Kathryn Thomas and the business of results at her fitness and bootcamp business
“I don’t have a lot of fear,” says TV’s Kathryn Thomas. “I like feeling slightly afraid. As a kid, if I was told, don’t swim out too far, or don’t go up that hill, that would be me doing it. I like going out of my comfort zone.”
And now she is going even further by setting up her own business, Pure Results, a fitness and wellness bootcamp, that is proving extremely popular with people who want to get fit and stay healthy.
“Last year we had 110 people through the door with Pure Results; this year our target is 400 and we’re also looking to international markets especially in the UK. The wellness industry is three times larger than the pharmaceutical industry so there’s huge opportunities there, especially as people are more aware of the need to eat well and exercise more.”
After ten years travelling the world with a small crew for No Frontiers, to presenting big productions such as the The Voice, she has learned much along the way.
“TV is a fickle industry, and to stay at the top of your game there’s always something to learn. My career in TV has given me the tools and confidence to set up my own business. But also key is surrounding myself with experts in branding, marketing, fitness - knowing what you can and can’t do.
“Most important though, is that everything has to be done with passion.”
Passion is key, agrees Elaine Carroll, the Programme Director with the All Ireland Business Summit which was recently held in Croke Park at which Kathryn Thomas was a keynote speaker. Set up only last year, it is now hosting over 500 Irish businesses bringing them inspirational peer stories, advice and tips as well as networking opportunities.
And yet, she has gone from zero in a short space of time to make it happen.
“I started from being in debt, which is even worse than zero!” she explains. “I was head-hunted to come back to Ireland and then lost my shirt in the downturn. I was pregnant, out of work, and had qualifications that were no good at the time – it couldn’t have been any tougher.
“But, those hard knocks allowed me to ask myself, what is it I love doing? I decided to stop complaining about it and just do it so I put down a non-refundable deposit for Croke Park and decided to take it from there.”
As for advice and tips for anyone contemplating setting up their own business?
“Failure is not an option, define what success is for you and just go for it.”
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You can check out the full Ready Business Podcast series here.