Stephanie Keenan Joins Us On The Steve Jobs Inspired Join Up Dots Podcast
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Introducing Stephanie Keenan
Stephanie Keenan is today’s guest joining us on the Steve Jobs inspired Join Up Dots podcast.
One thing for sure is this is a lady who has made me very happy.
As this is the second time I have had the pleasure of grilling her on the show.
She last appeared back on episode 208, where we talked about her rise to the top of the fitness industry from a starting point that was more than a bit unusual.
Yep, that’s all i’m saying, so you will have to go back and listen to that one to find out her unusual past occupations.
So when she connected with me again and said “David, have I got more dots to share with you and your listeners” then I knew it was going to be good stuff.
How The Dots Joined Up For Stephanie
This is a lady that is tackling one of the hardest fitness courses the world has scene “The Spartan Ultimate Team Challenge” created by Joe De Sena who also appeared on the show back on episode 312
And the big question to this desire to get down, muddy and sweaty is why?
She is a beautiful lady, has a great business that is rocking and rolling, has clients across the world, and could stay in her comfort zone quite happily.
But she doesn’t want to.
She wants to prove herself and go after bigger and bigger challenges, which really joins up the dots to our first interview.
As this is not your usual uber glamorous fitness guru.
But this is a lady will drive, commitment and passion to do the unusual.
To create her own path,
And to go to bed each night content to know that she has given it her very best.
So what was the appeal of going onto the hit TV show “Spartan Ultimate Challenge“?
And did she discover things about herself that were a complete surprise, or only cement what she already knew?
Well let’s find out as we bring onto the show to start joining up dots with the one and only Stephanie Keenan.
During the show we discussed such weighty subjects with Stephanie Keenan such as:
Why she got to the point of her life, when she realised that doing the stuff purely for the sake of it was not making her happy any-more and what she did about it.
How so many people will see the work you are putting into your business, and just see dollars signs right from the beginning……wow, how wrong they can be?
Why if there is someone who is too educated and spending too much time doing research, Stephanie feels that they should stop immediately and simply take action.
Why she believes totally that at her heart she is totally uncomfortable being uncomfortable in her life and has to take bigger and bigger action everyday.
How To Connect With Stephanie Keenan
If you enjoyed this episode with Stephanie Keenan then why not listen to some of our favourite podcast episodes such as Daniel Gefen, Anton Kraly, Super Cycling Man or the amazing Graham Hughes
Or if you prefer just pop over to our podcast archive for thousands of amazing episodes to choose from.
Full Transcription Of Stephanie Keenan Interview
When we’re young, we have an amazing positive outlook about how great life is going to be. But somewhere along the line we forget to dream and end up settling. Join Up Dots features amazing people who refuse to give up and chose to go after their dreams. This is your blueprint for greatness. So here’s your host live from the back of his garden in the UK. David Ralph.
David Ralph [0:25]
Yes, hello there, everybody. Yes, it’s David Ralph at Mass mean, it’s Join Up Dots and this is a show that is just getting bigger and bigger and bigger. One of the best things about it is that it’s a it’s a show that I’m getting to have guests on a second time, sometimes a third time and we can share more nuggets of gold and that’s what we’re going to do in today’s episode. As this is the second time I’ve had the pleasure of grilling this lady on the show she last appeared properly back on episode 130 140 or check it out and I tell you during the show where we talked about Her rise to the top of the fitness industry from a starting point that was more than a bit unusual yet. That’s all I’m saying. So you have to go back and listen to that one to find out her unusual past occupations. So when she connected with me again and said, David, have I got more dots to share with you and your listeners and I knew it was gonna be good stuff. And this is a lady that is doing good stuff because she’s tackling one of the hardest fitness courses The world has seen the Spartan Ultimate Team challenge created by Joe dispenza, who also appeared back on the show. And the big question to this desire to get down muddy and sweaty is why she’s she’s a beautiful lady. She’s got a great business as rocking and rolling as clients across the world and could stay in their comfort zone quite happily, but she doesn’t want to she wants to prove herself and go after bigger and bigger challenges which really joins up the dots to our first interview. As this is not your usual Uber glamorous fitness guru, but this is a lady with drive, commitment and passion to do the unusual to create a path and to go to bed each night contend to know that she’s given it her very best. So what was the appeal of going onto the hit TV show Spartan ultimate challenge? And did she discover things about herself? that were a complete surprise? Well only submit what she already knew. Well, let’s find out as we bring onto the show to start joining up dots with the one and only Stephanie Keenan. How are you, Stephanie?
Stephanie Keenan [2:23]
I’m great. Thanks so much for having me again.
David Ralph [2:25]
Always. It’s an absolute delight. We had a good time last time, didn’t we?
Stephanie Keenan [2:29]
We had a wonderful time.
David Ralph [2:31]
So how has life changed for you? Because when I spoke to you, on the last episode, you were doing your thing. You were rocking and rolling and your business was sort of exploding around you. It was a good time in your life. But also I remember you saying you had a few sort of personal issues that was kind of sort of balancing the feelgood factor in your life. Is it all good in your life? Have we got a new feather in our life? Are we loving life? How is Life on a day to day basis.
Stephanie Keenan [3:01]
Oh, life is great. It really is. And you’re right the last time we spoke. Well, everything was going really good. And yeah, I had gone through a really, really rough patch. A pretty bad divorce. And yes, things are great now and Steven and I met and he’s the one that introduced me to these races. So we’ve been just travelling the country doing races like crazy and we happen to end up on the NBC Spartan Ultimate Team challenge show together.
