Owning A Gym Probably Will Not Kill You

Spartan Race exhorts you to push harder! So says Joe De Sena who we have covered in the past and presently has a new book in print. Spartan is the endurance fitness event company that is De Sena’s brainchild; he’s a believer in finding the edge of exhaustion, and then to start doing some real training. Endurance events provide a test that few other things in life can do safely.

There are plenty of things that will test your endurance unsafely; war zones, being lost alone in the wilderness, but I think we’d all agree that it’s better to do it the other way. But then again, owning a small business is one of the most challenging endurance events you can engage in that (probably) won’t kill you.

Learning To Love Uncertainty And The Forty Percent Rule

Endurance run

Entrepreneurship is so difficult because of the daily sense of uncertainty that goes with it. I like it when my time horizon for planning and anticipation stretches out to a year or more. I seldom get that luxury, even after having established, grown and stabilized both businesses. When you are scrambling to earn income for the week or the month to cover the bills and hit your financial target, you just learn to get comfortable with uncertainty.

I own and operate two businesses. At first, handling all of the work on one, only to chase after some issue for the other, when I was exhausted, was very challenging. The most disturbing issue was knowing that I still had to meet my commitments and turn up fresh the next morning, which by the end of that day, might be just a couple of hours away.

At times like that, I remind myself of the Forty Percent Rule. Maybe you’re familiar with it? If not, it is a philosophy of endurance that originates with the U.S. Navy SEALs. The Forty Percent Rule states that when your mind is telling you that you’re exhausted, you are probably about forty percent of the way to depleting your physical and mental reserves.

Clear And Compelling Reasons Motivate Under Pressure

The Forty Percent Rule tells you that when you feel like quitting it is time to raise your mental game and push on. As a business owner and a gym operator, there will be times when you’ve had it for the day, but there is always something to do that’ll push the business forward. These are the times to remember the rule and dig up more energy that you know you have. Endurance events will teach you that the extra sixty percent is there, once you find it, always have the knowledge that more is there.

Some time ago, Gym Insight had the honor of interviewing Joe De Sena at the release of his previous book, Spartan Up! His new book, Spartan Fit is available through Amazon.com and your local booksellers. One of the points that De Sena makes, again and again, is that people with a compelling reason are the ones who can drive on through the pain and succeed where nominally less driven but fitter individuals drop out.

Spartan Races reminds us that owning a gym is a long distance endurance event. Also, the SEALs 40% Rule applies. Motivation plays a significant factor as Spartans that have clear and emotionally compelling reasons to succeed under intense pressure are much more likely to do so than those who are merely interested.

Endurance And Leverage

To respond to the challenge of gym ownership and win, you’ll need to leverage all your resources as efficiently as you can. Get comfortable with delegating responsibilities and use any information resources that you can get your hands on. That is the reason I first thought about creating a fully integrated gym management software suite. What emerged was a solution that helps small gym business owners get more out of the business and have better control.

If you want to succeed in gym ownership, build your physical and mental stamina, and if you aren’t already using it, check out what Insight can do to make your life a little bit easier. And, of course, remember the forty percent rule when you think you can’t go on, and see just how far you can get from there.

Bibliography

Fagan, Lawrence. Spartan Up! Reading The Spartan Race Philosophy. March 13, 2014. http://blog.gyminsight.com/2488-spartan-up-reading-the-spartan-race-philosophy/ (accessed January 24, 2015).

Finch, Sidd. The 40% Rule: A Navy SEAL’s Secret to Mental Toughness. November 30, 2015. http://thehustle.co/40-percent-rule-navy-seal-secret-mental-toughness (accessed August 11, 2016).

Vigneron, Peter. Meet the Most Punishing Man In Fitness. June 10, 2014. http://www.outsideonline.com/1922771/meet-most-punishing-man-fitness (accessed August 11, 2016).

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