Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Tolerance For Risk


"If you are not willing to risk the unusual, you will have to settle for the ordinary." - Jim Rohn

Years ago when my wife and I where setting up our financial plan with our advisor his first question was "what is your tolerance for risk?" The riskier you are in the financial world the greater potential to make money is but the downside is higher in that with anything luck could turn and you could loose more.

Life is not all that different in the decisions, actions and goals we encounter throughout our life. The bigger the goal the more risk you associate to failure, burnout or being overwhelmed with the task at hand. There is an ease to setting up goals that at the end of the day you know you will accomplish in time and that should you come across a difficult period all it takes is a slight recue of focus to change your direction. However over time do these fail safe goals make you happy? Do they push you in the direction you want? Are you achieving a level of accomplishment that you desire?

Years ago a mentor/parent figure in my life gave me one piece of information that I carry with me in all decisions I make. "If your mission in life doesn't scare you even a little then you are not living life to its fullest potential!!!" Since that day each decisions I make, each goal I set, each principle I try and teach all revolves around the ability to crank things up a notch. I don't get scared of failure anymore as failure is surrounded in everything we do and impossible to avoid. Instead I get scared in regards to the person I might become. Yes you heard that right....I get scared in regards to the person I might become. Will I have the energy, focus and vision to support that person? Any great journey is bound to change us for the better but are your foundationally sound to support the change. Times will get tough but who gives a shit. Its the strength and resilient person you may become is what matters.

Racing Ironman Triathlon for close to 20 years has mixed so well with my life's mission for one reason. While I love the actual race day I ABSOLUTELY love the day to day training that comes with Ironman. The ability to each day wake up with a plan of making yourself at least 1 percent better than the day before. To constantly try and chase that fountain of youth associated with always keeping the engine performing at high capacity no matter the age limitations. There is risk each day we wake up that injury might happen, that one will loose the love for the game, that others will have opinions that might weigh heavy on your personal quest, and that you might not hit your daily, monthly and yearly goals thus making you call into question your WHY.

Risk by itself stirs an emotion in people that is often negative. Why not flip that negative connotation into something positive and instead of run away from risk chase it instead. The riskier the decision the greater the success. Yes once again you can say that with increased risk comes increased risk of failure but who cares. If you have a strategy in place you can help minimize the failure or if failure occurs fight the good fight back to the top.

Here is the 10 step strategy I use:

1. Do my homework  - In triathlon this is a training plan. In business its studying the market place. Study the success of others and see if what they do works into your world. Don't copy them specifically but allow yourself some freedom to know if certain tools, trades and tactics would help you.

2. Engage in mentors - This has been my number one go to over the years. A mentor is a great sound board to give you honest feedback. Friends in general will always agree with you but a strong mentor will set you straight when your off course. Its also nice to have some of accountability helping you through your journey.

3. Self evaluation - If your not doing this daily you are already off course. We make thousands of decisions every day along with thousand more thoughts. Constantly reflect on whether or not your in the right ballpark for your goals.

4. Read - Knowledge in power!!! We have the ability to study every topic at our finger tips these days. Find that person or business who has done it before and learn about their journey and what they encountered. Not every book will be an earth shattering discovery but I can guarantee that you will come away with some pearl in every book to make you a little better.

5. Consistency - Nothing will happen in a positive manner unless your consistent in your quest. From treating patients, to training for triathlons, to giving a thought provoking speech....everything comes with practice and consistent attempts to always be better.

6. Breath - Next time you are feeling overwhelmed take a second and take 5 deep breaths in with slow exhales. I can promise that in the 20 seconds it took you to do this simple task that you will be in a calmer, clearer state of being.

7. Maintain composure - The success of most of the worlds leaders these days comes from their ability to always maintain composure. They are quick to make decisions but not before evaluating all their options and analyzing what is good for their environment. Would you rather follow a leader who thinks a process through or one who is frazzled and in a state of panic?

