Fired up About Fitness: The 2023 Two-Brain Summit

Fired up About Fitness: The 2023 Two-Brain Summit

Announcer (00:00):
The Two-Brain Summit goes down June 3 and 4 in Chicago. This weekend will define your year and set your gym on the path to success. Today on “Run a Profitable Gym,” Chris Cooper goes over the summit lineup, which includes a CrossFit Games champion, a bestselling author (or two), kids coaching experts and some of the most successful gym owners in the world. Don’t miss this event. You can find a link to the ticket page in the show notes. Now, here’s Chris Cooper.

Chris Cooper (00:27):
Hey, I’m Chris Cooper, the founder of Two-Brain Business. Every year, I love to bring together hundreds of gym owners from inside the Two-Brain community and also outside to motivate them, inspire them and give them actionable tactics that they can use to grow their gyms. It’s a great chance for gym owners to get together and talk to their peers, feel some community and some support, but also just get fired up. And more and more often people are bringing their teams. They’re bringing their coaches, their admins, their CSMs, doing some team-building stuff around the Two-Brain Summit and giving them their own inspiration, their own motivation to succeed. In fact, a lot of people who’ve been coming to summit for the last couple of years say that the best thing that they do is bring their team because when they go back home, their team is absolutely fired up. The owner leaves with great tactics that they can use, but the team is also excited to implement, and they’ve got their own ideas, too.

Chris Cooper (01:19):
It’s awesome. It’s the real catalyst for growth. And I even bring my own coaches to this, too. Our history of speakers has included Jocko Willink, Seth Godin, Todd Herman, Risha Grant, Lisa Nichols—amazing speakers. And this year I think is maybe our best lineup ever. So I’m super fired up to share this with you. I’m gonna tell you the speakers and I’m gonna tell you their topics. I’m gonna tell you what kind of value the summit is gonna give to you and hopefully encourage you to sign up. And we’ll see you there. So we have two stages. The first stage is the Owners Stage, and it’s just for gym owners. The second stage is for coaches and it’s for gym staff. Now sometimes people wanna sneak out of one and join the other, and if you’re the owner, you can definitely do that. But I want your staff to have their own source of inspiration and knowledge so that you don’t have to teach them everything and you don’t have to always be the one who fires them up.

Chris Cooper (02:13):
We’re gonna do that for you. So first we’re gonna start with a presentation by me on our theme, which is connection. This year, I’m gonna keep it short. There are so many great speakers that I couldn’t even carve out an hour speaking spot for myself. So I’ve got about 20 minutes to get you started on our theme, which is connect. From there I’m gonna introduce Jason Khalipa. Now Jason and I have been talking to one another since 2016, at least about business, but you know, we were introduced back in 2008. I’m gonna share that story with you at the summit. Jason was one of the very first successful, really successful, CrossFit affiliates and he went on to do a ton of gyms—like well over a dozen. He has his own NCFIT brand. Now he sells NCFIT programming. And through it all, he’s had a lot of challenges that he’s gonna share with you.

Chris Cooper (03:01):
He’s gonna talk about his evolving model, how it used to be really high volume, high number of clients. Now it’s really high value clients and the right clients, and he’s gonna share all that with you. I don’t wanna spoil it. And then from there, Dan Martell is gonna take the stage. Dan was my mentor when Two-Brain was pretty new. We were about a year in when I met Dan, and he helped me grow Two-Brain first up to a million-dollar mentorship practice and then to $2 million by sharing this concept called “buy back your time.” And he’s just published a book on this finally like seven years later, and I bought 500 copies to give away at Summit. So when you show up, if you’re one of the first 500 registrants, you’ll get a copy of this book. Dan will take the stage, he’ll talk you through it, he’ll get you really inspired, and maybe you can catch him for a signing.

Chris Cooper (03:47):
Then on the Owners Stage, Shawn Rider is gonna take the stage. Sean is gonna talk about the wealthy gym owner and their team, and he’s talking to gym owners about how to create a better platform for themselves so that their team can build on that platform and have more successful careers. Shawn is a true success story. He quit his teaching job to run his gym better, and then he joined Two-Brain as a client. He really thrived as a client, and then he became a Certified Two-Brain Mentor. He’s thrived as a Two-Brain mentor, and then he got into Tinker Phase, and now he’s thrived at making other people wealthy. And he’s gonna take the stage and talk you through all of that with the lens of “how do you create better careers for your staff?” Then Karl Solberg is gonna take the stage and talk about connecting your goals with the players.

