#12 - Diagnosing Performance Breakdowns Holistically w/ Anna Zamora

In this episode, I chat with Anna Zamora. We talk about her manifesto of competing in everything you do, building buy-in with humans, how fitness in the army has evolved, and so much more.




Anna (00:00):

I think too, like one of the biggest things I hope to influence during my time in this position is just and I don't even want to use the word proactive because the term like the word proactive to me, it seems like right, you're getting in front of something. But in reality, like you said, the main component of this organization is people, right are so 100%. So, I understand that the army is very reactive, right? We're like, people are failing PT, people are overweight, people are injured, and they're costing us money. Therefore, how can we get on the front end of this? When instead it should just be a conversation of what does the core of our organization look like from a holistic perspective? What do they need from us? Because like you said, we sure as hell ask for a lot from them.

Athan (00:46):

Welcome to doing the work. If you're okay with living a boring life with below average results, this is not your podcast. Go ahead and tune out now. But if you want to live an amazing life full of purpose, love, joy, abundance, and elite health and fitness, you've come to the right place. This podcast is for people who are ready to stop making excuses and start doing the work that creates a life that they love. I'm your host, Athan Schindler in Airborne Ranger turn social worker, turn strength coach turned entrepreneur. I've spent my entire life learning how to be uncommon among the uncommon. I found my purpose and empowering people to reach their full potential. And this podcast takes a deep dive in how to prioritize what matters. Do the work on your life, maintain compassion and kindness, and risk failure while enjoying every moment along the way. I talk to people who inspire me and share their gifts with you. This is my way of helping you find what sets you on fire and keeps the fire burning. The doing the work podcast is brought to you by Tracy's driving grocery backdrops iconic neighborhood grocery store, serving the community since 1946. And home at the best coffee in Bastrop. Check them out at www.Tracy's grocery.com I am super excited to have you on the show on you. Were one of my students when I was a master fitness trainer, instructor and, and really memorable. Because for a couple reasons. One, I think you were the only female in that class. Is that right?

Anna (02:21):

I was Yeah.

Athan (02:22):

So, which is a lot of females show up to day one, but not a lot of females get through the first assessment, which was obviously something memorable about you. But also there was this thing about you like had this like drive and this determination, you were clearly a high achiever, because I got every assessment, you were like taking it like you were you were there I don't know what you're maybe we'll get into that during this conversation. But it was clear that you were taking it very seriously. And so that left a mark on me. And then since we kind of follow each other on social media and stuff like that. And I always tried to challenge the students in that class to go out there and not just try to be a fitness guru, the word master fitness trainer, I think is misleading in that, I'm going to be this guru who tells everything, everybody everything about how to do exercise and nutrition. But the challenge really is to go out there and change the system to make the force better, and to be an agent of change. And I've been witnessing you doing exactly that. So that's why I had you on the show, because I'm just like, super pumped to talk to you and hear about all that.

Anna (03:40):

Yeah, I think well, first of all, thank you so much for having me. I'm super excited to be here. And yeah, I mean, you hit a lot of good things like you're in the same respect of, all the great things that you said about me like your class. I don't know, I've probably talked about that course, more than any other course I've ever taken in the military. And you are like a huge part of that. I remember, like, when you and I were talking the other day, like, I still have buddies from that course. Like one of them's like literally helping me move in two weeks. And yeah, being the only female is pretty difficult. Not in the sense, like, personally for me, but it was just a it created a little bit of a strange environment at first. But I mean, I just loved every minute of that course. And yeah, I actually trained for almost a year for that course. When you're like talking about like, Yeah, I know. And sometimes what do you tell people that they're like,

Athan (04:33):

What, like, makes sense, though? Yeah. Honestly, like in like the way that I could tell in your body language and how seriously it showed it to me. You had something on the line, and I could tell.

Anna (04:44):

It was like so I actually hired a coach. I worked with muscle nerds. And I had on it actually, I've been I've been trying to get into an MFT course for like, I mean, at that time, I'd been in the Army like 10 years. So I would say eight of those 10 years I was trying and I just could never either get leadership to send me or I don't want to digress too much. But so I actually ended up in that course by a series of like unfortunate events for other people. Like, someone got injured, couldn't go, I took their seat, so on and so forth, like just like a series of things like that. They're like, Hey, can you go to MIT? And I was like, Sure. So it was actually kind of like, a little bit serendipitous, I guess, or fate, however

Athan (05:26):

You want to call it? Yeah. I mean, that's how things work. You know, what do they say luck is the is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.

Anna (05:37):

Yeah. So it was just wild. So when I knew I had the seat, I literally went into like, preparation mode, I was like, I've been wanting to go to this course, for so long. This means so much to me, this is bringing, like my personal passion, and my career and the army all in one space, like I have to show up without a single doubt that everyday I'm going to get up and perform in this course, and literally be the best person that I can be physically, mentally and emotionally. And I did a lot of prepping for that.

Athan (06:09):

That's awesome. I mean, it just and there's a lot of people out there who have things that they that they're trying to accomplish, and they oftentimes it's more like a wish, than a goal, because they don't put any like effort into it. You know, it's just like, and when the opportunity comes, they just kind of fold because they don't prepare themselves. So it's a huge testament to who you are. You did what you needed to do to make it happen.


Anna (06:38):

Yeah, and I didn't want to just show up either,I like you said I wanted to go and I was there to perform. And I think too, there's like a little bit of a misperception because when I came into the courses, as a collegiate strength and conditioning coach, so I think a lot of times people just think that, all of that stuff comes natural, and you just do it everyday and you live it. But now, like I said, I hired someone, my coach Ben for muscle nerds to coach me everyday, like we, I and when I tell you like, it was a full gamut of like, Lifestyle coaching, I was tracking, my nutrition, I was tracking my volume in my training, my sleep, my bowels, my meditation, my stress levels, like, and it really also opened up my eyes to how as like strength and conditioning or fitness professionals like to what you even said, how we can also help other people or help people in ways other than just working out. So it was it was a pretty big life changing experience. For me overall,

Athan (07:35):

I'm really curious about that preparation, I didn't know all that going into this coming into this conversation. But with that level of attention to your, to your well being and actually part of the things that I have three things that I think are a part of my personal purpose. And that's kind of why I'm having even have this podcast is and one of those things of my purpose is to help other people to find optimal health, and so it sounds like you are on this pathway to like optimizing who you are as a human being. And I'm curious, like, how effective Did you feel like, going through all that process, and all the things you did, like, give me a little bit of like, experience, like what that was like for you? And did it work?



