Breaking Barriers One Step at a Time with Matt Kelly
“To go faster, sometimes you’ve got to start by going a bit slower.”
Do you find yourself often creating mental obstacles before even attempting to follow through towards a certain goal? If so, you’re in luck, ‘cause our guest today will equip you with the tools to shatter those mental blockades once and for all!
For today’s episode, David is joined by Matt Kelly - a newly minted Ironman, and an all-round good guy who keeps pushing the limits of what’s possible.
Although he aspired to be a fireman at a young age, and even undertook petroleum engineering at UNSW later, nowadays his actual day job is more detached from his childhood dreams, as he works for a construction and development company.
There’s something very rewarding in seeing a project to completion. There’s not a lot of work out there where you get to have that satisfaction, of being able to have this big, physical, tangible legacy that you can identify with as he further explains.
That type of team work environment such as construction is very different from being a triathlete or running marathons actually. “They balance each other out a little bit.”
Although the team environment is pretty intense, the time he spends out running provides some balance, and while he’s not a particularly extroverted person, he nevertheless agrees that the social interaction his work provides is very much a necessary part of his life, because we as humans thrive on that type of interaction.
Next up, the discussion steers towards Port Macquarie IRONMAN event, Matt’s experience of it and his new approach and philosophy when it comes to training and diet. It’s hard to juggle it all at times, and he admits he wouldn’t have been able to achieve what he did without the help of his loving wife.
Being creative with his training was key, and running his everyday commute to work was a flexible way of implementing the necessary training time. He also shares the books that profoundly influenced the changes in his running philosophy and training attitude, one of which was: Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen. It truly opened his mind and made him realize he was always trying to run too fast.
And another one is Finding Ultra, which was a big turning point for him about mentally challenging yourself to do the things you typically wouldn’t do.
A great source of inspiration comes from David Goggins from the Rich Roll Podcast: “Even when you’re at your absolute lowest point, physically and you think you’re gonna throw in the towel, you’re only at 40% of your potential.”
When we’re deep in the red zone during a race and when our body and our mind are screaming to call it a day, the only way through is to break it up one step at a time, compartmentalize the race and just get to the next turning point, setting measurable milestones is crucial whether it’s swimming, cycling or running. “You’re suffering, but there are people suffering more, just stay on your toes and knock out the next section, get to the next lap.”
Matt’s challenge for YOU this week is: “Find something that you don’t think is possible. Sign up for something that scares the hell out of you and get out of your comfort zone. Find reasons and ways to make it work and say yes, rather than putting up the barriers to make it seem too hard.”