They’ve always been smart. He just got lucky. She’s an overnight success. He just has high metabolism, so he can eat anything. She’s always been fit. I couldn’t do that, because I don’t have what they have.

These are all things one might hear once they’ve reached a certain level of success, whether it’s business, health, sports, etc. Instead of looking for excuses of why we can’t do something, let’s look at this with a lens of inspiration.

What we don’t often see from these successful people is the ten years they put in for their “overnight success.” We don’t see the sacrifices, the ridiculous discipline, the long nights and early mornings, the daily rejections, and the numerous failures. More importantly, we don’t realize that a lot of them started from a position similar to ours.

So here are a few reasons why it’s important for us to document the process and why I’ll be sharing my growth as an entrepreneur and journey to become an elite OCR athlete.

1. Started From the Bottom, Now We’re…Still Climbing.

One of the big reasons why we should be documenting the journey is the power in inspiring others. You can show them that they can do it too. People on the sidelines will be able to see exactly what’s needed to succeed in their journey from watching yours. They’ll be able to connect and relate to your story more so than the story of that professional athlete or multi-millionaire business guru.

They’ll be able to learn from not only your wins, but also your mistakes. They’ll be able to cheer you on, and more importantly they’ll be able to grow with you as you climb the mountain of success.

When you’re first starting out in any endeavor, people are going to question you and your choices. There’s a popular quote that highlights this perfectly.

First, people will ask you WHY you’re doing it. Later, they’ll ask you HOW you did it.

By documenting the process and your story, you’ll be able to answer both of those questions. You’ll be able to point back to everything you’ve shared so that they get the full picture of your journey.

2. Share Your Perspective, Not Your Expertise

For those of us that aren’t experts in our field or haven’t achieved those bodacious goals, we might not have expert advice or suggestions to share quite yet. People don’t like to follow or listen to others without proven results. “Fake it until you make it” doesn’t fly with people seeking real advice. If there’s one thing that people hate, it’s being deceived.

So instead of pretending to be someone you’re not, be yourself and share your point of view on certain topics. Authenticity is key in building supporters. Your unique perspective on life will be the main reason people will read or watch any content you put out. Some people will resonate with what you say, others won’t, but you don’t need everyone to agree with you.

One thing you can do as you document your journey is share what you’ve learned so far in the process. I like to implement the ILT concept: Invest, Learn, Teach. Invest in yourself. Learn from a mentor, course, seminar, etc and implement what you learn. Then teach what you’ve learned to others. Just because you’re not an expert yet, doesn’t mean you can’t give value to others.

3. Another Medium for Self-Reflection

Whether you’re doing a vlog or blog posts, this can be another form of self-reflection. Documenting the process is a great way for you to reflect on what went well, what didn’t, and what needs to be adjusted. Self-reflection is a great way to gauge whether or not you’re still on track to your goals.

[easy-tweet tweet=”What separates successful people from unsuccessful people isn’t their willpower. It’s the speed in which they get back on track once they’ve fallen off.”]

4. All Eyes Are On You

This last reason for why documenting your journey will be key to your success is public accountability! There will be those that are watching you in hopes that you succeed, because it proves to them that they can do it too. And there will be those that are watching you in hopes that you fail, because if you succeed, it proves to them that there’s no excuse for them to not go for it too. Either way, it’s up to you to determine the outcome.

There’s so much power in public accountability. Letting yourself down is one thing, but letting down the people that are cheering you on is a whole other thing.

 

I hope you consider sharing your trials and tribulations with the rest of the world during your journey, because it will benefit not only you, but others as well.

The first week of any fitness challenge or journey is one of the most important weeks, because it sets the tone for the entire adventure. It’s the most challenging week physically, but it’s the easiest week mentally. It’s when new habits start forming, bad habits start getting weeded out, and baselines get established. It’s the easiest week mentally, because that’s when you’ve got the most excitement, and you haven’t been burnt out or worn down by the difficulties of the challenge yet.

Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.

~Jim Ryun

This first week for me pushed far out of my comfort zone for running. Because 1) I hate running (for now), and 2) I’m not a great runner (for now). My workouts that we’ve got set up for me consist of P90X3 and a mixture of different runs: intervals, long runs, and hill repeats. I had never done any kind of training for running before so this was all new to me!

Based on my current running experience (almost none), Jay set me up with some running paces.

  • Easy Run (can hold a conversation and run): 11:00
  • Threshold (TH): 9:35
  • Long Run: 11:45

So here’s what I did for Week 1 of my 48 weeks until OCR World Championships!  (starting on Monday, November 7, 2016)

Day 1: Rest Day + X3 Total Synergistics

Rest day?! One of my favorites! I’m an expert at napping, so that was a fun start to my training! The last few months, I’ve really fallen behind in my workout routines. I went from six workouts a week to two a week. From a mix of vacationing in Cancún to business all over the U.S., I’ve been a bit out of balance. So this delay in training was nice for me to just get back into the flow of having a workout routine, because although I didn’t have to run, I still had to workout!

