Podcast Transcript

Greg:

You are 42% more likely to achieve your goals if you write them down. Imagine that.

(SOURCE: inc.com, Dr. Gail Matthews at the Dominican University in California, 2015)

 

Hello and welcome to the Imagine That podcast. I’m your host, Greg Weimer, founder partner, and wealth manager at Confluence Financial Partners. Each month we’ll explore new ways to help you maximize your life and your legacy and meet some extraordinary people along the way. So if you’re looking to get more out of your life today and legacy tomorrow, let’s get started.

 

This is gonna be a great session because at the end of the session, the goal is we give you a couple things that you can do to just get better. The greatest thing one adult can do to another is cause them to think so, hopefully what we’re gonna do today is cause you to think, not only about your health, but also about setting goals, achieving goals, and getting better.

 

And at the end of the day, if we can help you improve your health just a little bit today, we’ve accomplished our goal. And to do that, I’m here with Eric Zalewski and, and I’ve known Eric, I just did the math. I’ve known Eric for 26 years, right? So, or yeah, 20 years, 25 years, something like that. We’ve known each other a long time. Actually Eric went to kindergarten, I think with, with, with my son Gregory. So how the world changes is amazing. And, and Eric is a, is a son of a great friend of mine, Billy Zalewski. So and many of you may know, Billy’s a great friend. So, and is Eric’s a trainer Eric’s personal trainer at St. Clair Country Club and, and he makes people better. And, and I go in there from time to time, like I go into Jezioro’s gym and I’m trying to get better.

 

And what I love about Eric is he brings it. Like if I come in there, he brings it every day and I’ve been amazed by the passion he has and how much he loves helping to people get better. And you not only bring it, you live it. So Eric, welcome. We’re looking forward to learning a couple things that we can all do to improve our health and maybe on setting goals. So, so I’m just gonna ask you, like, how do you bring it every day? Because like, are you really that fired up about watching people do like pushups and stuff?

 

Eric:

Well, first off, Greg, thank you so much for, for having me here today. Obviously humbled to be here. Some very impressive guests on this podcast, and I’m just a fitness guy at the end of the day. <Laugh> As you mentioned, I, I run the fitness center over at St. Clair Country Club. I also coach locally, high school hockey and I run their strength and conditioning program over there. So what’s really cool about what I do is I get to work with so many different kinds of people.

 

Greg:

Yeah, you do, right?

 

Eric:

All different kinds of people, right? Which is awesome. Which is challenging. Let me tell you none more challenging than this guy sitting across from me right now. He comes in, day number one. He says, all right, I need to be a GI Joe. I need to go GI Joe shape.

 

Greg:

It’s true. GI Joe. He said, what are you trying to accomplish? I said, I wanna be a GI Joe.

 

Eric:

GI Joe, right? So how can you not be fired up about that at the end of the day?

 

Greg:

Look, you failed miserably by the way, but go ahead.

 

Eric:

Well, we’re still in, it’s a work in progress and I’m sure everybody can sympathize with me that it is just that. But no, I mean, ultimately here and, and we talked a little bit about this is, you know, growing up, hockey was my life. Hockey was everything. And unfortunately that got cut short a little bit for me in high school due to injury. So once I’ve recovered from those injuries, for me, it was kinda like, okay, where do I take that competitive drive? Where do I take this energy? And for me, it was fitness at the time. Started doing it. Loved the way that, that it made me feel. Loved the way that I could learn something and instantly apply it to my own workouts. When I learned that I could study this in school and do this for a living, bam,

 

Greg:

Bam.

 

Eric:

I was all in. I was all in.

 

Greg:

It’s interesting. What happens is, I worry, don’t, don’t tune out! We’re not asking you to a bunch of exercise. We’re asking to get better. We’re gonna like, like you said, you work with all different types of people. So if you’re listening right now, we’re going to meet you where you are. We’re not gonna try to make you a professional hockey player. We’re gonna meet you where you are. And if at the end of this, you have a couple things you can do to improve your health, we all win.

 

If we get nothing else across to you, if, if, if you’re motivated, just go into a gym and say, I’d like to hire a trainer. If we end this podcast right now, and you do that — game changer. It’ll, it’ll change the game.

 

Eric:

And, and really to your point, it’s all about structure, right? And exercise is so individualized, at the end of the day. So what works for you may not necessarily work for me. So it’s important to get a professional out there and somebody that knows what they’re talking about, and knows you more, most importantly, and from there can structure a program, based off of your goals and your body and your time and all of those things should be considered.

