Meet Gabby Pavelko, Sweat Republic Founder
Something I’ve wanted to do on AGIT is feature cool people doing cool entrepreneurial things. This is hopefully the first part in a continuing series as I have some other people lined up as well (and if you know anyone, send them my way, too!).
I was lucky enough to meet Gabby Pavelko, Sweat Republic Founder, last month. For those of you who don’t know, Sweat Republic is a gym in my neighborhood in San Francisco, The Marina.
The Marina is known for being kind of yuppie (I live here for a reason, after all!) and the stereotypes are girls and guys who always wear workout clothes (I’m so guilty of #bayareachic moments, even at home) and are leaving or headed to SoulCycle, yoga or Equinox. Sweat Republic bills its self as “Not Just Another Marina Gym” and they certainly are an amazing, boutique out of the box chain option for fitness in the city.
I happened upon Sweat Republic my first or second weekend in San Francisco when I took a Surfset class. I loved the feeling of community the gym had and that everyone working was inviting and welcoming. They also have a lot of great events so you get to know the people you’re working out with every day instead of just being a stranger!
How do you balance your 9-5 job, your passion, and day-to-day life?
I have a habit of keeping myself busy! It’s funny – a lot of people ask me why I work two jobs but I do not see it that way. I am a strong believer in loving what I do and when you do that, it does not feel like work. I am extremely lucky that I live in SF, and am able to do not one, but two things that I love and have a supportive friend and family base that understand and support my passions!
Do you set a schedule for when you work on your day job vs the Sweat Republic?
I would say that I am a natural multi-tasker. At any given time, I am probably thinking about and working on something for my day job and Sweat Republic at the same time. I am not organized enough where I have a set schedule, but there is a method to my madness and everything seems to not only get done but I am still able to find time to sleep at night! I try to keep track of everything through to-do lists, and I love the gratifying check mark of knocking something off the list when it is complete.
How do you determine which out of the hundreds of projects that need completing is the most important to begin?
Usually the most important projects find me! I am fortunate to have an amazing team at Sweat Republic who not only help me check things off that crazy long to-do list but are also extremely creative and resourceful. Together, we prioritize and decide on which projects to tackle and when, and we work together to complete them. Since Sweat Republic is centered on our community, our top priority projects usually involve our amazing trainers and members (we call them Sweaties) and making sure they are feeling supported and excited about coming to Sweat Republic for fitness classes or our events.
Sweat Republic has been growing each month which is really exciting, but we just recently had to put everything on hold when we had some flooding downstairs in our TRX studio with the rain. Our community has been extremely understanding and we have received many offers for people to help with cleanup, which we are enormously grateful for. We have not been able to complete the construction just yet, but we are planning to not only have the studio finished in time for the new year, but we are also planning a member appreciation party for our one year anniversary and a re-vamped schedule as well!
What are the biggest rewards of having your own gym?
Being a part of creating something that is not only a place where people come to work out but also meet new people who enrich our lives. We have a couple of members who are really good friends who have even travelled together. When I asked them how they met and they laughed and said Sweat Republic, it was a special moment for me to realize how important this little gym could be.
What about beginning your own business is the most surprising?
How many amazing new people will come into your life so quickly! I knew San Francisco was a special place but the fitness industry here is truly amazing – there are so many individuals, businesses and all-around rock stars! Some of my close friends today I did not even know before I started Sweat Republic, and they have definitely been motivation for us to continue what we set out to accomplish. It is tough when you are a small business up against the big guys, but we are honored to have achieved everything we have so far and beyond excited to see what this next year holds!
What advice would you give yourself two or three years ago before founding Sweat Republic?
Every day is going to be a rollercoaster, so hold on and make sure to surround yourself with an amazing support system. My dad is very entrepreneurial, and through him, I was lucky enough to get a preview into the life of a business owner, and it is definitely not for everyone. Not one day passes where you do not have a highest high and a lowest low, and you have to remain the brave and smiling face among all of the chaos. You will likely have to miss out on a lot of things (cue FOMO) but there is absolutely nothing else in the world like being your own boss and watching something that you created grow before your very own eyes. And when you have a support network of friends and family to help you and keep you motivated, then anything feels possible!
Sweat Republic is currently in the running for “Best Gym in the Bay Area” by Bay Area A-List so head over there and cast your vote!
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Do you have an entrepreneurial spirit? If you could do anything as your own business, what would it be? Do you want to see more of these features?