They say you are the sum of the 6 people you spend the most time around. If you want focussed, goal orientated and happy employees who aren’t afraid of hard work, look no further than the triathlete, and here is why:
Triathlon training requires athletes to look at food as fuel, they eat well and strive to stay healthy. For your business that means less time off for sick leave, increasing productivity. It is likely this healthy behaviour will begin to spread around the workplace, just like a germ… But better.
Triathletes set race goals months in advance and day-by-day work hard towards achieving them. They aren’t likely to give excuses as to why budgets are not achieved or work isn’t done properly, they know “You can have excuses or you can have results, but you can’t have both.”
3. More Alert
Some staff may turn up to work hungover, half asleep or just not yet ready to tackle the day. Triathletes have been up since 5am, completed a hard training session, refuelled with a healthy breakfast and are ready to take on the world and their work. An afternoon “Sunday Sesh” for a triathlete generally involves a long run, not sinking beers at their local, so Monday mornings may involve sore legs but not sore heads.
4. Less Tired
Following on from above you might expect triathletes to hit a wall at 3pm, reaching for the sugary snacks like the rest of the staff who have been up all night watching Netflix or at the aforementioned local pub. The triathletes may be hungry but it’s more likely they’ll be peeling a banana and snacking on nuts, getting ready for their afternoon training session. They were asleep by 8:30pm last night, so aren’t as tired and weary as their colleagues.
5. Hard Working
The type of person that would sign up for an endurance event has motivation, discipline and drive, three qualities that will reflect in their everyday work not just racing. Not to say that non-triathletes don’t work hard, but I am yet to find an endurance athlete that doesn’t appreciate the importance and value of consistent hard work, after all there is no bluffing in an Ironman.
You can’t cheat the grind. It knows how much you have invested and won’t give you anything you haven’t worked for.
Maximising the use of time is essential for triathletes, juggling training, work and family requires efficiency and planning. Junk miles in training are ones you run that don’t produce a specific benefit, hours wasted being non productive at the office are no different. Triathletes are efficient and utilise their time well, both in and out of the office.
When you exercise your body releases endorphins, their chemical structure is similar to morphine and they trigger a positive feeling in the body of euphoria and general well-being. It is also proven that stress is reduced by exercise induced endorphins, do I need to continue with reasons you should have a workplace full of triathletes?
“Food is the most widely abused anti-anxiety drug in America. Exercise is the most potent yet under utilised anti-depressant.” Bill Phillips
You can’t train for something like an Ironman unless you really love the process, and when you love something it shows. Triathletes passionately telling their colleagues about a great run or ride on the weekend and achieving their goals may inspire others to get involved. Before you know it, the office fridge will be filled with healthy lunches, the smell of chlorine will take over in the mornings and you may need to install bike racks in the carpark.
Why not go one step further and instigate your workplace’s involvement in a corporate triathlon? The potential benefits go far beyond employee satisfaction and increased business productivity. The camaraderie of training for an event will bring the workplace together and the health benefits will go well beyond race day.
So when you’re planning your next overseas race or training holiday to Thanyapura Phuket and need to apply for holidays, print this list out and attach it to your annual leave form. Your boss probably already knows you’re awesome but you cant go past a subtle reminder that the chlorine smell and lycra tans mean a very valuable employee.