8. Never settle - Never, never, never settle for the easy road. We all have it in use to reach that next level of success. Push the envelope until you see what is in that envelope.

9. Time management - Saying I don't have time is a lazy person's excuse. There is always time in the day to chase your dreams. Its when we are not efficient with our time that we find it difficult to stay on task. There will always be time if you want something bad enough!!!

10. Smile - Being other people focused is all about really being present time focused on others. Always presenting with a smile gives others a sense of comfort. This also allows you to consistently find peace in your decision making. Pretty sure when I smile it makes those last few sets of 800 meter repeats on the track a little more tolerable.


In the end any decision you make on a daily basis has risk associated with it. Why not turn yourself into a risk warrior and fight risk with a plan which will lead to success you deserve.

Make It Count!!!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Changed for good...



There are many journeys that we travel in life. One could almost have an argument that each day when we open our eyes we are set up for another journey. Life is not ONE long journey but is made up of small, individual quests that ebb and flow according to our beliefs/mission in life. If your mindset is one of a fixed mindset than you may be stuck in the same journey over and over. You may be limiting yourself of your full potential as either your values are off, other peoples opinions are driving your thoughts or you are having a hard time taking responsibility for your actions. On the other hand if your driving the car of life with a growth mindset than everyone better get out of the was as there is unlimited potential in this energy. Growth mindset only sees the upswing. Downturns or failures are nothing more than a learning experience. Obstacles are sometimes brought on by our own troubles and someone with a growth mindset sees this potential for disaster and diverts to higher ground. Growth mindset follows a Jocko Willink mentality of extreme ownership in that we are in charge of our own journey. Constantly look for ways you can improve the situation. Constantly use the term "I" in assessing blame instead of the term "they". Take ownership for your actions.

There is a saying that goes around in our family (see pic above)..."Because I knew you I have been changed for good." There are millions of exceptional quotes in this world but I always gravitate back to this quote as a demand force for the way one should live their life. Personal connections are the foundation for everything we do. Even in today's society where technology is taking away the live person to person interaction...personal connections are still needed to survive. So why not make it your journey to focus and help those around you fulfill their journey. This will always help two fold...1) It will allow that person to know they are not alone and that you are always just one step away from helping 2)Helping others will forever always come back to help you later on in life. Zig Ziglar said it best with....

 "You can have everything in life you want, if you just help enough other people get what they want"

Take time to listen to someone's story and don't just be present thinking of the meeting you have later in the day or what you want to say next....really take the time to LISTEN to what someone is telling you. Listening is one of the foundational arts of being other people focused. Don't be so quick to respond but soak in the conversation and think of your response. People will give you the answer to all their problems if you just listen.

People come into our lives only for the benefit of everyone in the situation. I know that this sounds like bullshit but its true. Not every adventure in life is gonna be smooth sailing. Life is gonna raise its hand every now and then and slap you around. Life is gonna present you with an individual/situation that is not gonna jive with who you are. In all situations you have two options....you can either get frustrated, angry or shut down....or you can fight your ass off and show the strength of your character in your actions, leadership and ability to always try and take the higher road. I have a family member who is a great therapist and he said it pretty well last week in a conversation..."people are pretty simple at their core...if someone is hungry they eat, if someone is tired they sleep, its their mindset that switches up their thought processes." So I challenge you to be the person that stands tall and pushes those around you to be better. I also challenge yourself to be better. Start with a morning routine of reading, writing, exercise and mindfulness that allows you to be foundationally strong starting your day. Every successful person I know starts the day with purpose and every successful person I know follows what Zig Ziglar said in that if you help enough people in life than you can have anything you want.




Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Scared




Is there anything in life that scares you? Something that makes you loose sleep? Something that occupies your mind, making you question if your doing everything possible? If you know what scares you what are you doing about it? Do you constantly push it out of sight hoping that it goes away or do you acknowledge the fear and let it pull you in the right direction?