Chris Cooper (04:34):
A lot of us are really good at having a very clear mission in our mind and also hiring amazing people to work in our gym, but we’re not great at connecting that mission or our vision with the people who are actually delivering it. I know this is certainly a huge gap for me. Karl’s got this dialed in, and over the last couple years we’ve been having these conversations about it and how to activate your mission in the minds of your staff. Look, your staff are not signing up for this job because of the money, right? Just like you didn’t open a gym because of the money, they’re signing up because they believe in the mission, but they’re not really always sure what that mission is or how it should play out. When they’re aligned with exactly where you are going, that makes a lot of the other problems with staff moot.

Chris Cooper (05:19):
You don’t have a retention problem with staff anymore. You don’t have a motivation problem with staff anymore. People want to do the right thing, they want to work hard, they want to impress the clients. In building a client-centric business, really you have to have this connection between the owner and the coach to do that or else everybody’s coming at it from these different angles and it doesn’t work. So I’m really fired up for this presentation. Our third presenter on Saturday, or our fifth presenter I guess, is John Franklin, and he’s gonna talk about how authentic content and sales work together. Now, this is really critical because in the past, you know, we’ve talked about sales, we’ve talked about marketing. Last year’s presentation on the four marketing funnels by Colm O’Reilly was incredible. John’s gonna talk about that intersection. When John and I met, he was really marketing focused, ads focused.

Chris Cooper (06:10):
I was really content focused, and I can remember having this conversation with him where each of us really, you know, didn’t see how our ideas merged, but over time that friendship became a partnership, and now we understand how meaningful content is going to work with sales, and that’s really helped grow Two-Brain into the largest mentorship practice in the world. But we’re not here to tell you about how to grow Two -Brain. We’re here to tell you how to grow your gym, and that is exactly what John’s gonna talk about. Now on Saturday on the Coaches Stage. So all those speakers are just on the owners side. That is a tremendous amount of value. Any one of these presentations is worth the cost of the summit, right? It’s just such an amazing return on your investment in a ticket. But on the coaches side, while you’re doing that, your coaches are going to be listening to Peter Brasovan, and he’s gonna talk about connecting powerful moments.

Chris Cooper (07:01):
One of the key ways that your coaches can help you with retention is to identify and highlight the special moments that your clients have. Peter’s gonna tell them exactly how to do that. Now if you’re in Two-Brain, you know what the client journey is all about. And if you’re not in Two-Brain but you’ve read some books on the customer journey or the 90-day year or anything like that, you’ll have an inkling about what he’s gonna tell them. The key though is that Peter’s gonna get them fired up to do this work for you, and it’s gonna make them love their jobs even more. So I’m fired up to send my stuff to that presentation. I’ll tell you, they’ve been hearing me talk about the client journey and the first 90 days, and they get it and they do the work. But Peter’s gonna get them really excited about it, and that’s gonna supercharge the special moments that your clients have in your gym.

Chris Cooper (07:47):
Then Yancy Culp from Spartan/DEKA is gonna get on stage and talk about lighting a fire. Now in past years, coaches have come to the summit and left really fired up, really motivated. And that, you know, just does so much for your gym when your coaches are excited. But Yancy is a spark plug. He is a catalyst. He’s in charge of the Spartan/DEKA program, and I’ll tell you the founder of Spartan told me, “When you get on the phone with Yancy, you’re gonna feel like you can run up a mountainside.” And he was right. Yancy is such a catalyst for energy that you just can’t help being excited after listening to him. I mean he’ll resuscitate somebody’s passion if it’s completely gone in the fitness industry, and if they’re already excited, he’ll take that from an eight to an 11.

