Episode 35 – Alex Povey- Purposefully Setting Out Obstacles to Help You Grow

The Coaching Ignited Show


Menachem Brodie:

Perhaps it’s one of the major reasons why you or I decided to get on the bike or start triathlon is because we wanted an obstacle. We wanted something to push us to grow, and to allow us to become the best we can be. Or maybe we just did it because we wanted people to say “You biked how far and how fast? You put out how many watts?” I don’t even know what a watt is.

Well, today’s guest Alex Povey and I are going to get into why and how he designed his 2020 year to have very large and numerous obstacles for him to tackle, putting forth a very difficult path in front of him. But why and how he elected to do this, how he’s going to use it to grow and to allow him to help thousands of other people along the way. On today’s Episode 35 of the Strong, Savvy Cyclist and Triathlete Podcast.

Speaker 2:

Human Vortex Training and Menachem Brodie present the Strong Savvy, Cyclist and Triathlete podcast where we talk strength training, physiology, psychology, tech and much more to help you get fitter, faster and stronger, in and out of your sport, giving you expert insights, talking with other leading experts. And now your host, world leading strength coach where cyclists and triathletes Menachem Brodie.

Menachem Brodie:

Perhaps one of the reasons why we get into endurance athletics is the fact that they force us to endure, to push our limits and to learn what we’re actually capable of. Now, there’s a lot that we don’t know. And as I’ve gone through my own obstacles in life, and I’ve had to learn and become better whether to avoid injury myself or to help others avoid injury. One of the things that remains true is that every single injury that I have suffered, one, it hasn’t been my fault. I really look at all of them, and there was nothing that I had done, there was everything that I did in my control, to take care of things and keep myself safe and healthy.

And things happen. Now the thing is, as you may hear, if you listened to when I appeared on Alex’s podcast, Coaching Ignited, it’s not what happens to you, it’s how you react. And I determined after each one of these to become fitter, faster, stronger, as well as a better and more knowledgeable coach by diving deep into the reasons why I’m injured as well as how it happened and how to get away from it. This included hundreds, if not thousands of hours at this point of actual reading and researching, going online and doing deep dives not only to my injury, but to ones that were related that I knew were common for athletes in my sports, basketball, cycling, triathlon, running, or things that I had seen other athletes, and I wanted to understand them better.

Now, the thing that is really interesting about today’s podcast is already between the time that we recorded this, and this being posted here, Alex has already come up with a bigger obstacle in that Tough Mudder has filed for bankruptcy, and he’s already working around it. So we cover a lot of different topics today. I think Alex is doing something that is incredible, and especially here for our sports of cycling and triathlon mental challenges abound. But mental tools and the recognition of mental health and its integral part of our sport, are not really given the respect or time that they are due. And I really think that this is the coming cutting edge of where we need to go now.

We’re just embracing cycling strength and triathlon strength training. And we’re just starting to learn if you’ve listened to any of my podcasts before, here on the Strong Savvy Cyclist and Triathlete podcast, or any that I’ve done, I really talked about how as a sport, cycling and triathlon are both kind of where the fitness world was in the 1980s, early 1980s, where we’re like, “Okay, I understand I need to go to the gym and pick up heavy things and put them down. Alright, we’re going to do some squats, and some deadlifts and some lunges. And yeah, man, we’ll do some planks. That’s 21st century.”

But there’s a lot more. And that’s why you’re here listening to this podcast, or maybe you stumbled upon it in iTunes or wherever may be. But by the end of this, you are going to want to go and give us a five star rating or maybe not. But that would help me very much. Because there’s a lot of great information that you’re going to get out of this podcast, and especially with the interview today with Alex. And he and I really just connected on a deeper level, kind of like, Tony Gentilcore comes to mind. When Tony and I talk it’s just, we’re both very relaxed and very free flowing and we just speak our minds. We go pretty deep on stuff and that’s what happened on Alex’s podcast and also here. So Alex’s podcast is called Coaching Ignited. It is geared towards coaches, specifically in person coaches who are looking to grow their business. He’s based out of the UK but I’ll let him tell you about that.

Before we dive into today’s lesson, or podcast, whatever you’d like to call it, I just want to mention the strength training for cycling certification is open. Today, well, when this is posted will be January 28, the course is going to be open until January 31. Now one thing that I am going to note here, the CEUs have taken a bit longer than me or the team anticipate it would. We applied the end of last year, and it still hasn’t gone through. Re-certifications needed to be done for some of the organizations as well as Christmas break and New Year’s and getting back into things.

So what we’re going to wind up doing here for the cyclist certification, the strength training for psycho certification course, is sign up for the insider’s list, which first of all is going to get you $100 off. So that helps. But also we’re going to open up the course again here later in spring 2020 once all of the CEUs have come back in so the NSCA is going to be one those should be in before the end of February, USA cycling USA triathlon, AFA and ASM are all going to be CEU certified or CEU will be awarded for you finishing this certification in full.

So the feedback we’ve gotten from the course so far is fantastic. But I don’t really want to talk about that because today’s interview is fantastic. And we went a little bit long. And when I say long is we went long and deep. We really talked a lot about a very deep well and that is building obstacles, building yourself up to be able to handle obstacles and doing it on purpose. So Alex Povey, I’d like to really thank you for joining us today. I’m really excited to have you here after you had me on your podcast. And we did a deep dive there as well, man.

Alex Povey:

Hey, man, it’s really good to be here. Really I’m grateful to have this opportunity to come and speak with you and your audience. So yeah, I’m super pumped to get into this episode with you.

Menachem Brodie:

And we actually talked before on your podcast Coaching Ignited, and you’re undertaking here, I think my episode was the first one of 2020. And we’re not too far away from that. But you’ve undertaken for this year, a really big and selfless training goal and performance goal. Can you share that with our audience? And tell us a little bit more about what you’re doing here in 2020?

Alex Povey:

Yeah, definitely. So in terms of what I’m setting out to do, I was kind of approaching the end of the year, the end of the decade, just like everyone else with 2020 staring me right in the face. And I was thinking, what can I do this year that’s a little bit bigger than what I did in 2019. In fact, I wanted it to be much bigger, I wanted it to really get me excited, and really get me energized for the new year.

And so I started like thinking, okay, what can I do? And obviously, I’ve got a big passion for fitness and training. And so I saw these events. They’re International. They’re these Tough Mudder events. And I did one, I did one Menachem back in 2014, one of these events. And if anyone’s done a Tough Mudder, it’s basically eight to 10 miles of running through about 20 different obstacles, drenched in mud, and it’s quite challenging for someone who’s not extremely athletic or cardiovascular gifted.

And so I did this event with my friends, took about two and a half hours to finish. And it hurt, like I came out the back of that event and I was in pain for a couple of days, because I’d been using muscles that I’ve never used before. And so when I was thinking about 2020, I was like, maybe I can do more of those, maybe I can do more of these Tough Mudders, because they were pretty tough. They were pretty challenging. And so I started to map it out. And I was like, okay, there’s one over here. There’s one over here. And I was basically trying to map the UK.

And then I decided that I was going to do six. And I thought about it, I thought yeah, that seems pretty good, one every two months. And then part of me was like, “That’s not really that exciting, like six every two months, it’s not very exciting.” And so then it moved to 10. And then it moved to 12. And then I was like, actually, this isn’t exciting me either, just adding numbers. And what I realized was I was being selfish.

And what I mean by that is I was just thinking about me and my own accomplishments. And I’ve done a lot of my own stuff and own selfless accomplishments, or selfish or accomplishments should I say. And it wasn’t really like getting me going. And so I was like, how can I make this more about other people than just about me? And then I thought about one of my friends actually, Tom. We went to university together, and he was going through some struggles over the last couple years. And long story short, he took his own life. He committed suicide.