 

Greg:

You know, there’s different types of investments you can make that, granted, by investing in, in businesses, through the stock market is a great investment. The best investment you can make is in yourself. So, so here is an investment guy saying the best investment you can make is in yourself, and go into, to get to someone like Eric with a personal trainer.

 

Eric has five steps. Five, right?

 

Eric:

Correct.

 

Greg:

Five steps. We go through these five steps. You know, you just follow these at the end of the day, you’re gonna be GI Joe. So I have obviously not followed ’em all, but, but, but here’s a problem with this. Easy to do, easy, not to do. Think about that. Easy to do, easy not to do. So, it is easy for you to walk into the gym and hire a trainer. It is also easy not to do it today. And say, okay, I’m gonna do it another day, you know? So it’s easy to do, easy not to do. So now let’s go through the five steps that you would take that if you really wanted to make an impact or change in your life. Step one.

 

Eric:

Let’s do it. Step number one, we need to identify what needs to change, okay? So the example that we’re gonna use for the, you know, case of this podcast is going to be lose weight.

 

Greg:

Lose weight.

 

Eric:

Okay? Simple enough.

 

Greg:

So simple enough. Go. So lose weight.

 

Eric:

Lose weight. Okay. So I’m identifying it. Hey, I’m overweight. Dr. has said, I’m overweight. My clothes don’t fit the way I like ’em to fit. I need to lose weight. Okay. That’s step one. Just coming to that realization of, it’s time to make that change.

 

Greg:

Can I add to that?

 

Eric:

Yeah.

 

Greg:

Why? So like that’s I think that like, I think in your heart, I think that’s exactly right. You need to understand if you don’t know what you’re shooting for, you’re not gonna get it. Right. You gotta, you gotta say like, I wanna lose weight. But you gotta say like, why? Why? I’ll tell you my why. I wanna watch my granddaughters dance at their wedding. We were at the gym, I don’t know if you remember, and a cardiologist was there with us. And he said all my, all of my, all of my patients over 90 have one thing in in common, they all work out. And so I just think about my granddaughter who I love dearly. And soon to be my grandson, but I, I love ’em dearly. I wanna be at their wedding when I work out. And if that means I’m gonna lose weight, I want to lose weight. So that’s my why. That shouldn’t be, some, maybe it’s because whatever, but it’s really your why.

 

Eric:

Right. At the end of the day, this is only gonna work if you understand your why, and if you’re committed to it.

 

Greg:

Fired up.

 

Eric:

And if you understand why, you will be committed.

 

Greg:

You will be committed.

 

Eric:

At the end of the day.

 

Greg:

Two.

 

Eric:

Step number two — in order, it’s great, okay, we’ve identified we needed to make a change, step one. That’s fantastic. But now it’s time to set what is. A quantifiable goal. Okay. So let’s put some numbers to it. So, okay, we’ve identified that, that it’s we wanna lose some weight here. Let’s, let’s say in the upcoming year I wanna lose 20 pounds. Okay?

 

Greg:

A year.

 

Eric:

I’m gonna lose 20 pounds in the next year.

 

Greg:

Is it possible?

 

Eric:

Okay. Of course. It’s possible. Anything’s possible. Okay. However, what’s important about goals. Okay? That’s more of a longer-term goal. If we look at a year, ah, it’s a long time. Right?

 

Greg:

Got it.

 

Eric:

So we gotta break this thing up into segments. So what if I said, instead I’m gonna lose five pounds every three months. And over the course of the year, simple math will get you 20. Right? So setting short-term and long-term goals, putting numbers to it. Right. Cause just saying, I wanna lose weight. What does that mean? Right. Put numbers to it and then also important to write down those goals.

 

Greg:

So, yeah. So it’s interesting how fitness goals correlate with personal goals. So, so in our firm, next Friday, we do this every six months, we will have all of our associates together. We’ll, we’ll create and, and repeat and focus on where we want to bring the organization to benefit clients. We will then say here’s what we want to do over the next quarter. And, and we’ll get into like the other stuff. We, we hold each other accountable, et cetera, but we will have three goals. Each that we’re trying to do over the next quarter. It brings us closer to our 10-year vision. And all of a sudden, you’ll, you know, you keep doing that every quarter and you get to your 20 pounds, right? If we keep doing that every quarter and we have our quarterly goals, which we, which are quantifiable on things we’re trying to do to help clients, it, whether it’s health or fitness, quarterly seems like the magical, that seems like the magical number. And you can make, so, so you can make a difference in 90 days in health.

