think that as reps.

Bobbi Millsaps:
It is. And I and I know in the past when I when I was helping out with runand Carolina Crossfit,, I didn't have to really make those business decisions. I didn't and I didn't talk to people about money or pain. I just coached and programmed and, you know. My whole world now with Crossfit, numbers and statistics and something like that. It's not that I'm not good at it. It's just when there's a human side to it. I've really struggled with that. And I also believe.

Fern:
It's because you care. Yeah, it's just case.

Bobbi Millsaps:
I just really wanted to please everyone. Yeah.

Fern:
If you were to go back, what would you do differently if you think because somebody is listening to this song. Damn, I'm in the same spot where somebody who is about to start an affiliate who's justifying that really low cost because they want to bring everybody in. What would you do differently? And do you think you could avoid it if you did it? If you did it a second time?

Bobbi Millsaps:
First of all, I won't tell anybody to make sure that you just start small. Go back and read those journal articles about how to start in your garage or start in a space where it's got to be affordable to you and you don't have a ton of overhead and remove that pressure from yourself and. When you do decide to pull a trigger on like opening an affiliate. Look at your demographic and look at kind of the average price for similar training in your area. And I'm not just talking about like Crossfit, gyms. Look at what some of these private coaches are charging to train kids for sport specific training in that area.

Fern:
People throw up in their mouth if they saw some of those prices.

Bobbi Millsaps:
It's true. But honestly, OK, some people can justify paying X, Y, Z for even personal training or or sport specific training or private tennis lessons or whatever. Look at all that stuff and then look at your look at your relative level of experience and like, OK, how competitive as a trainer and. You know, do I have the do I have that background and that knowledge should be able to back it up and set your price based on. OK, this is the amount of time I'm planning to invest in this facility. This is how much I need for operating expenses, be willing to take a hit going into it.

Bobbi Millsaps:
And then set your prices so that it's not so low just to get people to come in the door or not so low that you're only doing it because you just really love coaching people.

Fern:
Yeah, that never works.

Fern:
Going into it. Think about I would just say like. Coach classes somewhere try to do you like coach like five classes a day for five, five days a week for a couple weeks and see how exhausted you feel and then think to yourself what I want to coach this person. If I knew they were only paying me X amount of dollars a month to be here,.

Fern:
Or would I do this for 15k a year?

Bobbi Millsaps:
Right. Right. Because I you know, as an affiliate owner, I know affiliate owners who still really don't take. Any profit from their gym because they're paying coaches. To fill the clock, to help pick up the classes that are continually growing and growing growing.

Fern:
Which is not necessarily a bad thing. Where I get a little bit where I get a little bit stressed out is when there's people that are doing something like that who are trading memberships for coaches. So nobody's really getting paid at it. If you were paying coaches, worst case scenario, that means that there is built in revenue that you could take back if you actually had to. So let's just say roll payroll is like whatever. I'll say it's six grand a month. Well, if you had to pick up all those classes, at least you could pay yourself six grand a month like you'd be tired as shit. But you get six grand a month, you know. And that's something that I think people should really understand. And I did a podcast with John Briggs, who's an accountant who runs Private First Methodology for Micro Gyms. But he said and he was like, listen. He was like Crossfit, affiliate's and Crossfit, coaches have something amazing to give the world. Like, you have to keep yourself not just above water, but you have to create an environment in which you thrive so that you can continue to provide that service to people for 10, 15, 20 years. And that's something that Crossfit, like because the because the community is like so benevolent and just by nature that people will just throw themselves on their own swords because they're like, but I love Crossfit,. I'm like, I get it. But I don't know that you should, like, dial on that hill. Like, you don't have to.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, I think the. They are you know, hindsight's twenty twenty, right? I think we started an affiliate at a time when. There were a ton of other affiliate owners, too, who have made this these mistakes right. And so, I mean, even on staff, we didn't have a ton of folks that own affiliates are in these positions. Right. And I think that the community is in a much better place now because. You can always speak to other people and kind of. Brainstorm and come up with ways and what is your podcast that your buddies made the mistake already?