And it was weird because when I was thinking about these events, Tom popped into my head and I was like, how do I link this to that? Because there’s so many guys that are like 18 onwards and even younger, who are going through the same experiences as my friend, Tom. And I just can’t accept that. And so for me going into 2020, I was like, how can I link this challenge with raising awareness to mental health. Because I’m not going to lie to you, I cried when I thought about Tom, and how I could potentially create some awareness and impact around mental health and help these guys who are struggling with the same thing.

And so I wanted to set a goal that was bigger, to raise enough attention. So I just decided to look at every single Tough Mudder event in the UK, I found 16 in total, and I was like, “Okay, I’m going to do every single one of them.” Some of them are on Saturdays, and Sundays have the same weekend, back to back. And then I’m going to add four extra events on top, Spartan races to round it up to 20, and set out to raise 20,000 pounds for this charity called Mentell who helped men struggling with suicidal thoughts and depression. And then I was like, boom, I’ve got it. That’s what I’m doing in 2020.

Menachem Brodie:

And that focus on mental health and endurance, I mean, mental health in cycling, in particular, and triathlon is just coming to the forefront. We actually had a really great guest, Dr. Lisa Lewis, a couple of months ago, and she’s actually releasing here in January or has released by the time we put this podcast out, a mental health for fitness pros.

And it’s really interesting how you’re tying together these extremely physically taxing and challenging events along with mental health. Because in order to be able to do those types of events consistently, we need to have that healthy mental balance. And a lot of cyclists and triathletes tend to come from a background of some type of abuse, or they come from a background of addiction, where they get very addicted to that runner’s high, or whatever it may be. And it’s not always the healthiest thing.

So I find it really interesting that you managed to link these two things together, and you didn’t just settle like you said, for every other month, but you’re looking to really endure through these events. What’s your game plan, as far as like training yourself physically and mentally to make sure you’re able to handle these rigors this year?

Alex Povey:

You said something very important there, about the training and the challenge, and I almost see it as like a medicine. So I really regard fitness as like one of the best medicines, and I’m sure you will agree that when you’re doing any type of workouts and exercise or cardiovascular training when you’re biking or hiking, or whatever the audience likes to do, you get that kind of good feeling those, that dopamine or endorphins. And it just makes you feel good.

And I’m doing it one, for a selfish reason is I don’t want to feel like I’m having down days, or I’m feeling depressed. And training really helps me with that. And I know that if I can raise awareness, not only around mental health, but training as well, and do something that’s super inclusive, where I can bring in other people to do these events with me because it’s a team event, then it gives someone else and other people a goal to work towards.

And even if they’re just going to do one with me, it gives some of these guys, even at the charity, they want to get involved as well. But everyone around the UK who just wants to join me for an event, it gives them something to work towards. And that’s going to kickstart maybe their training and their medicine to feel better about themselves. And that’s kind of the bigger vision. It’s not just about me going into these events, because there’s probably a lot of guys listening to this and going “Tough Mudders ain’t that hard, really.” Considering the level of athletes maybe that are listening to your podcast. But for me, it’s pretty difficult. But I’m thinking from a biggest perspective, I want people to get involved in fitness, because I want them to have the same medicine that I’ve got.

Now, in terms of training and prep. I pretty much didn’t run or do anything really cardiovascular based last year at all. Menachem, I’m not going to lie to you. I didn’t really do it, because I didn’t really enjoy it that much. And I was just like weight training and just lifting weights and I did that for probably about 12 years, maybe even longer and loved it and still do it. But I started running late last year, probably the last two weeks and really started getting into the running and working with my coach and increasing that cardiovascular side of things. Because I knew going into these events, I’d have to run a lot more because it’s like eight to 10 miles and also maintain that upper body strength to do the obstacles.

So I started running started doing 10Ks, did a couple of 10Ks, towards the end of the year got a sub 50, which is great for me, because I’ve only done like, probably about 3 or 4 10Ks in my life, I think. So I got sub 50. I was pretty pleased with that, I was pretty happy. And I went into 2020 feeling like really good, really lean, really healthy. And so I was like, “What can I do next?” Because these Tough Mudder events don’t start until April. Just after I get back from Nepal.

So I’ve got like this three month window, where Yes, I can train but I wanted to take it up a notch, I wanted to take it up a level. And so my business partner actually inspired me to do this and enroll into probably the toughest mental challenge that I could find that would work for me and my lifestyle and what I do. And that’s currently what I’m going through right now, I’m about seven days in. And if you want me to kind of unpack it a little bit so people can grasp what I’m doing I’m happy to do that.

Menachem Brodie:

I do want to get into that. There are a couple things I want to kind of get into first before that, if that’s okay.

Alex Povey:

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Menachem Brodie:

So the first one is usually we would do this at the end. But I think this is a good time to let people know, this is such an important cause, like I have a good friend that I had for a number of years, who still suffers from mental health issues, PTSD, all this other stuff. A lot of different things going on. So how would the listeners connect to join you or to support you? Like, is there an opportunity for them to donate to the cause? Or to sign up to do the race with you? Or are you doing group training, where people meet up with you?

Alex Povey:

Awesome, I really appreciate you bringing this up. Because this is really one of my core focuses is raising awareness and raising funds for the charity. And so like probably the best place is to connect with me on Facebook, I do have a just giving page, but the hyperlink is too long to even, like read out right now. Maybe we can include it in the show notes.

But if you just connect with me on Facebook, and just follow my journey, because I’m a big documenter, I put out a lot of content. My whole business is built on Facebook and Instagram for my coaching. So like come and follow me and even get involved, donate. And if you’re in the UK listening to this, reach out, I’m like super open guy, I love training with different people and connecting and meeting people face to face. So just connect with me on Facebook first of all, and just follow some of the content I’m posting out and there’ll be links along the way to get involved in events, etc. And my Facebook is Alex Povey. So Alex Povey. And then you’ll see Coaching Ignited. CEO of Coaching Ignited, and you can connect with me there. And then we can like go through the journey together if you want to get involved.

Menachem Brodie:

Awesome and we’ll plug it again at the end, we’ll put the links into the show notes here. But I really want to support this cause and having gotten to know you the last couple of months, I think that it’s coming from an incredible place. A lot of people in the States, we get started as cyclist or triathletes by doing a 5K or a MS150. And that’s our first goal. We’re not really interested in racing.

But where you’re coming from, you’re talking about strength training for 12 years and you’re like, “Hey you know what, this looks kind of fun.” I love tough monitors. Personally if I had the body build, to be able to go through and handle those types of rigors right now, which I can’t yet. I love how it’s an entryway into Endurance Sports because it’s a great way for people who are more traditional in their fitness quote, unquote where it’s more Western, where we’re in the gym, and we’re running on a treadmill, and we’re kind of checking the boxes. The Tough Mudder is a fantastic way to learn about what really is functional. And all these people are saying, “Well bag squats on a Bosu ball is functional.” Well, no, it’s not.

“Well, balance training is functional.” Well, not really “Well, you’re a cyclist, you need to balance on the bike.” Well, kind of. You’re talking about like, hey, you’re going to run. And it’s pretty much like we’re going to pretend a lion is chasing you through a muddy desert and you have to survive. And it’s a ton of fun. You get stuck, cool, the atmosphere there is great. But what I really want to try and pull out of this is it is an endurance event, you’re essentially looking at stringing together a number of performances. But I’m interested, when we spoke on your podcast, you had mentioned that you had taken Welsh, you could speak Welsh, rather, and that’s one of the reasons you’re one of the very few people who can pronounce my name. Is your family Celtic? Does your lineage go back to Ireland and England?

