I don’t love working out. I am not a “go to the gym” kind of gal; I don’t run unless something is chasing me. I probably wouldn’t join a group fitness class either. However, a friend invited me to check out a group of moms working out together — and you can even bring your kids. I decided, what the heck, why not? And I really enjoyed it, much to my surprise . . . so much so, that I ended up joining (Me? A joiner? Who even am I?!). My son had just turned one when I joined. Now at almost two and a half, I’m still doing it.
This group of moms is Fit Mommy Charleston (FMC), and they are amazing. I love what the owner, Katie, has created. I wanted to get to know her better and get to the “why” behind it. So, without further ado, I am pleased to introduce Katie Guffey!
Moms to See in the 843: Katie Guffey
Hi Katie, tell me about yourself and what brought you to Charleston!
I grew up moving often and graduated high school in Atlanta. I attended Kennesaw State University where I graduated with a degree in early childhood education. I married my high school sweetheart two days after graduating college. We will celebrate 13 years of marriage this year and have been blessed with three amazing kids. The Navy originally brought us to Charleston in 2011. After years away, we were excited to be sent back to Charleston and closer to family. It felt like we were coming home. We transitioned out of active duty, put down roots, and are enjoying raising our kids in this beautiful area.
Have you always been into fitness?
I have always loved being active. I was involved in soccer and gymnastics when I was younger and eventually got into running cross country in high school. I stayed active through college and enjoyed running local 5Ks with friends.
When I became a mom, I was looking for ways to get strong postpartum. A friend invited me to check out a stroller group with her when my oldest was a few months old — I was immediately hooked. It was a great source of support and helped me gain back my confidence. Seven years ago, I became a certified group fitness instructor through the American Council on Exercise. I have maintained that certification through continuing education.
How did Fit Mommy Charleston come to be?
Fit Mommy Charleston was established before my ownership of it. I quickly joined and decided to become a group fitness instructor so I could lead classes and give back. In 2019, after being a trainer for a few years, and with the support of my family and the other instructors, I transitioned as the owner. I was excited, nervous, and had no idea what I was doing! But I wanted to continue to be a space for moms to focus on their fitness and bring their littles with them. This is the mission and motivation behind everything we’ve built.
What are you passionate about outside of work and family?
I really enjoy running and training for local races. In the past year, I have gotten into long-distance running and I am hoping to complete my first marathon this year.
I am very humbled to serve in the women’s ministry at my church. I also enjoy spending time with my family and friends, cheering on my kids in their sports, going on dates with my hubby, gardening, reading, and (most recently) raising our newest addition — a Golden Doodle named Winston.
You’ve built a wonderful community for moms of any age/stage. Why is that important to you?
As previously mentioned, I want to offer a place for moms to find support, focus on their fitness, and know their kids are welcome. Motherhood can be isolating. Group classes create an opportunity to connect with other women. I love having a qualified team that can offer appropriate postpartum/prenatal modifications as needed and prevent injury while building confidence and strength.
What is your favorite thing to do in Charleston? Favorite Restaurant?
I enjoy exploring downtown. I love to pack a picnic for my family to enjoy our parks and gardens. I love the beautiful architecture from so many different periods of history and the water views are breath-taking. There is also the amazing food scene in Charleston which is always evolving. My husband and I enjoy going out on date nights and checking out new places. My favorite restaurant right now is Edmund’s Oast.
What advice do you have for other moms/women who might want to start their own business?
First, I’d say put together a plan: What are your goals? What is your focus? What kind of time do you want to invest? What education or certifications do you need to best support your business?
Second, outsource areas you are not skilled in such as website design, social media, advertising, or photography. This is a massive time-saver and a way to keep focused on what you are passionate about.
Third, find a mentor — someone who has gone before you and is willing to give advice and support.
Finally, build a supportive team around you. Find others who share your vision, work hard, and are team players. I am so thankful for our wonderful team of moms at Fit Mommy Charleston who help lead our group.
How do you see FMC evolving in the future?
We occasionally offer evening classes now and I would love to offer more options for working moms. I recently became a certified running coach and am now offering running plans and group runs on Saturday mornings for moms through a program called Moms Who Run Charleston. I am excited to grow this area and to reach more moms this way.
Anything else you’d like our readers to know?
I really have a heart to serve women, and I know that comes from my strength of faith. My goal in my business is to help moms to feel connected and to know they are not alone. If that is something readers are looking for, they are welcome to contact me at [email protected].
Check out more of our Moms to See in the 843 series by clicking on the image below!