Total Synergistics is a full body workout using both body weight and free weights. It’s a combination of strength, core and balance training. It’s one of my favorites from the P90X3 program.

Day 2: Easy Run (2 miles) + X3 Agility X

My first scheduled running workout is an easy run for 2 miles! I did the run on a treadmill with a 2 degree incline to make up for not running outside. I think it’s time for me to move down south because it’s getting cold up here in Wisconsin!

Agility X, one of my least favorites because I’m just not a fan of doing agility/cardio exercises by myself. Definitely way more fun with other people. However, Tony Horton does crack me up, so that helps. And laughing adds an ab or two right?

Day 3: Easy Run (4 miles) + Hills (8x) + X3 Yoga

Ran at a nice park called Elver Park in Madison, WI. The hill there is also where the Wisconsin Men’s Basketball Team likes to go train, so I thought that if it was good enough for them that it was good enough for me. Unfortunately, it’s that time of year where the sun sets way too early so after I ran my first two miles, I saw that it was getting dark. So I headed for the hill which was enormous! I was only able to run up the full hill once. For the rest of the hill runs, I was only able to run up half way and walk the rest of the way up. By the time I was done with the hills, it was too dark to even see my feet, so I didn’t run the last two miles.  Logged those 2 miles at a 10:16 pace.

X3 Yoga is the bee’s knees! It’s great for stretching out those tight muscles while also training your core and balance.

Day 4: Easy Run (2.5 miles) + X3 The Challenge

I ran 3 miles on a 1 degree inclined treadmill at a 10:31 pace. Notice that I’m not great at following instructions…

The Challenge is a workout that is filled with different variations of pull ups and push ups. This is going to be a key workout for the obstacles in the races.

Day 5: Rest Day + X3 CVX

Rest? You don’t have to tell me twice. I’ve never in my life run this many days consecutively, so this was a nice breather for me.

CVX is cardio with weights. Add this to my list of workouts that kick my butt.

[easy-tweet tweet=”When it comes to working out, I’d rather get my butt kicked than to always kick butt.”]

Day 6: 5k Race + Ninja Gym!!

I had never run a “normal” 5k race before, so this was all new to me! I was invited by Lisa Nondorf to come run this 5k/10k race for Lung Cancer Awareness in Chicago. There I met some awesome fellow OCR racers and had an awesome time at the race, even though it was a little chilly. I finished the race with a 28:28 time w/ a 9:11 pace, so Jay’s predictions about my training paces were spot on!

The race overall was pretty flat, and I spent most of the time trying to dodge the ten year olds that were zipping by me. How do they have so much energy?! Halfway through the race, I started wishing that I didn’t put on so many layers, but at least I was pleasantly distracted by the elk that we ran by. Yes, elk (we ran in a forest preserve for elk). I ended up placing 2nd in my age group (Men’s 21-40). Sure there wasn’t a huge competitive turn out for my age group, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to take this W for my first 5K!

If you can’t enjoy the small wins in life, not only will you not be able to enjoy the big success, you’ll never even reach it.

After the race, we grabbed a hearty brunch and headed to the Chicago Ninja Academy. I’ve been meaning to go to this ninja gym for a while, so I was super pumped to finally go, and I was blown away! It was essentially a playground for adults! From different kinds of swinging grips to balance beams, ninja steps to warped walls, climbing ropes to a spider wall, it had everything! The best form of working out is play!

There I finally figured out how to lache, which is a full launch from one monkey bar to the other with both hands releasing simultaneously. That’ll definitely come in handy for the obstacle rigs with larger gaps, especially since I don’t have a large wingspan. Day 6 was an amazing training day; I wouldn’t even call it training. It was a play day with awesome OCR friends.

Day 7: Long Run (5 miles)

Following the trend of not doing what I’m told, I ran 6.1 miles instead. It’s hard to tell entrepreneurs what to do, that’s why we don’t like having bosses. Although to be successful in life, we still have to be coachable and have mentors, so we do listen…sometimes. Fortunately, Coach Jay is also an entrepreneur so he completely understands! I did however run this at an 11:45 pace like I was supposed to. I’ve never run 6 miles nonstop in my life so this in itself is a personal accomplishment!

 

The first week of OCRWC training is in the books! I had never run this many miles in one week either! The most I had probably run prior was 7 miles, and that’s because I ran a 6 mile OCR! In week 1, I logged a total of 16.1 miles! Holy crap!

Like I said before however, the first week of any challenge is the easiest, because it’s when we’re most excited. I’m so glad you’re joining me on this crazy journey, and I’m super excited to see what the next 47 weeks has in store for me!

