Episode 34: Adriana Cagan on Living Your Priorities

business you Sep 21, 2021
Adriana Cagan knows living your priorities

Adriana Cagan is a mompreneur from Seattle who understands what her priorities are and is living them out as owner of her own personal fitness training studio.

Connect with Adrian.. on IG, Facebook, or on her website.

The books she mentioned is worth reading for sure!  It's Atomic Habits by James Clear.

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This is a transcript of the This Mom Knows Podcast - Episode - 34

Jennifer Uren
Well, welcome to This Mom Knows. This is a unique thing. This is the first live on site interview we've gotten to do and we're here in Nashville at the Gaylord. And we're both at Podcast Movement, and you have a podcast and you're a mom. And so I'm really excited to talk with you a little bit about what you do and how you integrate being a mom with being an entrepreneur. So why don't you tell us your name, where you're from, what your podcast is, and what you do.

Adriana Cagan
That's so great. It is so nice to meet you. And thank you for having me. My name is Adriana Medina Cagan. And I have a podcast called Being Fuerte it's time to speak. My business called Fuerte Fitness and it's out of Seattle, Washington, I have a studio and a personal training business, but I also train group training and corporate training as well as kids training.

Jennifer Uren
Oh, excellent. So you do the whole family a whole all the way down? Yeah. So with kids...

Adriana Cagan
I should say like young adults.

Jennifer Uren
Okay. Not like children, children.

Adriana Cagan
Okay, so my children, they just work out with me. Or they work out with their moms, because sometimes that situation is gonna happen. Yes. Yes. And I say don't let your kids be your excuse. Bring them right.

Jennifer Uren
And model well for them.

Adriana Cagan
Exactly. Taking care of self.

Jennifer Uren
Yes. So what was it that caused you to stop and say, I want to start this business?

Adriana Cagan
I think it was the connection. First, I would have great conversations with other moms, and realize that there was a common thread. In all the conversations, it was always finding time looking for those spaces, looking for those situations, and then making it happen. It may not be perfect and you may not you may have that attitude of it's either all or nothing. But something is better than nothing. Yeah. And like you said, just modeling that habit for yourself. But it's also showing your children the same thing.

Jennifer Uren
Yes. And you know, I think the biggest enemy, we call it perfection, but really, it's it's grandiose, our biggest enemy is that all or nothing. And if we can make that all smaller, like if all I do this week is walk for 30 minutes, then we can make that progress. But when we go if all I can do is lose 100 pounds, we're never gonna do it.

Adriana Cagan
We're never gonna do it. And you have to standardize, I read this book called Atomic Habits.

Jennifer Uren
Yes.

Adriana Cagan
And he talks about standardizing a habit, and then you can optimize.

Jennifer Uren
Yes.

Adriana Cagan
And that's just this week work on putting your shoes on and getting out the door for 20 minutes.

Jennifer Uren
Absolutely. That is a fantastic book. And I'm going to put a link to that in the show notes. Because it is it's very influential. And it's what a lot of what I think is tied around rhythms and routines and building life around how we're wired and not trying to conform ourselves to what everyone else thinks we should do, or how we should do it. We want to do it in a way that that we can do it well.

Adriana Cagan
Right. And also, look for those possibilities. It's so easy to think about the experiences that you had where you failed. But let's talk about the possibility of like, hey, let's see if there's three times a week this week that I can get 20 minutes in, Yeah, wow, I can do it while the kids are at the playground, I can do it while they're, you know, having a play day. And I can go around and partner up with another mom and say you take care of them this time. And I'll take care of them this time. And it just, there's those possibilities everywhere.

Jennifer Uren
Yes. And I think you've just hit on something really helpful for us as moms and mompreneurs. Is that partnership and that accountability, and not accountability necessarily in a you know, overseer way, but in a mutual you know, we're gonna help each other way. Because it can be really easy to have intentions, but it can be hard to execute it because there are a lot of barriers.

Adriana Cagan
And there's a community right there used to be that same takes a child, it takes a village to raise a child. Yes. Right. Yes. And so I have other moms that have single kids, or they have more than one three or so. And I will take them all and say why don't you take care of you for an hour? And vice versa. Go on a date. Go be a wife.

Jennifer Uren
Yeah

Adriana Cagan
There's so many "selves" that we don't connect with because it's so we're just so uber focused on like taking care of, you know, our kids and being a mom that we forget about our needs to and our self care. So yeah,

Jennifer Uren
I think it takes a village to be a mom. Like, that should be the new phrase.