There have been things in my life that I have been scared of but with a little practice or guidance I am able to conquer those fears with some effort. There was a time that getting up in front of people to talk scared me but I am at a place now that I actually love to share a story in front of an audience. There was a time where I cared WAY to much what people thought of me and in exchange gave them to much power over my choices. I then realized how much this didn't make sense and how much energy I wasted trying to please everyone and not myself. There was also a time when I was scared to race in endurance events for the shear idiotic mentality that if I didn't win people would think I was a fraud. The funny thing is the second I committed to just doing my best my results skyrocketed.

There is however one fear that scares me more that anything and is something that I battle with daily....Not being a good dad or husband. I made a commitment to myself a long time ago that when the time came in my life that I would go all in with the family I was blessed to have. I knew from my upbringing that family is the one thing that matters the most in the world. Jobs, friends, hobbies, thoughts, homes, cars, etc...come and go but family is the one thing that 9 out of 10 times is our foundation.

What scares me is that I will fail them over their life. Not in any specific pattern or way but that I will loose them to small decisions that didn't support the daily growth of our family unit. I don't want to be that dad that in 30 years my kids say "dad I wish you came to more events" or "dad I wish you gave me more advice in life" or " dad I wish you where just around more". I also don't want to be the husband that chose selfish personal acts over the life long commitment I gave to continuing to build my relationship with my wife. My mind constantly works in over drive towards the next big goal to accomplish in my life and I typically have to self evaluate what is worth the effort or not. These are thoughts that scare me daily and push me to not be an over bearing dad but a dad who is always there for them.

Seeing your kids accomplish goals they have set in place and knowing at some point you had a piece in that drive is one of the greatest experiences we can have. I used to think that money, material items, business success and race placement where the keys in life. Over the years I have realized that seeing my wife and kids succeed and the smiles on their face is priceless. The first group of items will always be there for the taking with the right paradigms in life but seeing your kid smile or have them say "daddy...a face is a home for smiles" is something that I will forever seek out and hold onto.

What scares you?

Monday, September 12, 2016

Bubble





Have you ever found yourself worrying about the past while also stressing about the future? I am almost certain that I can answer both of these questions with a YES!!! I think its almost human nature that at some point we find ourselves over thinking a decision we made 10 years ago or we are stressing about something that might happen months/years down the line. We live in a time where media reminds us what we should look like, think like, dress like and everything in between. What we don't do very well anymore is to live in the exact moment.

Until not to long ago I was guilty of the top question and often found some of my responses and thoughts overwhelming my actions. That was until I realized how much time I was wasting and how much unnecessary energy was given to thoughts that had no bearing on what really mattered. This is when I decided to live life in a bubble. Not the physical bubble to protect myself from injury or harm but the imaginary mental bubble. A bubble that allows me to focus just on the task at hand. A bubble that circumferences just the 24 hours a day I am currently in. Time is a commodity that we can't replenish so to make every second matter is the end goal.

What this allowed me to do was focus on today. To live in the now and not let decisions of the past reflect may actions in a negative manner. Yes I will be aware of what has happened in the past but I will use those events as an ability to grow. An ability to learn from a failure and become a better person. I will not worry about what might happen tomorrow and beyond mainly cause none of that is guaranteed time anyways. Why worry about something that may never happen in the first place.

I will however make sure that my actions today put in place a legacy for the future. One where my kids are proud to call me dad, one where my friends knew I was always there for them, one where my extended family laughed at the stories of our adventures and of course all of my patients knowing that I cared for them constantly.

So my challenge to you is to define your bubble each day you wake up. Stretch, get out of bed and know that today will be your day. Live in the moment and constantly strive to make positive changes in the world. Those changes may be very small or in the form of a moonshot goal but none the less they are a change. Be the person that everyone wants to be around as you are full of energy, motivation, inspiration and a constant desire to continued improvement. Grab your bubble and Make It Count!!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Superficial Clutter



Every spring we dive into closets, garages, cabinets, drawers and every other corner of the house for one specific reason. The reason is to get rid of clutter that has been over the years. We call it spring cleaning and when we are done we feel accomplished, driven and full of energy to move on to the next phase of life free of clutter. Its the material cleansing we love but how long does it last?

