Get Fit To Lead

A Marine of the United States Marine Corps run...

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Ten months ago, I felt that I had lost control of parts of my life. I had gained 30-40 pounds in 6 years. I had become sedentary. I knew something had to change.

When I realized this, I started to make changes to my life. I greatly increased my physical activity. Because of the increase in physical activity, my level of fitness has increased.

I am able to run long distances without becoming winded. I am able to bike extreme distances. I am able to situps and pullups. I am even able to do a couple of one-armed pullups. My wife says that is impressive.

Through this increase in physical activity, I lost more than 40 pounds. I have regained control of my body.

“For 24 years of my adult life, by choice I weighed well over 200 lbs. I say by choice because you see I have never accidentally eaten anything.”
Zig Ziglar

I felt pursuing fitness would help me become a better leader. And I believe it did help.

By pursuing fitness, I worked the muscles a leader needs to exercise.

Mental muscles like

  • Goal Setting
    I set a weight loss goal of 15 pounds at the onset. After the first 15 pounds came off, I felt good. I was able to see results. This encouraged me to continue and set new goals.

    In leadership, you must have goals. You need to know where you want to go. You have to be able to tell others where you are going. Once you have reached your original goals, you must be able to set new goals.

  • Consistency
    My exercise regime had to be consistent. I had scheduled workouts three times a week at a minimum of 20 minutes a workout. By sticking to the schedule, I saw the pounds melt off.

    Leaders need to be consistent. You need to consistently set a good example. You need to consistently be learning. You need to consistently be growing. With consistency, your leadership skills will begin to atrophy, just like your physical muscles.

  • Self-control
    Part of the reason I had gained weight was my lack of self-control. If I saw food that looked good, I would eat it. And eat it. And eat it. I rarely told myself no when it came to indulging myself with food.

    As I set out to increase my physical fitness, I had to learn self-control. I set limits to what I could eat, how much I could eat, and when. As long as I did not stray from the boundaries, I was able to lose weight and increase my level of fitness.

    You will need self-control in leadership. There will be experiences that test your strength in this area. Someone gossiping about you. A team member that is disruptive. Bad reports that come in.

    If you have self-control, you will be able to control your emotions and handle the situations objectively.

There are also other benefits to increasing your physical fitness. You will be healthier. You will look better. You will feel better.

All of these will lead you to be a better leader.

“The higher your energy level, the more efficient your body. The more efficient your body, the better you feel and the more you will use your talent to produce outstanding results.”
— Anthony Robbins

Question: Do you need to become a more fit leader? What steps are you willing to take? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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