Alex Povey:

My family… So none of my family are actually Welsh, per se, apart from my little brother who was born there, but my family are from England and Scotland. So if you go back through like my heritage, probably like a couple of generations, it will be English and then Scottish. I don’t think we’ve got Irish in there, but they may be a couple of generations back. But yeah, mainly English and Scottish.

Menachem Brodie:

So I want to kind of sew together or tie together something for the listeners of the long term podcast. If you guys think back to Dr. McGill, when he was on the podcast, we talked about the two types of hip, we have the Eastern European hip, or the eastern hip, which is much more open and Dalmatian, there’s a lot of range of motion, there tend to be a lot of really good Olympic lifters. And then you have the Celtic hip, which is at the other side, which is a deeper hip socket, which is great for marching, carrying heavy things and running over rough terrain. And so Alex the bells were all just going off, as you’re talking about going from doing strength training to running. I’m like, he’s probably really well built for this. I’m interested how has your body been handling the rigors of running? Are you having back aches or knee aches? Or do you find like, you’re pretty resilient, and it’s just the muscles are kind of a little bit beat up.

Alex Povey:

I think like, I’m holding up pretty well, because I’m stretching a lot. So I’m doing a lot of stretching, a lot of band work. And I’m just mindful, because I did have, I think it’s plantar fasciitis, if that’s how you pronounce it, inflammation of the heel. I suffered with that for a long time. So running to me is suicide, really, because I’m smashing that hill against the floor over and over again, so to run is probably like the worst thing I should be doing. Yet, when I had that condition, and it’s been on and off for years, I learned to stretch a lot and then cope with it.

And so I’ve got into like a positive cycle of like stretching all the time. And so when I’m just like standing around, or I’m on the phone, like chatting to a client or whatever, and I’m stood up, I’ll actually just be like, stretching like my calf, or my leg. Do you know what I mean? And I’m just very mindful of just like keeping my flexibility. And after I do runs, they’re not particularly long, but I make sure I warm down, and I stretch. And if I’m just sat at home, maybe watching a YouTube video or listening to a client call or doing some work, sometimes I’ll just whip out the band and stretch.

And I think that’s what’s like helping me, knowing that I need to stretch and stretch a lot. Because I follow David Goggins who a lot of listeners may or may not know, but he is an absolute beast, when it comes to endurance. Does ultras, does crazy stuff. And he never used a stretch. And he was getting beat up, really beat up. And he then switched his paradigm to doing a lot of stretching. And for someone that does so much endurance, he really is a big advocate of stretching now. And me hearing that, at his level, I was like, “Okay, if he’s doing it, then it makes sense for me to do it.” Because he’s hammering his body. So even though I’m not hammering my body, I know that it’s a good coping mechanism to just stay in good shape, and just not batter my legs and my body, and particularly my heels, because that will inflame them, and then I won’t be able to run or walk. So I’m just mindful and taking precautionary measures.

Menachem Brodie:

Well, let’s kind of use that to kind of parlay into something that we had kind of talked about in passing before we started the recording here. And that was your purposefully kind of building in or engineering the struggle, because that’s a large part of how growth happens. Now, did that come from this plantar fasciitis and what you’ve been going through? Or did that emerge from… Like, how did you get to that, I need to engineer a struggle and make sure that I’m going through that in order to get growth. How did you come to that and how does this Tough Mudder for the next year string tie into that?

Alex Povey:

Yeah, it’s a great question. I think, when I was staring 2020 in the face, like everyone else, it’s a good time of the year to reflect. And I’ve been super reflective all year journal, I do a weekly review. I look at all aspects of my life and I’m very reflective. And so I’ve really flexed that skill throughout 2019. So when I was having my big thinking sessions, towards the end of the year, when there was a bit more room to breathe, less client work, less new clients, less sales, I was just thinking about things. And I was looking back at 2019. And I didn’t get the extreme growth that I was looking for.

So I wanted extreme growth in 2019. And then when I looked at my year, I saw there was a disconnect between the extreme growth I wanted, and the level of discomfort I was experiencing. So I wanted this extreme growth, but I wasn’t going through extreme discomfort. And anyone that knows about achievement and success will know that, generally speaking, you need to go through extreme discomfort if you want extreme growth, just like a piece of coal gets crushed into a diamond, through extreme pressure. And so I realized that going into 2020, if I actually want extreme growth in all areas, in health, in fitness, in business, in wealth, in relationships, I have to be willing to engineer as much discomfort as possible. I need to put myself on the line, I need to do these endurance races. I need to make big, bold claims, commit to raising 20 grand for this charity, commit to getting x client results, commit to securing X amount of clients and revenue, and really push myself to be in those uncomfortable spots where I have to become better, because the pressure is so severe.

Because you can only grow when you end this extreme discomfort. Because generally speaking, when you feel uncomfortable, you’re generally doing what you need to do. So a good example of that, and we can just break it down in terms of maybe a sell situation, because that’s how I could break it down for myself or my clients is like, you’ve got to be prepared to seek out rejection, from potential prospects if you’re trying to build your business. Because there’s a direct correlation between how much rejection you experience and how much opportunities you create, to generate new clients. That’s uncomfortable to put yourself out there and get rejected, to pitch your services, to pitch your coaching to pitch your products, and potentially hear a “No” or “I don’t want it” or “I’m okay, thanks.”

That sometimes hurts the ego and it’s uncomfortable, but it’s necessary if you want to grow a business. Equally, if you want to find a partner, or a girlfriend, or a husband, or a wife, you’ve got to put yourself out there, you’ve got to go out and meet people, you’ve got to approach people. You’ve got to potentially get rejected and feel horrible for a second, in order to realize the upside, which is I could find my perfect partner, if I went out more and spoke to more women or spoke to more men or really made an effort and put myself into some uncomfortable situations.

Because you can’t have the upside without the downside. Everything coexists together. So growth coexists with discomfort, just like up and down, hot and cold, left and right, day and night. There’s always an opposite to things. And so going into this year, I’m like, how do I get uncomfortable? Or how do I get comfortable with being uncomfortable, and then be the current version of myself and create new levels of normal, at an uncomfortable level, and then get even more uncomfortable. And just a constant evolution of getting comfortable with being uncomfortable at the current level. And then raising that bar, raising that bar until I look back and go, “Wow, I’m a completely different person that can basically handle so much more pain, frustration and struggle.” And that’s where I’m going to get the extreme growth.

Menachem Brodie:

And that’s something that it sounds like you kind of, even before the Tough Mudder idea, you were kind of seeking it out. I know we mentioned Les Brown. And when I was on your podcast, like it’s the same thing. He was a door to door TV salesman, “You want to buy a television?” “No.” All right, great, one down, I know that every nine no’s I get there’s a 10 out there, so I’m just going fishing. So was that kind of one of the things that you went through in finding that struggle? Like did you find like there was a system or after X number of failures I’m going to have a massive success? How did you kind of put those two together?

Alex Povey:

I just realized that like doing the uncomfortable stuff, like you just said there with Les Brown, is what you have to do to get what you want. Because there’s something on the line. If it’s uncomfortable, it means it matters to you. And you made a good example there, because I’m naturally… Not naturally, but my background is sales. I used to be on the phone, like Les Brown and doing meetings and hearing “No, no, no, no, no, no, no.” A lot of no’s, a lot of rejection. A lot of people hanging up or not answering my emails or basically backing out of deals that we were doing.

And you can get beat up in that business in sales, you can get beat up. But once you see the correlation between “Oh I need to get X amount of no’s in order to get a yes.” Then you flip it on its head and you go, “I’m going to go and seek out 10 no’s.” Because that will translate into a sale and that sales equal x amount of commission from that potential client, and then you kind of get more comfortable with being uncomfortable. Because there’s a process to it. That, if you go for 10, you’re going to get one. And it’s just a case of, “Okay, I need to endure a bit more discomfort, and then I get the upside.” and then it resets and it starts again. And then you go and speak to another 10 people, and then you get the upside. Or it’s the same way with training. Like you feel like really uncomfortable training, sometimes. Well how good do you feel when you’re finished? You just feel so good.