I was recently on a long run and thinking how the idea of spring cleaning can be applied to our lives on a daily basis. How much clutter is in your life in the form of thoughts, ideas, actions, and re-actions? How much of what you do daily, weekly and yearly is potential a waste of your time and energy? I love to end a day analyzing how much of my day was time well spent or time spent on superficial clutter that has no deep rooted meaning. How much of my day is spent building upon a solid foundation or spent of clutter that is leading me down a road/actions that don't support my overall personal mission.

Superficial clutter is constantly present and is in my mind the number one way goals are crushed (AND NOT THE GOOD CRUSH). While I love checking my social media, email, etc. How much of that time could be spent on pushing my goals towards levels of success. How many times do thoughts of what people will think, thoughts on what will happen if I fail, thoughts on it will be to hard, thoughts on will my support system be there for me and thoughts of is this the right choice distract you from pushing forward?

I think one of the most important reasons EVERY single person should write a personal mission statement is to understand what are the foundations principles that drive you. Having principles that have a foundation will constantly give you a basis to avoid clutter. You will be able to examine every thing that crosses your plate and see if it supports your mission.

The one principle that means the most to me in my life is the simple idea of TIME. It is the one resource that we can never get more of. We can always make more money but we can not (not yet at least) make more time. Time is something not to be wasted. Time is something to always love and always apply the mentality of MAKE IT COUNT!!!! However superficial clutter has a tendency to steal this idea of precious time. Wasting our energy on things that don't matter. In my life everything revolves around my wife and girls. So when I develop goals or my paradigm for success my planning includes how it will affect my family. If it takes to much time away I will cross it off and move on. If it inspires my kids to improve then I move it up the chart. Does your clutter affect your time?

Take 5 minutes tonight and examine your day. Did superficial clutter affect your decision process? Did the idea of a monkey mind take over and did you feed the monkey mind or ignore it? Some clutter will always be there but the more efficient we can make our lives the better off we will be personal and the better off we will be to support those around you.

Make It Count!!!!



Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Knocked Down



Life has been flying bye this year at an incredible clip and couldn't be more blessed to be experiencing all the positivity in life. I would never say that negative thoughts, temptations, experiences or energy don't enter our families life we just choose to focus on what we can and turn everything into a positive.

There are times in life (sometimes daily) when you feel that life is knocking you down. One second your riding that wave on cloud nine and then the next your wondering why me. Life is meant to be a roller coaster of emotions. Life should never be easy or else you would get to comfortable and not challenge yourself to be better than you are. I am here to tell you that there is an easy way out each time you get knocked down. All you have to do is stand back up, dust your knees off and attack the situation with all your energy and desire to succeed.

This past weekend I had the absolute honor/privilege of not only watching my daughter play in a soccer tournament but her whole team. As much as I love to see her succeed I love to see the team succeed just as much. This team has bonded extremely well and no matter who gets knocked down they are always there to pick each other up. At 10 years old their life maturity is beyond the win or loss column. They understand with every once of there body that if one person or the whole team gets knocked down the only way to recover and push towards the path to success is to get up and move. Don't rest on negative emotions or worry about what happened but learn and move on to the next play. While they lost with PK's in the championship games I believe each of these girls came our a champion with their level of teamwork, play and ability to play every play with 100 emotional and physical intelligence.

I understand that sometimes the circumstance surrounding you getting knocked down can be an extremely difficult one. There will be times when you feel your in over your head. These are the times though when we can grow the most as an individual. These are the times when success is the only option. These are the times when we reach for our teammates, family members, co-workers or spouses and build upon that foundation we have in place. There is nothing sweeter than rising from the bottom and climbing the mountain and seeing how far you have come. I wouldn't be the dad, friend, athlete, husband and professional I am today if I didn't constantly push myself away from a point of contention, failure, rock bottom or feeling of hopelessness.