David Ralph [3:31]
Now, if Steven introduced me to one of these races, I would punch him really hard in the stomach because it’s a madness. And I look at it and you know, I’m gonna cut to the chase. Stephanie. You’re lovely. You look lovely. I don’t want to see you all muddy and sweaty. What is the appeal to him? Why did he want you to go that route?
Stephanie Keenan [3:53]
It’s so funny. You say that? Well, both of us were kind of looking for a new sport. I had done the fitness competition thing which, like you said, is very paginating its beauty kind of oriented. And he had been doing CrossFit and he was really just kind of done with that looking for something else. And so one of his buddies said, Hey, do one of these races with me at both of us thought, Oh my gosh, this is so dumb. People had brought it up to us before and we were like, no, we’re definitely not plant paying to go play in the mud. But he didn’t really have a choice. He was staying with his friend that weekend. So he did it. And he said, Oh my gosh, you’re gonna love this. Let’s go do one. And so the one he signed me up for you would really hate it. I really loved it. It was one of the hardest ones they offer every year. It was the hardest thing I had ever done. And by the time we ended that race, it was lightning and thunder. We almost got pulled off the mountain. It was torrential downpour. I was going under barbed wire. It felt a little bit like the GI Jane movie. And my legs were cramping so bad. I couldn’t walk anymore. It was just brutal. And I absolutely loved it. I thought when can we do the next one I almost lost toenails from it. That’s I guess I’m kind of sick of the head. But it was that much fun.
David Ralph [5:05]
It sounds dreadful. It sounds totally totally lunacy, I had a guest, Joe dispenza, who actually sort of created ultimate Spartan and he created the whole thing. And I remember him telling me that he would have people come down to his house, as guests, like, come down to my house, have a barbecue, everything’s going to be great. And then he would wake them up about six o’clock in the morning and go, we’re going out for a run, and basically torture these people. It was great fun for him. But at the end of it, even though they went, Oh, my God haven’t ran for years, and oh my god, I can’t do this. There was a kind of power that had come through tackling that kind of thing, but most of us would have just rolled over and stayed in bed. Has that happened to you when you look at it because it’s kind of it’s it’s extreme to say beliefs. Did you find more about yourself? Can you tackle bigger things because of it? Or do you now now go now? That’s it? I’ve done that bit. Let’s go back to looking lovely on a beach.
Stephanie Keenan [6:08]
Oh, no, I just I continue to love to tackle things. And you’re right. It’s very representative of the obstacles that you have in life. And we were joking about it. We recently refinanced our house and all of the financial hurdles, we had to jump over it was funny because we felt like so at the end of a Spartan Race, there is a fire jump, typically as the last obstacle, and I kept saying, Oh my gosh, this whole process is like, there were eight fire jumps. And then we got to the end, and they were like, go do the race again. So it’s funny how you can draw all of these same lessons from the race into life. And there are some life obstacles. And sometimes you run into difficult people and you think, wow, this is kind of like that obstacle I see on the course. And, you know, you may have trouble with it in the beginning, but by the end, you really know how to navigate it. So yeah, there’s a lot of life lessons on those courses.
David Ralph [6:58]
And how do you go boy, With your fit guru ness app Do you got to the point where you it was comfortable because we see time and time again, Stephanie on the entrepreneurial journey, that people work really hard to get to a point when they’ve got a successful business. But then after a while when it kind of just floats along on its own, they start tapping their desk and thinking there’s got to be more to life than this. And you’ve got to that point.
Stephanie Keenan [7:25]
Now. Well, I think that’s kind of where I was with some of the Spartan Race stuff. I mean, I had done all of that stuff with the other fitness arena. And I just felt like working out for the sake of working out was really boring to me. Working out for the sake of the aesthetic appeal was boring as well. You know, those fitness competitions, you don’t remain looking perfect throughout the whole entire year. You look perfect on that day that you’ve prepped for whatever. But I just felt like that was very empty and lonely at the end of that. So I feel like these races are really great because you don’t get bored with them. There’s always something to improve on. So maybe this time You get a better time you place better. And maybe next time you just do the obstacles better. Because if you don’t complete an obstacle you’re supposed to do 30 burpees. So, you know, the goal a lot of times for people is to get through a race with no burpees. So you want to practice those obstacles. I just don’t feel like I’ve gotten bored with this. And we said that we’ll do this until it’s not fun anymore. And yeah, we did 16 races each last year. And we’ve already done six races each this year. So the season just started a couple months ago. We obviously love this stuff.
David Ralph [8:36]
Can I tell you something? Stephanie, I worry about you. I worry about you. And I’m going to, I’m going to share why I worry about you. When is enough enough. When when can you sit there on your doorstep and look at the sun going down and go to yourself? Yeah, I deserve the nice things in life. Are you always going to be driven Do you reckon on your deathbed Would you be going? Oh, come on, guys, just one more. I know 95. But just let me jump out of that window one more time.
Stephanie Keenan [9:06]
Well, I feel like I’m at that point right now where I can really enjoy it. So I don’t feel like I don’t feel compelled to always improve. And this, I really, honestly, we don’t train for these, we just do some regular kind of training a couple days a week. I mean, it’s not like we’re out pounding the pavement, getting overuse injuries to train for these really having fun with them. Sometimes we compete and sometimes we just participate. So I feel like I’ve finally kind of gotten to that point where I have enough that I’m working towards, but I am happy and content and my life without feeling bored. It’s a really, really, really nice place to be.
