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One of the best ways to enable change in work and life? Get physical. Four women tell us how.

“I had not ridden a bike in 15 years, and wanted to get back on one. But I was afraid of starting alone, going solo to a bike shop, riding by myself. All that freaked me out. So I was depending on someone to help me through it. And they were procrastinating. So I stopped waiting. I went to the store last weekend, and bought my bike and all my gear. And then went out and rode 21 miles. By. My. Self.” -- RSP Happy Hour attendee, July 19, 2021


Talk about overcoming fear. Taking a bold step toward change. And proving to herself that she can do something she didn’t think possible.

We all know physical exercise is good for body and brain. But how often do any of us think about -- really consider -- how effective a change enabler physical challenge can be? Members and guests at July’s RSP Happy Hour challenged us to do just that.

We heard from StudioME founder Megan Cooper about how building fitness into her life -- and aggressively protecting it as “me” time -- first gave her the strength, calm, and energy to support a close family member through a terminal illness, and then led her to a career pivot she never imagined as a trainer and owner of her own fitness studio. She now helps others take care of themselves while challenging themselves to achieve their own goals.

Repeat marathoner Sarah Whitcomb is no stranger to physical challenge. But she gave herself a new and scary way to tackle 26 miles not by running, but by hiking rim-to-rim in the Grand Canyon in a single day. That’s 26 miles of distance, PLUS one mile up and one mile down in elevation. Her tips: COMMIT. Then research and prepare. And know that no matter how long it takes you, you’ll feel great about the accomplishment. (Great advice for driving toward change, too.)

For RSP friend Teri Cannon, physical challenge meant loss. More than 80 pounds of it. Scheduling, building a routine, goal setting and tracking, finding an accountability community, and learning the science of healthy nutrition first motivated her to take the first step on her journey. Later, when she lost her job, an extended family member moved in, and other pandemic-fueled disappointments came home to roost, “it could have been chaos," she said. "But it wasn’t thanks to the routine I had established. It made me a new person.”

Finally, Glynne Barber Bassi challenged all of us all to tell our stories. “You never know who you’ll inspire.” And as a financial planner and adviser, she of course had a smart take on the SMART framework for goal setting about physical challenge:

  • S: Put a Stake in the ground. Commit to it.

  • M: Map it out. Create your plan, then work the plan.

  • A: Find Accountability partners.

  • R: Practice Resilience. There are days you’re going to fall down.

  • T: Take Time to celebrate. We don’t do this enough.

Clearly, pushing your body helps you push in all areas of your life. Whether your challenge is to walk around the block every day, to try something new (say … paddleboarding!

Come get wobbly and possibly wet with some fellow RSP women at our July 29th Pop-up Event!), or push yourself in a big way with a big climb, hike, or run, it will open new pathways to things you never expected you could do. And as you move, you'll bake fundamentals of successful change into every area of your life:

  • Goal setting

  • Training & preparation

  • New-skill mastery

  • Backup & contingency planning

As for me? I’m still on a confidence high from punching through a damn board with my BARE HAND at last month’s RSP Pop-up event at StudioME. Next -- and I haven’t told anyone this, until this very moment -- I’m training for my first-ever half marathon.

So now I’ve put it out there. Hold me accountable. And share your own challenge on the private Ready.Set.Pivoters member page on LinkedIn. Not a member yet? Join us. Then connect with another fellow RSPer and get moving together.

And hit me up for an early run, OK? I guarantee it will send us into the day with clear eyes, a feeling of achievement, and readiness to take one more step to our next best thing.

Get Moving





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