"This is 100% Jesse. Do it differently and you get different results. That's the way he has operated his entire life and it has worked beautifully."
- Mike "Coach K" Krzyzewski, Duke Basketball Head Coach
"Jesse is a risk taker and is always trying different things to get better.
Plus, he fun's to go out with."
- Tom Brady, New England Patriots, Four-Time NFL Champion, Two-Time NFL MVP
"George Foreman gave me great advice. When I told him my husband ran 100 miles nonstop he said, 'Sara, don't try to understand a man like that. Just love him.'"
- Sara Blakely, Founder of SPANX, and Jesse's wife
Like many of us, I like routine. I have the same breakfast, read the same newspaper and I take the same route to work-everyday. The running route I do in Central Park 5 days a week-the same. Bed time ritual-same.
Routine can be good, but routine can also be a rut.
When I found my life drifting toward cruise control, I decided it was time to shake things up. You know, break out of that same routine. Research shows that stepping out of our comfort zone is good for the mind, body and soul and I wanted to get better. It was time to shake things up.
I hired a rather unconventional trainer to get me off auto-pilot; an accomplished Navy SEAL widely considered to be the “toughest man on the planet”. The guy was intimidating, serious, and angry. I don’t know at what…but this guy was ANGRY. When I sat with him and “pitched him” on the idea of training me, there was a twist to it. I didn’t just hire him, I asked him to move in with me and my family for 31 days. Yes, I wanted to physically improve, but I also wanted the mental side of it as well. I was curious if I could inherit just a bit of that “warrior” mentality so few of us really have. I wanted it at work, at home, in the gym.
While this is a story about our month together, it’s very much a story about two people forced to step out of their comfort zones. SEAL and me. He was as uncomfortable with my Upper West Side lifestyle as I was with running through a blizzard at 4am with a weight vest strapped on me.
I started a blog about our training when SEAL moved in because it was so unorthodox. I sent it to 30 friends. The blog took off. My friends shared it with their friends and before you know it, I had quite a large following. While the blog focused on our training, there was so much more to our journey. The “if it doesn’t suck we don’t do it” mentality, the “everyone needs to find out what they have in their reserve tank”, the “when you dig deep that’s when you feel most alive” lessons I learned.
During our time together, SEAL taught me the benefits of getting out of your comfort zone. He taught me that to truly get better, you have to be willing to get uncomfortable. You have to do things that suck. The harder the training and the more courage it took for me to do..the greater the satisfaction.
SEAL lives his life that way. And some of that rubbed off on me.