David Ralph [9:45]
Well okay, so let’s take us back. We are going to come back to sort of ultimate Spartan because that’s the reason why we’ve got you on the show. But of course, you’ve been on a journey, which if anybody wants to go over it was actually Episode 208 of Join Up Dots. You can find out Stephanie’s back story. But when did you realise, Stephanie, that it all had come good for you when you actually were finding your sweet spot because more often than not on the entrepreneurial journey, we try anything to start building income. And sometimes we look back on it and go, Oh, thank God that failed. Actually, I thought that was gonna be a winner, but I’m glad it didn’t. When did you realise that you were actually in your game?
Stephanie Keenan [10:24]
That’s fun. That’s a great question. It’s funny as you asked that right now, and I have always so I started my business four and a half years ago, and I’ve always been very passionate my business. There was a time about a year ago when I just had to fire a couple clients. They were very, very needy in that they were desiring a specific athlete or appearance result. And for anybody who works in the fitness industry, good that can be pretty frustrating because there actually is no end goal. It’s somebody who’s Individual expectations and sometimes those expectations are completely unrealistic. And I mean, not coming from me somebody who does crazy stuff all the time. So it’s been great with the Spartan races because we both got Spartan s gx coach certified and I’ve been training more Spartan athletes and so while I still absolutely love my lifestyle clients, I really they’re very much focused on the bigger picture. They really get it Yes, they have some appearance goals, but they really do it for their health as well. And so adding the Spartan stuff into it has been very helpful in that and it’s, it’s really kind of changed my business. I now have some sport and coaching programmes dedicated to just Spartan athletes, and I’m working on starting an OCR podcast as well. So it’s been really great and that and it’s kind of revived my love of fitness, my love of teaching fitness because for anybody who’s in the fitness industry in any industry, really, you can get kind of burned out.
David Ralph [12:03]
So when you fired your clients, was it simply because of their expectations? You know, could you could you have been quite happy just taking their money? Or did it get to a point that you for actually, when I see but I’ve got to speak to you on a Tuesday, it’s sort of fills me with dread slightly is not fun anymore.
Stephanie Keenan [12:22]
Oh, that was it. That was totally it. There were a couple when I would see their names pop up. I knew that it was going to be another question about another, you know, you name it. Um, and I feel like I’m very open to exploring a lot of things but I felt like it was the same questions over and over again, like here’s point A, and that’s point B, but they wanted to stop at CD z, x and y in between. So it’s very frustrating if you have clients that are not coachable. So really, I mean, when I say I fired them, I honestly just stopped answering all of the little tiny questions in between and they just were like, Okay, I’m gonna go find somebody else who’s gonna answer the same question over and over again. And that’s fine. Some people need that. And I like working with people who are ready to move on to the next level and not continue to play over the previous level.
David Ralph [13:11]
Yeah, because I agree with what you’re saying, totally. I fired quite a few of my clients, because no matter what I said to them, they didn’t seem to be getting it I didn’t seem to be getting but yeah, it was down to them. And I used to think to myself, Oh, I can tell you this time, I’m blue in the face, you’re not doing anything about it, and quite happily take their money. I don’t think they would have been quite happy given me the money, but I just didn’t feel good about myself. So I got rid of a load of them and walked around sort of local park thinking to myself, did I do the right thing here? Was that a bit rash? Should I have just taken the money, but I knew in my heart of hearts that what I wanted to do and what would make me happy and I think you’re the same is for Brant provide 100% value to your clients. So that ultimately word of mouth spreads and Get more business. You do have to prune don’t you to allow the garden to grow bigger?
Stephanie Keenan [14:04]
You absolutely do. And you nailed it. I mean, it’s really scary as an entrepreneur and you’re paying all of your bills and you know, it’s funny from the outside. A lot of times people see business owner and they see dollar signs. But as a fellow entrepreneur, I’m sure you see it differently where you’re like, Okay, yeah, there might be some dollar signs, but I see a whole lot of work in between and, you know, somehow we make it work. But yeah, you’re right. It’s very scary. Sometimes even. I would call it scary because you’re having to make those ends meet and you’re like, Okay, well, and I’m going to get rid of people who are actually giving me their money. So yeah, but you’re right. It’s the healthiest thing for you. It’s the healthiest thing for your plant. Maybe it will go on to somebody else who can get through to them or you know, maybe they maybe they won’t and that’s that’s okay, too.
David Ralph [14:50]
Did you remember the days talking about seeing dollar signs where you saw dollar signs everywhere, but they were just going out of your bank account. You seem to be Paying for stuff on a monthly basis to grow your business but actually wasn’t seeing any rewards.
Stephanie Keenan [15:05]
Oh yeah absolutely all the time and like i said i mean with with social media people just assume all kinds of things and even for like these races my, my even for these races Steven is he’s in the Coast Guard, he travels for work he gets, you know, his his hotels paid for his rental cars paid for a lot of times they use points to join him. We have a season pass for all these races. So that’s covered. But a lot of people just say on social media, oh, they’re doing more races they added up in their own heads, and they think we spent thousands of dollars per trip, which is just not the case. So yeah, there’s a lot of expenses that go into owning a business. There’s a lot of other stuff people don’t see. People like to fill things in. They like to make excuses for why they’re not doing what you’re doing. And a lot of times those things are, oh, well, they must just have more more resources than I do. But I mean, to be honest, I just Just make it work somehow every month.
David Ralph [16:03]
But you know, I look at your life and it looks very glamorous. And I must admit I I dip into your, your world every now and again, as I do with most of the guests just to sort of see how the websites developed and how things have changed how different income streams are coming into it. And it’s horses for courses in it because I looked at you the other day, doing lunges on a beach and I thought I couldn’t be bothered, I really couldn’t be bothered. But there’s a lot of listeners out there that would look at that and think, I like being fit. I you know, I and I’ve got my own computer, I could create a business like this. Is it doable? Is it something that is saturated now? Is this something that they could you know, contact you and find a way forward to create their own dream Fit Club?
