Congratulations to The Fitness Equation for being a finalist for Health & Wellness Business of the Year! Post written by Jason Kangarloo. The livestream of the 26th Annual Loudoun Small Business Awards will premier Friday, November 13, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. on our Facebook Page. View all 2020 SBA Finalists here.
Tell us about your business, how it got started, and how it has evolved into what it is today.
Chuck Wilson and Ahmad Kangarloo each have over 40 years experience in the fitness industry. The driving factor for us is the pleasure we get helping people change their lives through fitness. The USA tops the list as being the most obese country in the world having 13% of the world’s population of obese people. 30% of the US population is obese or overweight.
Fitness is not a quick fix. It’s a lifestyle change. It’s preventive medicine helping people avoid problems like heart disease, the #1 killer in America. One person in America dies from heart disease every 37 seconds. We can drastically reduce those numbers by adapting a healthy lifestyle. That’s why we started TFE, not just to help people look better, but to actually feel better. By adopting a healthy lifestyle people can avoid a myriad of health problems due to an unhealthy lifestyle. To actually help an individual go from 450lbs to 190 lbs in 2 years, get off medication for HBP, and see him run a marathon is an unbelievable reward for us. That is what drives us. Helping people make their fitness dreams become a reality in a first class state of the art facility. Where service is key and people can reach their fitness goals in a non-intimidating, motivating, welcoming environment.
What would it mean for you and your business to win a Small Business Award?
Loudoun County’s sustained explosive economic and population growth over recent decades is why our county comprises not only the nation’s, but the world’s best and brightest business and business leaders. The Health and Wellness industry has never been more important and more top of mind. For TFE to be recognized as a finalist validates all our hard work in an extremely competitive market. Winning would be an amazing achievement that we would celebrate as a team and proudly display on our website and share with our entire community. TFE is all about setting goals, breaking them and setting new goals, never being satisfied. Winning a Small Business Award would raise the bar for TFE and our future goals!
What is the smallest thing that has made the biggest impact on your business?
Listening to our members and staff. It seems so simple and while it takes time and effort, there is not a hard cost to listening. Engaging and listening can make all the difference in knowing how to adapt and respond in an ever changing market.
Who is the one person that has influenced you the most in your career?
My father and our CEO, Ahmad Kangarloo. As the son of an entrepreneur and athlete who chose a career in the fitness industry, I was shaped from an early age to appreciate that it is a gift to have a healthy body and mind. It is our responsibility to take care of it which requires a lifelong commitment to personal health and fitness. Instilled in me was the reality that nothing good in life comes easy, you have to earn it. The world is competitive and only those who are determined to let nothing stop them from their goals will achieve them because there will be many obstacles and your passion and confidence will be tested.
What is your favorite thing about running your business in Loudoun County?
I made the decision to transition to the fitness industry and relaunch The Fitness Equation with Ahmad, Chuck and my brother Jonathan after a successful 10 year career in medical sales. I grew tired of making a living representing a product that could only help someone when they were at the end stages of poor health that could have been avoided had they invested more in their health with a commitment to fitness and nutrition. I am proud of the product and service we offer at TFE, every day I know I am making a positive difference in the quality of life for my community. Loudoun County is an incredible place to work and live with so much to offer. I thoroughly enjoy collaborating with other amazing and innovative businesses in the county my family and I reside in.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I believe the first career I wanted was a professional athlete and specifically playing in the NBA. While I did play for my high school JV team, I was not blessed with the talent and genetics to be a professional basketball player. Sometime during high school I realized that I wanted to be in business and ultimately a business owner for a product/service I believed in. I enjoy marketing, advertising, sales, coaching, and being a leader. I am beyond grateful that I get to do what I love everyday, which is not to say that everyday is easy, far from it, but that I have never doubted the purpose of our work and our mission at TFE.
What is a book that changed your life, and WHY?
“Strengths Finders” by Tom Rath. It’s not a novel, more of a personal development book. Early in my career of sales my employer at the time had us read the book and complete the test to identify our strengths and how those strengths can be best applied in the real world. It was the first time I had stopped to really self evaluate. Once you know your Strengths you can identify your most opportune path. You can also start to develop your weaknesses. This book validated why sales was the right career path for me at an early age of uncertainty and gave me a sense of reassurance in my ambitions.
When you’re not at your desk, where can we find you on the weekends/what is another passion you have?
With all the hours of operation TFE is open 7 days a week, 350 days a year, I work a lot of hours. As all entrepreneurs and busy owners know, in today’s world, work will find you everywhere at any time. When I am not working, I want to spend all my time with my family and friends in that order doing whatever they want to do and not having to make any decisions. I am blessed to be married to my best friend Lauren and we have two beautiful daughters Kaylin (9) and Harper (6). I love just spending time at home and getting to take in the beauty of Loudoun County. Our family recently moved to Leesburg, VA from Potomac Falls, VA and we are excited to explore our new town.
How do you see your business evolving in the next 5 years?
This pandemic has changed our industry. TFE has always had a focus on the member experience through meticulous sanitization, membership access, spacing, and overall service. We have only enhanced these practices through the pandemic. Where we have evolved and plan to continue to develop is through our remote or virtual offering to keep our members engaged when they cannot come into TFE. We know the community and culture we have built and continue to enhance at our TFE locations will be hard to replicate virtually but we committed to creating as close an experience as possible. The TFE experience is the reason why our club continues to be recognized year after year. We could not be more grateful for this support and recognition from our community.
Congratulations again to the team at TFE on being finalists! Check out their website here.