Camy Kennedy played intercollegiate volleyball and put herself through college by working 32 hours a week. It was a busy and stressful time which didn't allow her much time for health and fitness. After college, she worked at a gym and got her physique back, but realized minimum wage was not going to support her goals. She made use of her biology degree and worked in a laboratory, and then worked for a large supplement company for almost 3 years. During that time, Camy became certified as a Nutrition Coach under Venice Nutrition or IBNFC. She also attended FMI events in 2013 and 2014, am finishing up her ISSA Fitness Trainer exam this week, and have started a year long business mentorship with Jill Coleman of JillFit Physiques.
This month Camy stepped down from her full-time national sales position and have committed to building her online business with camykennedy.com and fitfaithfam.com. Her services offered are online nutrition coaching, in home personal training and corporate wellness – and her mission statement is “helping you find balance in nutrition, fitness + life.”
Camy has another passion and focus with her business Fit.Faith. She started this movement in 2012 with the vision to “empower women to embrace themselves as strong + beautiful conquerors.” With her best friend assisting in marketing and outreach, they aim to reach women where there are — in the midst of eating disorders, body dysmorphia and other body image issues. They come from a place of love and encouragement and offer resources and a community for women struggling with food issues. Her ebook lauched late last year, called Create.Believe.Conquer. and it is a 40 day devotional guide designed to be used with a sound nutrition and fitness program (www.createbelieveconquer.com). She provides spiritual coaching as well as fitness/nutrition coaching, as she believes that we are more successful at when we work on balancing all areas.
For the future, her charge is to bring faith-based trainers together via the internet so that women all over the United States can connect with someone who has both their physical and spiritual goals in mind. In addition, she is planning to hold Fit.Faith events in key cities across the US where women can get connected, get motivated, reach spiritual and fitness goals, and seek balance in their daily lives.
How did you get started with Fit Faith Program and what made you venture to start the business to offer online nutrition and fitness coaching?
In 2012, I wanted to start fitness modeling, but I wanted to do it in a way that would help people and not just be about myself. I created a facebook page and twitter account called “FitThruFaith” in order to provide motivation, encouragement, tips about eating clean, working out and faith. I invited my best friend/workout partner, Meg Lynch, to help me with the page – since we had always seen exercise and feeding our bodies well as a way to worship, connect with God, and realize just all that we had to be thankful for. In March 2013, we offered our first product – a 4 week program that involved meal plans, daily workouts and weekly devotionals. We had a great response, even getting an international client!
What did you dream Fit Faith would be 2 years ago vs. what it has become today?
I didn’t know where we were going with Fit.Faith 2 years ago, other than 2 friends helping and encouraging people on facebook. Now we’ve got nearly 1,000 followers on facebook – without really knowing what we were doing! We also have an official ebook, tank tops, a website, and people reaching out to be affiliates. I just hosted our first webinar and we are planning a Create.Believe.Conquer. webinar series soon. In our communities, (Raleigh, NC and Atlanta, GA) we are getting opportunities to speak to young women and attend big events with Fit.Faith promoting positive body image. It was an amazing feeling when we had our first event in October 2014 near Atlanta, and we had one of our original clients who had previously lived in Alaska attend!
What sets Fit Faith apart from other online personal training services?
We realize that many women fail at their nutrition/fitness programs because of something missing on the inside that is holding them back. We believe that is a component of faith and self-love, and suggest daily practices that change mindset and feelings about body-image.
When coaching, I come from an area of understanding and love and teach balance in nutrition, fitness and life. Working with us is unlike other coaches that expect perfection and have strict plans. I usually get clients who have tried other coaches and rebounded with weight gain. We provide one on one coaching and we are always developing new programs to fit everyone’s budget.
Faith’s mission is to empower women to embrace themselves as strong + beautiful conquerors. We provide the 40 day Create.Believe.Conquer. challenge (#CBC40daychallenge) to work with any fitness and nutrition program, as it only adds 3-5 minutes of daily devotionals, affirmations or journaling to build confidence, consistency and ultimately long-term success with a program.