Anna (08:19):

I mean, absolutely, it did work. And it was it was interesting, because I'm in my 30s like I'm so the fact that it kind of took me that long to go through a full kind of health and wellness experience, but it, it makes you much more conscious. And I think a lot of people again misperceive kind of health and wellness. And they think that if you just kind of assume it or think it'll happen, but it's just like anything else, it's just like finances or it's just like housework you have to be conscious in your efforts to ensure that you're getting to where you want to be and what your and your goals have to be defined. And when I talked to Ben, when I hired him, I was like, Hey, this is the course I'm going to in and the Army's changing its fitness test. I know I'm biased when I write my own programs, and I know that if I don't want someone to hold me accountable that I can't get to that next level.


Anna (09:10):

So pretty much like we had a really in depth interview when he decided to take me on as a client. And then that's what my program was written around. And like I said, like I was journaling. I was like, the meditation I think was probably the biggest, like game changer for me. I am a very busy like fidgety, a boisterous wound up person by nature. So, again, I would put it in my calendar, and I would consciously like either find, like a quiet space at work, or if I was home during the day, I would go into my room and I would, turn through all the like, close the door, shut the lights off, and I did a lot of like the headspace. I use that app a lot. Spotify has some really good options, but I'll definitely say I think that that was that was probably one of the biggest areas where I know Notice that, hey, like, I can turn it off for 30 minutes, I can be still, I can and then like how I felt afterwards was like, huge for me. So yeah, it was a great experience.

Athan (10:11):

I'm so glad you said that, because I haven't been a strength coach for a long time myself, I think it's a massively overlooked aspect of not not just wellness, but physical fitness and performance. You know, we sometimes write a program for somebody, they're dialed in on their nutrition, they're doing the work. And then sometimes the results, the results just aren't where you would have been expected or predicted them to be. And I've found that stress and your mental state has a much higher impact on it than I think we've given credit to in the past. And so a big part of what I try to coach people on now is just as much as your training in the gym, and just as much as you're working on your recovery in terms of nutrition and sleep getting into a de stressing, finding ways that that helped you to become in a peaceful state, and get rid of all those things that kind of weigh on you in life has has had a massive impact in terms of body composition, in terms of physical outputs, like in performance assessments, and the list goes on and on.

Anna (11:26):

It's interesting, because I've also even been like, I've been a victim of this. Like, what we think what we perceive as fitness, right are very tangible area. So like you said, body composition, you know, if I'm tracking my macros or physical assessment of how I look, or even a weight number on a scale, so I think it's like, sometimes the easy way to say, Hey, as long as I'm doing this and this, well, then I'm fit where I'm healthy. But like you said, we underestimate what the effects stress and life management have on us. Because, I was just talking to my girlfriend about this earlier today, like the human body is capable of so much, because like, sometimes we just don't give it enough credit, right. And Its job is to keep us it's to keep us alive, right. And it's to survive in a comfortable state. So just imagine all the things that are happening on the inside, if you're constantly uncomfortable from things you can't see, like stress, and, like, all the physiological responses that are happening because of that, and I think that's a hard thing. A lot of people have trouble wrapping their head around because you can't see it.



Athan (12:36):

Yeah, the human organism is just fascinating. I mean, there's just, and we don't even know much about it. I mean, the truth is that even the best minds, the bright, the most dedicated, researchers are still just making theories and guesses as to how all this happens in this in this, the meatsuit, that we were and that kind of brings me to another part of it is like what you were talking about, when we're talking about optimization, and we're talking about, this thing that we live in, and I tried to make a key distinction for people, and why it's important to do the meditation and the hydration and just all the layers is that, you are not your body, you live inside of your body. You know, anyway, again, that's a whole nother layer of things that we don't fully understand. But we know that we are something kind of, like bigger than our bodies. And I kinda like to think about it like an instrument, like, let's say, a guitar player, right? If if a guitar player picks up their guitar, and that guitar is out of tune, they strum it and it's just not going to work very well. But if you tune the guitar, like your body, if you tune your body, then it started to operate, and it vibrates, and, all these things that it does at a higher level, but if you're not taking the time to tune it, then you're going to perform like garbage.

Anna (14:08):

Yeah, it's so much has been going through my head too, especially like with, I had a recent job change and a whole life,

Athan (14:15):

We need to get into that.

Anna (14:19):

So move to to state number seven in the last 10 years, so and I'm fortunate enough to work in an area that I truly love and feel passionate about, but I still have those thoughts every day where I'm like, What am I here to do? You know, what can I do for this? And it's very interesting. I like that you said that, you are not your body cuz I don't think I've ever, like, consciously thought that. Um, but I think that's probably something I'll probably take. I'll take that away with me like, you're right, what can I do for this instead of like, what can this do for me? And it really it changes your changes the way you think?


Athan (14:55):

Well, let's jump into you know, I like you know, I made a little bit about like what you do a little bit about your background, like, I know some of it through conversations with you, but I'm sure some of our listeners kind of want to hear just a little bit more about who you are.

Anna (15:15):

Yeah, so I guess like you mentioned, I've been in the army for 13 years. So I'm a captain right now. I currently am the program manager for the holistic health and wellness for the implementation for the Army National Guard, which has been an amazing, we've talked about this and in depth, which has been an amazing opportunity. But prior to that I was the short version as a strength coach as a division one string coach. So my formal education I've an undergrad in Canadian sports science, and a master's in sport management. But I've coached for just over 10 years, when I left the full time coaching sector to come to take their full time army job. But I mean, there's also many people don't know this, but I've also worked in a bank, I was a bartender, I've worked in the service industry. So I mean, you name it, and I've done.



Athan (16:08):

So yeah, exactly. Just having like a diverse background, I think, is, because I'm similar, I've done so many different things. I guess that's just kind of what I like this, the spice of life and all the different opportunities and things that you can do. So I want to try a little bit of all of it. And I think when we work with people like you and I do, when you're, as a D, one strength coach, or as a army master fitness trainer, or as a, now you're a Program Manager for HTF, when you're working with people, it's kind of nice to have had varying experiences and varying, pathways to that, because then you can really have a sense of like, compassion and understanding and love for where that person is coming from.

Anna (16:56):

Oh, for sure. And I think I learned that pretty early in my career as a coach, because I came into the coaching world, I think I was 20,26, 25. And I wasn't a traditional student athlete, like I didn't have the same trajectory that a lot of strength coaches might have, where they came to, found their love in the weight room and college sports. So I think it resonated with a lot of athletes that I worked with, especially the female athletes, a lot of them that I still keep in touch with, we've actually we've talked about that, you just experiences that you can relate to and, I always like to say that, in the collegiate strength world, the strength coaches, one of the only professionals that can talk to the student athletes all year round, 365 days out of the year, there's, because you have like non reporting times and non recruiting times where the head coach has to kind of back off. So it creates a really interesting dynamic for you to build relationships with your athletes. But yeah, I've done it all.

Athan (17:52):

Yeah, well, so there's so much to dive into there. But of course, I'm really interested in these new programs that you're working on. So h two F is the holistic health and fitness program in the army, which I've been like, it started you started hearing rumors about it, years ago, I guess, when I stood up master fitness, around that time, there was like, kind of like these little rumors that you'd hear that this thing was coming. And, you talk to people who like, Special Forces has their own kind of model of it. And so now I'm just freakin pumped to know that it's like now being implemented. And, now that you're a part of it, I'd love to kind of just hear like, what is it and what anything you could share with us.