Stephanie Keenan [16:50]
That’s a great question. I’m so I’m also a grad student right now at the University of Florida and their entrepreneurship programmes. So all of my classes really are dedicated to understanding how other businesses work. And we’ve been working on our own businesses as well. And so one of the big things they talk about is how saturated is the market. And sure this market is super saturated. But the really big thing is that there’s the ability to differentiate myself compared to somebody else. You’re right. There are like, it seems like every single person who can sign up for a social media account and can work out or at least likes to work out is now calling themselves a fitness expert. Yeah, you know, you add the multi level marketing products in there and now they’re a coach when they have zero certification. So it gets pretty frustrating because these are the people who you’re constantly having to, like answer the questions of your clients to know that that next latest and greatest thing isn’t the latest and greatest, you know, you’re always kind of pushing that stuff away, because it’s pretty scammy. But I think that you know, if you want to do it, you have to Just be 110% dedicated to it a lot of people think it’s so easy they have no idea what goes into it. I didn’t I mean, I was a nuclear engineer in the Navy before this that was really really hard if I hadn’t done something like that, I don’t know that I would have been able to stick it out in this because the hours required you know, the financial uncertainty that is involved in this whole entire business, just dealing with people on a daily basis and a lot of people they’ll decide Oh, I’m gonna quit my job and start a business because I don’t want to I don’t want somebody to tell me what to do and work for myself blah blah blah. Well, you have just traded out one boss for like however many bosses 3050 100 whatever your client base is. So it’s definitely challenging and I honestly I don’t answer those pick your brain questions anymore for business coaching unless you want to pay me bitches coaching prices because it is it’s been so many conversations that I’ve had with people where I’ll tell them what goes into it and they’ll just seriously look at me with a blank face and go, Oh my god, that sounds like a lot of work. And I’m like, it’s a lot of work times 1000 I only talked to you for half an hour here.
David Ralph [19:12]
But he’s brilliant thousand, isn’t it? This is what I say to everyone that I talk about. It’s the world’s worst being when it’s going bad. Like last week, last week, I got to the point that my show and my income streams and stuff just kind of work that good you know, I don’t have to sell people come to me and everything’s nice in my world. Last week, literally, every time I press the button, something went wrong. Every time I spoke to somebody, something went wrong. It just became almost to the end. But people said I looked like I was going insane. And ultimately I ended up and this is to you, Mr. Bill Gates, but my computer updated, but blocked out all the USB. So I had a computer that was operational but the mouse and the keyboard wouldn’t work. So how’d you get into the computer It was about three hours before I had to start recording shows. And literally I’ve got to the point now for I don’t know how to do this. Now, when I was an entrepreneur on the Sony employee land, I would have just phoned up the IT guys and said, my computer’s not working, just come out and sort it out. So you do have a lot of issues that need to be resolved. But because it’s hard, because it’s demanding, because it’s long hours, the rewards are better. It’s got to be that isn’t it’s definitely you put in the rewards. If it was just Oh, press that button and press that button and you make $1,000 everyone would do it. So there’s not $1,000 you’ve got to put the work in.
Stephanie Keenan [20:35]
Oh, absolutely. And I think that’s, you know, that’s what makes me love it so much kind of like those Spartan races is kind of crazy, because it’s so hard. You think why would you do that? I think they’re very representative of entrepreneurship except for the fact that on the outside of Spartan races, you can see how messy it is. Versus on the outside of entrepreneurship. You know, we’re always trying to make everything like nobody wants to hear about And how how rough it is for you as an entrepreneur, so you kind of just push it down. You don’t really talk about it too much, you know, because you were also are the sales department so
David Ralph [21:11]
but But doesn’t that make it better for you? But you know, but when you say to people actually, I’ve had a really crappy week this week, don’t you find that’s the real power that people seem to respond. They’re the posts that seem to get more engagement. They’re the tweets that seem to become almost viral when you actually put your hands up and go Hey, guys, I haven’t got all the answers here. You know, I’m doing my best but God it’s been a bit crappy. Don’t you find that’s the real gold?
Stephanie Keenan [21:36]
Well, yes, but at the same time, people, I don’t know, maybe maybe I do it wrong. But a lot of people anytime I say something about this is challenging. I have a few people that will just turn it right back at me and go oh, well, I mean, it’s not a bad life though. Why can you How can you complain? I’m like, I’m not complaining. I’m letting people know that. That it is not as easy as it looks because I See it like especially like I said this MLM stuff, this multi level marketing, network marketing, they’ll get a bunch of people into a room and they get them all hopped up, and they’re like, Oh my god, you can replace your income, you can just quit your job, blah, blah. And a lot of people actually take that leap. And then they they have no idea what they’re getting into. They’re not cut out for it at all. It’s not in their DNA. And they don’t actually that’s not really what they want to do. They just wanted I don’t know what they wanted. But, you know, so I guess my point is that I sometimes try to put that stuff out there to let you know, like, hey, it’s not all rainbows and sunshine or sunshine over here. You got to put in the work. And yeah, a lot of people will just be like, Oh, well work is work, and I don’t know, they get kind of nasty with me.
David Ralph [22:43]
I don’t know how anyone can get nasty with you, Stephanie. I wouldn’t. You got bigger muscles me anyway, you could probably beat me up. Now what I’m gonna do, I’m gonna play some words. Now that’s gonna take us to the second stage of the conversation. And these are hugely powerful, and we probably didn’t play these words when the last time he was on the show. But here’s Jim Carrey
Jim Carrey [23:03]
my father could have been a great comedian, but he didn’t believe that that was possible for him. And so he made a conservative choice. Instead, he got a safe job as an accountant. And when I was 12 years old, he was let go from that safe job. And our family had to do whatever we could to survive. I learned many great lessons from my father, not the least of which was that you can fail at what you don’t want. So you might as well take a chance on doing what you love.