So next time you get knocked down instead of getting mad, frustrated, wanting to get even or feeling helpless stop for a second stand up and think what can I do from this second on to make the next second in my life better. What can I do immediately to take the higher road.

One thing I do every morning is called a 5 minute journal. I take 5 minutes total in the morning and the evening to write the following:

Morning

1. Name three things I am grateful for

2. What are three things that will make today great

3. Daily affirmation...

Evening

1. Name three great things that happened today

I have noticed by doing this exercise almost everyday that I am constantly reminding myself that life is a journey and I will always have things in my life that I am grateful for no matter the circumstances.

Make It Count!!!!

Monday, April 4, 2016

Modeling

Years ago I learned deeply about a topic that to this day I try and incorporate into my life. Growing up I always knew having a mentor would always be extremely important aspect to my life. While sometimes the people/mentors I had didn't pan out like I expected I have been blessed enough to also have some people in my life who will never know how much I owe them. Part of having a mentor is the process of modeling. Modeling is the process of learning what they do in their individual lives that make them successful and then try to implement those procedures into your life. While we are all on a different path in life we can always incorporate some daily routines that improve our efficiency, drive and success. 

I decided to go a different route with this blog. Instead of me repeating to you what I do in my life I have instead reached out to 5 very different individuals within my community who I view being extremely successful. I have asked each one the same 10 questions so sit back grab some popcorn and always remember to Make It Count!!!

Suzy Serpico

Bio - I started triathlons my senior year of high school in 1998. I have been fortunate enough to have competed professionally for the past 3 years, however going back to my age group roots this year. To date I have finished 15 Ironman triathlons, including the Ironman World Championship. I have a huge passion for sharing my knowledge of health, fitness and triathlons among many different ages. Along with being a triathlete, I am also an elementary school physical education teacher, spin instructor, head coach of RIP IT coaching and co-owner of TRIATHLEAN. http://www.ripiteventshome.com/

1. What is your definition of success? I think too many athletes/people define success based on comparison to someone else. I believe success is truly personal. If you set out to do something and finish to the best of YOUR ability, that is success.

2. What is one book you have gifted often or is your favorite? I must admit I am not a big reader. However, one thing that I love to collect and share is quotes/motivational sayings. We all have days we need that extra push, so I try to save them and share them with others when needed. My favorite is "You can't cheat the grind...it knows how hard you've worked, the effort you've put in, and the time you've dedicated towards it...it won't give you anything that you haven't worked for". We actually put that quote on the back of our coaching shirts for our clients. 

3. What does the first 90 minutes of your day look life? I am a pretty routine person. Most days I wake up before work, grab a sugar free red bull, and head out the door to get my morning training in. Monday, Wednesday and Friday are swim days. Tuesday I teach spin class and Thursday I teach boot camp.

4. What is one thing you do daily that adds the most value? I call my parents at the end of the day, even though they live 15 minutes away. I am very fortunate to have a fantastic family. My parents have been my biggest cheerleaders throughout my life and not sure where I would be without them!

5. What is your greatest accomplishment and why? That is tough! There are so many things that I have been lucky to accomplish as an athlete, teacher and coach. Initially I was thinking that an overall win would be my greatest but I truly think that it is people trust me to be their coach. I have had honor to coach many athletes who are doing their "first" race at a certain distance. For them to trust me enough to be part of their journey is pretty amazing!

6. Describe one failure in your life and how it has made you a better person? Ironically I came across this quote recently and for me it answers this question perfectly. FAIL means First Attempt In Learning. I believe that is so true. I don't really look at any experiences in life or training as a failure. Situations might not have gone the way I wanted them to, or the time on the clock wasn't what I was hoping for but I don't considering that failure. It becomes an experience in which I can take away something to improve or work on to be a better me next time. Too many people only focus on all the negatives when there are so many positives within the same moment. Its all about your mindset. 