Menachem Brodie:

Let’s actually use that. We’ll use this as a kind of a soft transition over the business side, because that I’d like to focus on what you’re doing for helping fitness professionals and coaches build. But let’s stay on the training side for right now. Like how are you and your coach building in that discomfort to be able to go in through those cycles? Have you planned out like an annual training plan? Okay, five on, one down. What’s your training periodization look like? Or are you guys kind of doing it week to week, month to month, and then looking back at what you’ve done and then deciding what the week will be? How are you setting your training for the next month or year?

Alex Povey:

Yeah, great, great question. So running up to Christmas, I was just doing split training where I was doing upper body, lower body, upper body, lower body, upper body, lower body, back to back, very simple, with maybe two or three cardio sessions in there. And I dropped 12 pounds, like really good shape, best shape of my life running into the new year. And that was kind of that box ticked.

Now I wanted to take it to the next level, just like I mentioned earlier, so I was looking for this kind of next challenge. Because I was like being really strict with my intake, my diet, my calories, my training, and all the way up to New Year. And I’d cut out a lot of alcohol. So I was practically not drinking at all, in 2019. Maybe like a couple of drinks here and there, but pretty minimal. So I was like, really, really well prepped going into 2020. And so I was like, I need something harder. I need something more challenging, but not just on the fitness side. On the mental side. I wanted something that would challenge me mentally.

And so I’m not an athlete, I’m not a triathlete, I’m not a swimmer, I’m not really a runner. Never really going to compete. My main sport is business. I like building businesses, and I like helping people build businesses. That’s my sport. That’s what I really love doing. But I’m also into my fitness. And so I follow this guy called Andy Frisella. Have you heard of him Menachem?

Menachem Brodie:

I actually have not.

Alex Povey:

Okay, so he owns First Form, one of the biggest supplement companies in the world. Okay. Super, super successful. He does probably about $300 million in annual revenue. So like, the guy’s a pretty decent entrepreneur, very successful.

Menachem Brodie:

Just okay, just okay. Just all right.

Alex Povey:

He’s doing all right. And he runs a sup business and other companies. And he’s got a podcast called MFCEO Project with over 300 episodes. And on episode 290, he reveals this thing that he does to basically build extreme mental toughness, and go to war with himself. And he shares this process on the podcast, and walks you through the steps and the rules that you have to follow in order to complete this challenge.

And so basically, what it consists of is 75 days straight, so 75 days straight, unbroken, where you’ve got to stick to certain rules. And you can’t break a single one of these rules. Okay, and I’m just going to break down like how it works, because I’m on my seventh day right now, learning so much about myself, about my mindset about what I’m capable of doing, and really just prioritizing time and getting efficient with everything because this is very regimented. So I’ll just break down the rules. So it’s follow a diet with zero cheat meals for the entire 75 days with no alcohol. So for me, that’s-

Menachem Brodie:

75 days with not a single cheat.

Alex Povey:

Not a single cheat meal. And for me, it’s no chocolate, no alcohol, no chips, no bread, not even a protein bar, because it’s got chocolate in it. Nothing because it doesn’t stick to like my fruits, my veggies, my carbohydrates, and it’s all being tracked on My Fitness Pal, super dialed in. If there’s like an M&M or a piece of chocolate, you start again. So nothing, you’re not allowed to touch anything. So that’s one follow the diet.

Number two is two workouts a day. So two workouts a day, for at least 45 minutes, and one of those workouts has to be outside. It has to be outside, because what this is teaching you that life is not perfect. And the conditions are not always going to be perfect in life or business. You might go outside one day, and it’s chucking it down as rain, it’s snowing, it’s cold, it’s windy. And it’s the last thing you want to do. And so it builds that mental toughness that you need to go outside once a day. And then one training session either outside again or inside, so two training sessions a day.

Then drink a gallon of water per day. I’m not sure if this is healthy or not. But I’m going to the toilet a lot. Drink one gallon of water a day, which is probably the hardest thing for me, is drinking the water. And the next thing is read 10 pages of a nonfiction book. So an entrepreneurial book, so not 50 Shades of Grey. It needs to be an entrepreneurial book, a business book. I’m currently reading, Relentless, which is quite fitting by Tim Grover, who used to be the coach to Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant. Amazing book, amazing book. Yeah, so, so good. So I’m reading that right now. And then the last thing is take one progress pic every single day. So you’ve got to complete all those things by the end of the day. Otherwise, you fail and you start again. And that’s what I’m into. So seven days into that right now.

Menachem Brodie:

That’s a really tough regimen. I’m curious though, why the chocolate. The alcohol, I totally get, the bread I can understand. Why chocolate?

Alex Povey:

Just another level harder.

Menachem Brodie:

I couldn’t do it, man, I dark chocolate, I’ve got to have at least… I don’t have to, there are many days that I don’t, but two or three squares of like 80% or 77% plus.

Alex Povey:

Yeah, I love it. I’m not saying it’s bad for you. But I want to make it harder. I don’t want it to be easy. That’s the whole point of it, it’s not a physical challenge. The athletes listening to this, people that are super fit will be like, “Hey, that’s fucking easy.” Well try and do it then, try and stick to like taking the progress pick, reading those 10 pages, drinking that gallon, training outside at least once a day, and not breaking your diet for 75 days straight, no rest. There’s no rest in this game. That’s two and a half months, you cannot step off the gas. That’s the side of it. It’s 90% mental 10% physical.

Menachem Brodie:

I think it’s really interesting, that consistency. It’s very extreme, but that consistency, building the mental muscle of being able to be consistent. But I also hear a lot, with the two workouts a day. It sounds like there’s also a big focus on the recovery. Like, it sounds like there’s also regimented sleep in there that, is that correct?

Alex Povey:

Yeah, this is interesting, because my business partner is doing the same things. He is a day ahead of me. And I was so exhausted last week, I actually fried my CNS. On the second day, I was so depleted because I’d been attacking it. Even six days before I trained back to back before I even started it. So I hadn’t really rested at all. And then I went into it like really energized. And I hit a massive like compound routine with like deadlifts, and pull ups and all kinds of random stuff and really went hard. I woke up the next day, and I was just fried. And it was like my energy was depleted. And I still had to do two workouts that day. I was like, “Whoa, I can’t do this.” Day two, and I was struggling. And then I realized that I needed to pace myself a little bit more and not attack so hard each and every session, and just treat it more like a marathon versus a sprint.

But when it comes to the sleep thing, I’m getting to the end of the day and I’m like sleep for me before was almost like an inconvenience. It was like I’ve gone to sleep and I feel like I didn’t necessarily deserve it and I should be working more. But now I’m like getting to the end of the day, absolutely exhausted. And you’re just like, I need this right now. I need this eight hours for recovery because my body is just like craving for some rest. And now I’m actually like really valuing sleep. I’m treating it like a really valuable and precious resource just like my food.

So like the diet is easy because I’m always looking for like more nutrient rich foods because I want to recover faster. I want to be healthy and I want to just look after my body because I’m just putting it through like a lot of training. And so the sleep thing, I’m really valuing it and I’ve been dialing it in like regimently for the last probably three or four months, I’m really just like going to bed exactly the same time, putting my blue light blockers on taking my CBD, and putting my earplugs in and then waking up at exactly the same time pretty much pre-alarm because my cortisol kicks in at the same time every day now, because it’s programmed. And everything is just super dialed in, it’s regimented, but what I’m trying to build is extreme discipline. So that I’m unfuckable with myself, that is the objective. So when I say I’m going to do something, I’m going to fucking do it. Sorry to swear, but that’s me. That’s what I’m doing.

