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Founders Story

Ever wonder what the story is with out founder Chad? What is is background? Why did he start a gym? What is his why? Read this and find out!

“I was always active in my youth. My mom was a high level racquetball player. I was always in the gym either as a little kid following my mom’s training, or working out on my own as I got older.

Then I went to art school.

For 5 years of my college life I became pretty sedentary. At a small art school, there weren’t any sports. As you can imagine, I got pretty out of shape.

After graduating with a degree in Illustration, I couldn’t find a job. So, I took a job as a caregiver in a nursing home. My job was to take care of a 21 year old comatose patient. During this time working in a nursing home I saw people wasting away. I learned that some of these people weren’t even that old. They were there for various reasons that arguably could have been prevented if they just had taken care of themselves earlier in life. Over time seeing this and being much more sedentary myself, I decided I needed to make a change in my life. I did not want to be the 50-60 something year old wasting away in a nursing home because I didn’t taken care of myself. Along with my “fat friend” saying that I was starting to look like him, it was time to improve my life.

I joined a 24 hour gym. I got some of my friends to come with me to make it more fun and I started making workout routines for us to do. My one friend said to me “you should look into being a personal trainer.” So I did. It would be the perfect blend of taking care of myself and helping others.

I got my personal training degree form NPTI in Philadelphia in 2009. Once I graduated, I started working at the same 24 hour fitness gym that I was a member at. My position became manager and personal trainer so I was fortunate have experience in both ends of the gym. I started running boot camp classes and eventually had a small following of people that were loving it and getting results. Their lives were changing for the better because of me. It was amazing!

Eventually, I found Crossfit. I decided to get my Crossfit Certification in 2010 and started also working at the CrossFit gym. This started to blend in the team and sports atmosphere that I grew up with. My competitive spark came back and I started training hard. I became pretty good. I also became blind to what my initial goal was. To stay out of a nursing home.

Training hard all the time with little rest eventually (sooner than later) took its tole on me. In 2011 I suffered a back injury that is still haunts me today. This woke me up to the reality that, if done incorrectly, this stuff could actually put you in a home sooner. It could limit your quality of life as opposed to increase it.

In 2013 I opened my own gym. My goal was to blend the Crossfit methodology with what I learned in training school to help people improve their quality of life. And we did just that. I had people around me that were on board with the same vision I had. We started getting people results. Many of my original boot camp clients were still with me. People were losing weight, getting stronger, able to do things outside of the gym better every day! And, while I was helping do this for other people, I was still training really hard to be a competitive athlete.

Don’t get me wrong, at the time it was SUPER fun. I was faster and stronger than I had ever been. I was winning comps. My physique was great. But, I never addressed or fixed underlying issues. Like my back. I would injure it, take some time off to “fix it”, and hit training even harder. Every time I injured myself, it would get a little worse.

In 2016, my wife and I were expecting our first baby. It was an exciting time but I knew a baby would take lots of time so I tried to get training in leading up to the baby. Inevitably, I hurt my back again. Once our baby was born, I still had a back injury. It wasn’t bad, but it was there. I continued to train like always.

The day my perspective changed forever came from picking up a 15lb baby out of her crib. I went to pick her up, my back seized up, I could barely lift her. Things had come full circle for me again. I had pain in my back that was caused by my training and not focusing on the right things that I personally needed to do. This was leading to a lessened quality of life. Pain. Not sleeping well. Trouble doing things I liked outside of the gym. Not being able to pick up my daughter and hold her. At this rate I would not be able to play with my daughter as she grew. I would don’t be able to have a quality of life that I wanted. I would be on the fast track to assisted care. This was unacceptable. At 33 years old, I would have to “wake up” and revisit why I got into all of this in the first place. To stay out of a nursing home, to have a high quality of life, and to help others achieve that as well.

I am still dealing with back pain, poor posture, and the consequences of almost 10 years of forgetting my why. I was helping others push that way, but I was neglecting myself. The “do what I say, not what I do” was not working out well for me. So now, my focus is always on “how will this help me improve my life.” In turn, it has helped me help other people by focusing the gym more towards this goal.

Elizabethtown Fitness and Performance exists to other people live a long and high quality life. 

Sometimes, it takes making all the mistakes so you can really learn what is important and you can help others not make the same mistakes you did.

My goal is to keep you out of a nursing home; to keep you doing the activities you like outside of the gym and improve upon them. To keep you playing with your kids or grandkids; have more energy. Sleep better. Be happier.

 I want your life to be the best it can for as long as it can. I believe the best way to do this is through the right exercise programs, eating well, recovering well, and being around like-minded people. I want this for myself. I want this for everyone.

My mom used to say “Being rich isn’t always about money.” As I age, I find this to be true. I believe the only currency you should be truly concerned about it time. Being rich, I believe, truly comes from the quality of life you have. The more time you can spend happy and healthy, the wealthier you are. If you’re happy, healthy and can move well, you are truly rich. 

I hope I can help others achieve this kind of wealth.”

So if you’re ready to make changes for your future, book a call today and let’s discuss a plan.


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