HOW TRAINING TO CLIMB MT. EVEREST TAUGHT ME THE MEANING OF ENDURANCE
As you read this, I’m likely in the middle of participating in an endurance event called 29029. A 36-hour challenge where I am climbing the vertical equivalent of Mt. Everest, which is 29,029 vertical feet. We have 36 hours to ascend the mountain 17 times. Complete the 17 ascents and you have equaled Mt. Everest. We start at 6am on Friday and have until 5pm on Saturday to complete. What does this have to do with business you may say?? EVERYTHING!
I made a personal commitment to this event and to myself nearly 10 months ago when I signed up. I believe that our life experiences make us better people, able to give more, and understand more about ourselves. There are several reasons I am doing this endurance challenge but let’s focus on the application to my business.
For the past 20 weeks I have been in an intense and structured training program coached by Brent Pease, a highly accomplished Ironman, Triathlete, and incredible athlete. To be the best version of you, you need to be pushed by others that are better than you and I have been fortunate enough to have that experience. The same holds true in business.
I said to someone the other day, if the event was cancelled tomorrow, (which would stink) what I have learned about ME over the past 19 weeks has been tremendous and now I can share that making me able to give more. The discipline, mindset, growth, pain, frustration, and success have surpassed any athletic, physical, or mental experience in my life. And I thought I had seen it all having played College Basketball….boy was I wrong. The 30+ mile runs, 12-hour training sessions, late-night workouts, 4am single-digit temperature runs, 5 hours on a treadmill, 3 hours on a stair-master, and 3+ hour runs in 90 + degree heat of the summer. The meaning of these experiences combined is far greater than the single accomplishment any of these provided. The same applies in business. If you’re working on a big project with a hard deadline or developing a project that has taken you years to complete, or are trying to grow your business, having ENDURANCE is a big key to your success. Here are some key components of ENDURANCE.
The first thing I learned from training for this event is the strength of COMMITMENT. Signing up is just Step 1. Committing to an unwavering training program, while running my business, and spending time with my family was no small feat. But the COMMITMENT I made to myself was unwavering. Most people in business commit to things they’re not truly COMMITTEED to, meaning they don’t hold passion or desire to see them through or they abandon them when “other things come up,” meaning they were never really committed to them in the first place.
Next is DISCIPLINE, which is like commitment but is more about the ongoing effort of a goal. I have always been a planner; planning my weeks, my days, my quarters, etc. but this took planning to an entirely new level. How do I squeeze 7 hours of sleep, family time, 10 hours of business, and 3, 4, 5, or even 8-hour training sessions in to a 24-hour day? The logistics were as hard as the training but staying disciplined kept it all together. The more disciplined you are the more disciplined you become. Discipline in business keeps your head on straight, it allows you to stay the course and not be derailed by outside forces or defeated by influences we all face.
Lastly, towards the end of my training, it became apparent that I could endure the physical part but that my MINDSET needed to be sharpened and altered to perform at the highest level. MINDSET is a loaded word but in business it means believing in yourself, staying positive in the face of massive professional hardship, and having an unrelenting attitude towards your goals. In endurance races people tell you the importance of having your own personal “mantra” to help you through the hardest moments. The times that you are physically spent and mentally ready to break, what do you say to yourself to help push you through? Without a doubt, MINDSET is the one aspect I grew the most in. We should all have our own life mantra’s in business, this serves as a reminder to push through the hardest moments in business and not allow a self-defeating attitude into your head. My mantra is “I CAN & I WIN, Mind to Body”.
Now, like any business, trying new things and what we get out of them is only as good as the execution and thoughtfulness behind them. For me, I thought I was operating at optimal level is all my “boxes” of life; business, family, fitness, and experiences but I learned I had A LOT more to give, we ALL do. My ENDURANCE level was shy of where it should be. I learned that true ENDURANCE is an on-going effort that never really ends if we don’t want it to. There is NO FINSIH LINE, nor should there be. Don’t let your imagination of a finish line stop you from improving and getting better.
The COMMITMENT, DISCIPLINE, and MINDSET didn’t cost me to lose time in business or family, it allowed me to see so clearly to what I needed to spend time on. A lot of the daily tasks we endeavor to complete we treat with an urgency as a mission-critical task but that’s not ENDURNACE, that is merely “checking boxes” and the best way to get ahead in business is not through brunt force or strength, it is through a cumulative approach, a steady non-wavering and disciplined approach, otherwise known as ENDURANCE.
Follow me on Instagram @Tylerobennett to hear more about this journey