Today we’d like to introduce you to Daniel Martin.
Hi Daniel, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I began my career as a professional DJ and music producer at the age of 18 after surprising my parents and coaches by choosing to not attend college and compete, but instead to chase a dream. I released my first album in 1996 and quickly toured throughout the United States and Europe up until 2009. During this time, I owned and operated two boutique record labels and one of the Midwest’s most beloved vinyl record shops for DJs & fans.
By 30, I was jet-lagged, overworked, out of shape and in desperate need of a drastic lifestyle change. I engaged in the course of personal and professional transformation, first overhauling my own diet and exercise habits. Inspired, I was drawn to share this transformation with others, both in my new hometown of Miami – and with other musicians and fans around the world. I opened my first fitness and nutrition center in Miami in 2008 and currently co-own and operate three locations – two in South Florida and one in my hometown of Waukesha, Wisconsin. In 2018 I created The Dan Plan, an online nutrition-based program. The Dan Plan has created achievable successes for many people of diverse backgrounds and body types. I continue to embrace my local community and growing online following with a commitment to a balanced approach for nutrition and exercise.
Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Without a traditional background, I have learned as I went. I started working out of the trunk of my Corolla, teaching friends for free. Eventually, I found some paying clients and worked out with them in local parks. Our first gym, Fit 305, started as a hobby in a very small sub-leased space. 320 square feet. It quickly grew and we moved three times in 1 year. I had never dealt with commercial leases or permitting in Miami, so it was quite a wake-up call. I learned how to not take no for an answer, how to keep pushing until things get done and the value of continuing to push a rock up a hill – even if it feels like it’s not moving. We are in a competitive market, but after 14 years, I feel like we have an amazing team with great locations and a fantastic crew of members, including those first personal training members in the park – Mark and Celine Terry are still with us! Pretty amazing.
Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
Since 2008, we’ve seen thousands come through our doors (both in-person and virtually). We’ve seen couples meet and marry. We’ve seen many great people come and go, but what has never changed is our core mission – to give people one of the best parts of their day and change them for the better. There is no greater feeling than to be told, “Thank you, you’ve changed my life.”
Can you talk to us a bit about happiness and what makes you happy?
A big hill makes me happy because I know I can sprint up it. Waking up and reading makes me happy because I know I’m expanding my mind. Honor system country farm stands make me happy because they still exist. Country roads make me happy because they’re peaceful and whimsical. My family makes me happy because they’ve always been supportive, even with my wild twists and turns. Loud eclectic music makes me happy and I can’t explain why.