Anna (18:50):

The analogy against in my brain, like goes back to college athletics, because that's where I grew up. That's where I came from. So the analogy I make in my head is I always I've mentioned this before, is, instead of just taking the former athlete or taking the PT stud, who's like, Hey, you're good at working out? Why don't you help these people work out? And just kind of, in the army, this, it's rocking and running. Like, that's what we did. We just wrapped it around. Instead, like the collegiate sector went through this transformation as well, right? They were like, well, holy shit. Like, if a kid isn't doing well, physically, what do they look like mentally? Or, what is their Courseload look like? Like, How are things at home? What are they eating? How much are they sleeping, and then we develop this high performance model in the collegiate world in the professional world, where now you have access to a registered dietician, and you're working with a sports psychologist that are coming out and doing, team building activities and your physical therapist is there so essentially, the army caught wind in my head, right? And they were like, hey, what do you know, soldiers aren't one dimensional. And if something isn't working over here, then potentially something might not be right over here.


Anna (19:56):

So they established they revamped their physical fitness doctrine to reflect an overall holistic, holistic health and wellness system. So it's based off of five domains. So it's mental, physical, spiritual, nutritional and sleep. Those are the areas that we're focusing on how we can make soldiers better. And then, right, that's the holistic approach. The interesting thing about what I do, and what you and I have talked about is, the Army is broken up into three compositions, right, we have our active duty forces, we have our Army Guard, and then we have our Army Reserve. Active Duty is a very cookie cutter system, because every installation has to look the same, right? They meet the army standard, so on and so forth. So they can just say, hey, here's your rd, here's your OT, here's all the pieces to help you be successful and HTF go forth and do great things.


Anna (20:46):

That's what they're doing. What the army failed to do is understand the guard and how we fit into this organization, and the different adversities and problems that we face. Because we have 54 different states and territories with different problem sets, different demographics, you're talking about Alaska, and their landmass size versus someplace like, New Hampshire or Vermont. So where I come into this is we have 54 Project Officers that are working their specific problems that for their state, and it's my job to manage the project officers manage the implementation and then serve as the liaison to like the headquarters of the Department of Army, and the director of the Army National Guard is to how an advocate on their behalf, because we currently have, we don't get any of those resources, and we don't have the support that active duty does right now. So we don't even get the go forth and do great things conversation. It's like, hey, good luck, I really don't think this is going to happen. But cool.

Athan (21:48):

Yeah, I've it's like, for me, and you and I talked about this the other day, a little bit. Bu it's like the, the good part and the negative part of the National Guard where I feel like the National Guard, actually, I was having a, I had breakfast this morning with one of my commanders, my former commanders here in the guard. And, he and I were kind of like, talking about how in the guard, you've got to be way more creative way more resourceful, you've got to be better with your time, in a lot of ways, people certainly there are, there are some downfalls of the guard. But I found for having done both almost eight years of active duty time. And now, I don't know how long I've been in the guard now, but I've seen both sides of it. And when I was on active duty, we used to kind of frown and look down on the guard. And now that I'm in the guard, I'm like, No, man, you don't get like what we have to go through just to do easy stuff that you do on the active side. And so I'm so glad that there's people like you who they are, they're putting in positions to really start thinking about like, well know, how can we provide more to help this to be successful? Because a lot of times you've seen it, they implement some sort of program at the national, they just say go do it. And it just falls flat on its face. Because there's no support behind it.

Anna (23:11):

Yeah, and I, and that's like, not to get too deep. But that's like one of my biggest fears, right? I have the opportunity to genuinely affect change. And in what, like the world's greatest army like that. Sometimes I don't even want to say that out loud, because that's a lot of responsibility. But at the same time, I can only control what I can control. So it's like this constant balance of, how much influence can I do? I really have, but at the same time, my biggest fear is implementing something preemptively. I was like talking to you about this the other day. Yeah. And if it's premature, I don't want it to fail. I like we cannot afford for this program to fail.

Athan (23:49):

Right? Yeah. And so well tell me how do you deal with that pressure? Like, what is it that you know, how do you take care of yourself? And how do you deal with a high stakes high risk scenario like you're in?



Anna (24:06):

Man, I'm still figuring that out.

Athan (24:09):

But well, we all are, it's just called That's called life.

Anna (24:13):

Yeah, no doubt. Um, well, I haven't spoken to this before. I'm very fortunate in my support system. Um, I have a lot of, I would say, a handful of friend, Josh Pittman is one of them, that I can call and bounce things off. And I have a lot of diversity in my friends as far as like skill sets and jobs and education, which I think is really important because when you talk to people, I'm going to get six different answers from six different perspectives. That's going to give me insight to help me kind of, take a deep breath or maybe back off the ledge or whatever I'm feeling in that moment, and I find a lot of value in that. And then I've also, when I find a mentor or someone that I see significant professional value and health value and I locked myself on and I'm like, Hey, I don't know if you knew you're signing up for this. But, it's almost like your Android email like mine. Yeah.

Athan (25:14):

It's really brilliant. I mean, because I think one of the, I think, classic mistakes that, rookies, people who are new to anything do is that they're afraid to admit that they don't know something. They're afraid to that they're afraid to say, I don't know, and they're afraid to ask for help. And I think one of the most professional people in the world that anything, are some of the first ones to say, I don't know, I'm not sure how to do this, I need help. And, I think, I try to emulate that as much as possible. Because I am certain certainly guilty of being that person where I just pull some bullshit out of my ass. Because someone asked me a question. I didn't know the answer. And, really ended up embarrassing myself, but also being unhelpful, actually being ineffective.

Anna (26:11):

Yeah, I think, as much as I love the army, you also have to be self aware. And then you also have to be cognizant, right? You know, you don't want to like, you want any that cognitive dissonance, right? You want to be in there, you want to know, and you want to be able to situationally aware, and for everything that I love the army, that's one of the biggest things I I kind of loathe about the army. And I always make this joke of like, My ego is not that big. And it's kind of a joke, but it's not because I think the true definition of like confidence and courage is being able to say, hey, I don't know the answer to that, or what, I'm not really sure which direction to lead you. Let's go find out or let me figure it out and come back to you. Because like, yes, in that moment, right, that says, that's a completely stripped vulnerable answer. You're making either deficiencies or in abilities known, and especially if you're in a position of responsibility or power. And you're like, hey, I don't know, and I think that's a big thing that a lot of people can't, they don't know how to do.

