A Portstewart fitness expert has followed her dream of owning her own multi-purpose gym into a reality thanks to help from the Go For It programme in association with Causeway Coast and Glens Council.
Marie Gregg, a trained fitness coach and qualified nutritional therapist officially opened her gym ‘No Pain No Gain’ in January this year.
The PT became interested in wellbeing 10 years ago when her husband started out in the fitness industry, and she followed her passion for wanting to help people achieve the fitness goals.
Marie said: “I would say it started off as a hobby and some sort of self-care – once a week looking after myself and it has developed into a successful career.
“I realised my passion was to help others on their fitness journey, to improve their lives and help them become better versions of themselves. I offer clients one-to-one training, small group personal training, fitness classes and massage therapy.”
When Marie launched ‘No Pain No Gain’ she felt incredibly excited but equally as scared: “Obviously I was excited about opening and owning my own dream business but at the same time I was scared as I was obviously leaving the safety blanket of a monthly income.
“I would say the best thing about owning my own business is that it is something that I love, and it definitely doesn’t feel like work – it’s my hobby. What I get to do on a daily basis, it’s an incredible feeling when your part of someone’s journey, you’re part of that process of them bettering themselves.
“My biggest achievement I would have to say is the expansion of my business and actually moving to a new, bigger and better premises.”
Marie said the support she received, especially whilst launching her business during a global pandemic, from the Go For It programme was second to none.
“The expert advice that Go For It provided me with helped me to develop my very own specific business plan. When I saw the final details, we were able to discuss ideas to take the business to the next level.
“My business adviser was able to provide me with a financial forecast, how to take that next step and he also provided me with some great marketing tips.”
The Go for it programme is delivered free of charge by a team of experienced business mentors through Northern Ireland’s wide network of enterprise agencies. It provides expert advice and help with developing a robust business plan to help turn ideas into a commercial enterprise.
For anyone who is thinking of starting their own business Marie strongly recommends getting in contact with the Go For It programme.
“I would absolutely advise anyone who has a great idea and looking to launch a business please do get in touch with a professional who can advise and guide you.”
The Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council Councillor Ivor Wallace said: “It is great to see new businesses developing with the assistance of the Go For It programme. This is welcome news for the area after such a challenging time for businesses across all sectors.
“I wish Marie every success for the future, and I hope she continues to build on her successes so far.”
Business Adviser, Mark Donald said: “Marie has a great business in terms of providing longevity of health for her clients and creating a culture of wellbeing far beyond the sessions with her. She’s almost future proofing those that she has as clients.
“From the first session that I worked with Marie, I could see her enthusiasm and passion for wellbeing, and I am delighted to see that the marketing concepts we created are providing growth and the business levels for both the training and the therapeutic elements are going from strength to strength.”