More Than Just A Gym: A Bittersweet Goodbye

Posted October 30, 2018

Photo of Cade

Rivalers,

A little more than two years ago, I would have never expected to see myself exploring a career in fitness. But when my career-path in digital marketing took an unexpected turn, I ended up accepting a management position at a downtown gym. By the time that gym closed in the spring of 2017, I had dropped my body-fat percentage by double-digits. I wasn’t ready to give up on working in a fitness environment. As a former athlete who fell off the wagon, I had been frustrated with the lack of accessibility and inclusion I’d often seen in fitness culture. Working in a gym had changed my life in unexpected ways, awoken a new sense of self-empowerment, and convinced me to set out on becoming a certified personal trainer with NASM. I wanted to bust myths within fitness culture and help people feel awesome about their bodies. So I emailed my resume over to Jim Mahan. When I first met Jim, he shared with me his vision for Rival, what the club stood for, and how essential the club’s community was to its success. This conversation, in short, was a precursor to what we would eventually begin to call The Rival Way. I was in.

I’ve worn many hats at Rival over the past year and a half. Instagrammer-in-chief, newsletter-writer, front desk-checker, graphic designer, gym tour guide, trainer-in-training, speed towel-folder, go-to bench press spotter, and DJ – just to name a few. But as cheesy as it sounds, my favorite role I’ve held at Rival has been your friend. However, this isn’t a title I’ll shed after I work my final shift at Rival on Oct. 31.

I’ve forged some of the strongest and sweetest friendships of my life here on this gym floor. Kickass friends who text you back right away, are always down to try a new restaurant, make you laugh until it hurts, and enhance your life in every way. Friends who have become nothing short of family to me. It’s my expert opinion that Rival is home to the finest folks in Seattle to join you for happy hour, or to waste away a summer afternoon at the lake with. The nicest people in the world work out at Rival.

Not only have I built my own friendships here, but I’ve also witnessed our community balloon and our members accomplish life milestones. I’ve seen members meet their significant others here. I’ve seen members plan weddings and welcome little ones into their lives. Yeah, hitting a new PR is great, as is fitting into that old pair of jeans, or feeling awesome when you catch a glance of that fine reflection of yours in the mirror. But sharing these milestone with a community who genuinely cares about your success is even better.

To me, The Rival Way is about there always being more. We love seeing our members find joy in fitness, connect with their bodies, and accomplish the goals they first set out on. But just as much, we love seeing our members succeed in life. Whenever you crush that goal, there will always be the next level up. And Rival will be there to help you achieve it.

That’s why leaving Rival Fitness has been so bittersweet. I could never have expected the outpouring of love I’ve received in the past week and a half since I announced my departure. I’m downright stoked about the next step in my career and am feeling all the love from everyone’s congratulations. It’s not at all easy to say goodbye to the faces I’ve seen roughly every day for a year and a half.

I’m proud of the club we’ve all built together. I’m proud that everyone is not only welcome here, but celebrated as they are. Even though I’m stepping away from the fitness industry full-time, I’m still a Rivaler ,and just a text or email away.

Thank you all so much for all the love and good vibes over the past year and a half.

See you all around,

Cade

From Rival: We are so grateful to have had such a wonderful team member in Cade. His enthusiasm for all things fitness, member service, and in helping making Rival the best gym in the neighborhood, will be greatly missed. We are very excited for his next adventure and know that he’ll continue to crush PRs, both professionally and personally. Thank you for being an integral part of the Rival family, Cade!

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