It does, I tell you. Just through my experiences with with training moms, with training parents prior to becoming parents and then going through the process with them. And then 10 years later, I become a mom. And I understand like what it's like what they were going through. Yeah, I have so much more compassion. Yeah, just understand like, it's that's the self compassion aspect that you have to give yourself because I would notice when they're like I did not do anything this weekend, and they go down on themselves and I'm just like, so you're here today. You showed up! Yeah, that's part of the process is like, All right. Now let's do something. This will be one of your three days. Yeah. And then look for that space.

But that perspective is really, I think, why we need each other because it's hard to find that for ourselves. I have a group I meet with monthly, a mini mastermind, and that's what I noticed we're the best at is pointing out what, what each other is doing well, when we can't see it for ourselves, we see where we're failing, but they see where we're succeeding. Yeah, and that's really probably the biggest benefit of someone coming to someone like you and saying, "I have knowledge. But now I need encouragement and support to do this." Is that is that something you've just noticed?

It is and also as like a mom, an entrepreneur, a business owner, a trainer, I am the competitor as well, I should also part, um, I am the hardest person on myself. So I think when you see that, like how would I imagine Sophia? Like having these thoughts or ideas and I'm just like, wow, okay, check. I love myself, I love my body, I birthed this, you know, beautiful child, I fed this child through my body. It's just a beautiful thing. And then it just turns the table across like, Oh, my body can work in my response as well. My love for myself, it works out of love not out of I have to because once you get to that I have to situation. It's a it's a chore. And it's it's better to choose and I think that's another thing that he brings up as well as in Atomic Habits is like you choose into it. You choose to work on your body, you choose to work on email for half an hour. You choose to play with your kids for you know, an hour. Like those are things that are fun, and it's like you choose to go work out in the park, you choose to be out in the sun, you choose to sweat and feel and look younger. Not like an older mom. Yeah, those choices are really like liberating.

Yes.

Adriana Cagan
And it's so much easier to to just love than control.

Jennifer Uren
Right?

Adriana Cagan
It's too much pressure.

Jennifer Uren
It's a lot of pressure.

Adriana Cagan
It is! Yeah, you I can catch myself every now and then with that, like perfectionism or the get down on myself. I should have the Oh, and I'm like Okay, stop right now. Let's I got to do what I can.

Jennifer Uren
Yeah. So how did becoming a mom - I mean, you mentioned that you did client work before - so how did becoming a mom shift, not only your perspective, but actually how you run your business?

Oh, my goodness, for one, I went from a 2000 Square studio, knowing I was I was pregnant, and I was going to have to start having more time for my child. So I started creating space around that. I merged with another partner, and just started creating a way to have a little bit more time with my child, and prepping people to prepping my clients to train with other clients while I was on maternity leave. So you build those I already build those relationships as well, should, we mentioned that already the other moms Yes, to train my clients to take care of my people. And so because I knew it was gonna be challenging, I didn't know how challenging it was gonna be. But it was pretty challenging to really figure out like, I still need to work on my business, but I still need to be on my business. But I have a newborn baby. And I have to create some habits around that. Yes, not being, you know, Mom, I still have to have dates, and all these other things, too. So I think it really helped me brainstorm ways on how to be a little bit more efficient, and how to keep a calendar and really stick to the appointments and put myself as an appointment as well. And I teach a semi private and while I was on maternity leave, I had another gal teach my semi private. And even as I was coming back, I thought I'd still want you to teach a semi private, but I'm going to be a mom too. I'm going to be taking that so and it helped me get back into shape as well. And she felt a little awkward cuz she was "this is your class" and I was like, Oh, right. I need I need you as like my mama partner, because I will take over after I feel a little bit more established. It was challenging. I moved studios, I moved spaces twice. Okay. And then I was already in the rhythm of creating, you know, business work. And I have two employees that were working with me at the time too that continue to do the back end of the business. So I needed help.

Well, good.

Adriana Cagan
And I've been in business for about 20 years. I should probably tell you that okay, yeah 20 years. Two of those years I was with a company 24 Hour Fitness operation. And then and then I left and then created my business.

Jennifer Uren
You started your own. Well and I think that's really interesting that you're talking about this need to to ease back into this because life is always changing. We're always creating new habits or tweaking how our rhythms and routines work. But I think there is nothing more inconsistent than birth to five years old, once they hit school, you get a little bit more of some set rhythms. But it seems like every 90 days, it changes. And so what you think you just established is now no longer working. And so I think there's a, there's a lot of pressure to go, okay, I've had my 12 weeks of maternity leave, or whatever it is and now I'm going to jump back in as if nothing has happened. But life has completely changed. And so I love that you said, I eased back into my job as a participant so that I was strong enough to take it back on, I think there was some great wisdom there.