Fern:
So it's some to some degree. There are certain mistakes, I think, within the within the community that are I don't wanna say inexcusable, but. Really tough to justify at this point because I was in sales practices to be like, you should not do that.

Bobbi Millsaps:
But the downfall for us was that we put we put the business and the members and trainers. befor. Just before growth as as human beings and before marriage and before our health and our mental health and our physical health, then it always took priority to a point to where I mean I mean, I decided to live away from my husband for three years so we could hold on to this gym, only to go on and sell it in 2014, because I just it wasn't sustainable with women. You've been as a trainer. You don't have to be an affiliate owner if you eat in any job that you do. You walk through the door even before you walk through the door. You're just crapped out that you would have to be there. It's not it's not going to start there. No, it's not. It is definitely not. So. We got lucky that we were able to pass it on to start the gym when it was sport of fitness Crossfit,. And because that's trademarked. Greg and Kathy and the folks over at the affiliates, they allowed us to keep that name even after it was trademarked. But once we sold the affiliate, it could no longer. Yeah. We had to change it. So it's now Crossfit, Valor and we sold it to Nate Wieland, who was deployed with Brandon. And he was. All things Crossfit,. He's young and he was just all about Crossfit,. And he's great athlete and had the potential to be a really good coach. I don't think it was in his wheelhouse to start, but he was going to get out. He was a corpsman and he got out of the golden. He didn't buy it from us in 2014 immediately. We just moved him into our home in South Carolina. That's another hit we took. We kept and we kept our home for a year and a half after I left. And part of his salary was just living rent free in our home to run our business in our absence because we weren't ready to let it go. Yeah. And. I think we sold it in 2017. We made we made the. We went through the process to sell it to him.

Fern:
Was that a relief?

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, yeah, yeah. It was. And if we lived in the same area, it would not have been as difficult. But when you have. You have an obligation, especially a business obligation in another state.

Fern:
That tought

Bobbi Millsaps:
It's a nightmare because it's only three and a half hours away, but it's just taxes and licensing is.

Fern:
Far enough away to present significant problems if something comes up.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, yeah. But we lucked out because. We introduced Jen, my favorite human, as a trainer. We introduced her to Nate. A relationship ensued and they're now engaged, they'll be getting married in March and he bought the gym and she and Nate run it together, they've started a side project where they are doing kind of nutrition coaching and.

Fern:
Cool

Bobbi Millsaps:
Marco I mean, that's a whole other, I think, side business. They've been able to do this and it's been really successful. He started like a little media company does a lot of drone stuff and it's pretty epic. We don't really have a ton of contact with them anymore, but I do still follow follow. I don't follow the gym. I just I can't bring myself to do it.

Fern:
But we still have to say that's probably good. But yeah,.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, we have relationships with some of the members that I. I'm really proud of. What we did while we were there, like the impact that we had. And I'm really proud of the two people who. Own it now. They're just great people. They're really humble and they're a great team.

Bobbi Millsaps:
And I think honestly, Nate and Jen have done more with that affiliate than Brandon and I could have. Ever had the capacity to do. Yeah. Nate, Nate is a smart business guy. Jan is the caring teacher coach. Not saying Nate is a great coach, but I think that it was exactly what branan and I should have been. To run a successful affiliate. But on one side, you had just two people who really like to train. And we really love Crossfit, and we love coaching. Whereas with Jen and they you get somebody who's a great business owner and really good at making tough decisions and somebody who's really empathetic, caring, sweet and is a.

Fern:
Great balance.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, it's a it's a great balance. So I'm really excited for them. It cool, really well.

Fern:
And that's that's really awesome that you got to have that offer and it's going to, you know. You handed it, somebody is going to, you know.

Fern:
You know, like you said, like, do it better so you get to see it, thrive it and feel proud of it. I think that's really cool.