David Ralph [23:30]
Boys into your spirit big time that doesn’t it?
Unknown Speaker [23:33]
David Ralph [23:35]
You don’t seem to have a safe option in your life. You seem to be going into uncharted territories more often than not, is that what makes your business flourish? Is it by taking the risky routes or maybe even not risky to you? Maybe I’m seeing it from a totally different way. How do you see it?
Stephanie Keenan [23:56]
Yeah, I feel like it is. That is my business. works. That’s how I work. I’ve said it before, I’m uncomfortable with being very comfortable. I had a really nice paycheck as a nuclear engineer. And it was quite secure. And it just and obviously, it’s challenging, right? Like, it was challenging on every level. But it wasn’t for me it was, I was still bored in it. And so yeah, like just taking these risks. That’s just normal to me. I guess I have a very, very high tolerance for risk, kind of like my tolerance for pain. So it works.
David Ralph [24:34]
Why does it work though? This is the million dollar question. Why does it work for you? When ultimately the entrepreneurial route is about making your life more comfortable? It’s about taking yourself away from when that boss can just put the hands on your shoulder and say, Sorry, we’re having a restructure. Why does it work for you?
Stephanie Keenan [24:55]
Well, I think every I just think that in society in general or public Some of us really are more of kind of warriors, right? And we are more comfortable with risk, we are more comfortable with the unknown. And I just fall into that category. And that’s I mean, that’s just that’s what makes me thrive. That’s what gets me up in the morning. I can remember when I was in that job, and I just getting up in the morning to go do the same thing. And maybe it wasn’t even always the same thing, but it was pretty darn known. That was just it just wasn’t for me. I have to say on the other side of it, though, a lot of people who think that they can be an entrepreneur and not have to do all the crap work that goes into it on the day to day that’s another wake up call for some people. I guess maybe I’ve just always I, I’ve always had like three jobs going on. So being an entrepreneur and having one company is like having three jobs. So it really just looking back on it, it fits me It fits everything that I’ve always done in my whole entire life. I’ve never been one person to just have one thing going on. Obviously, I don’t just tolerate this craziness in my life, I obviously seek it out so that it just works for me, all the other people. When they look at me, they think, Oh my god, you’re insane. Like, I don’t understand how you do it. I don’t understand how you juggle all of these things. But that’s what works for me.
David Ralph [26:30]
Because what I don’t understand and need this sort of fascinates me is, as I said, right at the beginning, I’ve said it a few times. You’re a very beautiful lady. And all the sort of lovely ladies I’ve known in my life have ended up being, I don’t know, PhDs or being business ladies or whatever. They’re not doing what you’re doing. And it strikes me as a kind of weird dichotomy that you’ve created for yourself, obviously plays right to your talents, but do you see it Do you understand why are looking at you in a lovely dress and heels kind of go? Yeah, okay, but that’s what she does. But then jumping through hoops of fire into mud a little bit bizarre.
Stephanie Keenan [27:14]
I get it, I do. Um, but it’s funny because I have a lot of other really hot friends who do this same sport. So I don’t feel like I’m so odd that I’m a pretty girl that’s in the mud. And this is how I grew up. I grew up in rural Missouri with mostly boy cousins, my brother, we played in the mud all the time. And even my aunt so my mom’s sisters and my mom like they’re lovely ladies. They like to play in the mud. And so I guess it’s just a little bit different from you know, where I came from my girlfriends now my close girlfriends that I hang out with on a regular basis. They look at me and they think I’m insane. But that’s alright because you know what, those are my girls I drink wine with and go shopping with so It’s just not their thing. And I get that too.
David Ralph [28:02]
So this is interesting. So this ties into the whole thing of Join Up Dots really, about when you find your thing more often than not, it touches on the kind of stuff that you would do when you was a kid. So if you was a rough and tumble kind of girl and like to be a bit of a tomboy, then that spirit that was in you before jobs got involved and relationships got involved in all the kind of boring stuff that we do as an adult. takes us back to that general play time. So what you’re doing now, although it is part of your business, would you say that you’re actually playing like you were as a small child?
Stephanie Keenan [28:39]
Absolutely. And every single time we go out and do a race, they take place on a Saturday or Sunday, and usually we start in the morning, and I feel like it takes me right back to being a kid again. And Steven is always saying, Oh my gosh, he’s he’s so much better at doing this now. But when we first started racing, I could just run down a creek bed with no thoughts just fly down. Yeah, he’s like, I don’t understand how you could do that. I feel like a baby giraffe. Well, he grew up in Boston. So he’s really good at jumping walls because he chose to stay away from the cups. But yeah, I feel like a kid again.