There is and what I appreciated too, is my client, mamas would come by and visit me as I was home. And I could just - they're like, how are you doing? Yeah, it's asleep. Sleep deprivation, right? They brought me food and brought me clothing, I didn't have to worry about any of that. In the first, I would say, three years of having Sophia young. So I was, so I was very lucky and fortunate to have great, great clients and my community really pulled in. And secondly, I just felt like you mentioned everything changes all the time, you know, you don't know what to expect. And it kind of puts you in a situation where you're forced to ask for help. And I had people that were fortunate that were actually grateful to help me all the time. Yes. And so when I ease back into actually came back within five weeks, but it would just be like an appointment a day, and then take the class in the morning. And then just kind of slowly, a couple times, just bring in Sophia with me as well. Yeah, these are because when they're little You're right, they sleep a lot. Yes. And then I had a caregiver after that. So kind of I just did it like in incremental ways and it wasn't always perfect. It didn't always look pretty, there was always some cancellation, you know, of my caregiver or whatnot. But I remember bringing Sophia with me on a backpack on our, and training people, one of my clients was like, I thought you were gonna be easy on me.

I can do this with a baby on my back. You've got no excuses.

Adriana Cagan
Which was so great. You know,

Jennifer Uren
that's so so funny,

Adriana Cagan
just to see their personalities. And you see they're softened up. I think that's just the beautiful thing about it, as well as seeing a baby, your heart just softens. And you know, you remember when your child was that young, and you have just so much more compassion? And it's, it's that's the compassion that you need as you're a mom. Yeah, went through these different stages, ages. And then you said it up until five, I think she's gonna start kindergarten pretty soon. So yeah, I'm sad, because I won't have as much time with her. But I'm kind of glad because it'll change up the dynamics. And I'll have a little bit more time to structure things. And I would remind myself that it's okay, like Sophia is only going to be here for, you know, the, at this stage of needing me this time and that kind of change. And my clients are so great, too, because they would see Sophia, especially with COVID come in through the back studio and say hi, and come out and say, I understand it's, easier. Yes, when they're 10, it's easier. I don't even think about it right now.

Jennifer Uren
Right. But you've included her. And I love that. Because I think I mean, there's there's clearly some instances where you you have to make a choice in that moment between the business or the family. However, I think globally, we think we have to choose more often than we actually do. I think there's a lot of ways that we can integrate and include our kids and our spouses and do it in a way that doesn't elevate one over the other or sacrifice. That's the bigger concern, sacrifice one for the other.

And it's true. And she gets to see all this community as well. Like it's she's a little bit more open. I talk to my husband about this often. But I think there's an advantage of her having a mom that is a personal trainer that does eat healthy, that makes great food that has this lifestyle because she grows with that being a part of her life. And sometimes that's not how it is.

Right, right.

Adriana Cagan
Yeah, I didn't grow up that way half. Most of my clients didn't grow up that way. But it's great. It's the same thing when a child is raised in the NFL kind of lead where their dad is an NFL in sport. Yes. It's the same idea. It's just the we create it on a different scale and different level. And if we if we involve them, then they see how fun it is. And they keep that as a lifestyle themselves. So we create a whole generations worth of like just healthy living.

Jennifer Uren
Yes, yes. So do you. So we're talking about including our families. How do you and your husband balance, you know what he does with what you do with raising your child? How do you communicate about that?

Adriana Cagan
Especially with Covid? It's very unique, right? We would take turns we would high-five each other like, "Okay, you got the morning we'll figure out appointments." And both of us work from home. The studio is at home. I used to work at another studio as well. And that kind of got back because I had Sophia. Yeah. And then she was going to a Montessori school. So we also took her in for three hours a week this summer, but last year, she wasn't going.

Jennifer Uren
Yes.

Adriana Cagan
And so we had a lot of take care of doing tag teaming and coordinating. Yes, other moms, other parents in law, like that were comfortable with Yeah, the care and be an outsider inside. And I redid the studio. So it was all outside. So even if I did have the kids over, they were outside and they were under a pergola.

Jennifer Uren
Yes. And so it sounds to me, like some of what I'm hearing you say is that by being a mompreneur and choosing to integrate them together, it's actually giving you a lot of freedom and flexibility.

Adriana Cagan
Yes. And when I do podcasts, like, this is the solo important and other clients solo importance or solo sessions that are important, I should say, yeah, then I have let Matt know. Okay, I'm gonna record now. So I'm gonna be on a call with somebody outside of the state.

Jennifer Uren
Yes, yes.

Adriana Cagan
You got Sophia.

Jennifer Uren
Yeah. Got it. Yeah, good.

