Holly LaMie is a lifelong fitness trainer.
“I’ve been teaching fitness for over 20 years,” she said.
What you need to know
- Holly LaMie has been teaching fitness for 20 years
- When the pandemic closed fitness centers, their clients disappeared and their paychecks dried up
- Since LaMie put her classes online, she’s doing better than she was before the pandemic
When the gyms closed, their work stopped. That ended her paychecks and, LaMie said, her purpose.
“We had to be more careful with our extra expenses,” said LaMie. “I had a little depression because I didn’t know when it would end and what it would look like when it was over.”
Even when the fitness centers reopened, few people returned to their classes, according to LaMie.
LaMie is part of a group that has been particularly hard hit by the pandemic. Information from the US Bureau of Labor statistics shows that millions more women lost their jobs than men because the worst hit industries – such as hospitality and healthcare – typically employ more women than men.
“I have friends who lost their jobs and so did, and it was kind of a moment when it became a blessing for me,” said LaMie.
LaMie did something she didn’t want to do before: she built a home gym in her kids’ playroom and started giving virtual classes.
“I loved being face to face and I think it was just this door that closed and said you need to toggle,” she said.
LaMie says she completed a week-long virtual “boot camp” that taught her the basics of transitioning to online teaching. She and her husband converted the playroom to equip it with studio lights, sound and other equipment. She says it took some getting used to.
“Teaching a camera was really different,” said LaMie.
But she says the flexibility of working from home made all the work worth it.
“All I can tell my students is that I have to get in at ten today because my third grader has a spell check at nine,” said LaMie.
She says she’s making a little more money now than before.
“In the end, I liked it a lot better than teaching face-to-face,” said LaMie.
According to LaMie, there are plans to continue teaching from home even after everything is back to normal.