Welcome to the first of my series of posts that will be documenting my journey as an entrepreneur and Obstacle Course Racing athlete! One of the things that I noticed from other online entrepreneurs, network marketers, OCR athletes, bloggers, etc. is that everyone is at the top of their game or at least that’s the image they’ve created. They’re already either a leader in their industry or in the top 1% of their sport, but we don’t often get to see how they’ve gotten to that level of success. I’ve decided to bring you along with me on this journey to show you the ups and downs on the way to greatness.

Check out this post on why I think this is important to document the journey not only for me, but also for others that may be on a similar path. So let’s get into the details of my journey to become an elite OCR athlete and to qualify for OCR World Championships 2017!

The Big Goal: Kick Butt (mostly my own) and Qualify for OCRWC 2017

In May of 2015, I got my first introduction into obstacle course racing with the Spartan Sprint at Miller Park Stadium in Milwaukee, and I was instantly an OCR addict. For the rest of 2015, I continued to focus on my weightloss and dipped my toe into other races like the Warrior Dash and BattleFrog (R.I.P.). This year (2016), I stepped it up a notch and ran eight races including Savage Race, Rugged Maniac, and Conquer the Gauntlet which have become part of my favorite races.

I’ve been able to meet and connect with some amazing racers this year and dive deeper into the OCR community. As you well know, you become the average of the five people spend the most time with. Well it just happens that most of the OCR people I hang out with are elite OCR athletes that have made the podium over dozens of times. After watching all of my OCR friends’ Facebook live and share their awesome photos at OCRWC this past October in Blue Mountain, Canada, I made a new declaration for the 2017 season. I want to qualify for OCRWC and take my OCR racing to the next level! It’s time for me to stop watching from the sidelines and get in the game!

The LONG Journey Ahead

Now I’m nowhere near being an elite racer, but we all have to start somewhere right? In order to know where I’m going, I need to know where I’m starting, and boy am I starting a mile behind the start line. An example of how far I have to go is my performance at the last Savage Race. To qualify for OCRWC through a Savage Race, I would need to be in the top 10 of my age group which is roughly the 55:00 to 60:00 minute mark. I’m landing around 1:45:00. Even after we take away the 5 or 10 minutes where I was goofing around on obstacles, I’ve still got a lot of time to get rid of.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.

~Lao Tzu

It’s all about progress, not perfection. I know I’ve got a huge task ahead of me, but with my awesome coach and support team, it’ll be a fun challenge to take on.

The Team

Jay Flores, my coach and founder of The OCR Project, will be helping me step my OCR game up. 14237683_10210681318935876_3831114760156234010_nHe’s podiumed numerous times in various races as well as killed it on ESPN’s BattleFrog League Championships. Jay has also helped me lose 75 lbs and was the one that introduced me to OCR, so there’s no one I trust more and am more grateful to.

I also get the pleasure to train with Lisa Nondorf, who is one of the top OCR Elite Masters in the world! She’s also part of Team Chicago from ESPN’s BF League Championships with Jay. When Jay’s out of town, she’ll be dragging me along on her runs, making fun of me on Facebook live when we’re rock climbing, and kicking my butt at the ninja gym.

Jumping in on the fun will be our friends of the 414 Fit Club which includes a mix of OCR first timers and OCR weekend warriors! Training and working out is a lot more fun with a group than it is alone, so I’m super excited to have all of these wonderful people with me as I embark on this journey.

The Game Plan

The two things I really need to improve on are running and rig obstacles. I’ve never been a great runner, but I’ve seen my own progress in running in the last two years. Two years ago, I couldn’t even run a mile. Last year I was able to increase my running ability to three miles and now I can run six miles with a consistent pace. And this is all without focusing on run training!

When it comes to rig obstacles, I need to vastly improve my grip strength and overall technique when it comes to these types of obstacles that require a lot of swinging. I’m not that strong when it comes to upper body obstacles, so that will also be a focus for this journey. So I’ll be supplementing my current workouts with running and some grip focused activities like rock climbing!

I’ll be returning to my 90 day workout program format which has been proven to work successfully with me for the last two years. Every time I find myself in between a 90 day challenge, I end up slacking and going back to bad habits. P90X3 will be back in my training regimen which contains strength training, endurance, flexibility, balance, and everything else you need to perform well in OCR. My first round of P90X3 last year revealed to me that I had abs hiding under all of that insulation, so I’m super excited to see what else it will reveal to me after three more rounds!

After each week, Coach Jay and I will reflect and review to see if any adjustments or improvements need to be made. I’ll also be posting a weekly recap of the week to let you know the details of the training and the numerous eventful naps I take.

I’m super excited to go on this journey with everyone! I’m already feeling sore from just thinking about the amount of hard work I’ll have to put in!

Click here to check out the recap of the first week!