Menachem Brodie:

Oh man, now I have restart the whole podcast all the little kids… It’s okay. It’s nice, Anchor’s like, “Oh, is this explicit?” It is, it is. I can’t remember, I think with Tony Gentilcore, I dropped a bunch of F bombs. My wife was in the other room, she popped her head in [inaudible 00:40:51]. She makes a point. Like I’ve actually been watching comedians in cars getting coffee, which I just love. The first time I watched it, I was like, “Oh, it’s kind of silly.”

But one of the things that I just watched, I can’t remember who the guest was. But they were talking about Rodney Dangerfield and his stand up and how the cursing actually takes away from his act. And Jerry says like, I’m a huge proponent of clean comedy, because it’s much harder. But it’s also when you’re talking about this stuff we are I find that it’s genuine. Unless you’re like a 12 year old kid who just learned the F word like “F, F, F, F.” Like, Dude, it’s not cool. You’re not an adult.

Alex Povey:

I try and use it sparingly. But I think it’s because I listened to Andrew Frisella a lot. So as I’m doing these training sessions, and working out, I’m going through all of his podcasts as well. He’s got 300 of them, I’m going from start to finish. And just listen to him. And he swears a lot. So I’ll probably pick a lot from him. But I try and use swearing sparingly, just to actually emphasize points as well, when I’m speaking. Kind of like what Tony Robbins does. And I’m not saying I’m Tony Robbins.

But Tony Robbins says some really vulgar things, you notice when he’s trying to make a point, he’ll like, call people out and say “Your mother’s a whore.” He will say things like that. I’ve heard him say it, really piercing and polarizing things. Because I feel like swearing is a good mechanism to drill home a point. And like, go a bit deeper than if you were to just say it like really politely if that makes sense. So I use it as like a good communication tool, not just for the sake of swearing.

Menachem Brodie:

And it’s just like the good hearted training programs. Like I was just talking with somebody else the other day, I’m working on a book very early, I’ll share with you off recording. But one of the things that we were talking about is how people just want hard workouts now. So he was talking with someone the guy’s like, “Oh yeah, it’s a great program. It’s really hard.” So he’s like, “Okay, well, what do you like about it?” And the guy’s like, “Oh, it’s really hard.”

And then through the rest of the conversation just came back. He’s like, “By the way what results have you seen from that really hard program.” He’s like, “Oh, I don’t know, I couldn’t finish it, but it was really hard.” It’s kind of like getting those super hard workouts. And that’s what I kind of like about what you’re talking about here, is you’re finding very quickly that in order to maintain that consistency, that those five sixes and sevens are going to get you there. But just like occasionally dropping the F bomb for impact, you have to have those super hard workouts occasionally. How are you kind of figuring out how to find that balance of when to drop that in there?

Alex Povey:

Yeah, so that’s a really good point. What I noticed was day one to five, I was training, like I was doing a run in the morning, because it doesn’t have to be weightlifting twice. It’s like running, weightlifting, or on the bike, or you know what I mean, you can mix it up. You don’t have to do back to back, upper body or lower body, whatever. So what I was doing was I was doing a run in the morning. And I was doing a weight training session in the evening. I was doing that as like my back to back in the day.

But what I was finding is because it was the first thing I did in the morning was train and the last thing I did at night, there wasn’t really that much recovery time. If you think about it, I had my sleep. And that was it. There was no real recovery time. And so what I did yesterday was I engineered that I wouldn’t train in the mornings. So on Sunday, because I was so exhausted Menachem. I was like, I need to like reset somehow because I was losing energy. And I fell asleep in the barber’s because I was so tired on Saturday. I was like, I can’t keep going on like this.

So what I did was I stopped… I didn’t train yesterday morning. I save both my sessions till late in the evening. So I had a full night of sleep that I had probably about, I don’t know, six, seven hours worth of like just chilling, just on the sofa, eating as much as I could, and just watching YouTube and videos and stuff. And then I felt super refreshed by the evening so that I was ready to just attack a big session. Because I had all my energy back, and I’ve recovered, really well, because I give myself a bit more breathing space.

And that’s really how I’m engineering it. So I’m like being tactical about when I train and just mixing it up. So some days I will do it in the morning, and then in the evening. But today, I trained first thing in the morning, and then I did a workout just before this. And so I’ve still got another, I don’t know, seven hours of the day left. And I won’t be training until tomorrow now, so I’ve got a longer recovery time. So then I can go a bit harder in the sessions, because I’m giving myself more recovery. So I’m just getting more tactical when it comes to it.

Speaker 2:

Want to learn more? Check out humanvortextraining.com. For more on this topic from Coach Brodie, and today’s guest.

Menachem Brodie:

And has this had an impact so far? I know you’re just seven days in, but it sounds like it’s very regimented. How has that affected your business? And we’ll kind of parlay over to that, but how has that affected how you’re running your business? Have you seen changes in how you’re organizing your day? Or like, certain things first instead of being lost? And how has that affected it?

Alex Povey:

Oh, great question. And I would say 100%, so far, it’s affected my business in so many ways. I do this thing called a power list. So I actually got this from Andy as well. So there’s five things on the 75 hard challenge, that I’ve got to complete a day. So basically, I’ve got to tick all those things off. And I mark the day as a win or a loss. So you put a W or you put an L. I’ve had five straight wins… Six wins in a row, I’m on a hell of a winning streak when it comes to 75 hard. But also what I’ve got is I’ve got a power list of five things that are the most integral things to moving my business forward, and getting me the results I want for my clients, my business, my revenue, goals, all that stuff.

And so basically, what this is teaching me is to dial in on the biggest and most important tasks of the day, and just focus on those things. Because where a lot of people get tripped up, and I used to do before, is you’d set out with this massive list, you think, “Hey, I’m going to set a to do list of 10, to 15 things.” Guess what, no one fucking gets them done. Because there’s so many things on the list and they’re not like honing in on what the most important thing is. So you end up just doing a bit of everything and not doing really anything. And so what I was doing is, I was wasting a lot of time before, but now I don’t have a lot of time, I don’t have a lot of time to mess around, because I’ve got prep my meals, I’ve got to drink my water, I’ve got to do my workouts, I’ve got to get showered, got to get to and from work, I’ve got to manage all my business, got to manage my clients, got to manage my staff, I have to be very, very focused on what is important.

And this is the key thing. It’s teaching me to value time, more than I value time before. So I don’t waste time on ineffective or invaluable or low income generating activities, I hone in on my power list, and I cross that power list off. And if I’ve got more in the tank, more time, more energy, then I start working on the secondary tasks, they’re not top priority. And then I mark the day as a win or a loss. And so you can imagine what is happening in this process is I’m winning on five fronts when it comes to my nutrition, my fitness and my training, five wins, right five rules that I’m crossing off, win.

Then I’m hitting the power list, crossing five things off win. I’m effectively stacking 10 wins every single day. Imagine what that is doing. For my confidence, that conviction in what I do, and my discipline and my basically, focus on the right things. That translates into business, translates into my coaching, translates into my sales course, translates in my ability to complete tasks faster than I was ever doing before. And when I said become unfuckable that’s what I mean. I’m so regimented and disciplined, just five or six days in, imagine what I’ll be like in 75 days. I cannot wait, I literally cannot wait.

Menachem Brodie:

Yeah, it’s the consistency. And that’s the thing, that’s what I was trying to tease out. And I love that you honed in on that is that it allows you to focus on the high return things, which, for endurance athletes in particular they’re so focused either on family that work kind of suffers, or they’re so focused on working out, they’re not getting the recovery in. They’re not taking care of the nutrition. Sleep is one of the first things that gets cut from most of the athletes that come to me because they’re broken.