Adriana Cagan
So well, when it's really important like that, and when when we have situations that we're both in like, appointments, then we do bring Curious George in for caregiver, yes. You know, in one or two episodes, like, it's fine and special, it's special. And especially like with COVID, I learned a lot about like, I have to relax my standards of like, what is permissible and what is not because that's okay, too. We're in a unique situation. And so everything is okay. I think you have to just listen to like your needs and yourself and, and then talk with your husband and situate, like, create a balance between those two things. And we've also had another two young neighborhood gals that come and babysit for us to seldom, but we do. So...

Jennifer Uren
yeah, well, good. So it sounds like you also work with not only local clients, but you do some remote work?

Adriana Cagan
I do I have some clients in Maine and I have a client in Idaho, and I have a client in Texas, okay. So they're just they're all over the place. And and they travel and now with, with the zoom being a little bit more common to us. They're like we do this session online.

Jennifer Uren
Yeah. So you live removed literally every excuse that anyone could possibly have for...

Adriana Cagan
We have! And I've recorded a little bit more outdoor or 15 minute workouts for people to watch as well and make it easy for them. Because I'm telling you just seeing my clients get tighter and not moving as much not being able to touch their toes. Like I've had to include a lot more mobility and stretching into the workouts because they don't they no longer have that commute. They no longer have that stretch of time where they would be going downstairs to get lunch or whatnot, so it helps them have a good balance as well. Yes. Okay, we, I can spend an hour here.

Jennifer Uren
Yeah,

Adriana Cagan
I can do lunch here and actually take time.

Jennifer Uren
Okay, so for the mom listening who, who says, I know I gotta get my health under control, do something differently. But if they're anything like me, and they a) don't enjoy sweating, and they b) tried to get out of gym class ever since kindergarten, what is one simple thing that they could start doing that would at least put them on that right track?

Adriana Cagan
Stretching

Jennifer Uren
Okay

Adriana Cagan
Take the time out just to stretch, you'll feel better. And when you feel better than you'll want more, I've noticed that you'll see a difference. And you'll be attracted to that difference, like your shoulder doesn't hurt anymore. Your hips aren't kind of poppin as they used to be. And it just changes that. So I would say and I have many of those situations, and I have plenty of 10 minute little mobility stuff. 10 minutes stretching that I can give them, you, like anybody that could just want something to move and self care. That's why I started the podcast because self care doesn't solely integrate the physical body. It also integrates the mind like you strengthen the mind along the way. Yeah, take a little time out to like give yourself that 10 minutes a day to stop thinking for a time or to pray and to set your mind right for the day. So that you are more in touch with like what you need to do, instead of what your monkey brain is telling you what to do. Yeah, that happens with me a lot. So I need 10 minutes a day to kind of set my time. And before I drink coffee before I get on the elliptical or whatever it is I have to make sure I'm doing what I need to be doing to serve you know, my myself, my family and my community.

Jennifer Uren
Yeah, we have segmented so much of life. Which is funny because as women we multitask and men can compartmentalize, but we've still done it where we've segmented family, us and we always - generally speaking - put ourselves last. And yet, relationship is very involved. It's a relationship with ourself. It's a relationship with our spouse, it's a relationship with our children, its relationship with our extended family. And I think you are leading the trend for what I'm starting to see other people do that it's not just body, it's all of it, and that it's okay to not work out. If you need to take some time to sleep. It's okay to work on that mental headspace if it's going to help you be physically present, where you do these things, but that it's not just check this box, check this box and check this box.

Adriana Cagan
No, there's no rules. It has a great thing. There's no rules. So you can't let yourself off the hook.

Jennifer Uren
Yeah. No, I don't like where this is going.

Adriana Cagan
You have to do what works for you. And I've noticed that with a pandemic, and we're starting the podcast, and like I mentioned before, working with other people, like women, we are we work in relationships, that's how we function. And men are different. They work on their strengths and like competing, and, you know, which is just a different way. They all work. But I think it's really important to sit down with yourself and figure out what works for you and then start there. And yeah,

Jennifer Uren
So there's 100 different ways that could happen, but it needs to happen.

Adriana Cagan
It just needs to happen.

Jennifer Uren
Oh, well, that is great. Well, I, I thank you so much for taking the time to chat today. And I do love these events where we meet new people. And that's part of what This Mom Knows is about is introducing moms to the other moms that can enrich their life and add some value. And so in the show notes, I will make sure that we've got, you know, links to all the ways to find you. But thank you so much for being here.

Adriana Cagan
Oh, you're welcome. It's so nice to meet you and so great for having me on your show and I love listening to it. So

Jennifer Uren
Wonderful. Thank you

 

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