Increasing Retention via Nutrition

increasing retention

Did you know out of all the people who will join gyms in the coming couple months, 70 percent won’t stick with it?

Laura Rupsis shared the above in talking about how to retain members at her gym, Absolution CrossFit in La Grange, Illinois. Seven out of 10 people will bail in their fitness programs simply because they aren’t seeing results. And a lack of results stems from most aren’t getting 70 percent of the solution – nutrition.

“They come to us and want help, and if we’re only supplying half the solution – not even half the solution [because exercise is only 30 percent] … it’s no wonder they’re unsuccessful,” said Rupsis.

Off the bat in January, Absolution is offering a six-week nutrition challenge. It will start January 21, using the week prior to help participants get prepared and ease in to the right mindset. But a week of preparation isn’t the only way Rupsis is getting her membership ready.

In early December, a Keto-specific workshop was held, diving into what the Keto diet is and how it works. With over 20 participants, many of Absolution’s members were interested in the topic. And it was in the workshop Rupsis began sharing about the upcoming challenge, complete with a Keto track if desired. She said it will give members a chance to try Keto while doing it right and doing it safe. Plus, a discount is offered to those who commit and sign up before 2018. “Talking about it now, letting them know it’s going to be available, trying to gain commitment now locks people in for January,” she said.

All in all, Rupsis hopes to combat that 70 percent failure rate of gym goers. By having this challenge, personalizing the process, showing the importance of nutrition and understanding fundamentals, she wants to build a solid foundation of help. “It’s not a diet, it’s not giving them macros, that’s not it,” said Rupsis. “It’s being a support systems. It’s dialing into your why; why are they doing this? It’s the education on why certain foods are really just not aligned with their goals, taking it to more than just the 10 pound weight loss, because what happens once they get there?”

Bonus Tip:

Are you using your members’ networks? Absolution CrossFit has seen an upswing in December – typically a lower-numbers month – due to a deal based on members bringing in their family and friends. Rupsis said this also helps keep current members accountable; if they have someone there they brought, that member is less likely to go off the rails.

“We’ve had a lot of success with that,” said Rupsis. People bringing in those that they care about to check out what they love so much at Absolution CrossFit.”

Heather is the editor for Box Pro Magazine. Contact her at