We look at their training schedule, like why did you start waking up at 4:30. We’re like, “Well, that’s the only time I can get my workout in, and it takes me an hour and a half to do my prehab stuff. And then I do my workout which takes me another hour and a half. So then I have to go home…” Like dude, where do you have time for your kids? I have a woman I’ve been talking with where she’s sleeping for three hours in the afternoon while our kids are at school, and then she’s sleeping for three hours from midnight to 3:00 AM, and she has just been in this injury rut because she’s not prioritizing sleep, she’s prioritizing workouts and trying to hit old PRs that she has from two or three years ago.

And we’ve spoken about this, I asked her if I can… I’m not going to refer to her by name, but she’s all for people learning from it. Because there’s a lot of endurance athletes that are thinking this way, instead of like, what’s your list? What is actually going to impact you and help make things better for you. And this is something else, if I’m not mistaken, in Coaching Ignited this is a large part of what the business sales and marketing strategy that you guys are doing for face to face coaches. Is that not correct?

Alex Povey:

Yeah, you’re correct.

Menachem Brodie:

So it just kind of makes sense to me that you, you came into this 75 day focus, the consistency, it kind of seems like you’ve been building up to this and through your engineering, the struggle for growth, it was kind of like, okay, now I’m mentally ready to handle the rigors of going through the struggle of trying to put together 75 days. By the way, chocolate, I’m going to make it even harder.

How do you get to that point in your career, where you’re like, “Okay, I know that my business is working X, I know that I want to do Y with my training. And then oh, I totally want to put these two together and be able to help the individuals dealing with suicidal thoughts.” How did this kind of come together and how do you see it impacting your Coaching Ignited business and how you’re coaching others?

Alex Povey:

I think the catalyst for this for me was, I was just thinking about where I’m at. And I’m going to be open and honest on this show. I’ve been very kind of like, I wouldn’t say selfish, I like to call it focused. People might call it selfish. But I like to think of it as focused. Maybe that’s my own story. But I’m very focused on what I’m doing. Very focused on growing my business, very focused on acquiring more clients and helping more personal trainers, very focused on my training.

Like I said, you could call that selfish, but I’m focused. Right now, I’m not in a relationship. I’ve not got kids and I’m 31 years old. And I’m looking at myself, and I’m thinking, “This is probably the only time I’ve got now to go all in. It’s go time.” I’ve got no restriction. I’ve got no one to answer to. I’ve got no responsibility, other than for my clients and for myself. So for me to not go all in on all fronts, raise money for charity, build my businesses, put my body through endurance that it’s never been before. I would be leaving too much on the table when I’ve got a golden opportunity and no limitations.

I don’t have any limitations right now. So why the fuck would I not go all in. It’s gametime. I’m not getting any younger. I’ll be 32 this year. So when I spoke about extreme growth last year, I wasn’t all in. I was looking at the year and I was thinking I wanted extreme growth, but I didn’t behave incongruent with what it takes to get extreme growth. So it’s like how do I put myself into the position where I commit to so many things, that it’s going to be a lot of pressure, a lot of pain, a lot of struggle, but a lot of growth.

And I was like, I’m going to do this for this charity, I’m going to grow my business to X, I’m going to put my body through this insurance. And each step of the way, I’m going to keep killing the current identity that I hold and replacing it with a bigger and better version, each step of the way, every quarter. I want a bigger and better version of the new Alex. And so I’m creating a new version, every time that I put myself under more pressure.

Because it’s game time, I’ve got no more time to waste. And it’s a golden opportunity for me to do everything that I want to do, and nothing holding back and there’s no limitations. So that’s kind of why I’m on this path right now. Just extreme focus, extreme discipline, extreme growth, extreme pressure, extreme stress, when I’ve got too much going on, I’m going to add fucking more. That’s how I’m approaching it. When I’m like, “Oh, this is too much.” That’s a signal that I need to stack even more, until I’m basically getting crushed under the pressure, because that’ll have to become better than the version I am right now. And that’s my philosophy this year.

Menachem Brodie:

I’m going to ask you a really hard question.

Alex Povey:


Menachem Brodie:

Do you have a game plan or a strategy for when you get to the point of either a failure or that sense of overwhelm?

Alex Povey:

Yes, I do actually. Getting a pen and paper and start writing things down. Journaling. One of my clients actually, Dan,  we were on the phone call today. He was super overwhelmed, his dad’s really ill. He’s trying to build his one to one personal training business, I’m mentoring him. And it was just getting to him. And I was like I should try, just an idea, is just get a pen and paper like you did when you were younger, when you were at school, when you’re a kid, and just put some notes on paper, just write how you feel, write how you’re thinking, and you’ll be surprised at how therapeutic it is.

But also, it helps you almost abstract, the noise and some of the overwhelm. Because you get it on paper, you can see it almost like a third party, you can like appreciate it for what it is. And you can also find a lot of solutions by just pulling it out and putting it onto the paper. And so when I get super overwhelmed, I just start writing things down, I journal. And I just use my pads and my paper. And that works really well for me. And it sounds like you do that as well. Because you’re like, yeah I love it.

Menachem Brodie:

Well, that’s me personally, but it’s also a matter of the fact that, yeah, I’ve given a thought, but I’m not like… Because a lot of people I think they plan for the failure. Like “Oh, well if I reach for this point then I’m going to do this and this and this and this.” And they’ve already plan to fail. Like no, you’ve got to figure out, like the most important thing is how am I going to get perspective.

So some people would say, I’m going to talk to my business mentor. Other people like you and I, let’s write it down. Let’s look at it. I went through a phase on Instagram of take 10 where I just sit on a bench and drink a coffee, I put my phone on airplane and then what would inevitably happen within two or three minutes of not incessant texts or notifications, my brain would start going like, “Oh, it’s obvious., like that’s the answer, of course.” And I start sitting there typing on my phone because I didn’t carry a notebook. But I love it because it’s simple. In that like, “Great. I’m going to get perspective.” As opposed to well, then I’m going to do this, this and this. And because then it’s just too much the brain goes 1, 2, 3, fuck that shit, too much.

Alex Povey:

Yeah, you can’t combat noise with noise. Because overwhelm is noise, isn’t it? It’s like too many things. So like if you try and add strategies and systems like coping mechanisms, and fail safes, and, “Oh, if I don’t hit this, this is going to happen…” What you’re doing is you’re creating more noise. And I don’t think that’s the solution. One of my other mechanisms that’s worked really well for me is meditation. And I was like it’s good, I should do it, did it for years. And everyone was like, you need to meditate, you need to meditate. And it wasn’t till I had someone on my podcast, super successful, in the same space helps online coaches grow their businesses, was in the same mastermind as me, actually. And he was just banging on about meditation.

And I don’t know, something just clicked, and like I always do, I like to make commitments, and I said “You know what live on this podcast, I’m going to commit to doing 30 days of back to back meditation.” And you’re going to hold me accountable. And I said it on the podcast. And I like making public statements like that. Because then it gives me that actual level of accountability. I’m sharing my 75 Hard journey on Instagram every single day, because I want that extra level of accountability.

And so I started this meditation process, only five minutes a day, every day for 30 days completed it, again, that might have like, contributed to the 75 hard thing, because that was kind of like a 30 day discipline. And I noticed what I was doing, and if you could see my hands right now, it would make more sense. But I was creating room and space to think clearly. And that’s really what it does, it creates like a gap.

Because at the moment, everyone’s got a massive fucking wall in the way of noise. And sometimes you can’t hear through the old noise that you’re creating by consuming so many things at the same time. Whatsapps, Instagrams, Facebook, messages, phone calls, like all these different things are just coming in like frequencies. And it’s creating this wall, and you can’t think through it. And so the meditation helps you like create a gap, where you can actually see clearly for the first time, and then I did this to hour… At the end of this 30 days, I did this like two hour deep meditation, guided meditation exercise. And I went into this like, really, really like deep abyss of nothing.

