Life Changing Conversations for Entrepreneurs

Run Around the Block. And Then Write Your Business Plan.

Jeff Coney, marathon runner

About five years ago I got serious about running and started working my way up from running around the block – to a 5k – to even further distances. The process took a couple years, and I never got very fast, but I loved it, and I still do.

As I met more and more runners, I got great advice. One of my informal coaches was Jeff Coney, a marathon runner who’s fast enough to qualify for the Boston Marathon – no small accomplishment. Occasionally I would email Jeff with questions or to chat. One day I emailed “I ran 8 miles this morning, coach.”

And I was surprised at Jeff’s reply. He emailed: “and you are the better man for it. You are going to make some extremely good decisions today as a result of your 8 mile run.” I read that and wondered what he meant about decisions. Well it turned out I did make some good decisions that day, and I noticed my game (business, family, everything) got better.

Now there’s more proof, just reported in the New York Times:

Aerobic exercise causes a steep spike in blood movement to the brain, an action that some researchers have speculated might be necessary for the creation of new brain cells, or neurogenesis. Running and other forms of aerobic exercise have been shown, in mice and men, to lead to neurogenesis in these portions of the brain associated with memory and thinking, providing another compelling reason to get out at lunchtime and run.

So my friends my advice to you is this: rise up from your PCs and Macs, your laptops and lattes at Starbucks, rise up and stretch! Walk around the block, yea, verily, run around the block! You will inspire yourself and become ever more creative.

About Robert Jordan

Robert Jordan has been launching and growing companies and helping other entrepreneurs do the same for the past 20 years. He has authored book and audio series including How They Did It: Billion Dollar Insights from the Heart of America (RedFlash Press), featuring 45 leading company founders who've created $63 billion in value from scratch, and How They Did It Nightingale-Conant audio program . His startup, Online Access, the first Internet-coverage magazine, landed on the Inc. 500 list of fastest growing companies. His newest endeavors are RedFlash, a strategy execution team, and The Association of Interim Executives, which champions interim management as its own global specialty. You can also find Robert on Google+ and Twitter. View all posts by Robert Jordan

6 Comments to Run Around the Block. And Then Write Your Business Plan.

  1. Bob,
    glad to hear you’ve jumped on the health bandwagon. Now the next step is to cross-train so that you don’t strain your body too much with repetitive exercise & try a sprint triathlon. The race should take a bit longer than a 10K running race, which gives you about the same aerobic workoout, but it’s much better on your body because you’re not pounding your joints so much. Just let me know if you’d like more info.

  2. Thanks Michael, lead on! I’d love to learn more –

  3. Bob,
    It’s pretty simple: jump in the pool & swim for awhile; head for the hills for a bike ride; then follow that up with a run (bike + run = “brick”). There are lots of programs out there. I’m a member of the Chicago Triathlon Club which has members & activities for all different types of folks, even “masters athletes” like me. I’m doing this indoor triathlon tomorrow morning: which is comprised of a 15 minute swim (pool), 20 minute (stationary) bike, & 15 minute run (indoor track), for a total of 50 minutes of fairly intense aerobic activity. The person who goes the farthest in the allotted time wins.
    I usually do a circuit of 4-8 races/year around my summer place near Lake Geneva, WI, which keeps me in better shape than most. In case you can’t tell, I’m a big advocate of these, so just let me know if you’d like still more info.
    Enjoy the scrunch of running in the snow this weekend,

  4. How did the indoor triathlon go?

  5. in case you didn’t see my tweet, I was a little slow on the swim, biked better than I have in years, & ran farther than I ever have in the allotted time. I just saw that I won my age group, but I suspect I was the only entrant in that age group…I’ll take it anyway. the only problem is when I get so pumped up with endorphins, I can’t get back to sleep…zzzzz

  6. More congrats to Jeff Coney – he just completed another Boston Marathon – well done Jeff!

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