 

Eric:

Of course you can, of course, you can make a difference right away. Right? But it’s just a matter of sticking to it. And, and we’ll continue on that path here as we move forward in these five steps, but it starts with being quantifiable with that goal. And again, if you look at a longer-term plan in a vacuum, you know, it’s gonna be hard to hold yourself accountable to that. Cause that’s never gonna get here, so far down the road.

 

Greg:

It can be.

 

Eric:

But when you split that up and you can see the finish line from the starting line, boom.

 

Greg:

It’s better. Right. Instead of a marathon with no end line, it’s just like, I’m gonna lose, I’m gonna just, I’m gonna lose weight forever. It’s a series of sprints. So you’re like, okay, I’m gonna do a 90-day sprint. The first quarter, second quarter, whatever your thing is, the next 90 days, I’m gonna do a sprint. And here’s my quantifiable goal. Right? And by the way, when I’m functioning at a high, at my highest level, but then we don’t always function at our highest level, I take those quarterly quantifiable goals and I put ’em on index cards and I usually have three to five and I put ’em around my mirror in my bathroom. So I look at ’em every day. And I put ’em on my notebook, on my iPad every day. And I’m looking at those quantifiable goals and I’m trying to accomplish every single day. And that leads to an intentional life. And part of the intention, if, if it’s your lose weight, right? You get, take this, you, you, you’re saying, we’re saying, we’re agreeing — you can make a difference in 90 days. So the question is if that quantifiable goal’s important to you because of your why, is 90 days worth your health?

 

Eric:

And the answer to that we all hope is yes.

 

Greg:

I hope so. You just gotta, yeah. So that, so what’s the next thing we need to do?

 

Eric:

Okay. So then we’ll move right on to step three.

 

Greg:

Boom. Let’s go.

 

Eric:

Okay. So we have identified what needs to change. We’ve set that quantifiable goal. Step number three. It’s time to create a plan of action. How are we gonna get there? Okay. So for example, here, we wanna lose weight. We’ve identified here that we wanna lose 20 pounds in a year. We wanna lose five pounds every three months. That’s great. How do we get there? Maybe for example, that it’s going out, like you said, Greg, hire a trainer, step one, right? Find somebody that’s gonna hold you accountable. Find somebody that’s gonna approach this in a way that’s very structured, in a way that makes sense for you. That’s a great place to start, but of course you gotta figure out other things within that. Okay. Where am I going to find the time in a given week?

 

Let’s say I want to exercise three times a week. Well, where is that time gonna come from? Right? So now you have to start to look at your schedule and we have a great quote, Greg, you and I talked about this. It says that you don’t want to prioritize your schedule. You wanna schedule your priorities. I’ll say that again. Don’t prioritize your schedule, but schedule your priorities. So if this goal, this change in your life is such a big deal. We would say it’s a priority. It’s important that from there, you start to schedule that accordingly. Treat it like a priority in your life.

 

Greg:

So, so as you’re, you’re saying that, I couldn’t agree more. And, and, and this is where I fail, right? So like this, I say it’s a priority, but, but I book over it. I, I just like, I haven’t seen Frank in a couple weeks. I‘ve seen, I’ve seen you one time in the last couple weeks. I book over it. I, I just, it’s it. I say it’s a priority, but, but I, but I book over it. And so, and it’s a challenge. And so the plan, so let’s assume it’s, let’s assume four hours would be a lot to work out in a week. Yeah? I mean, four, four hours. It could be four one-hour sets. I mean, that’s a lot. Right? So four hours.

 

Eric:

For most.

 

Greg:

For most, that’s a lot, I mean, but that, but you could get results with four hours.

 

Eric:

Of course.

 

Greg:

Yeah. I just looked, it’s 2% of the week. You’re gonna tell me you care about yourself, but you’re not gonna — and Greg, you’re like, like, you wanna be around for your grandchildren. And, and if I were, you I’d call like BS on that. It’s like you say you want to be dancing with your grandchildren, but you’re not willing to commit 2% of your week to really caring about that. Right. So, so having the plan is really important, but what’s the next step on making sure that it works?

 

Eric:

Well, it’s execution of that plan, Greg.

 

Greg:

There it is.

 

Eric:

Right? So now it’s time to, it’s great to, to write down how you’re gonna get there, but it doesn’t mean anything if you don’t do it.

 

Greg:

With you and Frank, what do I do? I text ‘healthy scratch.’.

 

Eric:

Right.

 

Greg:

Cause I’m not, I didn’t get outta the business. I didn’t get outta the office.

