We had the good fortune of connecting with Skip Wood and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Skip, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
When we opened AZFITCO, I was still a full-time school teacher so my hours were crazy. Over time, as the company grew I was able to leave teaching as planned as well as hire employees so my workload was lightened. I still like to be there a lot to stay on top of things, but have found balance especially with being able spend time with my family. The key was putting in the time to build the company in the mold we wanted and then hiring quality people so that nothing changes when we are away from the gym.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Opening a gym was dream come true…and a long time coming. I was a school teacher for 19 years leading up to 2018 when we opened AZFITCO. I am incredibly proud of the community of people we have built and the progress our members have made and continue to make in terms of fitness. Many lessons have been learned along the way, but a big one is to stay true to your vision. It may not please everyone all the time or be the most profitable option at times, but it’s your identity as a business and it needs to stay in tact regardless.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
If the visitor doesn’t like being outdoors and active, they’re not going to enjoy their stay w/my family and I! 🙂 We would start each day mountain biking- early to beat the heat and at a different mountain range every day. San Tan Mountain (Queen Creek), Usery Mountain (Mesa), Brown’s Ranch (Scottsdale), South Mountain (Ahwatukee), McDowell Mountain (Fountain Hills) and then hit the trails in Prescott, Sedona and/or Flagstaff on the weekend. I eat pretty clean typically, but to be a good host we’d be sure to eat at Buddyz Pizza and Neko Sushi in Queen Creek and Shake Shack Burgers in Gilbert during the week. A couple evening paddleboard trips to Salt River (Mesa) and Tempe Town Lake followed by any live music (if this pandemic would ever end) we could find to end the night would be ideal.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My wife Amanda has always inspired and encouraged me to work hard, take risks and never settle. Marrying her was the smartest thing I’ve ever done.