You recently stepped down from your full-time national sales position to becoming an entrepreneur. What was the turning point? How did you prepare? Would you have done anything differently?
Yes, that decision had been in the works for over a year when my body began to give out due to stress, travel and excessive workload. I knew I could not continue to be healthy, both physically and mentally if I stayed at that job. I also had such a joy and purpose when I was coaching people – I knew what I was supposed to be doing with my life.
The turning point was the end of 2014 when my boss and I had a heart-to-heart about the travel in the coming year. I would continue to be on a plane 3 weeks out of every month, working weekends and evenings – and I was honest about my inability to do so with a good attitude. Your body will tell you when you are doing something you are not meant to – if your job exhausts you and turns you into a person you never wanted to be – then it is not right for you.
I had been interviewing at other places since September of last year, but wanted a job that would allow me to have time to build my business on my time. It turned out that I had enough money saved to take 6 weeks off and I’ve spent this time networking and finding opportunities in my local market to practice nutrition coaching, personal training, and getting in front of local churches to promote health, wellness and positive body image.
If I were to do anything differently, I would have saved a lot more money while at a very well-paying job. However, what I gained is industry connections and experience. I now have the ability to present in front of large audiences, the discipline to work from a home office, and sales and marketing aptitude that I can now use to market myself. I have a high regard for networking and partnership.
You also launched an ebook last year called Create.Believe.Conquer can you tell us more about it?
Believe.Conquer guide is our #CBC40daychallenge. The goal is to guide you through the process of being successful with your fitness and nutrition program, through daily devotionals and practices. Consisting of 3 distinct phases, the book takes you through Creating your goals, Believing in yourself and your creation, and Redefining what it means to conquer. The devotionals are based on spiritual practices, affirmations, positive psychology, the law of attraction and biblical scriptures. Ultimately, my goal for this book is that every woman will walk away saying “I love me.” and Believe that she is truly a Conqueror. The challenge is to commit to the daily practice, and transformation occurs from the inside out. It could also be used during competition prep or post-pregnancy weight loss. We also offer a private facebook group to support the #CBC40daychallenge.
What advice can you give to those who want to start to focus their dreams and pursue to build up their own brand?
This question is so humbling to me! I still feel like I’m just starting – but I also can see where I came from so I have some advice to offer. My #1 piece of advice is TAKE ACTION. Even if you don’t exactly know what you want to do. It has been my struggle for the last 10 years, moving from different jobs in different industries. I found out what I did NOT want to do. But when I finally started following my joy – what makes me happy – it turned into something more. I took action and attended FMI in Long Beach, CA. I sat in the seat and thought “I have no clue what I’m doing!” But I stepped in the direction of my dreams. Every step after that has been ACTION – even when I didn’t feel good enough. Even when people thought I was crazy for changing jobs. Even when I had “no clue” – I kept taking steps.
The other thing that you CANNOT live without is a support system of like minded people. When you want to follow your dreams, many people closest to you will (lovingly) tell you you’ve gone crazy. You need to have a network of people who “get you” and you can call when you are feeling discouraged, like you have failed, and beginning to think you are indeed crazy. FMI was that energy source for me. I saw that these other “crazy” people were actually making money – like lots of it – just from helping people reach their goals. They got through the tough times, and it makes you realize that you will too.
If you were to explain FMI to someone who could benefit from it, how would you describe FMI and what it did for you?
FMI is lifechanging. We all have that voice in our head that “knows” we should be doing something more. I didn’t really know what to expect with FMI – because I didn’t know what I didn’t know. The first time I went – I was excited about getting some pictures with amazing photographers, meeting some people and getting some information on fitness modeling. But WOW – I got so much more. My mind was completely expanded in regards to making passive income online by offering products and services that we already have (in our heads). It’s not all about fitness modeling, but its about using your image to inspire, encourage and help others (while making money).
My first FMI, I sat and listened to Jill Coleman, who has successfully built her online brand in the past 6 years – and the thing that stuck with me the most was she said “Ready..FIRE…Aim, Aim, Aim.” She encouraged me to just “do it!” I got my website that night, and I’ve been improving ever since.
