Fitness has always been a part of my life. From team sports in high school, relentless focus on fitness as a US Marine, semi professional cycling in college, to completing some the the hardest endurance races in the world. I have always prioritized health and fitness in order to stay competitive in everything I do. I passionately believe being healthy and physically fit has a direct correlation to happiness and success, whatever your personal definition of that may be.
The common dominator in completing them at a very high level is that it’s mostly mental. I’ve often times witnessed people quitting early because of the mental and emotional stress placed upon them. So, my philosophy in preparing for the toughest events in the world was to let my fitness level be the last thing I had to worry about. I knew there would be plenty of other challenges to face. I know the training pays off when fitness is the last thing I have to worry about.
I believe a good leader must maintain mental and physical wellness in order to effectively drive a business forward and inspire the team. A fit leader is a better leader.
Energy & Productivity
Maintaining a regular exercise routine will give you more energy throughout the day. Leading a growing company is tough enough. Make sure you have the energy to do so effectively. As a leader when you have more energy, you are more likely to face the challenges of the day aggressively and confidently.
Exercise is one of the best ways to manage stress because it boosts your brain’s “feel-good” neurotransmitters called endorphins. Also, by solely focusing on your body’s motions for a period of time, you focus less on the day’s stresses, at least for a while. According to an article by the Mayo Clinic, exercise also reduces symptoms associated with anxiety and depression, while also improving sleeping patterns.
Confidence & Creativity
A fit leader will have more confidence and solve problems more creatively. Studies show that our cognitive ability to be creative increases with even moderate levels of exercise. Whenever I have a majority important day, I make sure to exercise that day prior to the event.
If all this is true for the leader of an organization, it must be true for the whole team, right? It is widely believed that healthy employees are happier and more productive. A fit workforce is also less likely to get sick; thereby, improving attendance and reducing healthcare costs. You can’t expect to foster a culture of fitness unless you, as the leader, are physically fit and promote overall wellness.