Athan (27:09):

Well, vulnerability in leadership alone is in my like, transparency, vulnerability. Authenticity, is something that I found to be severely lacking in a lot of leadership, and they're the ones that the leaders that I've looked up to the most. And when I've been the most proud of myself as a leader, it's really in those really vulnerable, honest, deeply honest, transparent states, because that's what builds connection. That's what builds trust, real intimacy, not, anything other than just like how people can connect with each other truly comes from creating a safe place, and people feel safe when they feel like you're giving them the real deal, you know?

Anna (27:56):

Yeah, absolutely. And, like you said, I definitely think that's something that's, it was an evolved process of mine, because I remember, especially especially in coaching, when I first started, I didn't want to hear anything, my athletes had to say, I didn't want to hear anything. You know, I was in charge. I was the leader. It was everything. I said, like, Don't even ask me how my day is, it doesn't matter. You don't need to know how my day is like, and I look back on that I'm like, What in the hell? Like, I wouldn't have listened to a word I said.

Athan (28:29):

Well, we've all been there as leaders, and you couldn't get to where you are right now, with have without having gone through that there's just levels of maturity, and leadership that and just like, human development, it's no different than that that adolescent state that we've all gone through, there's adolescent leaders and ou can't there's, it's not something you can read in a book, what do you think about the how does me having served in, I have some fairly elite units in my military career? Well, I guess where I'm going with this, is that one of the things that I think isn't talked about a lot, and I'm curious about your perspective on it, and how maybe it even plays into HTF, like you mentioned, obviously, physical fitness you I think you said mental spiritual sleep, and there was like one other one. Where does human connection come into that? Where do Where do relationships play in?



Anna (29:34):

So I've actually had this conversation with quite a few of the project officers, because so one of the domains is is spiritual, right. But then also one of the domains is mental. So it's interesting because like we talked about in the guard, right? We have 54 different abilities of governance because we all report to the governor and the tag which is different than active duty. We haven't proved Graeme, in Wisconsin, that is, it's based on behavior change, and it's based on motivational interviewing. But anyway, so he has his own kind of five pillar system, but it fits underneath soldier care. And one of his pillars, one of his pillars is relationships. And he coaches soldiers on whether it's a friendship, whether it's your spouse, whether it's like professional relationship, but what do those interpersonal bonds that you have in your life look like? And I think that's another thing as I've gotten older, like, my interpersonal relationships are like, they are so important to me. And I think that's it? That's a good question. I don't know if maybe I would say that's maybe more spiritual. So I think people associate spiritual wisdom with like religion a lot of the times. But I would definitely say, they're there. They're in there. And they matter, maybe? Yeah, I don't know, I've never thought about that. Which is crazy. Because that's part of that's like, literally at my core, like something that's so important to me.

Athan (31:03):

Yeah. When I think about holistic when you say the word holistic, right, I think a lot of people get a different, you could ask seven different people, what is holistic health look like to you? And you're probably going to get seven different answers. You know, and so I'm always just, I'm curious with this new program, and with the new development, and obviously, me having a high level of concern for our warriors out there, those those who have volunteered to serve our country and to do some of the most horrific things that anyone can be asked to do. You know, I want to know that we're doing a good job of taking care of them and be and doing right by them. And a lot of that starts with what you do in all the hours of things that happen before anything bad happens, all the time on the PT field all the time, focusing on your sleep, and your nutrition and all that stuff.



Anna (32:10):

I think too, like one of the biggest things I hope to influence during my time in this position is just, and I don't even want to use the word proactive, because the term like the word proactive to me, it seems like, right, you're getting in front of something. But in reality, like you said, this should just be a basic component of an organization that says that it's key, fucking losing my words here. The main component of this organization is people write are so 100%. So I understand that the army is very reactive, right? We're like, people are failing PT, people are overweight people are injured, and they're costing us money. Therefore, how can we get on the front end of this? When instead it should just be a conversation of what does the core of our organization look like, from a holistic perspective? What do they need from us? Because like you said, we sure as hell ask for a lot from them. So what are we giving them? How are we it? How are we giving them value? So yeah

Athan (33:16):

You hear that? You hear the term? I know, here in Texas, are our tags. And so for those listening who aren't military folks tag is is your Adjutant General. This is your, the leader of the state's military. And, ours here in Texas, I think number one priority is people first. Yeah. Right. And, there's so a lot of lip service is given to that, but I don't know that people spend a lot of time just sitting around and thinking about what what does that what does that actually mean? What does that look like?

Anna (33:51):

Right? And I was talking with you this past week, so I spent the week in Natick, Massachusetts and a couple days out in Ohio State University and we were at one of the it's the biggest Research Laboratory for the army so anything that comes out like new gear ACFT base things like they're reading the army body composition change right now, and I spent a few days with those folks and it's interesting because that's their job is how can they optimize the human weapon system? And when it comes and we like what we were talking about right when it comes to physical fitness and they know the optimal amount of nutrition that a soldier needs says averaging 120 pounds in you know 113 degree weather down to the outs but when you try to talk about okay, well where does their mental health need to be to maintain that 125 pounds at 113 degree weather? And how do you measure that? Wow, like I had a whole conversation about that and that's those are some of those are the some of the leaves like I'm trying to turn over and eat but the thing is at the end of the day, the conversations are happening, right the conversations They're happening. So I might not be able to change the world in a day, but at least the ball is rolling and these conversations are taking place. But yeah. People First.

Athan (35:11):

Yeah. Well, I love that the conversations are happening. I love that. You know, cuz you think about what's the, like, you hear stories about heroic acts, and all these things that happen, are these people are achievers, and they're not. They're almost never and, so through collegiate. You know, it's not your most talented people who who perform at the highest level, it's people who work the hardest, who have the best attitude, who have the, and then have the support to kind of achieve, and like, so that attitude piece that that mental piece that you're kind of talking about, like how do you know, it's like, how do we, as leaders as people who are expected to facilitate health and fitness and wellness, how do you best impact the mental aspect,


Mental Aspect

Anna (36:11):

And I was also as having another conversation with one of the individuals out at CI MT, that's a center for initial military training. So any soldier that enters the army, that goes through basic or whatever, that's that they that area at Fort Eustis, that's who they control. And I was talking to a physical therapist who's on one of the HTF, what they call implementation teams that's going around and like checking on the progress. And she was talking about how she was trying to have a conversation about mindfulness with drill sergeants. And it was really interesting, because I kind of took her down a path and I was like, Well, what do you do when a soldier fails? Like your basic rifle? Like, qualification? What do you what's the first thing you do? Right? You test you retrain, and test. But when we retrain, what do we do with those soldiers? We take them to an isolated area, we go to like a paper target, right. And the entire process of shooting a rifle is based on mindfulness. And based on like, mental rehearsals, right? It's yeah, it's how it's think about your breath. Right? And you work with them on how to visually zone in on the target, you talk to them about when they need to breathe, how they need to breathe, trigger, squeeze, you talk them through the steps multiple times over before you need to put a rifle back in their hand.