Chris Cooper (08:38):
This is the guy that you want getting your staff fired up. He’s so motivational. After Yancy, Colm O’Reilly’s gonna take the stage, and he’s gonna talk about why our clients don’t listen and how to get them to start. One of the most frustrating things in the fitness industry that burns out a lot of coaches and owners is when the clients don’t follow your lead, don’t take your advice, don’t listen. I get that. I’ve been a coach for 25 years, and this to me was a massive source of burnout and frustration. “You’re not doing what I tell you. How do you expect to get results?” Well, Colm is gonna tell your coaches how to approach that problem, get your clients to listen and actually get them better results because of it. Then Brian Strump, one of my favorite humans, is gonna be onstage and he’s gonna talk about having hard conversations with clients.

Chris Cooper (09:27):
Now Brian is a very successful gym owner from North Carolina, and he has had over the years many of these tough conversations. He’s built an amazing staff around him. You’re gonna get to meet some of them at summit this year, but Brian’s gonna talk about how to make sure that you’ve got a positive environment in your gym by having hard conversations with your clients. Getting them aligned again or getting them out. He’s really good at both. He’s tactful, he’s a great communicator. You’re gonna love listening to this guy in his Long Island accent. He has become so good at this. It’s one of his key skills that’s helped him grow his gym into what it is now. And you know, Brian is a very successful mentor at Two-Brain. He’s a very successful Tinker, he’s very successful with his family. He’s got a great life balance, and a lot of this is because he nips problems in the bud in his gym, and I want your staff to be able to do that for you so that not every problem escalates to you.

Chris Cooper (10:24):
Then Jeff and Mikki Martin, another couple of my favorite humans, are gonna be onstage talking about coaching youth. This is a common theme that I wanna bring onstage every year at summit because our youth are our legacy. Not only are these the future clients for your gym and the best athletes in your gym three years from now, but they’re also a massive opportunity. And as most gym owners know, we don’t prioritize our youth nearly enough. I’ll give you an example. People who cater only to youth generally charge about three times for a monthly membership what we charge for youth programs in our gyms. That reframe is really important because it’ll help you decide what is the best thing to do for our gym and also for our youth. And if you leave summit with one coach fired up about coaching youth or even building a teens program, the summit will pay for itself 10 times over.

Chris Cooper (11:18):
Okay? Just one. And Jeff and Mikki have been doing this forever. Great motivations, great incentives. They know how to build a successful kids program, and they’re gonna tell your coaches exactly how to do it. Now that’s just Saturday. And at night you can go out for dinner with your staff, you can do some team building, you can just relax if you want to. The summit is in Rosemont this year. It’s a beautiful area for kicking around relaxing, getting a fantastic meal at a wide variety of restaurants, you know, playing Frisbee or doing yoga on the green. Whatever you wanna do Saturday night. On Sunday on the Owners Stage, Jolene Bingham is gonna start us off by giving us a staff journey for growth and retention. So earlier I mentioned that, you know, we like to map out the client journey and plan that out in advance to make sure they get great results and stick around, but we need to do the same thing for staff.

Chris Cooper (12:08):
The economic climate is such right now that it’s becoming harder and harder to find good staff. And so what you need to do is plot out the staff journey, show them the path to making this a really good career for themselves, and keep them around in the industry. You know, when I started in this industry, the average lifespan of a personal trainer was about two years and two months. That was it. They did personal training, they burned off all their passion, and then they went out and got a real job. Successful gym owners are in a position to keep people in the industry for longer, and this is how we grow the industry: by making the gym owners successful, then making their staff successful and then having that compound and compound and compound. And Jolene is gonna give you a way to do that, a very clear tactical plan.

Chris Cooper (12:53):
Andrea Savard is gonna talk about creating legendary leadership. I saw her speak on this topic at our Tinker Meetup in Nashville. She’s gonna go deeper and give you actionable tools for leadership that you can actually use with your staff. The thing about leadership is it’s an inspiring, broad topic, but it’s very hard to have actionable takeaways. I promise you I saw Andrea deliver the shorter version of this talk, and it is extremely actionable. You will leave knowing exactly what to say, exactly what to do and how to improve your leadership. It’s a very, very rare speaker who can actually do that. Andrea is that speaker, Bonnie Skinner is gonna talk about growing your entrepreneurial maturity. Now Bonnie owns Level Up Coaching, and she works with successful CEOs on growing their entrepreneurial confidence, removing things like that are barriers to their growth that are all inside your head.

