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#UpWithHer: Dallas gym owner shares staying-power solutions for small businesses

Brit Wold, founder of Grit Fitness in Dallas, describes the qualities that helped her small business succeed and become recession-proof.

DALLAS — Brit Wold started Grit Fitness eight years ago. 

In the past five years, her business has expanded with a second location, survived a pandemic and record-breaking inflation.

Wold told WFAA Daybreak anchor Kara Sewell that the only thing she can control is her energy and enthusiasm. She believes those two qualities dictate success and help recession-proof a small business.  

Wold said there are no easy days at Grit Fitness.

"You don't need grit when things are going well. You need grit when the going gets tough," she said. 

Wold challenges clients with 17 different class formats, focusing on strength training, cardio and flexibility.

But, her biggest test is encouraging women to shift their mindset. 

"It was about creating a safe place for women of all backgrounds, of all races, of all body shapes; to come together, be vulnerable and focus more on strength and not just how your body looks," said Wold. 

Wold's mission also keeps her motivated as a business owner in a slowing economy. 

"The first and most important thing that I do is I make sure that I focus on what's thriving as a business owner. If I focus just on problems, I'm just going to attract more problems. And I'm not going to have the right mindset to come up with creative solutions to keep my business growing through an economic downturn," said Wold. 

Her solutions center around people.  

"I really try to focus on how many new customers we have. What new class formats do we launch? Who are my most loyal clients? How can I praise them?" said Wold. 

And Wold continues to build clientele by viewing any challenges as opportunities. 

"I have to spend an equal amount of time working on the business, not in the business. Because if I'm just putting out fires every day, there's not that brain power or that capacity to think about where we are going to be in five years," said Wold.

So, Wold steps out of her fitness classes, designating time annually for entrepreneurial development and self-care.

"The entire organization feeds off my energy and my vision. If I'm pouring from an empty cup, then I don't have that energy to empower the rest of the group," said Wold. 

Because you can't have grit without hope. 

Wold believes the hardest part about scaling up any business is securing a high-quality business loan because one in five small businesses fail in the first year.

Despite having excellent credit, savings and a business plan, it took Wold about three years with high revenues to get a loan. So, she recommends to get creative and be open to unique ways to find funds.

Editor's Note: The following video was uploaded in 2019.

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