Athan (37:28):

Yeah, that's a language. Yeah, I've never thought about it like that. But what a powerful analogy in that because also, you're not thinking when you're when you're doing basic rifle marksmanship, you're also 100%. In that moment, you are not in the past, you are not in the future. You have your target, you have your sight posts, you're focusing on your breathing, you're focusing on your amount of pressure that's on your fingertip, on that trigger, and I had never heard anybody say it like that. But that is exactly what mindfulness is.

Anna (38:08):

So I was like, How come when we can have that conversation about, shooting a weapon, but we can't have that conversation about, everyday life decisions, buying a house or having a difficult conversation with your spouse, or, what might be easy for me isn't easy for someone else going on a few FTX, or soldier, we might be struggling with PTSD. But it's interesting, because the army is already doing what he left his butt. But for whatever reason, there's still that first disconnect, because once you put a label on it, right, and you kind of make it an actual structured system. That's what's causing, in my opinion, just a little bit of the disconnect. But yeah, I thought that was just kind of heavy when you're talking. And I was like, what you're already doing this?

Athan (38:55):

Yeah. Well, so I'm getting the sense that green between the lines, do you feel like there's resistance to this type of program being implemented?

Anna (39:05):

Specifically, in the part of the organization that I represent? Yes. There's this, which I need to get better at. And I need to understand, like, I spoke to this before in another podcast I did about understanding the language of my audience, because I care right? So for me like that's, it's a no brainer. But when you're talking about an organization like the army, right, it comes down to dollars in time. So there seems to be a little bit of a disconnect with senior leaders on the guard side as how they can allocate resources to support us to implement HGF and that is part of the, overall kind of adversity that I'm facing in this position, but we have a lot of great project officers and we have a lot of people who are on board and so as you talked about, evolving in your leadership style, Like, instead of focusing on those individuals, it's like Sorry about you, because this train is moving with or without you. And we're determined to help soldiers one way or another. Yeah.

Athan (40:11):

So is that, when you when you meet resistance in a project or in a conversation or anything like that, like, What's your general approach to like? How do you? How do you handle that?


Anna (40:24):

So, again, another area, I'm still learning and trying to grow myself professionally, but I make sure to do my homework, it's something I've gotten a lot better at is understanding who you're talking to. Um, and for example, like conquer the TDY, just came back from it was ensuring that my, whenever my spiel is or my pitch or my passion is dynamic, so I know that when I'm coming to talk to you, Athan or if I'm coming to talk to general, so and I know what their interest is in mind, and I know how I can choose to connect with them, that's going to make the conversation relevant. Because at the end of the day, right, people, we're all bias, we have our own interest. So I have to ensure that I can make my job and what I'm trying to do relevant to every person that I talked to.

Athan (41:14):

Yeah, so but playing that through playing that tape to the end a little bit, let's just say you did your homework, you did your part, you understood your audience, you pitched it in a way that you felt like was the best way you could pitch something. And somebody's still just not, they're not getting it or they're not understanding it, or they just don't like it. What do you do next? That's a good question.

Anna (41:49):

I try not to get emotional. But I know at this point, like, I can play this scenario in my head. And at this point, I'm probably cursing a lot.

Athan (41:57):

So when you say emotional is you get angry? Or you get, what does that look like? For you?

Anna (42:03):

Yeah, it's probably like a little bit of just like, stubbornness of like, resist, I know, when I'm fighting resistance, and I'm going to fight that the same way. So I'm going to be much more like, try and get to the core of what's happening, and probably not the most efficient.

Athan (42:28):

Yeah. Well, there's no right way. I mean, I've having implemented you, I think I've spent almost my entire career, implementing new things like things that people hadn't heard, that, like, emerging things. And so I've been pumped up, and I really don't know the answer.

Anna (42:52):

I bumped. I was gonna say, what do you what what's been your experience?

Athan (42:55):

I think what I one thing that I have learned, and I don't you know, is that the harder I push against their resistance, the harder they're going to push back against me. You know, there's this whole model of when I was in grad school, they talked about this model of resistance theory. And the the actual example that the professor had someone come up to the front of the class, and I'm going to demonstrate it as if there's two people here, he put his hand up like this. And he told a student to put his hand up, and the professor pushed against the student's hand. And so automatically, what is the student do? Push bashes bass? Yeah, right. So now they're just pushing a hard, but the second the professor led up and and, like eased up, then the student eased up also. And I've tried to had really stuck with me over the years, and I've tried to practice that, but the challenge of that particular method, and what that demonstration doesn't do for you is okay, and then what? Okay, let, yeah, no, I let up a little bit, but I still have a goal. I'm like you said this train still moving forward. So what do I do next? And I don't think that I've ever gotten it right. I'm always just trying to learn from other people who are in challenging and emerging scenarios. But I think what the people who I've seen do it well, they do a good job of getting buy in from other people. They admit when they don't know things, they just kind of are also open to okay, you're resisting, something, you have a part of this puzzle. So what do I need to learn from you to like, figure out how to push this thing forward. And, I've tried everything, from just running people over to You know, unhelpful things. But I'm always just trying to, I think, learn, you know,

Anna (45:07):

I think sometimes to you, just like you said, you just have to let the dust settle. So sometimes you have to recognize, like, Hey, we're not going to solve this tonight, like, let's take a moment and you kind of take your lashings or whatever and your negative feedback and you reflect on it. And then I think in this position, I've just recognized that, like, you were saying, so this might be the resistive conversation, right with these individuals. But I'm at least fortunate enough to have another group of individuals that are bought in so trying to focus my energies here, and make her these make this group, quantify or make this group, give, provide me with information that, hey, maybe we'll come back in a few months to this, resistive group, but I have all of these, areas that I can talk to you about that have been successful, that provide me a little more firepower and actual implementation that I can bring to the table. So I think it's just patience to which is not one of my forte.

Athan (46:07):

Well, I mean, either ambitious people, ambitious, high achieving, people are super patient. It's one of my lacking areas, also. But what you just said made me think of like when someone has an injury, right, let's just say like, I hurt my knee. And so that that would be like the resistance and a particular idea. Well, yeah, there's going to be certain things I can't do with my knee or, or my leg, but there's like 30 Other things I can do. Right, I can start working on my core, I can start working on my mobility. I mean, there's a lot of other things that I can do. And like you, your analogy kind of made me think of that. Okay, I bumped up against bumped by heads against this person. Okay, we're just gonna let that rest for a little bit. Let me go see the other things that I can do to make this thing work?

Anna (46:56):

Yeah, I think that's a really good point. Because you're like, Yeah, I might have a bum leg right now. But I still got a good leg. I still got two working arms. So well, yeah, I do. Until the time is right to come back. And then, but when the time is right.

Athan (47:12):

We're coming back game on. Yeah. Well, with the stress that you? Well, a couple things that I was thinking about, you mentioned, like way early on in the conversation about what it's like to be a strength coach. And people have like assumptions about that. And people are gonna make assumptions about what it's like to lead a high level program like you lead, how do you optimize yourself to to handle the work that, you mentioned what you did to prepare for Master fitness. But like, what do you do to prepare for this, this amazing work you're doing?


