Name of company: 4D Fit
Business Start Date: Sept. 26, 2018
Number of Employees: 1
Number of Customers: 4
Name: Scott Mikesh
City of Birth: Fargo, ND
City you live in: St. Paul, MN
High school attended: Fargo South High School
College attended: University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
Q. What led to this point?
A. I was born and raised in Fargo and moved to the Twin Cities in 1997 to attend the University of Minnesota. I studied mass media, design, and social psychology, that not only inspired my career path, but also helped me accept myself as a gay man.
Coming out made me aware of the power of perception. I later realized that much of my anxiety and fear stemmed from my own self-perception, the perception of others, and from what I had been taught and told.
Today, my focus on mental fitness has helped me manage my anxiety. Like any other fitness goal, creating a new habit, pattern, or routine takes time, commitment, and social support.
Q. What is your business?
A. 4D Fit is mental fitness. The concept of fitness is often limited to physical — the things we can see, touch, and measure — focusing on three common dimensions: biometrics, movement, and nutrition.
4D Fit focuses on the fundamental fourth dimension of fitness — mental fitness — and the interconnectedness of mind and body. As anyone with a physical impairment will tell you, thriving in life is not about physical ability; it’s about believing in yourself, focusing on what you can do, and making the most of the life you have.
4D Fit provides group workshops, talks, and training sessions for small to medium-size businesses and community groups. The sessions are based on the 4D Fit Mental Fitness Model that provides a framework focused on progressive levels of fitness, including balance and flexibility, rest and recovery, and strength and endurance. Sessions are conducted in-person to provide social connection and emotional support, that are an important part of mental fitness.
Q. What is the origin of the business?
A. Since college, I’ve developed communications and brand strategies for several health and education organizations, led employee wellness and inclusion initiatives, and led an incredible youth art mentor program called Art Buddies.
It was my cumulative experience and passion for empowering people to thrive and realize their full potential that inspired the creation of 4D Fit and the 4D denoting mental fitness.
Q. What problems does your business solve?
A. As a society, we are struggling to thrive. It’s not that we don’t know what we should do to live healthier lives. We have more information at our fingertips than ever before, and we are spending more each year on fitness programs than college tuition, yet we are still struggling to make healthy choices.
To truly thrive, and combat the stigma of mental health, we must broaden our definition and approach to fitness beyond the body, to include the mind.
Whether your goals are to improve physical health, improve relationships, promote equity, foster inclusion, manage conflict, or optimize performance, it all starts in the mind, that can be supported by focusing on mental fitness. Which exactly what 4D Fit focuses on.
Q. What big obstacle or hurdle did you have to overcome?
A. My primary goal has been to provide on-site services for business clients, to reach people where they’re at — at their workplace. Though I’ve received a tremendous amount of interest from the business community, a large hurdle that has delayed execution has been the bureaucracy and approval(s) required by the right decision-makers to bring a program like 4D Fit into large businesses.
Therefore, I switched gears this year to offer community-based workshops at local establishments — including coffee shops, art spaces, and fitness centers — where individuals can enroll themselves to focus on mental fitness in a group setting. From there, attendees may recommend 4D Fit for their workplace, where mindset and emotional processing play such a vital role.
Q. What personal strengths or skill sets do you bring to the business?
A. I believe my personal strengths are the values of honesty, integrity, and compassion that I strive to practice every day. I consider myself a well-rounded person, with experience in many areas that influence our community and culture, including the arts, education, media, mentoring, fitness, finance, business, policy, and community service.
Q. What are you most proud of?
A. I am proudest of the leaps of faith I have taken to face my fears, challenge my perceptions, believe in myself, embrace others, and develop a healthier mindset to achieve my goals.
Q. What obstacles must you overcome to be wildly successful?
A. My biggest goal for 2019 is to establish a stable revenue stream that can sustain the continued growth and development of 4D Fit, to achieve its full potential.
Q. What would be success for your business in the next 2-3 years?
A. I hope in the next 2 to 3 years 4D Fit will be providing workshops and talks in the Twin Cities and beyond by developing a team of licensed instructors who can coordinate and facilitate 4D Fit workshops regionally and nationally.
Q. In your opinion, what does it take to be a great entrepreneur?
A. To be a little cheeky with a phrase stolen from RuPaul’s Drag Race, being an entrepreneur really takes charisma, uniqueness, nerve, and talent. Entrepreneurs must be able to engage people, and have something unique to share, with enough nerve to put it out there, and enough talent to make it happen.
Q. How did the James J. Hill Center and 1 Million Cups Saint Paul help you with your business?
A. Not only did the 1 Million Cups St. Paul opportunity at the James J. Hill Center provide this unique media opportunity, but really helped me focus and refine my business pitch, to articulate my mission and services, and reach a broader audience. The community of people involved have provided valuable feedback, resources and support for me as an entrepreneur, and for the success of 4D Fit.
You can hear from startups like this every other Wednesday, 9-10 a.m. at the James J. Hill Center during 1 Million Cups St. Paul. Visit jjhill.org/calendar for scheduled dates. The James J. Hill Center is a nonprofit in downtown St. Paul that provides access to business research, educational programming and a place to work. The Hill is open to the public 8 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday-Thursday. To keep updated on what startup is presenting next or to apply to present, visit www.JJHill.org/1-million-cups.