7. What three people would you love to have dinner with? Britney Spears, Justin Beiber and Eminem. I know it might be random  but I have no shame. For once it would be nice to have dinner and not have a majority of the talk be about triathlons!

8. What is the top thing you would tell a younger version of yourself? That life, no matter how old you are is like a roller coaster; full of ups, downs, twists and turns. So better buckle up and enjoy the ride!

9. What motivates you to push forward everyday? The fact that I can!!! Each day that I wake up and able to train is a gift. I have seen too many people get so caught up in the sport and times that they forget to step back and enjoy. A workout of mine that I like to give my athletes is something called 6 SMILES. The goal of the run is for them to leave any type of technology at home and to smile each and every step because the fact that are out running is pretty amazing!

10. What is one moon shot goal of yours? Is to complete the Ultra 520K this July. It is a 3-day race (Day 1: 6.2 mile swim, 90 mile bike, Day 2: 170 mile bike and Day 3: 52 mile run). I have complete 15 Iron distances and looking for a new challenge. I am excited about this race because it is truly against the clock and myself. 


Peter Odunne

Bio: Business owner, endurance athlete, husband, dad, coach, mentor and facilitator  http://www.rusttotrust.com/

1. What is your definition of success? Getting results that lead to significance. 

2. What is one book you have gifted often or is your favorite? Gifted often: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens by Sean Covey. Favorite (gifted to me): Leading and Inspired Life by Jim Rohn

3. What does the first 90 minutes of your day look life? exercise

4. What is one thing you do daily that adds the most value? think positive

5. What is your greatest accomplishment and why? Becoming a dad; It taught me the importance of relationships and leadership. There is so much joy at seeing someone you love begin to grow successfully and begin to inspire others.

6. Describe one failure in your life and how it made you a better person? My first marriage. I met my current wife and started a family.

7. What three people would you love to have dinner with? Jesus; Ronald Reagan; John Wooden

8. What is the top thing you would tell a younger version of yourself? It's not about you. It's all about others.

9. What motivates you to push forward everyday? Feeling good about myself by helping others to feel good about themselves.

10. What is one moon shot goal of yours? Qualify and compete at Ironman World Championships, Kona.


Dr. Judy Staveley 

Biois the CEO of The Platform Magazine, a Biology Professor, author, speaker and a triathlete who teaches at several colleges in the Maryland area. She serves as a spokeswoman and advocate for several biological, health, medicine and forensic science organizations. Additionally, as a professional athlete / triathlete, and National Health/Fitness Specialist she assists in several community programs to initiative “health in youth sports”.  She is part of the USA Swimming, USA hockey, USATF and USAT organizations. Dr. Judy Staveley was born in San Antonio, Texas and currently resides in Maryland. Her education was completed at the University of Alaska Anchorage (pre-med curriculum). She graduated with honors, leadership honors along with the honor Society Tribeta. A Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences with research focused on toxicology was awarded to Staveley. Staveley pursued her dream of becoming a Forensic Medical Scientist, by enrolling and completing a Masters of Science degree in Forensic Science specializing in DNA and Serology at the medical school of University of Florida – Gainesville School of Pharmacy. She continued with schooling and pursued a second Masters degree in Biological Sciences and Emerging Diseases. Finally she completed her doctoral in Health Psychology with a Biological and Health emphasis. She continued to pursue her education with a stint at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, Maryland and a career in teaching Biological Sciences / Health Psychology at the university level. 
While mentoring athletes at the University of Alaska Anchorage, she took up marathons, cycling, triathlons and swimming along with other sports. She started to compete in triathlons in the year of 2004. She completed her first triathlon in 2004 with team in training, combining sport and charity for the first time. She continues to compete in multisport events, marathons, and ultramarathons. Staveley achieved her childhood dreams when she won the Chancellors AWARD for teaching at the University level. This award was given by the students of the University of Alaska Anchorage and was considered to be a heart filled achievement. This achievement led her to pursue a Ph.D. Professor Staveley is a highly regarded speaker in biology, research, health and wellness, sports, and science. Topics range from motivating athletes in health activities, molecular research sciences, forensics, biochemistry and nutrition. Her focus is to continue to promote the biological and psychological aspects of health and promote healthier lifestyles. Staveley has been featured in numerous media articles, speaking presentations and television appearances. She remains active in her athletic and charitable pursuits and raises money for cancer, autism, and many other charitable nonprofit organizations to help support families in need.
http://www.judystaveley.com/