Master Fitness

Anna (47:53):

So it's taken a lot of self reflection. Because you have to be able to sit and understand what your strengths and weaknesses are, if you truly want to be successful. And I know the things that I feel very confident in and I know the things that I don't like, for example, I'm an extremely visual person who struggles with mental compartmentalization. So therefore, all the things that manifest themselves physically in my life have to be compartmentalized. So I'm talking like I can see two whiteboards literally, just from my vantage point, right now, I traveled with a whiteboard, which God bless my NCO that I was working with bought me one, he's like, man, you need this. So I try to be very methodical in the things that I do. And I'm extremely routine base, because but it's good and bad, right? Because it's good, because when you can stay on that routine, but I also can get derailed very easily if that routine is not able to take place. I have five different notebooks. Like that's my system right now. And each notebook is labeled, and then that's where the notes go. And a lot of brain dump, I try to write as much as I can, I try to write down as many even if it's just random notes about events or situations I try to write down as much as I can. So then I can come back to whatever I felt was important in that time in that moment, and look at it from a different perspective when maybe I'm not so stressed or busy. And I can be like, oh wait, what was this about? And kind of come back to that? So lots of writing

Athan (49:27):

Yeah, I just said there's like, Have you ever read the book The Miracle Morning? Okay, well anyway, it's not really that important but except for that he I stole the six six things to do every morning and one of them is journaling and you saying that you come back to what you write like I'll all right and I'll journal and It relieves what's in my mind. It gives me perspective I'm able to organize my thoughts, but what I feel like I need to do better is come back to it, like I never I might as well just burn it as soon as I write it, honestly, because I don't ever revisit it. And it's just something I'd like to be better about, you know?

Anna (50:10):

Yeah, I mean, it's definitely come in handy. Because like I said, like, if you're able to be in a different mindset, sometimes it also cultivates just like additional thought, you're just kind of like, when I texted you the other day, and I was like, Hey, I got some, like, literally, it's just going to be a brain dump of deciphering some notes. And coming back to some thoughts that are happening in the moment. I'm sure some people think I'm crazy, because I was like, sitting into meetings. And I'm like, and they're probably like, What is she doing over there? Like, this is just an informational brief.

Athan (50:43):

I'm always like that, because I'm not a great note taker. And so when I see people taking notes, I'm like, oh, shoot, should I be? Should I be writing this down? Like, yeah, I got started to get like, a little bit sick here. Like, maybe I'm missing something here. You know?

Anna (50:56):

Yeah. It's funny, because my boss is like that. So he can like take information, and then just like, hold it. And when we were at Ohio State this past week, I did leave my notebook and I felt naked. Yeah, so he like, pulled his notebook out and realized that he just been sitting there for like, 10 minutes. And he was like, Here you go. You can have it. I was like,


Athan (51:20):

That's awesome. Well, I think it's really important. What you said is to like, like, a large part of being effective is just like really knowing yourself, knowing what you need, knowing where your typical hangups are, where to where my stumbling blocks, like, after a while, it's kind of like, shame on me, if I just keep tripping over the same stumbling block, and I don't ever do anything to overcome it. And so like what I'm hearing you say, you're creating systems, you've got your whiteboards, you've got your notebooks, you've got the things that you need to do to keep yourself going. One thing you said that I totally relate to is, I'm a very routine person, I'm constantly fighting to hold my structure in my life, but when it something derails it, it's like, I'm completely spun out, and I really want to, I'm getting better at adapting, but like, I'm still not great at that, you know?

Anna (52:22):

Yeah, it's hard. And I've been traveling like crazy. And I actually took a month of sounds like nothing, I'm sure. But to me, it seemed like eternity. I didn't travel for the entire month of October. And I would you would have thought I was a new person. I just started traveling again two weeks ago. And that's definitely no, it's that's definitely something that I want to try. And there's a couple things that I'm like, Okay, this has to happen again, I was like talking to my girlfriend about that this morning. Like, I have to get up. I got to get walking and I got to get a coffee. Like if nothing else, to at least trying to start my day, is get a coffee, especially when you're when you're traveling on time zones, like getting up and getting moving and finding the sun and just like being alive. Like that's really big for me in the mornings. But it's definitely difficult when you're traveling as much as I do.


Athan (53:19):

There's so much research right now around sunlight, and even down to the adu. Do you know, Andrew Huberman at all? Or do you know who that is? He's a researcher from Stanford. And he's actually a neurologist, but he has a lot of, he's doing a lot of research out there around like sunlight and actually getting direct light into your eyeballs as soon as you possibly can. In the day, and I'm just like, I'm trying to coach as I'm picking up information like that. I try to coach other people, like almost like lab rats, like, hey, let's try this. Let's just get up and get sunlight in our eyes in the morning and see, like what happens, and picking up on that.

Anna (54:04):

Yeah, it's funny that you say that. Because I so when I was in Massachusetts, at the Research Institute, we did a, we met with a group called wave neuro, and they do like as if I'm going to sound my medical my medical background isn't as vast as my strength condition. He EGS or he, they did like

Athan (54:23):

EGS. Yeah, or Eks is one of the two. Yeah.

Anna (54:28):

Yes, so they put this like contraption on and they give us like, brainwave information and then but he asked me about my routines. And essentially, it was almost like a gypsy reading my palm but with legit science because yeah, he could see like the, they can tell how fast your brain is processing information by different sections. So the front of your brain versus the back of your brain, so and so forth. But I talked to him about my morning routine, and he was like, do you wear sunglasses? And I said, I always wear sunglasses. I take your sunglasses off. He was and I was like, I've been doing it over. Yeah, he was like, No, it's good. Ray, you're still getting out and your body knows, but he's like, You have to take your sunglasses off. And he actually spoke. He was I think he was a neurologist as well, but he's like, You got to let you gotta let your eyes see the sun. And I was like, oh, yeah, it's good to know.

Athan (55:12):

Yeah. And I can just say that for me there. It's amazing that's just like a little switch that I flipped. That I mean, has had an impact across a lot of different aspects of my life. You know? And it's crazy to think about that, like, simple thing. It's the simple things like, I think for the better part of 20 years, I dread drinking a gallon of water a day. And they like, I was like, Okay, I'm hydrated, whatever. But then when I started putting, like, electrolytes in my water, it became a game changer. Like, you're like, Whoa, it's like someone just flipping a switch, you know?