David Ralph [29:14]
No, I can see that. And that’s the sweet spot, isn’t it? That’s when everything comes together during these interviews, and I feel when I come in my sweet spot, I love it. And I can join up my dots. And I can see a theme that has run through since I was a small child. I used to get my reports and it used to say, David is great at his work, but he likes to talk too much. He likes to, you know, connect with everyone in the in the classroom. And I look back on it, I think, Well, yeah, that that must be because I was just being myself. It wasn’t a bad thing. Teachers, you should have sort of looked at that and say, Well, okay, why does he want to do that? There’s a fantastic story about this lady, who was, you know, very bad at school, and she got taken to the doctors and her mom said, you know, We need to calm her down, we need to calm her down because she’s just always leaping around. There’s something wrong with her. And the doctor fortunately looked at her and said, I think she just likes movement in her life, I think we should encourage her to move. And she ended up being a prima ballerina for the London ballet school or whatever school it was. And so that was her natural spirit. But the adults almost suppressed it, and they kind of put it into a place where it was a bad thing. So the fact that I like to talk and express myself, that should be encouraged the fact that you like to roll around in the dirt and get a bit sweaty. That’s your thing. And when you look at the listeners out there, if they have something that they remember doing and loving as a kid, that is a good start to a business idea. Would you say?
Stephanie Keenan [30:46]
Yeah, there definitely is. Um, yeah, you absolutely and but you need to make sure that Oh, that’s a that’s a great question because it goes back to the are they willing to put in the work? So yeah, if there is something thing that they can really identify with. And do I mean, then absolutely. And I’m guessing if they’re listening to this podcast, they are willing to put in the work because a lot of the people who aren’t probably just see something on social media and think that’s great. And then start asking the questions. I feel like people who listen to podcasts, especially daily podcasts like yours, they’re well informed. They’re putting in the work. That’s awesome.
David Ralph [31:22]
I don’t know if you’re putting in the work. But that’s the problem. I think a lot of times the fact that people and I don’t want you to turn off listening to me, listen to me as many times as you can. But the fact that people do buy the self development books, because they are listening to the podcast, ultimately, I find so many of them are doing all that stuff, but they’re not taking action. They’re not actually getting out there and doing it. And so I could be killing my show, but I kind of want them all to turn off the podcast and go off and do something meet people network. You know, get away from the virtual world, the books and actually start doing stuff. Isn’t that the way towards success? Definitely.
Stephanie Keenan [32:04]
Yes. And I would say the same thing for my clients too, because a lot of times the ones that are most challenging for me and are not seeing the results are the ones that are most educated. They’re the ones spending the most time reading the blogs and doing all of the the research, but they’re not actually putting in the work. And I have to say, for my business, I did research for a couple years as I had a very long commute. So I listen to podcasts just like yours. And, and all the self development stuff because I spent three, two and a half hours in the car every day. And so I did that part of the work. But then once I jumped into it, yeah, I’ve just been having to put in the work every single day and just doing actions every day. I fail more things than I actually succeed at. I just continue to fail forward every single day, not just every week, every day.
David Ralph [32:54]
And those failures because I’m always interested in the failures because do you actually look at the majority to come and go, actually, thank God for that. Thank God I think that failed because I was slightly not on the right thing. You know, I’ve created products that I thought were gonna fly. And they’ve just died a death. I look back on them now and kind of thing. Yeah, actually, I’m kind of glad. I think that would have been slightly wrong. How do you feel about the failures?
Unknown Speaker [33:20]
Yeah, I do. Um, I really liked the book.
Stephanie Keenan [33:25]
The pelo Queloz book, The Alchemist and so I kind of put a lot of things into that. You know, like, he has things that happened to him, and I kind of put things in that frame of use that frame of reference. And yeah, some of the things that fall away. They just weren’t supposed to be there. And some of the things that people don’t sign up for, eventually you go, Oh, well, that’s not too bad. One example, I had a bunch of one on one clients a couple years ago, and then I just, the timing wasn’t right. And some of them quit because they ran out. money or they had just finished up their coaching programme with me or whatever. And while you know financially that was because one on one clients definitely bring in more money. And financially that was kind of a struggle. You’re kind of like, oh man, should I get new clients to replace these spots? I thought No, you know what, this is the chance that I’ll take to do something else. And so that’s when I started grad school. So yeah, like things, things that things sometimes go away, they sometimes come back, I guess it’s just really focusing on moving forward and not focusing on what you failed on. I tend to forget those pretty darn quickly.
David Ralph [34:39]
Now, when you look at ultimate Spartan, Spartan Ultimate Team challenge, obviously, that’s why you’re on the show. So I want to get the conversation back to that. Did you have to go round and find your team did you look at personalities, but you knew that would work well with yours or were you just thrown into a big mix You had to choose like when you went to school, and your stand up against the wall when you go over them, and then the next person says I have ever and it works like that.
Stephanie Keenan [35:08]
Oh, that’s a great question because, um, so I, I, the invite for applying for this came out and a lot of people have been watching Stephen and I do these races and you know they see American Ninja Warrior and they’re always like you should go do that and I don’t know if they realise that we’re very heavy people it’s so carrying ourselves across the course by our arms is insanely difficult. So, so anyway, people have always said that this right well, then all of all of these same people were in my inbox saying, hey, there’s a new Spartan when you guys are Spartan athlete, you should apply for this. And then I mean, this is all within the same week. Then three of the casting producers contacted me because they found me via social media and they said you should apply for this. So we started looking at it, and Steven was out of town working As usual, and so I sent him a message and I said, Hey, I’m doing this. Do you want to do it with me? And so we need to have two males, two females. And so he said, Yeah, sure I’m in. And so now, it was down to finding a female. And like you said before, not a lot of females do this. And, you know, finding the right female to do it with us, too, I thought was important because sometimes female relationships could be a little bit challenging, especially when competition comes into play, right. So anyway, I thought, you know what, there was this cool chick when I first moved back to Charleston, I had met her through kiteboarding. I was going to take lessons from her, but I never bought the gear. And then fast forward a couple years joining up those dots. The publisher of the magazine that we were both on the cover of contacted me said, Hey, do you know Adam and Elijah, they do Spartan races, you guys should meet up. And so he said this every month for about five months. And I was kind of like, Well, I mean, we do these races but what would meaning up, brother do at this point. Well, now the casting call came out I need a male and a female So, and they ended up saying yes, they would join our team, which worked out perfect because they, we all live within five miles of each other. We hang out as friends together, we travel to these races together. We’re all about the same ages. I was the youngest on the team at 37 students 38 lS 39 out of 44. And, and then we got paired up with our elite athlete. That’s the one thing that we didn’t know what we were going to get. They paired us up with Orla Walsh, the most amazing chick ever, just a really strong athlete and amazing story and how she got into these races. So yeah, that’s how our team came together. And like I said, we do all kinds of stuff together. Now we hang out. We have barbecues, all kinds of fun stuff.
