Training With A Purpose: Guest Article

Guest Post: Kevin Jagger is a friend and former client who decided to quit his job to pursue his dream of competing for Canada in long track speed skating. At the time of his resignation he had never even put on speed skates now he is headed to Calgary as he has been accepted into the Calgary Olympic Oval Program, the country’s top high performance training program. You can follow Kevin’s journey on his blog Long Track Long Shot.

A piece of advice that I have always carried with me came from my cousin Angus Reid a number of years ago who said “when you decide to chase something, take an immediate step that commits you.”

If you want to read more. Join a book club. If you want to learn French. Enrol in classes. If you want to get in shape. Get a trainer, join a gym.

Whatever it is, take a big step right away and make a plan.

After you have committed, even if just financially, share your goal with people you respect. Sharing your goal helps hold you accountable.

In January of this year I began training with Chad. My goal – to train. No specifics. I was in poor shape but not horrible. My “commitment” was simply to hit the gym a couple times a week. No other aspect of my life changed. With no specific goal in mind, I floundered. Chad was frustrated as I showed up late for sessions when I did not skip them entirely.

Then one day I decided to train with a purpose. I was going to become a speed skater. I researched the discipline. Met with people in the sport to seek advice and most importantly shared my goal with family and friends. Chad upped my training, overhauled my nutrition and I began feeling a lot better all day – not just while I was in the gym, but all day.

Here’s a video of Kevin training.

I dropped 35 pounds, got my body fat percentage into the single digits and have begun to make great strides on the ice.

At a party last week, a friend mentioned that he would like to get in shape. With a couple of beers in the tank already we decided to capitalize and make him sign up for a run. He did. Now he has a goal: complete the BMO Vancouver Half Marathon on May 1, 2011. There is no putting things off each day. Each day is one day closer to the run so he better get up and at ‘em. And he has.

When times are tough it is important to have a mental image in your head to keep the drive alive. Is it that vision of you stepping on the scale one morning and seeing your ideal weight register, is it completing a PB on a 10km run or is it dropping post-baby weight?

Whatever it is, visualize it. Dream about it. Be specific.

Use that visual to your advantage and allow it to drive you to keep promises you made to yourself.


What is your goal heading into 2011? What step are you going to take TODAY to make it happen?