I came out of that event, this was just before Christmas, actually, and probably contributed to me thinking so straight and getting clear my visions, I just came out like very silent, and I didn’t want to consume anything Menachem. It was like two days, I didn’t want to consume anything. I didn’t want to listen to podcasts. I didn’t want to read, I didn’t want to do anything. I just wanted to be silent and I was loving it. I was just loving the silence.

And then what I allowed was from my real deep goals, desires and visions to shine through. And finally gives them a gap to be heard. And that’s probably coming full circle, why I came to all these different conclusions about growth and struggle and engineering it and doing these things for charity and Tom, they all aligned or came to the front of my mind because I created the gap. I got rid of the noise. And anytime I feel like overwhelmed, I write, or I meditate and create gaps so that I can think straight again. So yeah.

Menachem Brodie:

Let’s use this as a hard pivot to coaching and your business helping coaches because you just hit on a number of things that as a newfound entrepreneur back in… It was, what, 14 years ago, 15 years ago. I’ve literally made every single mistake in the book when it comes to running a coaching business. In the last couple of years, the more I present, the more coaches come to me and ask for clarity and help with their business. And what did they do?

Well, here you are, we have you on the line. We’ve just talked about how you’ve gone through and put yourself and built in these consistent habits of 30 days and 75 days and engineering and embracing the struggle to grow. Let’s do a hard pivot over to your business of helping coaches and personal trainers build their business, let’s talk about the clarity that can come from working with someone like you. Because most coaches nowadays, they’re trying to do Facebook and Instagram. And they’re doing all these things instead of just choosing the one thing that they actually enjoy, or may be good at, they’re trying to do all of it.

So can you tell us a little bit more about what do you kind of see, or what would you want to teach to a new coach or someone who’s just setting up their business to grow? Because maybe they’ve been doing it on the side for a little bit. They’re just now thinking what? This guy Alex, I really like what he’s saying. He’s talking about clarity, writing stuff down. He’s talking about making fitness a staple in his life. Being selfless and raising money for mental health and suicide awareness. You’re hitting all the chords with them? What would be your number one message to them to getting their business in order to help them grow in 2020?

Alex Povey:

Great question. And I’m glad you’ve kind of opened this up. And you said a key word. And this is probably the most important word is clarity. Okay, so I want to just unpack that for a second, because you alluded to it about getting clarity. And this is the most important aspect of everything, particularly with business as well. I’m just about to jump on later today and do a live training to probably about 100 coaches on this principle of clarity, and getting like really clear on what it is that you want.

And so you can see the target, you can almost visualize the target. And so you know exactly what you’re aiming for. Because it’s difficult to hit a target that you don’t know exists, or you don’t know where it is. Because it’s almost like you’re firing the shots and just hoping. I call it like playing Russian roulette with your business. It’s just the game of chance. Because when you get like super clear on things, like all aspects of your business, you really start to dial things in.

And a good example of this, if I can just make it simple for any coaches listening because you’ll be able to resonate with this. When you first sit down with a potential prospect, or a potential client, what’s one of the first things that you would ask them. Maybe you could tell me Menachem. So if you were to sit down with someone for the first time, what’s probably one of the first things you would ask them to get an idea of what you’re going to do next?

Menachem Brodie:

My number one goal when I am meeting with somebody is to understand their why. And I’m not talking about like, “Oh, why do you want to do…” “Oh, I want to run a marathon.” No, no, you know Simon Sinek, start with why. You ask 5, 6, 7 times, what’s really driving you? Oh, your grandmother and your mother both died from congestive heart failure in their 50s. That’s why you want to run a marathon is you want to get away from that. That’s where I would go is understanding what their pure motivator is at its core.

Alex Povey:

Yeah. So you’ve got like a couple of steps deeper past the surface level questioning that most people would start with. So like most trainers that I would coach and work with, will start with things like so what are your fitness goals? Really simple. A nice opener, where people will generally ask that, personal trainers will generally ask that because they want to get clarity on what they’re working with, and what the client actually wants. Correct?

Menachem Brodie:


Alex Povey:

And then obviously, you go deeper levels. So you ask the client what is it that they want, what is their fitness goals, etc. And then once that client signs up with you, and you perhaps want to help them lose weight and create a calorie deficit, you’d get them to use some kind of app, maybe like, My Fitness Pal for tracking the calories. And so they’ve got like a mechanism to work against.

Now, when you take those same trainers, and you contrast it to them and their business, this is where a lot of people fall short, is they don’t ask themselves, what are their goals, their objectives, their why. And then they don’t have their own mechanisms for tracking their progress. And so they’re scratching their heads thinking, “Why is it that I’m not hitting the income goal I want to make?” Or “Why is it that I’m not growing? Why am I just plateauing? Why am I not moving?” It’s because they don’t have a crystallized target, objective or reason why they’re doing things. And even when they do, they’re not tracking it in a way that allows them to see progress, and make adjustments along the way.

So it comes down to clarity. That’s one of the biggest things, if you can just get clear on where you want to be, the chances of you growing much faster, are significantly higher because you’re crystallizing where you want to be. And what happens is, your reticular activating system will then start tuning in to that objective, that target, almost like a sniper or a guided missile. And then your actions, and subconscious will become congruent with that objective or target.

So just by setting the target and getting clearer on it alone, and then having some kind of tracking mechanism, will really significantly improve your business and your growth. So when a client comes to me, just like a client comes to you, I’m going deep into, “Well, why do you want to make $3,000 a month or $5,000 a month?” And they’re like, “Well, I just want to cover my overheads and pay my rent, etc.” And I’m like, “What else?” Like the Simon Sinek. Why? Why? Why? I What is the reason for that? And you’ve got to dig really, really deep into getting clear about why you’re taking certain actions.

Because just setting goals as well that are too superficial, like I want to make X amount of money is not deep enough. It doesn’t mean anything. I always say to coaches say, “Hey, I want to make 10K a month.” And I’m like, “Why? Every coach says that. Why do you want to make 10K? Have you figured out that it takes you 10K to sustain the life that you want to have, and travel the way you want to travel, give to charity the way you want to give to… Have you actually broken it down to the dollar, in terms of why you want to make X amount of money? And then how are you tracking this?”

And if you haven’t got those key things in place, your chances of success of hitting that 10K are very slim, because one you’re not honed into it. And two, you’re not tracking it. So you’re just going to fall off the path or take a wrong direction. Or you’re not going to be like relentlessly pursuing that one thing because it means something to you, and you’ve programmed it as something important. And so that’s what I’d start with, clarity. It’s a game changer. Just getting clear on what you want and then tracking it. And then making your actions congruent with the outcome.

Menachem Brodie:

I think you hit on something really important there is why does X dollar amount a year or a month matter? And I’ve seen and talked to and done some consulting with a couple of coaches that are actually at that $10,000 a month… That seems like a magic pill. Like “Oh, when I make six figures in revenue a year is when I’ll be happy or when I’m successful.” And they’ve come to me because like it’s not the magic pill. My revenues are you know $10,500 a month but my expenses are $8,800 they’re worse off than they were when they first started because they’ve now bought into, Ramit Sethi calls it marketing tactical hell, where they’re paying all of these different people or their Facebook ads and Instagram ads and YouTube ads and Google ads and they’re just not focused enough to understand where they’re actually having an impact.

And usually that comes down to what you enjoy making. I spoke to an author, someone who went to journalism school, and he’s like, “I enjoy the end process, like what comes out, but I hate writing. I hate it. I don’t enjoy it. I’d rather be interviewed and have that kind of turned over into print and then I can go through and edit it as opposed to actually writing my thoughts down.” And it’s like, well let’s just do more of that. And that’s what they’ve done. And they’ve been very successful with that.