Anna (55:52):

Right. And that's how I am with when I try to talk to people about sleep. Because they're like, Oh, well, I'm good on four or five hours of sleep. And I'm like, but are you because imagine, you're right. And then they're like, Oh, but I function I'm like you might be functioning because again, like we were said, right, your body's job is to stay alive. But imagine if you got eight hours asleep, or imagine nine hours asleep, which is my number, but

Athan (56:14):

Right? Well, and it goes back to that guitar analogy. Like, I can strum this guitar, the strings of this guitar and it'll make a noise. You know, it'll do something. Yeah. But if I'm not, if it's not tuned in, and if it's not the right chord, played at the right time, right. And then it's not as beautiful as it could have been, right?

Anna (56:35):

And sometimes, which, again, coming full circle, right? We were talking about this when I was in Massachusetts? Well, I've always done it this way. And I've been successful, right? So maybe the objective of the person playing the guitar isn't to sound beautiful, but it's just to make noise. Yeah. So they're like, hey, I can strum these strings all day long. And I'm making a sound, and somebody's gonna hear me. Right. And it's the same thing in the army. And that's why we're facing like that resistance. Because it's like, wait a minute, I'm here in my career. So everything I did from this point forward must have been right. And it worked. Because I made it here. So why are you telling me that I have to change and make something different?

Athan (57:13):

Right. I mean, what you just said is so powerful that I think, like not enough people think about that. Like if your objective is like, I'm just gonna keep using the guitar analogy, because we've worked, we've gone there already, is just to make some sort of noise, and it's got you, it's gotten you somewhere, then because not everyone's I guess not everyone's goal is to make beautiful music. Right? Or you're not everyone's some people want to make some sort of music, but they don't realize that they would love another kind of music, if they just tried it, or they'd be more effective. They'd be better at it, and you got to try different things, different songs and chords and whatnot. Yeah, so anyway, that's, it's off to think more about that. But um, so was there anything that you wanted to talk about on this podcast? Like, we as you were getting on it? Did you get weather things on your mind or things that you've been on, like, every pod? Like, you've been on podcasts lately that, like, I'm curious, like, if there's things that like, is there anything that you've talked about on those other podcasts that you feel like, needs to be shared?


Anna (58:31):

I mean, why, I mean, I will say that, I think, whoever listens needs to know, like, what an influence you are. So I'm going to put you on a little bit of a pedestal for a hot second. Surely, Bryce It's so crazy. Because again, Josh and I still talk about this to this day, because like, are we remember the staff went up and introduced themselves. And, you guys are like, I'm sorry, so I'm starting so and like Pittman and I were literally like, Zack guy, like, we want that guy. And when we got put in our small group, and you were our like, Team Leader, or our small group leader, like Pippin, and I were like, This is great news. We were so excited. And also for the record, I was petrified that you were going to fail me on my final project. I was like, He's not and I tried to keep it under wraps that I was a strength coach. I did not say a word for I think the first week. And then I was like, okay, these people need some help. So I ended up like, Not yet. The students. I helped.

Athan (59:34):

Yeah, well, we need to help people. Yeah.

Anna (59:37):

Um, and I remember when I went in for my final presentation, and I came back out like all the guys are like, Why were you in there for so long? I was like, I told you he was gonna fail the E. But it was one of those like, I knew you knew that. I knew what I was talking about. You wanted me to do well, so I knew you were gonna push me. But I was a little nervous.

Athan (1:00:00):

Yeah, it's really a strategy. Thank you for saying all that. I mean, I love have always loved that, that position of teaching it, I just took it so seriously about, like, what you guys were going to go and do out there in the world. And so, but my strategy always is to, is to really hold people to a really high standard, like, when I see you, I feel like one of my talents has been able to see potential. And sometimes I see potential in people that they they're not they're even clueless about. And so I just want, I don't allow, I wouldn't allow you to be anything other than, your best self. And if it took a little coaxing, or a little time or a couple different shots at it, I was in, you know, it was worth it for me, and if I had to be a little mean, or a little aggressive or whatever, that it was worth it for me to get you to where I knew you could be.



Anna (1:00:59):

Yeah, but and, like, I don't think it ever came off as me, we just, I just, you could tell you were passionate. And I think like, even how we started this conversation like that stood out to us, especially in the army, where sometimes you kind of get put in positions that you don't necessarily want to do, but you're like, Hey, you're the closest person in proximity. And they're like you, this is your job. Yeah. And I think your passion was very evident, and we could feel it, we vibe with it. And I think the people that I keep in touch with from our small group, we're very thankful for that.

Athan (1:01:31):

So that's awesome. Well, that that makes, I mean, that's really all I want to do in this world, to be honest, is to help other people to find become their best self. I like I said, my purpose, I feel like is helping people to find their optimal health to build their deep connections and to self actualize. And so if I feel like I've accomplished that I will have made it in this world. So I'm glad that at least in that one, Mike, micro time I've maybe got a little closer to that purpose. So absolutely.

Anna (1:02:05):

The people in that small group appreciate that. So you definitely have that effect. And I'll definitely say like, I've done like strength and conditioning podcast before as well. And what I'm very, I'm very much so appreciate and enjoy about like this new job and some of these new opportunities. It's created as I get to talk much more, much deeper, right? You're talking like, we're not talking sets and reps? And are you a front squat guy, your back squat guy, it's yeah, I genuinely get to talk about human evolution and an optimization of the human as a soldier. And that's something that I will never take for granted.

Athan (1:02:40):

Well, that's the beauty of the word holistic, I forgot, I was so proud of the army for choosing that word, over whatever other words, they could have chose what they once they have chosen in the past, for example, the course that I stood up for the army was master fitness trainer, you know, and it's just ridiculous to like, that those words versus holistic health and fitness, you know, it's in there. Right? No, but good on good on them. And that's why you're now being engaged in that in more profound ways.


Anna (1:03:19):

Right? dynamic conversation. It's so funny to say that because I have four life rules in life. Rule number two is words matter. Words matter? Yes. And for organization that creates, additional skill identifiers, and certain paths and avenues for individuals solely based on labels, right? Whether you're a master and expert, beginner, it's very interesting that they labeled that course master fitness trainer, when you could beg to say that. Maybe that's not quite what, when you produce Welcome to entry level fitness.

Athan (1:03:54):

Yeah, it's like they could have, they really could have named it almost anything, but and it would have been more appropriate. You know, and I always kind of made that joke. And that's a real challenge of instructing that course, is like you again, words mean things. And, people go in there expecting one thing, and I'm not giving you that thing until you've met these other requirements, and so it's just really challenging. You know, I love that, I need to know your four rules are you said the second one was words, or words matter? What are the other ones?

Anna (1:04:34):

My first life rule is compete in everything you do, compete and every, whatever that means, compete and everything you do. My second life rule is words matter. He said words have meaning. They, whatever you're saying it matters. My third life rule is don't be a dick. Just stop being dead. Like you can be. You can be angry, you can be passionate you can be you know, calm conversational but have intent. There's a difference, right? If you're just being, if you're just being mean to be mean, then come on. Otherwise, let's have some constructive conversation. And my last rule is, you know what, sometimes you just gotta be happy to be here.

