(Graham Twigg, windsurfer extroardinaire)
“You look fat.”
The statement was delivered to me with a bluntness that only a lifelong friend and business partner could get away with. “We’ve gotta do something about this or we’re gonna have heart attacks before we’re 40. Look at Ryan. He’s only been here a month and he’s already put on 20 pounds.” “Speak for yourself. I still get out surfing and mountain biking. I’m in not bad shape,” I replied, saying it but not really feeling it. Truth be told, my most recent attempts at any of the outdoor pursuits I’d always enjoyed were marked by pain, exhaustion and all around feebleness. Long hours spent in airplanes and in front of the computer were driving our business forward, but were not making for healthy people. With the stinging truth of my colleague’s observation still making my ears burn, I made up my mind to do something about it.
My wife had been going to BDHQ for a while and assured me that ‘guys go there too’. And so our workplace fitness adventure began, fuelled partly by the taunts of our CEO as he pointed out the painful truth, and partly by a genuine desire to improve our health.
Michele Shorter of BDHQ struck a deal with us whereby we would bring our entire office to BDHQ for a lunch hour corporate boot-camp for two sessions each week. That was some two years ago now, and ‘gym class’ has since become an integral part of our corporate culture. I'm sure the financial ROI is there due to the fewer sick days, better focus and reduced absenteeism associated with having a healthier workforce. But for me, it’s really about the intangible benefits of having employees who are happier, who like that we do something together other than talking about work all the time, and who are ultimately more enjoyable to work with because they appreciate us investing not just in their brains but in their overall well-being.
On a personal level my fitness level has improved to the point where I can go out and do the things I like to do, at a reasonably active level without a constant threat of injury. The best training for surfing, skiing, mountain biking or whatever your chosen pursuit is will always be to go out and do that pursuit 7 days a week. But for most of us with limited time due to work, family and other obligations the training you get at BDHQ is a pretty close second.
Chief Technical Officer
Multivista Construction Documentation Inc.