By Kerry Drager
Setting a goal is the beginning of realizing a dream. Trish Thieschafer of Belgrade has made it her job and her personal goal to help others find the motivation and provide the support they need to keep striving for their dream.
While in school, Thieschafer’s favorite subject was physical education. She loves playing all kinds of sports and staying active, but it wasn’t until she was a young woman that she began her journey in helping others become physically strong and fit.
“I wasn’t into running until after I had my second baby. I like to sign up for things that keep me motivated and moving. After signing up for my first half triathlon, I got hooked on the whole fitness thing,” said Thieschafter.
Being a mother of three children and having a full-time job is a juggling act for any parent, but Thieschafter wanted to find time for herself. It was important to her to keep her body and mind healthy and active.
“I would bike and run to work and then at the noon hour, I would swim to practice my laps. People began to realize that if I could find time to do this with three kids and a job, then they could too.”
Co-workers and friends began to ask Thieschafter how she was managing her time and keeping in shape. She wanted to help people obtain their fitness goals and began looking for ways to obtain the education she needed to become a successful personal and group trainer. Online classes and researching at home provided the schooling and credits she needed to become certified.
“We did part of our garage into a fitness center. I still had my job at that time and only had a couple of hours to be with my clients because of my job. I realized that if I quit my job, I could become a personal trainer. I already had four or five people who wanted to do a boot camp. So I started my boot camp in the city park in June of 2012, but the weather started to get chilly by September and we needed to find a place to have the boot camp indoors.”
Thieschafter had the goal to open up a fitness center in her home town of Belgrade. A local shop was closing and she took the proactive step of approaching the shop owner to get a ballpark figure on how much it had cost to run the store.
“I kept seeing her moving her stuff out of the building one day. I knew that if I really wanted to make the move to obtain this business, I was going to have to ask her what her payments towards the building were. She was very helpful and wanted to see the building put to use.”
With a starting point in place and her husband’s assistance, Thieschafter created spreadsheets at home to find out how much it was going to cost to start up and maintain a fitness center.
“When I left my job, the fitness center was our long term goal. We had to guess how many members we would need and what I should charge them to break even. Then I talked to the bank and decided I could get this to work. By November we were in the building, and I ran my boot camp while I was remodeling. My long term goal ended up being a really short term one. My husband and I worked on this together and by January of 2013 we opened To Be Determined.”
Thieschafter is always looking for ways to benefit others while keeping active herself. She is currently raising $2,300 to donate towards a three-day, 60-mile walkathon for breast cancer awareness in the metro area next summer.
To help raise some of the funds, she participated in the Cold Water Plunge, an event that is currently sweeping the nation. The event requires the challenged to jump into a body of cold water or donate money towards a charity.
“I got challenged by a family friend. If you don’t jump within 24 hours, then you donate towards whatever fund the challenger chooses. Then you can pass the challenge onto someone else and you get to pick where you want the money to go to. When I passed it along, if they did not jump, they needed to donate to my walk.”
Thieschafter also helps out by coaching girl’s’ basketball and volleyball at the local high school.
To Be Determined also participates in the Silver Sneakers and Silver and Fit programs for seniors. She is currently working on obtaining more, low-impact equipment for her active and growing number of senior clients.
It has taken a great deal of dedication, careful planning and time management to obtain the healthy body and the business she’s always wanted. With the right amout of willpower, long-term goals can happen even sooner than expected.
She has shown her community that despite your busy schedule, there is always time to take care of yourself and others.