1. What is your definition of success? Success is based on your thoughts, actions and goals. Reaching your goal is your success. Everything you do is based on a thought. That thought determines who we are and what we do to reach a successful goal. Good thinkers are problem solvers that never lack ideas and become innovators. Success is not measured by degrees or money. Success is measured by the joy of creativity. Creativity is pure gold, not matter what your profession is, if you created something and your happy with the outcome then your successful.

2. What is one book you have gifted or is your favorite? I love books and I personally share so many books from different authors and publications. I love to educate and encourage reading. Being educated and being diverse in different subjects brings about confidence. Confidence brings about success. Most of the material I do share has to do with success or inspiration.

3. What does the first 30 minutes of your day look life? My first 90 minutes of my day, I wake up look at my phone briefly for important message. I eat breakfast and then gear up to train. Exercise helps clear my mind and sends me good endorphins for the rest of the work day. 

4. What is one thing you do daily that adds the most value? Educating others to stay healthy.

5. What is your greatest accomplishment and why? My greatest accomplishment was completing two full marathons back to back in 2013. I personally never thought I was capable of handling that distance or even doing 2 marathons in 15 days. After encouraging myself to set this new goal and do it. It was very rewarding after it was done. A very humbling experience. 

6. Describe one failure in your life and how it has made you a better person? N/A

7. What three people would you love to have dinner with? I don't know? That's a great question. I enjoy having dinner with many individuals and love the company of sharing great stories.

8. What is the top thing you would tell a younger version of yourself? Don't ever fear expanding your horizons, just do it.

9. What motivates you to push forward everyday? Positive self - talk is a great way to push oneself on daily basis. Everyone should give it a try. Affirmations on social media are very popular and can be used for self talk and motivation. I personally enjoy being engaged in self focus thinking. Running helps start my day by removing mental clutter and distractions to harness positive energy to reach my desire goals for that day. Focus thinking has always helped me reach my goals. 

10. What is one moon shot goal of yours? I have accomplished so much in life which I'm grateful for. Whatever comes my way in the future is just icing on the cake. 


Amy Lesko 

Bio - President of Empower Nutrition and Fitness, has more than 12 years of experience in nutrition, fitness, personal training, competitive bodybuilding, CrossFit and athletics, with a special interest in disease prevention. Amy has consulted with more than 100 individual clients, guiding them to achieve their health goals. She has also developed tailored programs for c-suite leadership groups, mothers (pregnant and post-pregnancy), and cancer patients. Amy lives in the DC/Baltimore region, with her wife, Shannon,and their two little boys, Leo, 3 and Wesley, 5.  http://empowernutritionandfitness.com/

1. What is your definition of success? Everyone's definition of success is different. The way I measure my success is if I am living the life I desire...everyday. It's knowing that I am taking the strengths that I have been given, combined with my passion and use them to help others. When I am doing this -and being true to myself in the process - then I know I am being the best person I can be. That's success in my book. 

2. What is one book you have gifted often or is your favorite? I constantly gift the book The Four Agreements. It changed my life and I believe it can exponentially take your life to the next level if you're open to it and if you desire. 

3. What does the first 90 minutes of your day look life? I wake up at 5AM, drink a cup of coffee and read my daily devotions. I also use that time to plan all of the workouts for my clients that day. For me, its is the perfect combination that gives me a peaceful and energy filled morning. 