Bobbi Millsaps:
I just think that that, like passing things on is just a huge. I don't know. I feel like it's something that's always just been ingrained in us, in the Crossfit, community, and especially very early on when I came into all this. Is that. Everybody was so welcoming. Coach.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Almost insistent that I was able to be involved because Brandon was involved, and just with, you know, Dave and Nicole and just all the things they've done to just kind of pay everything that Greg did for them for to us. The same with the affiliate team. And I just think that like. To be successful in this community, to be successful as a trainer or an affiliate owner or somebody working for this company.

Bobbi Millsaps:
You really have to have like a genuine heart for service.

Fern:
Yeah.

Bobbi Millsaps:
And you know, you really have to not just surface say that you want to see people do well. You have to. You have to be willing to take a major hit emotionally and physically and spiritually to help other people be better than you were, and that it was a huge.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Growth process for me, even as an athlete like it was fair, I found it very difficult because I was just kind of coming into my own as an athlete. Here I am working out against people that I should want to be better than me. Yeah, the fun in that issue with like, I feel like they're cheating and I don't like that they're time's better than mine on the whiteboard because I know it's bullshit, but you know, as their coach I find that balance and I'm not saying like I threw some fits. You know, I was childish and and. You know, behaved. In a way that coach should behave when somebody would beat me in a workout. You know, in the first few years of doing this whole thing. But at the same time. You know, I I just I had a big turning point when Joe Alexander, who's a mutual friend of ours and now kinda like your boss and seminar style kind of guy, was he is my boss. Yeah. Joe is basically the reason that I. Am in a good, healthy place right now, and I. Somewhere along the way, I just remember him telling me that. Don't ever forget that leadership. Service leadership. The servitude. And I should be your goal to make everybody in the room with you at whatever time, wherever you are, to be better than you. Like that service and. I remember him saying that and I never forgot it. And I watched him live that I've watched so many people that came before us live it. And I have my shortcomings just as a human being in general. But that that that goes so far as to even just like when you're in a grocery store, being nice to somebody, being kind to the person on the register and not make it. I'm not making them a better person, but at least I'm leading by example and saying like, hey, thanks so much or have a good day or just treating like a human.

Fern:
Got to Care.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, you got to care. And there's no there's no substance to substitute for that. So I think if it that just never goes away. Right. One coach would say people would ask like how to become a great trainer. It's like you just have to carry yourself to give a shit about other people. But you have to be willing. To bear the emotional burden that comes along with that. Yeah, especially as a business owner. Yeah.

Fern:
No, I think that's that's a really good encapsulation of the whole thing, which is and I think that's a really good spot to end it because I don't really have anything to add to that, so.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Oh,.

Fern:
I think that's good. So take notes, everybody. Yeah, we could do this all day, but we're well over an hour at this point, so cool. Thank you, ma'am. I really appreciate it. It's been fun.

Bobbi Millsaps:
Yeah, it's been fun. I miss you Fern. I mean, I know we gotta go. I miss the team. Hit me up next time you're in Wilmington.

Fern:
We will. I was that was my fault on the last one, but. Cool. We'll have you on again, because there's some other stuff that I wanted to get to that we didn't get to. But that's OK, because we're gonna do. I don't know, maybe a thousand more of these podcasts we'll have you on.

Bobbi Millsaps:
I appreciate man. And you're. You're awesome. I think what you are doing is really, really good. I wish that we'd had something like this 10 years ago. It would have been. Helpful to hear people. I just live in this world of social media where like everybody, everything that gets posted, if you look at it, everybody's their lives are just fucking awesome, their business is awesome and workouts are awesome. Sounds fucking awesome. Like you would have been really cool just to. Here are real people.

Fern:
Keep it real.

Bobbi Millsaps:
You know, just keep it just fun, keep it real, keep it real.

Fern:
That's what we're trying to do. We will keep trying to do that. So, I mean, awesome. If you guys have questions for Bobby about anything, hit us up. We'll pass it along. But I will talk to you very soon and hopefully I'll catch up with you very soon.

Bobbi Millsaps:
All right. Fern, thanks. All right.

Fern:
Yeah. See you.

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