Athan (1:05:15):

Yeah. I love. Like, honestly, there's something powerful to like people having, a creed, or a manifesto, or values that they've established for themselves. You know, I have five values that I try to, I always keep in the front of my mind, and I talked about him as much as I possibly can. But I'm curious, I just want to know from you like, what does having those four rules? What does it do for you? Like, how does that serve? How does it serve you in your life?


Values

Anna (1:05:53):

Yeah, I think, which is a huge theme of kind of like, what this whole conversation is like, it keeps me honest, it keeps me centered. And they all kind of like resignate different ways, right? Like I said, I'm a very passionate, aggressive person. And in this job, you have to learn how to hone all that in so I don't need to ever be mean or rude to get a point across, I just have to be proficient and to speak my piece, but I think they just keep me, they just keep me centered, they bring me back to where I'm supposed to be. And like I said, compete. Everything you do doesn't have to be over the top. But it's like, you know, MFT, or it's like this job. It's like, I'm going to show up every day. And I'm going to take things just a little bit further. I'm going to take them one step more than I have to. And I think yeah, I think they just remind me as to who I am and what I'm here to do.

Athan (1:06:47):

Yeah, my mind gives me something similar. They give me it's like a decision tree matrix, right? Like, if something comes across my radar, and opportunity comes and event happens, whatever, it's a really, if I've got to memorize and they're always on the front of my mind, I can always just check in, like, this thing that I'm about to do. Is this in line with my in your case, you call them rules, I call them values, is this in line with what? You know? What should I do next? And so minor, prioritize what matters? Fail often own your own life. Kindness over everything, and oh, gosh, I'm gonna miss I sit on your lap. prioritize what matters fail often? Oh, shit, well, I'm T. Don't you have them? That's right. I'll just talk to him. I'll just look at it do the work. How can I remember that?

Anna (1:07:41):

Yeah, I remember so and, subconsciously, maybe that that's where I don't even know when this happened. I don't know when I evolved or gathered these, but I remembered that you did have those tattooed so

Athan (1:07:55):

You got a little funny. But yeah, So I love that you have those. And I love that you're using those? I'm curious about the I guess I had. It's funny, because when you said compete like the word, like, what's the exact rule? Can we say it again? Everything you do. I had almost like an adverse thought about that. You know, but But it means something to you. And that's what really matters. You know, I'm like, Oh, well, should I always be competing and everything I you know, it's good. It makes you think about it. And?

Anna (1:08:36):

Well, that's kind of why I followed up on it. Because I can see that because a lot of times I think it does get a little of a like, like you said we'll do maybe I just need to show up sometimes. But that right, then we go to life rule. It's almost like a flowchart. So yours is like a decision matrix. And mine's kind of like a flowchart. Right? Well, they, that's fine. Sometimes you just got to be happy to be here. But again, like I said, it centers you raise it, what does competition mean? It doesn't mean it maybe doesn't mean you versus the world, right? Maybe in that moment, whatever you're going through, or wherever you're showing up, you're just competing to be your best self, you're just competing to, maybe you had a bad day, the day before, to not be that person you were one day prior. Or maybe you're competing to just feel good today, it could be anything, it doesn't have to be, you against the world.

Athan (1:09:26):

Well see, and I love that you are just like you are able to even articulate that, sometimes people like adopt, like, quotes from other people rules from other people, and then they're just like, not even able to, and so and all that really matters is it means something to you. It doesn't need to mean anything to me because it doesn't matter at all. So I love that and I'm proud of you for doing that for yourself. I mean, again, I think we're all expecting not not putting pressure on you, but we're all really hoping something amazing comes out of your role and your program. And I love that you're You're doing things to take care of yourself to make sure that, you know, I've done this before I've taken on big things, big roles, and I've crashed and burned personally, I was successful professionally. But I crashed and burned, like behind closed doors, I crashed and burned. You know, and I would never want that for you.

Anna (1:10:20):

I appreciate the DMS and the text that you've sent me, and sometimes I'm pretty transparent on so I don't really, like I said, my egos not that big, I don't really have anything to hide. And, like, the last eight months, I would say of like traveling, and then transitioning into the role had been pretty tough personally, um, and I'm still trying to figure it out, and like, I think you said something to me a couple weeks ago, where you can't compartmentalize yourself, right? Like who you are in that moment, affected who you are right now. So without that event, the person that you are right now wouldn't even exist. And it was so interesting, because you literally said that, to me, I think the same day that I had a conversation with my project officers and was constantly he's like, Hey, make sure that you don't miss remember things. You got to remember them in the way that they happened and your perception right now. And the way you're feeling might cause you to miss remember, we don't only focus on where you feel like your shortcomings are right now. Because throughout those processes, you did have some really great things happen. And no, you're right. And I'm trying to hold on to that and balance that. And my boss was like, Hey, he's approaches a little more external. Right? So he's like, 54 states and territories right now or depending on you. So let's do them. Let's do them justice. And I just got it. Yeah. Keep telling myself.

Athan (1:11:39):

Yeah, Well, and you're always gonna do your best. So you don't ever have to worry about that. I like that. That advice about don't miss remember things. I think we intend to do that a lot. Like, well, there will be some fat and not only just miss remember it, we fill in gaps of information with our own bullshit and lies. You know, an actual event will happen. And they will make up a liar story about why that happened. It might be something like, that happened because I'm a bad person. Or it might because it's they're an asshole, or whatever. I think we have to be as human beings, we have to be really careful about you know, how we fill in the gaps of knowledge, how we remember things. You know, over time, the story becomes something totally different than what actually happened. Not wild. Yeah, it's crazy. Well, I've kept you way longer than I expected to keep you and I'm so grateful that, that you've stayed on this long with me. You know, again, I just want to close with where I started. I'm so grateful for you. I'm so grateful for how you showed up with the time that we shared in master fitness trainer course. And now I'm so grateful for the work you're doing out there in the world. We need people like you. And so, I'll be for sure. You know, watching and hopefully I'll be able to participate in anything that you're producing up there.

Anna (1:13:07):

Fingers crossed. Yeah for sure. Thank you for having me. And this has been great also to have a conversation with someone that has had such an influence on my life as well. So I appreciate you have me on.

Athan (1:13:19):

Alright. Well have a great evening. I hope you have a great Sunday and we'll we'll be in touch some sometime soon.

Anna (1:13:25):

All right. Thanks, Jason.

Athan (1:13:29):

I'm so grateful that you joined us for this episode of doing the work podcast. Providing you with value is why I do this and I hope you got something out of this episode that you can put into action into your life. If you enjoyed listening to this episode, please share this episode with your friends and family who are looking to level up in life. Sign up for our email list at www.doingwork podcast.com. To receive special offers and discounts from our sponsors. subscribe to the podcast on Spotify, YouTube, Amazon and anywhere podcasts are hosted. Thanks again for joining the doing the word podcast. And we'll see you on the next episode.


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