4. What is the one thing you do daily that adds the most value? Having quiet "Amy" time in the morning to read my daily devotions. These are most often books life The Four Agreements, The Invitation or Everyday Grace. I have found that when I start my day with dedicated time to connect with myself on a spiritual level, than I am most often able to carry that "peaceful" mindset throughout my day, which is incredibly powerful. Life throws all of us curveballs when we least expect it, but doing this keeps me grounded and feeling grateful no matter what. 

5. What is your greatest accomplishment and why? Having my two boys. They show me everyday the meaning of love and how to live life to the fullest. 

6. Describe one failure in your life and how it has made you a better person? Not truly loving myself. For most of my life, I thought I did love myself, but yet, I had not looked closely into my heart and soul. When I truly started to do work on me, I saw clearly that I had spent years living out of fear. What I mean by this is that I was living out of fear of being true to myself. This realization - this awareness - was a significant awakening for me. I now try every day to speak my truth and be who I am. I now have a deeper understanding of what it means when they say YOU must love yourself in order to truly love another. It's so true. 

7. What three people would you love to have dinner with? My mom - She is in the late stages of Alzheimer's and I would to talk with her life we used to. I miss her wisdom and love. Rich Froning - He is a machine and ridiculous athlete. I would love to just talk with him and his training...I know that it would be mind-blowing. Chris Donatiello - He is the wine maker at C Donateillo in Healdsburg CA, a winery that makes one of my all-time favortie Pinot Noirs. There is a science and passion that comes with wine making and would love to share conversation with him...and of course, a glass of wine!

8. What is the top thing you would tell a younger version of yourself? Spend more time loving yourself than worrying about if you are the "perfect" version of you for others. Being true to yourself is the best gift you can give to yourself and the world around you. 

9. What motivates you to push forward everyday? My wife, my boys, my family and friends, my clients and each day I feel so grateful.

10. What is one moon shot goal of yours? To place in a local Crossfit Competition. 

Esther Collinetti 

Bio - Owner Rev Studio, cycling instructor, Lululemon Ambassador, avid cyclist, triathlete, Baltimore 40 under 40, fundraising via fitness/spin classes and passion for helping individuals reach any goal they have for themselves. http://revuup.com/

1. What is your definition of success?
Leading a life one loves with purpose, balance, joy, adventure, playfulness, health, and love.

2. What is one book you have gifted often or is your favorite?
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.

3. What does the first 90 minutes of your day look like?
Alarm goes off and I set an intention for my day.  I take my 4-legged baby out, feed the cats, make my espresso, eat breakfast, catch up on work and personal emails, catch up on both personal and business social media, dress up and get ready for a kick ass day!

4. What is one thing you do daily that adds the most value?
I close my eyes and feel grateful for my life and the people around me in my life.

5. What is your greatest accomplishment and why?
Opening REV has been by far my biggest accomplishment in my life so far.  I have always wanted to be an entrepreneur and to be able to transform my passion into a business that works has been truly a dream come true.

6. Describe one failure in your life and how it has made you a better person?
When my father committed suicide I ventured into a couple of dark years.  My biggest failure at that time was drinking to much.  I laugh at people that have coffee cups with the saying “there is a chance this is whisky” as I’ve been there and I am not proud of it.  It took a horrific car accident that I had to be rescued by a helicopter ride to shock trauma where I stayed for 7 days in the intense shock trauma with hopes that I could shit from my own ass one day.  I am forever grateful to University of Maryland Team C and truly I am walking and shitting from my ass thanks to them.  I take my coffee double espresso with a splash of 2% milk please. 

7. What three people would you love to have dinner with?
My father.
Bono.
Any athlete that inspires me and motivates me to go the extra mile.. (there are many)

8. What is the top thing you would tell a younger version of yourself?
Do it.. don’t be afraid of failing... just trust your gut.

9. What motivates you to push forward everyday?
My drive to get stronger, wiser, smarter and more vulnerable with my own self in order to live the life I love with those that I love the most.

10. What is one moon shot goal of yours?

Buy an island in a remote part of the world and create a retreat home for many to venture for wellness.