The Overflow Podcast // 036 // Jay Carter talks fitness- and even crushing other goals- for normal guys


A few months ago, I ran into Jay Carter’s wife, Mary, at a conference in Washington, DC. She thanked me for what we taught Jay at the most recent Advance weekend, then told me he was making the bed every morning… things had radically changed. He was also running, beginning to take on some other projects around the house, and had dropped about 15 pounds.

Cristy was shocked: “Andy taught him to make the bed!”

I admitted I hadn’t taught him any such thing. Rather, Jay had take some tools he learned at the Advance, applied them in the way that suited him the best (which is exactly how the material at Advance works- everyone walks away with something tailor-made to them and their own goals / priorities).

580948_4340744678175_561658550_nMy time gets pretty thin at the Advance weekend, so I don’t get to talk to everyone as much as I’d like. Jay was one of those guys I wanted to meet- but it just hadn’t happened. So, I made a mental note to catch up with him at the next rendezvous- and then did.

My impressions were correct: he didn’t really need our help- we’d just helped inspire him. He was already a great guy- it’s just easier to be great when you’ve got others around you trying to live out their greatness, too.

Hence the old adage: “Show me your friends, and I’ll show you your future.”

And, Solomon’s own way of saying it: “He who walks with the wise will be wise… but the companion of fools suffers harm” (Proverbs 13:20).

Over time, I learned that Jay was doing some oddly incredible (yes, I meant to put both of those words together) fitness activities. A triathlon. A stair climb in full fire-fighter gear in honor of the 09/11 rescue workers who gave their lives to assist others…

So, I thought we needed to chat. How do regular guys- guys with real routines like making the bed and chasing kids and working a job- actually get in shape?

So, listen in… and look for… (Jay’s ideas, not mine):

  1. Consistency. Do something every single day. But, don’t just do “something,” have a plan of what you’re going to do.
  2. More is not better- better is better. This sounds odd. You’ve got to think long-term, though. You’re not going to be in radically better shape in a single day. You’re going to be in a “little bit” better shape. Continue that trend, though, and you’ll make it.
  3. Accountability. Training partners help us by calling out the greatness in us. Often, we think accountability only keeps us from doing things we shouldn’t do. The truth, though, is that accountability also encourages us to be everything we’re destined to be.
  4. Goals- have something to look forward to. Jay advocates starting with something small… and then having another “carrot” to go for… then another… So, you’re first goal might be a 5-K… then a 10-K or triathlon… or something a bit larger. Reach, now, for something that’s just out of reach… and continue reaching.
  5. Education / coach-ability.  You can learn something from everyone. Soak in all you can- even from places you might not expect it.
  6. Have fun. If your’e not enjoying it, do something  you will enjoy. This doesn’t mean it won’t be hard… often, it is the result you enjoy more than the process itself. But, it’s got to be something the brings you value, or it will be short-lived.
  7. Gear- get the right tools for the job. In fitness, having the right shoes, the right bike… the right shorts… it can make all the difference.

Incidentally, everything we discussed applies to every area of life. That is, Jay’s steps work whether you’re trying to crush a fitness goal… or a business goal… or even date your spouse. Work through the list; you’ll see what I mean.

Show notes

Jay’s weight loss story on Mary’s blog:

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