David Ralph [37:53]
And as up in times when you’re doing it and the tough has to get tougher You look at each other and go, Oh, you wait till I get home. I’m gonna I’m gonna make sure that the next time you come to a barbecue, I’m gonna burn your sausage. I’m gonna be tough on this.
Stephanie Keenan [38:10]
No, not at all. We’ve gotten along really, really well the whole entire time. And we’ve raced together as a team, like competing race together. So we got to get this done quickly. Now it’s been it’s been awesome with them.
David Ralph [38:23]
Okay, so give the listeners a flavour of what happens in this. And I know it’s launching, I think it’s June the 13th. Is that right on it on NBC. So for people in America, you can tune in to NBC and you get it I’m not sure how it’s gonna operate across the world, but I’m sure that it will be franchised everywhere. So give us a flavour of what happens.
Stephanie Keenan [38:46]
Okay, so it’s the same producers as American Ninja Warrior. It was also the same course builders as American Ninja Warrior, but they put in a lot more obstacles that are very Spartan oriented. The one thing that is very different Spartan races versus the show is that typically, we don’t have some of these obstacles. So in a regular Spartan Race, you can race as a quote unquote team. But you also do everything is done as an individual. So you don’t need a whole entire team to pick up a log, for example. And so in this race, we all had to work as a team, the course builders made every obstacle team oriented. And the other big difference was that most of these races we do are usually between five and 15 miles long, which is a good distance. This race for the show was only a mile so it was a sprint, you would think shorter, better, no shorter means faster. So so we all have had to work as a team and they did a really, really great job of putting in obstacles that were just brutal. Now going into this, I thought, Oh, it’s television. I’m sure they’re gonna be like, oh, let’s take that again. Do that obstacle again. We want you to say this or look that way. No. All they did was give us some insanely brutal elements including water that they chilled to like 39 degrees and and then just some very scary scenarios like making us go under dunk walls that with this freezing cold water and things like that. So really they just, they just did the they just turned the camera on and we were just going
David Ralph [40:24]
and was it anything that you fall? I really can’t do that. I really can’t because I imagine going under in 39 degree water that’s going to take your breath away anyway. And so the fact you must go and then have to go under that’s that’s daunting. Was there any part of it that you thought hang on this is one step too far.
Stephanie Keenan [40:42]
Um, there were a lot of parts where I thought, oh my god, somebody can die. If we had to. There was a point where we ended up in a lake that was before the dunk wall there and they didn’t tell you you need to be able to swim. So there were some people that were concerned because they couldn’t swim. So some teams literally Had to save each other. And the barbed wire like we did. We didn’t know we weren’t really going to be wearing any clothes until like 12 days prior to the show. You know, I thought we I always racing clothes. I mean, you’re under barbed wire, you’re rolling on the ground like why wouldn’t you want to have clothes on? But they have a sports bra and shorts. So it’s like Baywatch. But
David Ralph [41:21]
this is their greatest show ever. It’s becoming better every minute. I don’t know how you’re gonna get NBC but I’m their first episode. So,
Stephanie Keenan [41:33]
yes, it was, but that was surprising. So yeah, and then the slip wall at the end was just insanely brutal. And the other thing I have to say too, that your listeners won’t catch from the show is that we were episode one heat one. First thing in the morning, we were the very first heat to go and so they were still getting all of their equipment, setup, sound checks, video checks, all that stuff. And so we were on the start line and it was Only like 43 degrees that morning. It was kind of starting to mist. This was in December. And so we all had warm clothes on. We they mic us up and they’re like okay, you guys can kind of warm up and then they’re like alright take off your your outer clothes. Well, I guess they were still working on some stuff because they had a stayed out there I apparently I didn’t count somebody else was counting 97 minutes from the time we took those warm up clothes off until the time that the gun went off. We started racing, we were frozen.
David Ralph [42:28]
What did you know all huddled together like penguins for body heat.
Stephanie Keenan [42:33]
Well, we were running around, they had cameras out we were like trying to get some footage prior to. We did this cool chant with these scary red masks. So if your listeners see my social media, that’s what the red mask is. We used it on the show as a chant. So now we race the course with the but we usually have them on the back of our heads because you can’t breathe through them.
David Ralph [42:55]
By sound like the organisers sound like I grew up in the 70s and it If you grew up in the 70s, certainly in the United Kingdom, PE teachers were basically lunatics and psychopaths, and they would get you to do the most bizarre stuff. I remember having to do swimming on a snowy day, and having to spend half our time standing outside the pole with frozen water on us. You know, it’s absolutely bizarre stuff. I reckon that was training. I think, in the 70s. If you took Spartan back to the 70 schools, it would be a breeze we would just fly through. It’s definitely because we were tough in those days. We become soft.
Stephanie Keenan [43:35]
Oh, that is so true. Good thing. We were 70s children too.
David Ralph [43:38]
Yeah, absolutely. And I wasn’t lunatics. When I lunatics and psychopaths PE teachers in the 70s. Did you have the same?