 

Eric:

And I think you’re being a little hard on yourself, to be fair. But yeah. I mean, you’ve definitely found yourself on the physically unable to perform list a couple of times here recently, but nonetheless, so it’s about executing that plan, right? So, hey, if you’re persistent, you’ll get it. If you’re consistent, you’ll keep it. You have to be persistent and consistent when it comes to execution, at the end of the day.

 

Greg:

What helps you? What helps you get better at that?

 

Eric:

Well, I think for me personally, you reset after every single day, you know, it’s great. What I did yesterday was great. Okay? But it doesn’t mean anything if I don’t do it today, if I don’t follow that up today. So for me, it’s that mental reset at the start of every day. What can I do today to become better than yesterday? And what can I do tomorrow to become better than today? That’s another quote that I like to live by. But at the end of the day, it’s that mental reset and bringing it, staying committed every day. And Greg, not every day is gonna be sunshine and rainbows. Not every day is super easy. There might be a day or two that gets away from you. What’s important in all of this is to remember that’s gonna happen. And that’s okay. But over the course of time, if you’re persistent and you’re consistent in that execution, if you bounce back strong, after a tough day, over the course of time, those results and that change will happen.

 

Greg:

The likelihood of you executing, if you write it down, there’s levels, right? If I say to myself, Greg, I should work out today. There’s a chance I’m gonna do it. If I tell Eric, Eric, I’m gonna work out today, there’s a chance, there’s a greater chance I’ll do it. Cuz I’ve, I’ve shared it with someone else that I now have to live by my word. If, if I, if I say to Eric, meet me at the bottom of my driveway, let’s go do a run. Now, all of a sudden, my, my likelihood of doing it goes through the roof because I have someone to be accountable to. So like in our quarterly goal sessions that we’re doing on behalf of the clients, we have accountability partners where, where it’s like, okay, here’s the things I say I’m gonna do in the business to make sure our business is strong for our clients, for generations. Here’s the things I’m gonna say, I’m gonna do this quarter. And then what we do is we make sure, A, it’s top of mind. So on top of every day’s to-do, are your, are your goals. On top of every day’s to-dos. So you’re living intentionally every day. So it’s on top of your page. And then also we’re, we’re holding each other accountable. One of the greatest things about having a trainer is when I say I’ll be there tomorrow at 11, doesn’t always happen. But if I say I’m gonna be there tomorrow at 11 it’s 90% chance I’m gonna be there instead of 10. So, right? I mean, so it goes through the roof.

 

Eric:

Right and honestly, even coming back to the accountability, find a friend, you know, or, or find a family member, find somebody that has a similar goal as you and get in this thing together, right? At the end of the day, you know, accountability can make all the difference in the world. If we’re in this thing alone, it makes it tough. Right. It makes it super tough. So finding somebody that has similar goals, similar interests as you, can definitely help in the process of execution.

 

Greg:

Totally agree. Next step

 

Eric:

Fifth and final.

 

Greg:

Here we go.

 

Eric:

Two-part plan, or two-part step here, revise and progress. Okay. Revise and progress. Okay. So what does that mean? Let’s start with revise, right? Whether you’re successful or unsuccessful in your goal, there’s always gonna be an element of revision that’s necessary. Okay? So let’s say you’re not successful. Let’s say I wanted to lose 20 pounds in a year. We’re six months into that, I’m down only five pounds. I was hoping to be down 10. All right, so let’s go back to that plan of action. Okay. First off, am I doing everything that I planned to do? Am I exercising three times a week?

 

Greg:

How much did they want to lose?

 

Eric:

Right. They wanted to lose 20 pounds in a year.

 

Greg:

And they lost what?

 

Eric:

They lost five pounds in six months. Right. It’s not over. Right. But why aren’t we on pace? What is it that we need to do in order here to get back on track? So revisiting that plan of action. Am I doing everything I said I was gonna do? If I am, what needs to change then in order for me to have a little bit more success, right? Do I need to set aside more time to exercise?

 

Greg:

Right.

 

Eric:

Should I be doing a different type of exercise? You know, am I watching what I’m eating when I’m drinking, stuff like that? But there’s constant revision, there’s constant analysis of the plan when things aren’t going well. And Greg, if things are going well, that’s fantastic. Okay. However, we’re not in this thing just for a, for a one-year, trade off, lose 20 pounds. Great. What happens if I stop? Comes right back, right? So the beauty of success is that it’s two things. One, I feel success is contagious. Right? You get through that year; you lose 20 pounds. Success is contagious, right? Like you wanna do more. Right. What’s the next thing?

 

Greg:

And, and as horrible as this is. And it’s so egotistical, but it’s humans. Once you start to see results, like, like when you said 5 versus 20, I’ve trained myself. You know what I heard? God bless, they lost five. Do you know what I mean?

