June 17, 2024

Prepare to be Inspired

This article is brought to you by Nicki Anderson. Nicki Anderson has owned and operated Reality Fitness, Inc. Personal Training since 1992. Nicki lectures all over the world teaching trainers the secret to success in owning and operating their own personal training business. Nicki is the author of 4 books, including 8 Secrets to Creating a Successful Personal Training Business. A few of Nicki’s lecture topics include, Outrageous Customer Service, Biggest Mistakes Personal Trainers Make, Women in Business-Finding the Balance and many, many more all pertaining to business. As a successful business owner, author and columnist, Nicki also consults with personal trainers providing them with tips for success. To contact Nicki, email her, nicki@realityfitness.com or via her website, www.realityfitness.com 

Prepare to be Inspired

24-year old Katie Spotz, from Mentor, Ohio, describes herself as having been the “benchwarmer” throughout her life. However, there came a time when she made a discovery: you don’t have to be extraordinary to achieve incredible things. And she set about achieving them, one by one. The list of accomplishments to her name is long, and includes a half-ironman triathlon, an ultramarathon in Australia, cycling across the country, a 325-mile river swim, running across deserts and a solo row across the Atlantic Ocean. But this just wasn’t any row; when she arrived in Guyana, South America, after 70 days at sea, she set a world record for the youngest ever solo ocean rower, one of the many records to her name.

Katie offers her advice, inspiration and keys to perseverance. “Extraordinary achievements are within everyone’s grasp.” Katie says.

What do you tell yourself when challenged by an adventure? How do you stick with it?

Everyone is faced with hurdles every day of their life, whether they’re in a rowing boat on the Atlantic or walking down the street. The way to overcome them is the same wherever you are: take them one at a time. As soon as you let them build up, the issues appear insurmountable, but if you take each one as it comes, it all becomes much easier. The only way to keep going on a trip as vast as rowing an ocean or cycling across a country is to take one mile at a time. Nobody thinks they can row or cycle 3,000 miles, but most can manage one mile; well, just do that one mile 3,000 times, and you’re there!

Is there a specific type of “mental” training you believe in when preparing for your adventures?

I have worked with a sports psychologist who helped me break down these adventures into manageable steps or phases. I have also participated in extensive meditation retreats—the last one in which I meditated 12 hours a day for 10 days straight, without any sort of human interaction similar to the isolation at sea.

How do you handle the different emotions that are sure to surface when working towards a new goal? Fear, anxiety, nervousness, uncertainly, etc.

There have been countless times during adventures that I wasn’t sure where I would find the strength to continue. I try to accept rather than fight the emotions when they rise and remind myself that no matter how challenging it is, it will pass.

What keeps you coming back for more adventures?

I am constantly looking for new ways to challenge myself. My passion for endurance started by completing my first marathon at age 18. Before taking on this challenge, I was not particularly athletic, so immediately after completing the marathon, I was curious to see how far I could go.

This curiosity fueled a run across the Mojave and Colorado desert, 325-mile swim of the Allegheny River, 3,300-mile bike ride across the country,  a solo row across the Atlantic Ocean, and a nonstop bicycle race across America (with a broken pelvis!).

What are the greatest lessons you’ve learned from your goals?

The only person that can ever hold you back from realizing your dreams is yourself. We all have so much inner strength and courage and unless we tap into it, it’s easy to forget how capable we truly are.

What advice would you give others striving for a health/wellness goal?

I think that the most important lesson that I factor in my success is that I haven’t been afraid of failure. Whenever you do something that challenges you, there is always the risk that you won’t succeed. When I set off across the Atlantic, I knew that 50 percent of attempts failed. But I still gave it a shot and, as it happened, I made it. So many people think they know their limits and never try to discover if they can go further. I’m so inspired by anyone who does that — even if they fail.

Beyond her curiosity of endurance adventures, Katie sees each opportunity and challenge to raise awareness for charity called the Blue Planet Network, a San Francisco-based non-profit funding safe drinking water projects around the world. Katie is continuing to raise awareness of the plight of the billions around the world suffering from a lack of safe drinking water, giving talks to groups and organizations around the country. Along the way, she can’t help but inspire all who come to see her speak. Visit www.katiespotz.com or http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/campaign/schoolsforwater.