I met a few alumni in 2013 and thought it must be amazing that they still come back each year. They must be learning more every time – there must be something really great about this organization. Now, I’m an alumni and have countless friends from FMI who I can call for advice or just to find out what great things they are doing. These friendships are also business partnerships, as I’ve learned about affiliate marketing from attending FMI.
My second year at FMI was even better! Why? Because now I knew what to expect, and what my goals were this time. The best part was meeting newbies and getting to help them start their dream, pick a brand name, build their website, and watch them grow! The energy that exists in a room full of passionate, driven, and fit people is tangible. It’s different from the rest of the fitness industry where everyone seems to be in competition with each other. Even after the lectures, people were sharing their experiences, tips and where they were a year ago.
The value that comes with attending an event is priceless. You will look back on this experience and soon realize that this was the best investment in your personal growth and business that you could have made.
Can you give us your top 5 best tips when it comes to building your own company?
- Fight the negativity in your head that tells you that you are “nobody” in this industry. You were designed completely unique and you have knowledge that can help people that want to hear specifically from YOU.
- Make a plan. Take Action. Keep planning. Even if you don’t know what you are doing, get around people who do, and then start DOING. You can always make improvements.
- Have at least 1 person in your corner. If you do not have anyone physically there to encourage you – you must get connected somehow. You can join a meetup group locally, but going to FMI is practically guaranteed that you will live with a lifelong friend! There will be tough times, and having a sounding board is a must.
- If you are not organized, work on getting organized. Get your finances straight in the beginning. Separate personal and business expenses. Find out from people who know.
- Play up your strengths. Know your weaknesses. For example, you want to help people – you have killer program design and you can make awesome YouTube videos – so do that! Maybe you are not good at spreadsheets or web design. Then get help!
For future reference, how can future clients contact you through internet for more information about you, your Fit Faith Program, and ebook?
My passion is helping women grow inside and out and offer online nutrition coaching which consists of emails and scheduled phone calls. I always like to take time to find out more about my clients and offer a complimentary 30 minute phone consult for those interested in coaching. Interested ladies can contact me through my website: camykennedy.com. There will also be several new products launching this year, for those looking for a program to fit their budget. Anyone who is interested in the Fit.Faith. component can get connected at www.fitfaithfam.com and the #CBC40daychallenge ebook and be found at www.createbelieveconquer.com. We are also looking for affiliates, personal trainers and bloggers who believe in the #fitfaithmovement and want to be featured on the site.
Any shout outs?
I have met so many great people in this industry so I know that I will be leaving out a lot! I have to give some recognition to Jamie Middleton Eason for being my inspiration and to my boyfriend for his encouragement. He showed me a picture of Jamie in 2009 and said I could look like her and do what she’s doing. I really doubted that, but I continued to work hard and stay focused on fitness, despite life challenges. In 2012, I had the honor of meeting Jamie and Michael at the Olympia, and got to spend time with her telling her about Fit.Faith. She loved Fit.Faith. and was so encouraging to us, and even ended up doing Meg’s makeup for a photoshoot with Bobby Black! Thank you to Bobby – he was the one who introduced us to Jamie – and he is a still a close friend and amazing photographer based out of Las Vegas (www.bobbyblack.com). That whole scenario really made me believe that I could be someone to make a difference in this industry. Since then, have had the opportunity to connect with so many strong Christians involved in fitness, and I see that the #fitfaithmovement is something real.
Wendy LaFayette, of busyfitworld.com, was the one who helped me get into the fitness industry professionally and has been responsible for so many of my connections.
To my soul-sister, Meg Lynch, she supported me when I claimed things even when they hadn’t happened yet. She has a vision and a passion to grow Fit.Faith. into something that can change so many women’s lives and her marketing and outreach efforts are what will expand it nationwide and at a grass roots level.
To my family and friends who know who they are – thank you for the encouragement and support. And to my mom – she always supported me, even when I moved away to California on Christmas Day and recently, when I told her that I no longer had a full time job. She has always believed I was going to “make it”!