Girl Boss: Kelly from KP-ing It Simple

Happy Friday all! This post is part 3 in my weekly "girl boss" series (view the others HERE!) and this week is dedicated to Kelly from KP-ing It Simple. She has a fantastic food and wellness centered Instagram and blog, which you should definitely check out! I love her stories on Instagram where she breaks down some of the weight loss programs out there, from a very honest and science based point of view. This girl knows her stuff, and not only is she incredibly knowledgeable from a science perspective, but she also has first hand experience from her own weight loss and fitness journey about how to start and sustain the path to health.

Kelly's story has inspired me, and I am constantly liking her food photos on Instagram (drool worthy) so I have reference points on those "what do I make for dinner" nights. Check out the answers to my questions below where she shares her journey, advice to future entrepreneurs, and challenges she's faced along the way. She calls this her passion project, and I think you'll see why! Make sure to check out her Instagram (linked above) and blog KP-ing It Simple.

One other thing - if you don't have any plans this weekend, make sure to go to Marquee Pizza in the Iowa River Landing and order her collaboration pizza called "KP-ing It Local" through Saturday, June 30th! It's really delicious (I've had it twice already) and benefits the Coralville Food Pantry!

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Also, thank you to Elizabeth from Girl Wonderful who sent me some shirts after I bought two for myself and was inspired to do this project. Please, check her out - I love what she stands for and her tees would make a great gift for yourself or any awesome girl you know!

Tell me about your business, how did you begin?

In January of 2016, I tore my ACL when a snowboarder collided into me while I was skiing (an athletic activity that I really enjoyed!). While recovering from that injury, I decided that I was sick of being limited. I was sick of being tired, drained mentally and physically. That spring, I made te decision to start a nutrition program which served as a catalyst for a passion for health and fitness. What began as an Instagram food and fitness diary to keep myself accountable slowly grew into a platform where I dish out healthy recipes and evidence-based nutrition and exercise principles, served with a side of humor and sass. In 2018, I began partnering with brands to promote product lines and taking on sponsorships. My platform is now a side hustle that I am proud to call my own.

Advice you would give to future female entrepreneurs:

Just go for it. Don’t dwell on your ideas. Make them tangible. Whether that is finding the right people to help you form your idea into something concrete or sticking up for yourself and knowing your worth, just do it.

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What decisions have you made that you feel have gotten you to where you are with your business right now?

I created something that is uniquely mine. While there are tons of “foodie” accounts on Instagram, I have found that my platform is different. It is different because I KP It Real. I share my authentic self and I do not deviate from my style. This allows me to come across as genuine, which is something that consumers value.

What are some challenges you've faced along the way?

For a while, I felt that I needed to build a large following before monetizing my work. This resulted in me putting a lot of work into things that had very little return. Once I understood my value, I was able to ask for what I felt that I deserved. As it turned out, I was worth even more than that. I think sometimes we can have tendencies to be more accommodating and do what we are asked, without asking for enough in return. This was certainly a challenge initially, but now I’m not afraid of asking for what I know that I am worth.

When my platform really started to grow, there was a lot of question about why I was spending so much time on something that “didn’t matter.” While it hadn’t taken off yet or had any potential as a source of income, I was seeing growth that others weren’t. I had faith in it, and I knew that I could make something out of what I had created. That faith in myself and what I had built was enough to keep me going through all of the doubt.

Tips for balancing career and family/personal life?

I am a nurse, nursing faculty, a PhD student, a lifter, a wife, a dog mom, and an influencer. It takes a lot of time to do all of those things and to do them well. It is absolutely essential to prioritize your time and put value on what is important to you. While some days I cannot go through and engage with my followers, I make up for it on other days. I also think it’s important to see what has the biggest impact to your business. Previously, I posted three times a day. This became entirely unrealistic. Instead of focusing on quantity of posts, I focused on producing quality content. Since then, my engagement has drastically increased and I reach far more unique accounts on a weekly basis than when I was posting three times per day.

Describe your journey so far in three words:

Surprising. Simple. Real.

What as been the most rewarding part of owning/running your own business?

I have gotten many messages from women who have told me that what I said resonated with them. That they experienced the same thing in their diet history or fitness journey and that they learned something from what I posted or shared on my Instagram stories. I’ve gotten messages saying that women have hated the idea of eating healthy, but that they tried one of my recipes and are now hooked. I’ve gotten messages from women saying that they feared the gym but saw that I worked out in shorts for the first time in years and that inspired them to go to the weight room. I feel as though I’ve touched lives, and that is extremely rewarding.

If this is your part time thing, what else do you do for a career?

I am a nurse, nursing faculty, and a PhD student. I’m BUSY.

Where do you see your business in 5 years?

Ideally, I’d love to see it grow into a 100k+ platform that with ongoing brand partnerships. I’d love to be able to source some of my research sample from my follower base. Finally, I want to keep enjoying producing quality health-related content. This is a passion-fueled project and one that I am very thankful to have.


Do you know an awesome Girl Boss you want to see featured? Email me: info@jenmadigan.com!

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