I have been fortunate enough to help a diverse group of people achieve their potential. Each of them has fueled the desire in me to continue doing my best. Reflecting on the inspiring clients I work with at this time, I must confess that I have to "cheat" and select not just one but four, as they all highlight a certain something that propels me forward as a person and a professional.
The Szocs are an older couple who have embraced the ideals of an active, healthy lifestyle so they can enjoy their retirement years to the fullest extent. Exercise is an integral part of each day, and they jump into it knowing that, unlike many of their friends, they are improving their quality of life. The importance of their enthusiasm was nicely summed up by one of their sons, a world-renowned skier, who commented on how proud and happy he is that his parents are fit enough to share skiing, hiking and other adventures with him. This great couple underscores for me that it is never too late to be fit and that physical fitness brings joy to life on a variety of levels.
Claire is one of the top downhill mountain-bike racers in the world. For 5 years she has fought her way up the ranks, representing Canada four times at the World Championships--all with little to no sponsorship. Claire is awesome to work with because she pushes me! Besides thriving on training hard (and smart), she is a sponge--looking to learn all she can to make her the best at her sport. I am always motivated by her belief that as an athlete she has responsibility to her sport. Even working 10-hour days to make ends meet and then putting in time to train, Claire gets out there to be a wonderful ambassador for downhill biking--particularly by encouraging and mentoring young girls to excel as riders.
"Big Rich" is one of Whistler's best bartenders. An enthusiastic sports fan, he was unhappy a couple of years ago when a back injury prevented him from doing his job well and being involved in the activities he loves. The "big guy" decided to change his life, and he has stuck to that commitment. For me, Rich is a study in consistency. From leading an "okay lifestyle, but not the healthiest on the planet," Rich has taken the time to learn and try things that will make him fitter and healthier for years to come. By being persistent, he has knocked off all his goals, and he continues to set new ones, steadily progressing toward his potential. What's the most personally inspiring point about Rich? Every Friday at the end of his workout, I get to wind up my week hearing him say, "I love this, man! Thank you very much, Di!" From where I...