Startup Story: Ivan Ho and FIT from Home

Ivan Ho

Company name

What does your business do?
FIT from HOME INC. is a Canadian based company dedicated to helping people achieve their fitness goals by delivering fitness right to their doorstep. No gym memberships, no travelling, no waiting for equipments. We bring expertise, motivation, and results right to our clients, at the convenience and comfort of their own homes/workplace. We teach our clients how to enjoy a healthy and active lifestyle by providing a personalized fitness program and nutrition counseling. Every workout with us is fun, safe and effective, we bring all necessary equipments, so all they have to do is wait for the doorbell to ring.

Our target market is everyone age 14 and up. But most our clientele will be mainly the baby boomers because they are the ones most vulnerable to health problems at their age and have the resources to enjoy our services. Our goal is to help all our clients reach their fitness goals, whether they are weight loss, muscle gain, sport specific, post-rehab, whatever it is, we can help them get there.

What makes your business different? What is that you do that makes your business unique?
What makes us unique is that we are passionate trainers who enjoy helping people succeed and not just in thsi business for money, and the prices we charge is very affordable compare to our competitors. We’re not looking to make quick money, our prices are cheaper because we offer our services in packages (monthly memberships). We work with our clients for longer duration so we can first help them lose the weight, then maintain that weight, and incorporate that into living a healthier and more active lifestyle in the long run. We don’t sell sessions, we sell RESULTS!

Why did you decide to start your own business?
I first got the idea last October when I was working at the gym and picked up a magazine (FITNESS BUSINESS CANADA) someone had left behind. Inside was an article about a Vancouver university graduate who had started his own in-home personal training company and gained huge success with it and in 2 years he began franchising. I was very insipired of what he did with his passion and turned it into something very successful, he was able to reach out to so many people that needed the help and was able to change their lives not just by himself but with other trainers as well. That’s when I began my own planning and decided to pursue a similar business here in Ontario. I did reserach on the market need for trainers, why people stop going to the gym, demographics in GTA, what’s thriving in the dustry in the US, etc)

What’s the best part of being an entrepreneur?
The best part is knowing that you’re doing something you have a passion for, something you truly care about, something that can provide for you and family. Every day at work doesn’t feel like work because you enjoy it and everyday is a learning experience. To most money may be the upside of it, and if one can make good money doing what he loves to do, then that’s just bonus. What is the most important thing to me is knowing I love what i do, i love helping people and now I’ve found a way to help as many as I can.

What’s the worst part of being and entrepreneur?
The worst part is thinking about your work when you’re sleeping, in the shower, eating, and when you’re with your girlfriend. It is hard to balance personal life and work when it is something you love doing and can’t stop. The eyebags and lack of sleep will catch up to you also.

How long have you been in business?
I’ve been personal training for 2 years but in terms of FIT from HOME INC – it started May 11,2009.

How did you raise the start-up cash?
Personal savings and Summer Company grant.

Identify and discuss a few lessons you’ve learned as an entrepreneur?
One thing is that you need to find the right people on your team and sometimes you meet individuals who may not be right for you. I had a run-in with a lawyer who I felt treated me unprofessionally because to her, I was too young (22) to know business and to afford her services, she felt like I was wasting her time. It was harsh at the time, but I’ve used that to motivate me to show everyone that I can succeed. Also money plays a huge factor in your own business and how you allocate your funds is very important, you need to make the right decisions when it comes to spending. Always look into areas where you can save money and spend wisely always, I’ve made some bad choices but now I have better control in my finances.

What advice would you give to an aspiring entrepreneur?
Make sure it is something you have a passion for. And think and plan before every decision. Try writing things down and asking others for their opinions before going through with things. Seek others for help, especially experts and professionals, ask for free suggestions and advices. Look into government programs, there are many help out there, you just need to reach for it. And be positive, even when you hit a bump, just know that the road will get better. Somethings are out of your control, but if you steer into the right direction, you have a lot more control.

What are your goals and plans for the future?
I have short-term and long term-goals.
My short term goal is to have enough clients that I will be hiring other personal trainers by September.
My long term goal is to begin my first franchise one year from today. Further goal is to have a FIT from HOME personal trainer in every neigbourhood in Ontario. Then in Canada. Though my long term goal may not be achievable, it is something I will keep striving for.

My other goal is to also pursue other business opportunities outside of FIT from HOME with the revenue I generate. I’m an entrepreneur afterall, so I’m always intersted in other opportunities if profit is acheievable and the act is moral.

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4 responses to “Startup Story: Ivan Ho and FIT from Home

  1. he seems like johnchow, the owner of a popular money making blog

  2. I'll back again for sure, thanks for great article 😀

  3. Really enjoyed reading your blog post. I will have to bookmark your site for later.

  4. What I like about small business owners is that they are not afraid to take huge risks and lay it all on the line. But, I agree they do need a lot of help with their marketing. I think having them go the social media and email route is not only the least expensive but its also the most effective. Thanks for the stats!With Facebook and Twitter being among the leaders of the Social networks, marketing as a small business is being transformed..Respondents according to the Vertical Response survey appear to need some differentiation with the use of SE marketing and Social media Marketing

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