The public is welcome to attend the grand opening on Oct. 22 from 9:30-11:30 a.m. at the Downtown/Northshore Chattanooga location in Coolidge Park at 150 River St. near the stage close to where the Delta Queen used to be docked.
For more information visit www.chattanooga.fit4mom.com or email Rachel at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Starting Oct. 24, Fit4Mom classes will be offered Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 9:30 a.m. at the Downtown/Northshore location. On Tuesdays and Thursdays classes will be offered at 9:30 a.m. at the Imagination Station/Wolftever Creek Greenway location at 4910 Swinyar Dr in Collegedale.
Rachel McClellan played volleyball at the University of Illinois and later spent several years as a pro indoor volleyball player in Puerto Rico, South Korea and several European countries.
Being athletic — and the mother of two daughters, Adelynn, 4, and Avery Kate, 2 — McClellan had a natural affinity for Fit4Mom, a business with more than 1,300 franchisees nationwide. It offers such workouts as Stroller Strides, at which groups of moms exercise while their kids go along for the ride in strollers.
"The workout's kind of designed with understanding kids' attention span," McClellan said. "You have about a four- to six-minute window to do [an exercise] station."
"I happened upon Stroller Strides, went to a class, and was instantly hooked," she said. "I became an instructor and knew at that moment that I had found my tribe."
Now, McClellan will bring Fit4Mom here with help from Ash Robinson, a Chattanooga-area native and Fit4Mom's newly-appointed CEO who splits her time between her home in San Diego where Fit4Mom is headquartered, and Chattanooga, where Robinson has family.
The two moms will hold a free grand opening event Saturday at Coolidge Park that will include a Stroller Strides class, Stroller Barre class, giveaways, prizes and refreshments.
Robinson called Stroller Strides Fit4Mom's signature workout. Other programs include Fit4Baby workouts for pregnant moms and Body Back exercises for moms who want to get their "body back" after pregnancy.
"I think moms are really surprised by how well kids do in their stroller," said Robinson, a 1999 graduate of LaFayette High School in LaFayette, Ga., and mother of two children, Luka, 4 and Vivi, 1.
McClellan and Robinson met through a Fit4Mom participant who knew them both.
"We were both college athletes, so when we met, we both sort of connected on that level," said Robinson, who played golf at Mercer University in Macon, Ga.
Franchise tailored for moms
It costs about $65 a month for a mom to participate in Fit4Mom workouts, which are usually outdoors in a public place. McClellan is looking to find an indoor workout space to use when Chattanooga's weather gets cold.
Being a franchisee costs a total of roughly $7,500, Robinson said. The typical franchisee will have about 20 moms sign up, she said, about 10 of whom show up for class on any given day.
"It's really a business that's designed for a mom who's maybe working part-time," Robinson said. "It's a very small business, not like opening a big gym."
Robinson said being a franchisee — in addition to CEO — will give her "insight into the processes, support and coaching our franchises need most."
McClellan and her husband, Anthony McClellan, lived for eight years in Chicago before they relocated to Chattanooga in 2015.
McClellan — a Tennessee native who missed the South — knew in "less than five minutes" that she wanted to move to Chattanooga after her husband got a job that allowed him to work from anywhere in the Southeast.