Why I almost quit The Fitness Marshall
I wanted to take a moment to talk to you all about everything that has been going on and what is to come. The past year has been a rollercoaster. It’s taught me a lot about myself, The Fitness Marshall and what kind of person I want to be. Moving to LA was really incredible. It has been a dream of mine since I can remember. When we moved to LA from Indiana we moved on a wave of viral success. One moment we were in Indiana making random YouTube videos and the next moment we were being whisked away to LA shooting a reality show and selling out cardio concerts all over the world. It was way too much to take in at one time. I thought I had my feet on solid ground but after moving I quickly realized I had been living on a cloud that was dissipating quickly. As much as I tried not to get wrapped up in the instant success of it all, I definitely did. I thought “Me Too” going viral and all of the attention and ticket sales meant that were were just going to keep going UP and UP and UP. But that’s not how viral success goes. As quickly as people love you, they forget you. Now let me pause because that sounds hella dramatic and I totally realize that I have a HUGE audience and so many Booties who have been on this journey with us since the beginning. I’m strictly talking about the viral “sensation” of it all. But going from getting 30 million views in a month to getting 3 million views in a month really freaked me out. It made me think I wasn’t good or interesting anymore. It made me think I lost my spark. I went down this obsessive spiral where I would watch old videos and try to figure out what people liked so much better about them and what was wrong with me now and it really destroyed my mental health. It made everything not fun anymore. All of a sudden I was in this new (EXPENSIVE) city and my viral moment was over, my reality show was over and I was left trying to figure out how to make this a successful business for me, my boyfriend and best friends. Never before had I cared what people thought. In the beginning I just danced to songs I liked and was so confident in myself and what I was doing. There was never any pressure because there was never anything to lose. Suddenly it felt like there was everything to lose. I started overanalyzing my moves, what I would say, the music I would do. I would look up all the latest dance trends and songs and try to make videos for them as soon as possible in attempt at another viral moment. I was chasing this high that I had before. After almost a full year of feeling like nothing was sticking and I had lost my touch I hit a breaking point. I remember sitting on the couch this summer just crying and telling Cameron that I was ready to quit. Never in the 6 years that I have been teaching have I had a moment when I was so ready to be done with it all. After that point I knew if I was going to continue, something had to change. I had to stop chasing viral success. I had to stop trying to make every video perfect. I had to stop making videos that I thought OTHER people would like. I started this because it made ME happy. I used to not say that because it sounded selfish and wasn’t a great sound byte for an inspirational media story...but by making myself happy, I was able to make other people happy. I had spent the last year trying to be something for everyone else that I forgot they fell in love with The Fitness Marshall because I WASN’T trying to be anything for anyone.
The past 4 months have been nothing short of life changing for me. I’ve started making videos that I love again. It feels amazing. It reignited my passion and gave me confidence I have been missing for so long. I still get in funks and I still doubt myself but not like I used to. We are going back to basics. Going forward, every video now is made with one goal and that is TO HAVE FUN. That means that ANYONE can join in regardless of skill level, ability, size, etc. If you’re an avid follower I hope you have been able to see the change in tone of the videos. I hope they are making you happier, more confident and healthier overall. I hope you are able to see people you can relate to. I want to do a better job of representing as many people as I can. That’s why I’ve thrown Cameron in the past few videos because he is NOT a dancer but that’s OKAY. You don’t have to get all the moves right to have fun and get healthy mentally and physically.
Most importantly, we are finding better ways to connect with you all and give you a true, seamless workout every single week. It’s been such a struggle with YouTube because we don’t make any money from the videos and sometimes it can be hard to get a true full workout when you have to wait for the intro/ending and commercials between the videos. We have been working around the clock (and investing lots of money) into a new streaming platform that will allow us to workout with you every single week LIVE right from your TV, phone, tablet, laptop. We call this, the BOOTY ARMY. Me and the Backup Booties will FINALLY be able to dance with to all your favorite videos from our YouTube channel for 60 minutes straight every single week. No effects, no editing, just all of us sweating together getting through the same workout. We will be doing a new playlist each time. Even if you can’t watch it live, all the livestreams will be available for you to watch on your own time without any ads or interruptions (except a few short water breaks lol). Not only will you get the live streams, we are also shooting tutorials for every single YouTube video. We break down all of the moves so you can really NAIL your favorite ones and never feel left out or like a video is too hard for you. We are all giving all members of the BOOTY ARMY discounts on merch, tour tickets, behind the scenes live streams of our shoots and more. It’s a brand new chapter for us, and one that I honestly never thought was possible (streaming copyrighted music is expensive AF you guys) But I believe with all of the my heart that the music makes it so special. That’s why I’ve been willing to make very little money doing this because I have been waiting for the opportunity to launch a membership service like this that will not only allow us to sustain the YouTube videos, but give you all the full seamless workout that you deserve.
I am so FREAKIN excited for 2019. I feel reinvigorated, confident and with such a sense of direction and purpose. This is truly just the beginning and I hope you continue on this journey with us because you ain’t seen nothin yet lol. I hope you guys sign up to join the BOOTY ARMY. It’s such a labor of love and is going to be the best revolution of The Fitness Marshall. We aren’t starting the live stream workouts until the beginning of next year so we are offering the membership at a discounted rate until that launches. If you sign up now at the lower rate that price stays locked in but if you wait until the live streams launch the price will increase.
I know these thoughts are kinda scattered but I just felt it in my heart to update you guys on where everything was at. I love you so much and can never thank you enough for making all of this possible in the first place.
To new adventures <3