Chris Cooper (13:49):
I work with Bonnie, and she’s been so important at growing all of my businesses because the biggest barrier in a lot of those cases was me. I would avoid hard confrontations. I would keep clients or staff around longer than I should. I didn’t have the confidence to post the things that would actually grow. I wasn’t inspiring people because I didn’t wanna put my foot out there. Bonnie helped me get through all of that. And removing those barriers is what’s grown all of my business and my personal life. She is one of the most popular people in the Tinker Group. She is a very sought-after speaker, and you are going to love her. Then Karen Hazelton’s gonna talk about building a simple goal review SOP. You know, I started doing goal reviews in Catalyst years ago. That has been taken and refined over and over and over, and Karen is really a master at delivering goal reviews at scale.

Chris Cooper (14:39):
Goal reviews are one of the most important things that a gym owner can do with their clients, but it’s also one of the things that people are most likely to skip when they get busy. That means they’re not doing this crazy-important thing that will improve retention, improve ARM and grow their business over time. And Karen is gonna give you a simple, more actionable way to do that. She’s the master. Next, Taryn is gonna talk about how to zero in on your focus every day. Over the last several years, the summit is now seven years old, I’ve always had the closing keynote. And my job has always been to inspire action. This year, I asked Taryn to take my spot because she is better at this than I am. While I work on this all the time and I think I’m pretty good at it, Taryn is incredible. Taryn has grown from having kind of a struggling gym to a very successful gym. She’s grown from being a brand new mentor to one of the most popular mentors in Two-Brain, and then she actually grew a private mentorship practice on the side, which is massive, all of this while qualifying to the highest level basketball referee status in the world and competing in her first triathlon and buying Airbnbs. How does she do that? She gets all these different things done by being able to focus on one thing at a time, doing one specific thing. And this is what she teaches her clients. She’s gonna teach to you from the stage on Sunday. You’re right, there’s more. I know this is incredible already, the stuff that you’re gonna take away. Again, any one of these speakers on the owners side will give you a positive ROI on your ticket investment.

Chris Cooper (16:16):
On the coaches side on Sunday, Jason Khalipa’s gonna lead us off, and he’s gonna talk about the pursuit of virtuosity in coaching. Get your coaches fired up to be better, to give clients a better one-on-one experience and improve your retention. This guy has been around and seen it all. And if you’re not familiar with Jason Khalipa, look him up. He was on the CrossFit Level 1 staff for years. He was probably the first CrossFit affiliate to have more than 10 gyms. You know, and he used to go around and do these seminars for people. Now he’s focused on developing coaches, and he’s gonna talk to your coaches and develop them for you. If you’re not doing any coach development, this is the simplest investment you can make: bringing your coaches to summit. If you are doing coach investment, this will be one of the best things that you do for them all year.

Chris Cooper (17:05):
Let him train your coaches for you. Then Anastasia Bennett’s gonna take the stage, and she’s gonna talk about the perfect nutrition client avatar. There are very few people in the world who are doing a good recurring nutrition business. While we all know we should be selling nutrition coaching in our gym, last year it accounted for only 4 percent of gross revenue on average in the gyms that were doing it. Anastasia’s gonna tell you how to build that up by identifying your best client avatar and then delivering to them. She has done this. She’s extremely good at it. She’s not trying to sell you anything. She’s just helping your coaches build your nutrition business, and if they sell two more clients, I mean that pays for you and three staff to come to summit, right? Then Cynthia Fotti is gonna come up and teach your coaches habits-based nutrition stuff. They don’t need like a certification to do that. They can just deliver without exposing you to risk and get your clients results.

Chris Cooper (18:01):
So you’re gonna have this one-two punch of Anastasia identifying who should get nutrition coaching and how to sell it to them, and then Cynthia on how to deliver nutrition coaching. We need more of this in gyms. The current options that are out there are just not working at improving sales and retention and nutrition in gyms. These two have done it. They’re gonna teach your staff how to do it. Then we’re gonna bring Brian Bott on the stage, and he’s gonna talk about semi-private training. Semi-private training bridges the gap between one-on-one personal training and group training—like a class. It’s an interesting concept that just never occurred to me. I had this personal-training studio, and then I opened a CrossFit gym, and had I known there was a an option in the middle, I would’ve gone straight to that and been profitable way faster.

