taking responsibility for your athletic decline - by Stride & Glory 🏆
The harsh truth about your declining fitness levels and your demanding job.
Carl Wakeford - Nov 2022
why your athletic decline has nothing to do with your job
You're at the top of your game. You're the CEO, CTO or CFO, or another senior top dog, or perhaps you aspire to be. It's taken a lot of commitment and sacrifice to reach this point. Times are often stressful, and naturally you have less time to prioritise your athletic career.
But what happens when you start feeling like your athletic abilities are slipping? What if you feel like you're no longer meeting your potential or your less competitive than you once were? What if you don't know how to get back on track?
Well, first things first: it's time to take personal responsibility for yourself and start exercising again!
The simple truth is that you are responsible for your wellbeing.
The simple truth is that you are responsible for your wellbeing. You can be the best employee in the world, but if you don’t take care of yourself at home, then it doesn’t matter. Your job is not responsible for keeping you healthy and happy outside of work hours — only you can do that.
I know that this may sound harsh, but it isn’t. The best way to ensure that we retire with a good pension and benefits package is to maintain good health throughout our lives so we aren't an expensive burden on society later on.
If companies want their employees to be healthier and more productive workers, then they need better incentives than just saying "go eat kale".
The healthier you are, the more effective you will be at work and in life.
Let's get one thing straight: exercise is good for you. It will help you become more productive at work, deal with stress better, and be a better leader.
I know that when I'm exercising regularly it gives me a lot more energy and focus than when I'm not—and that's important in any job. It's a fast spiral to feeling sluggish and thinking less of yourself whenever exercise routines start to slip.
Plus, it's fun to feel like a self-righteous fitness king!
So, while there are many reasons why your athletic decline is your fault and not the fault of your corporate career (or whatever), this is probably the most important repercussion to consider: your health has an enormous impact on how well you do physically, mentally, emotionally and professionally.
You cannot deny this fact any longer.
You have to put yourself first. You cannot deny this fact any longer.
In order to live a life of health and happiness, you must make time for exercise every day. The benefits are so much greater than the sacrifices that you will have to make in order to fit it into your routine!
By exercising, you will be more effective at work and in life as a whole. You will be a better role model as a senior professional, both and work and for your family. Your physical health has to take precedence over everything else in life because it is the foundation upon which everything else rests.
There is no excuse for not making time to exercise each and every day.
I know what you're thinking, and no: you don't have to be a CEO of a Fortune 500 company to feel the effects of lack of exercise.
In fact, I'd argue that it's even more important for those in your position—or anyone who is responsible for any kind of team or project—to maintain a regular workout schedule because if you don't, then your work will suffer as well.
If you're still not convinced, here are some other benefits of staying active:
● Exercise has been shown to reduce stress levels, boost energy levels and improve sleep (which will help with those afternoon slumps).
● You'll be happier at work. When we feel good physically and emotionally during our waking hours, it's easier to focus on our goals instead of worrying about all the little things that may be causing us anxiety.
When we take care of ourselves first before diving into our daily tasks for the day/weekend/month/year whatever-it-may-be; we arrive at work feeling prepared and ready for anything thrown our way.
If you do not make your health a priority, then your career will be a priority.
If you do not make exercise a priority, then your career will be a priority. That’s just the way it is. Your job will be your main focus, and that’s OK because that’s what you signed up for when you started working there.
However, if you don't make time for your health and well-being, then YOU have no one to blame but yourself when things start going south with your physical performance as well as your mental state.
You need to take personal responsibility for yourself! Think about where you want to direct your energy: towards work or towards fitness? How much of each do we want? The answer may vary depending on our individual situations at work and home life; however it's important that we understand the tradeoffs between these two things in order for us to not become overwhelmed by them both simultaneously.
Your physical health has to take precedence over everything else in life.
You can't be a winner unless you're healthy. If you are not in good shape, then you will not be able to lead your company through its next big growth phase.
You will also not be able to enjoy the fruits of your labor by maximising your potential income or providing for your family. If you don't have a strong body, then no matter how much money is coming in or how much time you spend with your kids, it won’t matter because all that success will end up being self-defeating if it isn’t balanced out by good health.
Being healthy means being able to do what needs to be done without getting tired or stressed out; having energy all day long so that nothing seems impossible; sleeping well at night so that when morning comes around again there's still plenty in the tank to finish off yesterday's work (and play); having enough stamina during sex so that neither party gets bored halfway through; feeling confident enough in one's own body image that any clothes look good on; never having the feeling of being fat even though technically speaking some extra pounds would help balance out those muscle gains (or vice versa); feeling like an athlete who could run across town just because they wanted too…
Your employees, your colleagues, and your family demand it of you!
The clue is in the title... Leadership position.
If you're in a position of leadership, you have to take responsibility and unfortunately that means your colleagues, juniors, and your family will be looking to you to lead by example.
And yes, there's a lot of pressure which comes with being a strong leader. That's why Stride & Glory coaching programs focus on way more than just the physical elements, but on the wider (arguably more important) mental elements too.
If you have a family, then it comes down to being a good role model too for your partner and your kids.
Being a good role model relies on you having the systems and behaviours in place to support those that are looking up to you.
We're not trying to overwhelm you with this information, but we are trying to get across the mindset that's required to truly dominate in your career while remaining fit and healthy, and the way it is absolutely possible with the right systems and guidance in place.
Corporations are focused on deliverables, not the poor control of your health
The truth is that corporations will never force you to exercise. They simply don't care enough about your wellbeing to do so, and the hard truth is that you are replaceable.
It's up to you to make sure that you're taking care of yourself and staying fit—because if not, then who will?
Corporations are interested in one thing: money. They don't care about your health or whether or not you get pushed into early retirement at fifty-five because of poor fitness habits.
Those things don't make them any more or less money than they already have—and since being overweight doesn't cost them anything (compared with obesity), why would they bother themselves with it?
You have to be proactive every single day, just like you were when you were pursuing your spot at the top.
I know you're asking yourself, "okay, I'm convinced, but how do I stay ahead?".
The first step is to start thinking like a college athlete. It's not enough to just show up at practice once in a while—you've got to be consistent.
Start by doing everything you can to improve your game. Your daily routine should look something like this:
● Get 8 hours of sleep
● Plan 30-60 minutes of exercise at least every other day. Build it into your commute or make time.
● Fuel your performance at work and in training with hearty meals packed with carbs and protein.
You're going to have to make time for exercise. You need to be proactive about it, and you can't rely on anyone else but yourself.
If you don't, you'll get left behind in the dust of others who are keeping their bodies fit and healthy. Corporate culture doesn't force people into exercising; it's up to each individual employee to take action.
To summarise, if you don’t take care of yourself now, no one else will. And that means that your career could go down the drain before you know it! So unless you want to be stuck on the same treadmill in life forever with no way out... start exercising today!
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If you resonate with this article, and you'd like a coach to help you take your fitness and wellbeing to new heights alongside your professional career, please book a free no obligations call.