Stephanie Keenan [43:45]
Oh, yeah, totally. And I was in the country so
David Ralph [43:49]
they wouldn’t get away with it nowadays. Well, just before we send you back in time, and second time to do is to have a one on one with your younger self. Where can people get This isn’t gonna be online. Did I actually have to have cable subscription? How’s it going to operate? You know?
Stephanie Keenan [44:06]
And yeah, so it’s on NBC, which is a major network here in the US. And June 13 10, nine Central. And they also have seen on the website that they have a link where it shows like, Is there going to be addition or the episodes are going to be available online? So obviously, they’re not up yet because it’s not on yet. So there is an online version of it. And I’m really hoping that we’ll get a second season and move on like that because American Ninja Warrior is also available to watch on Esquire network after the fact so you can just watch these these marathons of the race. So hopefully, Eris gets on that too.
David Ralph [44:46]
Do you know what I’d like to see Stephanie, I would like to see you create your own TV kind of station and we can do it very easily now online. And instead of having these Uber fit people tackling these things, it would be good to see People that are going on the journey going on the journey of, you know, from totally overweight, not being able to open a bag of potato chips without wheezing to be able to do stuff that would be good when they because there’s a video online of a man. I think he recorded himself summit night 90 times from the point to be able to touch his toes. And you can watch it in sort of like step by step by step. One day he got that far the next day he got that far the next day got that far. So if you created your own sort of challenge course for the overweight that would be great when it and inspiring.
Stephanie Keenan [45:36]
Yeah, and that’s what I love about this race. I mean this Spartan in general, you can do it even if you’re not in great shape. And if you can’t do an obstacle, that’s fine, just walk around it for the time being and then maybe next race, you can do that obstacle or, you know, you get some help doing it. So yeah, I think that’s great. And we started podcast about obstacle course racing. And it isn’t to the elite. It isn’t somebody who’s trying to shave one minute off of 10 mile race. It is somebody who’s just getting started in it, what do they need to really know from a basic level? Not anything super scientific that’s gonna complicate their training or their nutrition.
David Ralph [46:13]
Tell us about the name of the podcast so that people sitting listening can stop listening to Join Up Dots and jump over and listen to you. What was it called?
Stephanie Keenan [46:21]
Hey, thanks. And so the podcast is OCR radio. It’s on OCR radio.com. And then my regular lifestyle podcast is stop chasing skinny. So I do a podcast there that talks about all the great things that go into making a fit life. That’s not necessarily based on all the other diet crap we see out in the world these days.
David Ralph [46:43]
Well, this is the end of the show. And this is the part we’ve been building up to and instead of sending you back into the early days, I’d like to send you back the last couple of years to the first time that you was on the show and how your life has changed. So if you could go back just a couple of years and give your your Younger versions, some advice, what advice would you give? Well, I’m gonna play the theme tune. And when it fades, you’re up. This is the Sermon on the mic
Unknown Speaker [47:16]
with the best bit of the show.
Stephanie Keenan [47:33]
So Stephanie of two years ago, you’ll never get better at this sermon on the mic. But it’s fun to try. And and everything will work out just like you thought it would. And you thought that it would get better and better and better and it does. It gets better every day. All of the bad stuff falls away. All the good stuff takes its place, as long as you just keep focusing on that good stuff. And not all of that bad stuff. Because there was a A lot of bad stuff you could have focused on but you didn’t. So just keep your head up, keep moving forward. keep getting muddy, and apply for television shows when you can because it’s really fun.
David Ralph [48:13]
Stephanie what’s the number one best way that our audience can connect with you?
Stephanie Keenan [48:18]
On my website, the AF elite a th e l i t the athletes.com. And even Stephanie Keenan comm SK FitLife calm. I’ve got a few of them
David Ralph [48:32]
will have all the links on the show notes. Stephanie, thank you so much for spending time with us today. joining up those dots. And please come back again when you have more dots to join up. Because I do believe that by joining up the dots and connecting our past it’s the best way to build our futures. Stephanie Keenan, thank you so much.
Stephanie Keenan [48:49]
And thank you
David Ralph [48:52]
Stephanie Kenan, she was great when she was great the first time she was great the second time and she’s she’s doing a thing finding a sweet spot. That kind of might be lunacy. For me. It sounds dreadful what she’s doing, but it’s right for her. And I suppose that’s the message for all the shows. If you want to do something, it doesn’t matter what other people think it doesn’t matter what your mates being your friends, family, whatever. If it’s right for you, and it feels right, then it is right. He just happen. Start doing it, start doing it, play around, persevere. I mean, you know, find out how you can start making money, he comes down to money, we all have to pay our bills, no getting away from that. And it’s not playtime all the time. But if you can find a thing that you like doing, and then earn money from it as well, it really does become good. If you need any help on this guy’s just drop us a line, on Twitter, on Facebook or whatever, you can always connect with us because that’s why we’re here. That’s why we’re doing the shows. That’s why we want to develop you guys to get the life but we’re getting and it’s there. It’s there for you. Yeah, you know, I’m an idiot. I’m an idiot podcaster. But if I can do it, you can do it and we’re going to show you how We’re gonna show you how on the next show as well so we will see you very very shortly. This was David Ralph and as I always say that was Join Up Dots. Thanks for listening by.
David doesn’t want you to become a faded version of the brilliant self you were wants to become. So he’s put together an amazing guide for you called the eight pieces of advice that every successful entrepreneur practices, including the two that changed his life. Head over to Join Up dots.com to download this amazing guide for free and we’ll see you tomorrow on Join Up Dots.