 

Eric:

Right, and to your point, it’s about celebrating the little victories and that’s important here for sustainability. Right. And change. Like, you should be pumped up if you’re on the right track, if you’re trending in the right direction. That’s awesome. Right. Keep it going. Like you’re doing a lot of things right if that’s the case, right. Especially in this example I provided, but the second part that I was gonna say about success is it’s not only contagious, but it’s encouraging, right. At the end of the day, like you have some success, like, you know, you’re fired up.

 

Greg:

Yeah.

 

Eric:

You’re fired up. Right.

 

Greg:

By the way, you could work out like one day and say, I feel so much better. <Laugh> Right? It’s just, it’s a little bit, I just feel better. It’s like, yeah. It’s about energy. Yeah.

 

Eric:

Right. And we could spend all day talking about the physical and mental benefits of exercise. Right. There’s too many reasons to not do it.

 

Greg:

Right.

 

Eric:

But at the end of the day, yeah, I mean, finding, finding something that works for you is ultimately what’s most important. And at the end of all of this, you know, we’re talking about making changes in your life, fitness, health, anything that you wanna make a change to — it’s about a lifestyle, right? So it’s not just a short-term goal and it’s not just a long-term goal. It’s a daily commitment, right? And this is a long journey. But if you focus in on each and every day, it becomes your lifestyle. It becomes what you do.

 

Greg:

Do me a favor. Let’s recap the five steps because it’s really important that people put these in their brains. I know it’s simple, but you know, getting, getting better and have to be complicated. So the, the five steps are, go!

 

Eric:

Right. Very simple here. Five steps to make a change in your life.

Number one, identify what needs to change.

Number two, set a quantifiable goal.

Number three, create a plan of action.

Number four, execute that plan of action.

And number five, you’re constantly revising and progressing at the end of the day.

 

So and, and just to touch on one thing that you said there, Greg, we live in a watching world. People are watching what you do. We need people out there leading by example. And that’s what it comes back to. If you need to make a change in your life, fitness-related or non-fitness related, if it makes you a better person, in all likelihood, it makes everybody around you better, right? A rising tide lifts all boats. And that’s really what this is all about here today.

 

Greg:

And here’s, here’s just one last thing I would add. If you’re in a rut, change your state. You gotta change your state. So like, if, if, if right now you’re listening to this and whatever’s going on and you’re like not feeling you’re in the moment.

 

Get down to 10 pushups. Listen to loud music. Put some hot, put some, put some cold water on your face. Whatever that is, you can change your temperature. You can do whatever you gotta change your state. And then when you change your state, then you may, then you go through Eric’s process. If, if state, if, if all you had to do is go buy the new exercise piece of equipment, everybody that ever bought a Peloton would be in shape. You’ve gotta keep the right state and so change your state.

 

And then I would really encourage you to go through those steps that Eric went through and not make it about Eric’s example, make it about you. And if we’re able to do that and, and people, I don’t know, if five people that listen to this improve their health, we had a hell of a morning talking, right? If just five people, but let’s make it more than five people, cuz the results are the, the, it’s too important not to, right? I mean the, the ramifications are too great not to do this. And then at the end of the day, let’s ask the question is your health worth 1 to 2% of your time a week? And if it is, you’ll have the opportunity potentially to dance at your granddaughter’s wedding and that’s all worth it. Eric, we really appreciate it. We appreciate the passion you bring every day.

 

Eric:

Well, Greg, thank you very much for having me here. This was a lot of fun. We, and I’m gonna say we’ll be in GI Joe shape maybe by Christmas of 2023.

 

Greg:

If not, maybe, who else could we be? We’ll pick someone else maybe that’s a little more realistic. We’ll see. <Laugh> All right, thanks Eric.

 

Eric:

Thank you.

 

Greg:

Thank you for listening to the, imagine that podcast. We hope you enjoyed this episode and welcome you to reach out to Confluence Financial Partners with your questions and comments. If you’d like to hear more episodes, head over to confluencefp.com/podcasts, or find us wherever you get your podcasts.

If everyone kept their New Year’s resolutions, we’d all be in great shape. Unfortunately, our goals for the new year are often forgotten by February. Meet Eric Zalewski, fitness expert and personal trainer at St. Clair Country Club, who has a few tips to help you stay on track with your goals, not just for fitness in 2022, but any major change you want to make, for your whole lifetime. Join host and Partner of Confluence Financial Partners, Greg Weimer, as they discuss strategies for maintaining discipline in the best investment you can ever make — an investment in yourself.

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