Chris Cooper (18:47):
Semi-private training is growing rapidly in popularity among personal trainers, but I think it’s probably a more efficient way to scale, and a lot of gyms in our program who started out with just a class base have now gone to semi-private. I’ll paint you a quick picture. Let’s say that you and me and two of our friends are training together at noon, but we’re all doing slightly different programs, and there’s a coach in the room with us that’s going from person to person. So, “Hey, Chris, let me give you a spot on that bench press. Hey, Mike. Elbows up on that front squat.” Okay? So you’re getting coaching cues, but you’re not all doing the same thing at every time. Like your program is tailored to you. You’re not just kind of following along and doing this thing. That creates a higher-value experience for the client.

Chris Cooper (19:34):
It creates higher ARM for the gym and a higher paid hour for that coach. This is kind of like the Holy Grail for a lot of people, and Brian Bott’s gonna tell you how to do that. He’s gonna tell you what it is, how to build it and how to implement it, whether your gym is mostly class based or it’s a personal-training studio or it’s somewhere in between. Then we’re gonna bring all the coaches back, and we’re gonna let them experience the magic of Taryn Dubreuil on how to zero in your focus every day. I wish there were two of me so that I could go back and forth and watch every single speaker, but I’m gonna do the next best thing, and that is bring my staff to summit. I am so fired up to experience these speakers, but more than that I’m so fired up for you to experience them.

Chris Cooper (20:18):
When we do a summit, it’s not lectures from a stage where by 2 o’clock you’re tired, you’re bored, you’re not taking notes anymore. These are all workshops. So not only are you learning, but you’re applying it. Every single speaker gets on the stage and gives you a worksheet and an activity that you’re going to do with them to actually make your gym better. Yeah, you know, after two days this is a lot of work and a lot of focus, but these speakers are entertaining, they’re engaging, they’ve been there, they’ve got great stories, and you’re going to leave with work already done. You’re gonna know what exactly you need to do on Monday. Your staff’s gonna know what to do. And, most important, you and them will be excited to own this gym business. Again, to keep the energy high, we’ve got a couple of extra things coming at Summit this year.

Chris Cooper (21:04):
Friday night. we’re gonna have a mixer where we bring all of the gym owners and their staff together just to meet everybody—a meet and greet, more social time. We’re also going to have more vendors than ever before, with a couple of really key exciting ones that you are going to find super awesome. So the first, Rep Fitness is gonna come. They’re gonna set up some equipment, and on Saturday and Sunday morning, Jason Khalipa is going to lead a big group workout following some of his NCFIT programming. You can sign up early. Make sure that you book a spot for that. He’s gonna take 70 people each morning, and that’s it. That is gonna be an amazing experience, and I really want you to participate. Also DEKA is gonna be there, and DEKA is gonna run us through some of their in-gym fitness challenges.

Chris Cooper (21:50):
I wasn’t even aware of DEKA last year, and now they have exploded on the scene to compete with Hyrox and others in gym obstacle-course races. These guys have an amazing setup. You can do most of this stuff with equipment that you already have. And this is crazy. It actually draws people in to do these challenges, so it can actually attract new clients. I know a lot of people make that claim, but with DEKA it’s actually true. They give you this worldwide leaderboard. They send you awards that your clients can win. They do some of the marketing for you to bring in outsiders. But at Summit this year, Yancy and the team from DEKA are gonna run a couple of challenges that you can try out on your lunch break, too. It’s gonna be a lot of fun. The only thing missing from our summits in years past has been workouts, and I can remember, you know, no matter where we were, the hotel gym was always just like crammed at 6 a.m. This year, we’re gonna make that a lot more fun.

Chris Cooper (22:41):
We’re gonna bring you together to do workouts with other people and try out some stuff, too. There’s no reason to not come to summit. If your gym can’t spare you for three or four days, then you’ve gotta fix that problem. If your gym can’t afford to send you and coaches, then come by yourself this year and bring your staff next year. But make sure you’re there. You need to get the information, the tactical knowledge, the activities, the inspiration, but also the energy to go out there and fight for people’s fitness for the next year. That’s what the summit is all about to me. I’m fired up just talking about it. I really hope to see you in person there.

Announcer (23:17):
Fired up about fitness? Get your tickets to the Two-Brain Summit right now. Click the link in the show notes and we’ll see you in Chicago!

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