There’s something so special about Spring. It makes us feel like anything is possible. The days become longer, the flowers begin to bloom, and the weather gets warmer. The change to this season in particular proposes a fresh start for our mind, body, and life that isn’t as prevalent with the other three seasons. But a “fresh start” doesn’t just show up on your doorstep like a bouquet of bright flowers. You have to first face your fears and embrace change in order to truly realize the wonder that is the “fresh start.” To get there, you need to really want it, accept the challenges, and explore the doubt. Flip fear on its head and make it a motivator!
Mimi Roukoz, one of our newest studio owners, did just that and her journey to San Luis Obispo to open her studio is heartwarming.
Mimi admitted she didn’t instantly love The Bar Method. It was a real struggle: she had just stopped playing college soccer and was 25-lbs overweight (hard to believe when you look at her now). She was working as an accountant in San Diego and although she loved (and excelled at) accounting, she was triggered by the thought of sitting behind a desk for 40+ hours per week for the next 30 years of her life. Was this really her story or was there a fresh start in her future that she had yet to realize?
Mimi always knew in her heart there was a reason she was exposed to The Bar Method at such an early age and at a pivotal time in her life. The gap left open from quitting competitive soccer, an identity she had known for over 20 years, coupled with the desire for more beyond a 9-to-5 corporate life, set the stage for her to realize The Bar Method was more than just a workout and could in fact be her “fresh start.”
Mimi eventually got the hang of the workout and became hooked on The Bar Method. As a student, she connected to the foundation of the method and noticed changes in her body she didn’t realize were possible. The Bar Method was the real deal.
“Before Bar Method, I genuinely thought that you were born athletic and flexible. I thought because I wasn’t a dancer growing up, I would never be able to do the splits. Not true! The Bar Method changes your body in ways you never knew were physically possible.”
She decided to take her love for The Bar Method to the next level and trained to become a teacher at the Carmel Mountain studio. As a teacher, she loved coaching her students to keep going and finish strong. She connected to the structure and rigor of the training program and appreciated the quality of the method even more than as a student.
“My background in team sports is behind one of my principle loves of bar method. In class, you feel like you are on a team and your instructor is your coach. Together, you take on the exercises with one goal in mind and your instructor sets you up to succeed.”
Even though she knew in her heart that she wanted to open a studio some day, she would still question whether it was the right decision to give up a career she loved. Mimi worked hard for her degree in accounting and had a comfortable future to look forward to. But The Bar Method was special and she was inspired by the way other studio owners were impacting people’s lives in such a positive way. To her, they symbolized the true meaning of role models and she was convinced they had the BEST jobs in the world. Around that time, she read a quote that stuck with her and became the launching pad for her to begin her search for a location:
“If you are always waiting to be ready – then you are going to be the last one on the island.”
Mimi’s search for a location was long and arduous. It eventually led her to consider opening a studio outside of San Diego, a place she called home for 9 years. She was comfortable there, surrounded with friends from work, school, soccer and The Bar Method. She was terrified to leave, that wasn’t the plan; however once she found San Luis Obispo, CA she knew in her heart that she was on the right path. She turned the fear of leaving her comfort zone into excitement for the opportunity to positively impact more lives through The Bar Method. Once she made that mindset shift, she couldn’t wait to get started!
“The change of perspective I have gained from this journey roots all the way down to thigh work! If I can get through a grueling set of thigh then I can get through this. A fresh start requires hard work but it is an opportunity for change that isn’t even conceptual yet!”
As an owner, she feels a responsibility to her new community and staff to represent The Bar Method in it’s truest form. She loves her new home and community in San Luis Obispo! We couldn’t be happier that Mimi followed her dreams and pursued her fresh start — she is an inspiration to the entire The Bar Method family!
The Bar Method – San Luis Obispo
4464 Broad St., Suite 120
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401