Whereas others are like, well, in order for me to be a great cycling coach, I need a coach, national champions. Like Dude, been there, done that it’s fun, you get to do a lot of high end stuff, but number one, the money is not there. Number two, it’s very, very challenging, because these athletes are highly demanding. And you have to have the balance, to be able to have the energy and the focus to be able to help them.

And I think a lot of coaches don’t necessarily take that into account as we’re being paid to help someone be consistent, be accountable and not make mistakes. And that means we need to give them our undivided attention. And it seems like nowadays, a lot of coaches are going through what Ramit calls marketing tactical hell, or they’re too distracted during the damn sessions to actually have an impact on somebody.

Alex Povey:

Yeah, totally agree. And going back to that thing with like, too much noise, not enough clarity is really just like costing you the focus necessary to succeed.

Menachem Brodie:

So it sounds like you’ve helped people like this. What would the process look like? If one of our listeners is a coach? And Alex is really hitting it, everything he’s saying I’m shaking my head, yes. What would the process look like? Don’t get into details. But if someone were to come to you and say, “Alex, I want to hire you for six months, to help me get on solid ground.” What would kind of be the anchor to you being able to help them? Like what would be, aside from the why. Are you looking at their business? Are you looking at how they’re running their business? What’s the anchor for them to be able to put their feet solidly in the ground and be able to start building?

Alex Povey:

Yeah, great question. And it’s evolved a lot over time. And I used to be super tactical, and teach a lot of strategy and marketing and in sales, and I still do. So like some of the core components is basically like getting clear on things, tracking things, teaching them proven marketing strategies that I’ve used time and time again, with other coaches. And then teaching themselves mechanisms to position themselves as experts and sell higher ticket coaching. Because they can convey the value in a more compelling way.

And I’ve drawn on my experiences, a multiple business owner and being in sales for a long, long time. And I shared these skills with them, they were never taught. Because if you look at any personal trainer or coach, who have been through, let’s say, their level two and level three, they don’t get taught any of these skills, they don’t get taught how to sell and market themselves. It’s just not in the syllabus, which is one of the reasons why I partnered up with Bluestone College who do the level twos and level threes. They realized that, yes, they’re training them in health, nutrition and fitness. They’re not giving them the business skills required to survive as a business owner.

And so I teach them the business skills. But one of the biggest things that have become prevalent in my coaching, and why I work with people longer is once I’ve taught them all the strategies, the tactics, the marketing, and the sales is we work a lot on mindset. And it’s very much in line with what I’m doing right now, with the charity stuff, but also with the discipline and the 75 hard and the mental toughness. Is what most coaches struggle with is not the strategy and systems. It’s the implementation and the action.

We all do. I do, everyone does. Everyone struggles with the implementation, mindset blockers, challenges, fears of rejection. So a lot of my work is spent trying to unpack these barriers, and break them down with the client, so that they can have a clear runway to execute on the strategy. Because it’s not just about the strategy. It’s about the way you see things, your belief systems, your relationship with money, what you’re worth, how much you’re prepared to invest in yourself, how clear you are on your vision, your goals, what impact you want to create. All these things are mindset based, and vision based.

And so the clients that work with me longer, we really get into that stuff. And that’s what really adds dollars to the business. I can teach you strategies and systems all day. But if you can’t execute them consistently, 12 months of the year, then you’re going to be leaving a lot of opportunity on the table, one, for yourself and your family to make income. But two all the people that you’re not helping by not becoming a better version of yourself that can go out there, implement these things I teach, take action and get results and attract people into your client base. So yeah, in short, that’s kind of what I cover the strategy and the mindset behind building a successful coaching business just like I’ve done for myself, and hundreds of others.

Menachem Brodie:

So we don’t have a ton of time left here. But I’d really liked for the listeners to kind of hear what would working with you look like? Is there a minimum timeframe? What would your expectations of them be? And how do people connect with you to get started?

Alex Povey:

Yeah, great question. So my core business is helping one to one personal trainers. So offline trainers. The best place to connect with me is on Facebook, this is where I hang out. If you are listening to this podcast, connect with me, Alex Povey on Facebook, and just send me a message and just drop the name of this podcast in the message. And I’ll send you one of my free resources. This strategy is predictably generated 10 to 20 leads for my personal trainers every single week. And you can have it for free, you just got to send me a message and say, “I want the strategy.” And just put Menachem’s podcast in the DM.

And that’ll be a good starting point. And there’s some other trainings in there as well, just so you can see what I’m all about, and what I do and the results I get. And I lead with value. This is one of the reasons why I’ve created my podcast, one of the reasons why you probably created your podcast is you just want to give a ton of value. So that’s the first starting point.

But to work with me one to one, I run a five week program, initially, which is designed to add multiple four figures to your coaching business in that five week period. And then we take a view, what do you want to achieve next? What else do you need to learn? Do you want to do other things? Do you want to go online? Do you want to do X, Y and Z and then it’s more of a customized approach, and on a case by case basis. And I’m just designed to help people collapse the growth curve between getting to where they want to be, be successful and fill out my bigger goal, which is help more people get into health and fitness and create a bigger impact on people’s lives.

Menachem Brodie:

And it is very, very blatantly clear that you’re not only talking about it, you’re physically and mentally doing it and you’re going out and committing to it. And that’s a lot more than most people can say here at the end of January every year. Alex, it’s been a pleasure to have you here listening about how you’re planning. Go ahead.

Alex Povey:

Yeah, I was just saying, each to their own, everyone does things, different ways. I’m on my path and my journey. I’m doing things this way and I’m a big sharer. So if people want to, like take bits of what I’m doing and implement that in their lives, great. But I don’t try and push my way of doing things on people, if they resonate with it great. If they don’t, that’s totally cool. There’s a million different ways to get to the same result. I just do it a certain way. And people like that way of doing it. And if we resonate, and that’s really how the relationship starts and we get to work and we get stuff done.

Menachem Brodie:

I love it, man. It’s a matter of there’s many different ways to get to the angle, we’ll find the one that works for you.

Alex Povey:


Menachem Brodie:

Well, Alex, I wish you and I’m sure we’re going to be keeping in touch over the next couple of months, if not the year, to hear how you’re doing. Where can everybody get a hold of you on Instagram, Facebook how do they connect with you and, one, donate to the fantastic cause, raising awareness on suicide prevention and mental health. And joining you for your trainings as well as Coaching Ignited to work with you.

Alex Povey:

Great. Yeah, thank you so much for bringing that up. In terms of the charity stuff, because that’s really like my big focus right now, is like I just said connect with me on Facebook, drop me a DM and just say, “Hey, let’s chat.” And just mentioned that you heard me on the show. And I can just share some of the journey and some of the plans and what I’m trying to do. And if you want to get involved or donate that’s totally cool, like no pressure.

And then equally I’m on Instagram as well, Alex C Povey so that’s Alex a C and then a P-O-V-E-Y. On Facebook is Alex Povey, CEO of Coaching Ignited, pretty easy to connect with. Pretty active on there, posting a lot and lots of value there for you as well if you’re a coach, and you want to learn about growing your business. So thank you so much for having me on. I really appreciate it. I really do.

Speaker 2:

That’s it for this episode of the Strong, Savvy Cyclist and Triathlete Podcast with world leading strength coach for cyclists and triathletes, Menachem Brodie. Don’t miss an episode. Hit that subscribe button and give us a review. For more exclusive content visit humanvortextraining.com or get the latest expert videos from Coach Brodie on the HVT YouTube channel at HV Training. Until next time, remember to train smarter, not harder because it is all about you.


Picture of Menachem Brodie

Menachem Brodie

Coaching since 2000, Menachem Brodie has been working with athletes in a number of settings, and a broad variety of sports.


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