The Bottom Line: 10 Questions with Rachel Cosgrove
1. What was your first job in the health club industry?
My very first job was as a step/aerobics instructor at the YMCA while in college. I earned my first certification from AFAA as a step/aerobics instructor.
2. What led you to founding Results Fitness?
After earning my degree in physiology with a minor in exercise and health from University of California at Santa Barbara, I moved to New York City, where I worked full time as a personal trainer. There, I met Alwyn Cosgrove, my now husband, who I learned a ton from about lifting weights and coaching my clients. I took my CSCS from the NSCA and got more and more into strength training, seeing the results with myself and my clients from making it the No. 1 priority in my programming.
We worked together in New York building up our clientele out of an independent gym under the business name of Cosgrove Fitness & Sports Training Systems. After a couple years we both moved to California and opened what eventually became Results Fitness in 2000, setting out to offer something different than the gyms we had worked at. We were frustrated with the standard in our industry and wanted to change the way fitness is done.
3. What is one key to Results Fitness’ success?
Constantly learning and improving. We never rest on our laurels and are always looking for a better way, whether it’s better results for our clients or a better way to run our business. We are always seeking new information and knowledge to keep leading in the industry.
4. What’s your favorite part of being in the fitness industry?
I love coaching people. I love seeing people realize they can accomplish something they never thought they could. Now I get to see this in our employees, which is just as rewarding as seeing a client succeed.
5. What is the best piece of leadership advice you’ve ever been given?
It starts with you. You have to lead by example times 10. You can say whatever you want, but your actions speak far louder than your words.
6. If you weren’t in the position you’re in now, what job do you think you’d be doing?
At one point I wanted to be a Broadway dancer, before I realized I was meant to be a coach, which was why I moved to New York City. Dance is my background and one of my passions.
7. What’s the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome?
Four years into opening our business, Alwyn was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. He went through chemo and within a year it had come back a second time. He ended up having a stem cell transplant at UCLA. This is by far the biggest challenge I’ve been through.
8. And how did you overcome that challenge?
Thankfully we had systems in place in our business and a team in place so it could run without us while we focused on him fighting this disease. He’s now 13 years in remission, all clear. This definitely gives you perspective. The little things are not worth stressing over after going through something like that.
9. If you could give your younger self a piece of advice, what would it be?
You’re exactly where you’re supposed to be. Learn from the moment you’re in. Be careful always looking ahead. Take time to be present and soak it all in.
10. What’s a fitness trend you’re keeping an eye on?
Technology and how it is integrating with what we do is definitely the focus of the future. How can we use it to enhance what we do, without losing the personal side? An in-person coach will always be superior to a computer, but can technology help improve that in-person experience?