I never fail at making resolutions

Most of you made some sort of resolution this New Year’s Eve. Some of us have not admitted to them yet, but you know there is something you have thought about making better in your life for 2015. We don’t admit to these resolutions because we don’t want to fail. This is pretty typical, no one wants to be a failure or give their friends ammunition to tease them.

I am in this resolution boat almost every month. When you look up the definition of a ‘resolution’, it has nothing to do with New Year’s or some damn ball falling from the sky. All it really means is you have made a significant decision. However, we now use New Year’s Eve to make a resolution to do something better for ourselves. But why are you not setting resolutions all the time? And why are you worried about failing at your resolutions?

I am an a ‘A to B’ type of person. You know, the person who just wants to get shit done:). Usually, I make firm decisions quickly (a.k.a. resolutions) and try to get from that decision to a solution or failure as soon as possible. My tolerance for failure is pretty high. I could rattle on for days about all the business ideas and decisions I have had that failed. Losing family time, money, happiness, and relationships.

This all adds up to a lot of failure for some folks, but for me it adds up to how I make resolutions.

Failure is all about perspective and prioritization. When you are an ADD entrepreneur like me, you become superb at prioritization. One thing I have not prioritized recently is my health.

When I look at my busy schedule and family life it can be hard to make my health a priority. This has been the case since my second son Matthew was born. I set career and family as my top priorities, allowing health and fitness fall to the wayside.

Before I had a family, I was an athlete. I ran 50 miles a week and cycled another 100 miles, at my peak. I was single, partied hard, worked hard and worked out harder. Running was my escape. I put on my headphones after work every day and ran for more than 2 hours. That was back when I had time to be selfish and could keep my weight at 175 -180. It didn’t matter what I ate; I could burn off 1,400 calories in one run.

skinny dan mcgaw


Since then (2012) I have put on over 65 lbs.

fat dan mcgaw

I come in at a cool 245 on the scale and couldn’t run a mile if I wanted. This is the heaviest I have ever been. Fixing my weight has been a topic my wife, and I have talked about multiple times. Luckily, my bombshell 115 lb. wife doesn’t mind my weight. We both agree fitness and health are important, but our priorities have prevented me from making a resolution to do something about it.

But this year is different, and coincidentally New Year’s just happened.

A few weeks ago an opportunity dropped in my lap so I could make a resolution to lose weight. My best friend Neil told me that our buddy’s gym, American Combat Club, needed some business and marketing help. This MMA gym has fighting, kickboxing, and fitness classes. I had been to their MetCon class about ten times and it kicked my ass, so much so that I stopped going because it did not fit my priorities or schedule. I frigging loved the workout; it was only 30 minutes, but I could not commit due to other priorities (other resolutions).

Now, my gym owning buddies, Vinnie and Mitch are amazing fighters and could kick my ass in about 2 seconds. They are some of the nicest, most patient people I know. The visual experience of the gym is not the best, but the customer experience they provide is exceptional.

When I finally met with the AAC guys to learn about their needs, I saw a unique opportunity. Here are two founders who have run a gym for eight years, have a loyal following, but don’t know how to make it a success.

They were also about to set out on one of the biggest investments of the company’s lifetime. AAC will be moving from the east side of Orlando (Semoran and Colonial area) to a space downtown that is twice the size. Their decision for this move makes sense, location is everything, and their current location is not the easiest to get to. On top of that, there is no direct competition downtown.

When I looked at the business model I got really excited, it is a subscription model with multiple pricing tiers. Kind of like all the technology companies I have worked for and currently consulting. To toot my own horn, I kick ass at subscription models but have only had a chance to work on digital subscriptions. This is a chance for me to use my skills for a real world service! The subscription model was exciting; the founders kicked ass and they needed support.

Ok, back to the resolution stuff.

What is the best way to get back in shape? You go to the gym and workout!

Well, I have a gym membership to Planet Fitness and pay them $20 a month. I never go though, haven’t in 7 months. Excuses of course are to blame, but it has more to do with my priorities on time. Going to Planet Fitness sucks because of its location and I can’t do intense workouts there. They have rules that prevent me from going hard.

These things add up to me just not going to the gym. By becoming an investor and partner in a gym, I get to kill two birds with one stone.

First, I get to use my skills to help some awesome founders grow their business and prove that I can be successful with any subscription model, online or offline.

Second, which is probably the most interesting to me. I don’t have an excuse to not be at the gym. By investing time and money into a gym I will need to be there to track its success. To ensure I can provide the most value, I will be working from the gym at least three days a week.

My biggest problem with going to the gym has always been efficiency of time. If I drive 10 minutes each way to the gym, I lose 20 minutes a day. When I do workout it takes me a long time to cool off, upwards of 2 hours. I don’t lose the whole two hours, but being sweaty prevents you from putting on nice clothes and attending meetings. These are my two biggest complaints about my current gym experience.

With the AAC gym I do not have those excuses. I am driving to the gym, as my office is at the gym. When the new downtown space opens, I will be moving my company’s offices to a space next to the gym. I can’t use the excuse that the drive wastes time. With my office being next to the gym I can easily walk downstairs and do my workout at any time of the day, early or late. Since the gym has dedicated showers, I can take a shower before or after cooling off. I can even store clothes, shower supplies and whatever else I need in my office.

Simply put, I have no excuse to not take advantage of the gym.

Even with these positive attributes, there are also some big negatives. By getting involved with the gym, I will need to invest time and money. This means less time spent on my other businesses and family.

With this comes a new resolution I need to make. Do I prioritize my health by investing in the gym or do I skip the gym and focus on continuing to grow my current business??

I am choosing to make my resolution to become healthy. Being healthy brings quality of life and isn’t that why we earn mo
ney in the first place? Even funnier, if you ask an entrepreneur why they want to start a company, it is usually because they want money from the business to improve their quality of life.

For me, I already have successful companies and the money is not a concern. My health, right now is a concern and with my new obligation to the gym, I don’t have a way to get out of becoming healthy.

This, my friends is how to commit to your resolutions. The moment you make your resolutions ingrained with your life, the more likely you are to succeed.

What is going to be the obligation you create to ensure you never fail a resolution again?