Back in Vietnam with Ruben, he would joke around about me getting fat while traveling. Whenever we saw a big bearded heavy guy in loose fitting traveler pants, he would say: “That’s going to be you in three months..”
Obviously, it’s something I would never let happen. And if you follow my #photooftheday on Instagram, you know I’ll always find a way to work out. Be it a swim/run, CrossFit, sprints and — if you don’t mind people staring at you as if you’re crazy— you can always do a 100 burpees. But to be honest, remaining fit while traveling, can be a stress at times.
That’s why when I got to Cape Town I signed up for a traveler’s month at CapeCrossFit. Besides daily exercise, it automatically gave me more of a daily routine. Something I started to miss over the last weeks.
A cool thing about CrossFit is the community. Friendly people with a shared interest: CrossFit. One of them is Mark Koekemoer — how is that for a South-African name! He is a trainer and together with Mark Fawzy he runs a startup called Boxchamp: a website/app for functional fitness gym owners to help them run the business side of their business better and grow a healthy and fit community.
After one of Mark’s classes, we started chatting. He told me about Boxchamp, the 80 gyms that already run on their software and the 6000+ active members that use Boxchamp to book classes and log their scores.
Three days later I met Mark and his wife Hilda for dinner on Saturday and my eight experiment was born: Help Boxchamp with the customer journey of the app and website.
I could stay at their place and on Monday we got right to it.
Knowing they already have over 6000 active users, I was amazed by how open they were to suggestions. We started sketching, and boiled the essence down to one question: Will this help gym owners run their business better?
Every single idea and feature had to pass this question with grace, otherwise it would not be in the new design.
During the week Mark and Mark got invited to do a radio interview about the success of their startup so far. I got to come with. It was just one of the many things I got to do last week, that is not on TripAdvisor. Something that still amazes me: How open people are to invite me into their lives. Which ultimately allows me to travel this way.
In an attempt to thank Mark and Hilda I made them a typical Dutch meal: Zuurkool stamppot (sauerkraut). Thanks for the recipe, mom!
Besides Mark, Mark and Hilda, I feel like I’ve made two other friends this week: Luke and Dusky. The dogs.
I got to take them for walks (or actually they took me for walks) around Tamboerskloof and up the mountain. If you curious of the view, go here and check the video.
Hilda and Mark, thank you so much for letting me stay with you this week. And after I return from Grassy Park High School (the stop for my next experiment), we should still have a gin at that hidden bar..
All the best,
If you’re curious what’s going on next week, the best way to do this is probably via Instagram. Every day, I post one photo and share a short story of something that happened.