Fulton Fit House, OwnerShare your story
Robert Morris University has been a large part of Christine’s success and has allowed her to change the shape of Chicago.
Christine Ketteman is an alumna that is determined to change the lives of as many people as possible. In March 2011, Christine and boyfriend Michael Madonis opened the Fulton Fit House. Their mission is “organic growth through like minded people reaching for a common goal,” and the Fulton Fit House is succeeding at this.
Christine grew up in Portage, MI and was very excited to come to Robert Morris University’s Chicago Campus. She fell in love with the allure of the big city and calls Chicago the most amazing city she has ever seen. Christine was also a soccer player for RMU and team captain for three years. In 2010, Christine led the Eagles to nationals, finishing in the elite eight. She graduated from Robert Morris University with an Associate Degree in Exercise and Sports Studies and a Bachelor of Professional Studies Degree in Applied Health Sciences.
“Robert Morris has helped me so much,” exclaimed Christine. Aside from meeting Michael through her externship, she also shared how important her education and soccer experiences have been to her success. The amount of experience the instructors brought to the classroom was very helpful to Christine, and everyone seemed to genuinely care about her success. “The 360 Degree Reach Survey helped me decide to pursue fitness. I tell everyone to do the Reach Survey.” Playing on the soccer team had been a large part of her success as well. Christine stated she was never a straight “A” student, but maintaining soccer eligibility forced her to learn how to balance all of the commitments. The soccer team helped her develop leadership skills, learn to be motivated, and learn how to motivate.
Christine took part in externships that helped her further develop her learning at RMU. One of these externships was tracking and assessing the progress of Oprah employees for Oprah’s “O” Challenge. The best experience was an externship at a gym in Chicago’s west loop working with RMU Director of Sports Medicine & Head Athletic Trainer, Jerry Henley. It was at this externship that one of Jerry’s clients walked over and asked Christine out on a date. Romance was not the only part of this budding relationship, a business partnership developed as well. After her boyfriend, Michael, began fitness training with a friend, they decided to turn their 600 sq. foot loft into a fitness studio. They bartered to get rubber floors and a stationary bike, and bought a few weights. Soon, the one friend receiving fitness training quickly turned into 35 people in a cramped space. Now the couple has a three floor home in Fulton-Market where they operate their fitness and nutrition center. Although still living on the upper floor of the gym, they plan to move out and expand to have rowing and more cardio equipment.
Fulton Fit House is a fitness center that is focused on people who make a choice to live a healthier life. This is not the average gym. Members must work with a trainer in an individual or group fitness class at all times. The Fulton Fit House is an innovative environment that continues to adapt and grow to serve its clients better. Christine and Michael focus on being part of the Fulton-Market neighborhood and know most of the people they pass on the street. They also have a strong relationship with nationally acclaimed chef Paul Kahan, who owns the restaurant next to the gym. Christine and Michael focus on changing lives allowing people to live longer, and they are not focused on just becoming rich. They have not taken a paycheck since they opened, and put all the money back into the gym. This has also allowed them to operate completely debt free.
Michael interviews everyone who would like to join, in order to make sure that all people remain positive and striving towards the same goals. Christine has had four RMU interns, and the gym also works with many of the RMU athletes through fitness programs and physical therapy. Robert Morris University has been a large part of Christine’s success and has allowed her to change the shape of Chicago.