Episode 9

Marion Abrams - Spartan Up & Grounded Content


There is nothing that Marion Abrams of MadMotion cannot do: she is not just a multiple Emmy-nominated filmmaker – but also oversees some of the world’s best podcasts at Spartan, has her own podcast with Grounded Content and also coaches podcasters in all walks of life.

You’re not only going to fall in love with Marion’s stories – but also the amazing person that she is.

This Full video episode available for free at: https://rebrand.ly/mariondeal

All of the products discussed in this podcast can be found here: https://rebrand.ly/MarionList

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Full Episode Transcript:

Who doesn't love a good story? Do you think you've got good stories? Do you ever wonder if these stories can help you with your business or your life goals, this amazing guest of deal casters does exactly that there's nothing that Marion Abrams cannot do. She's not just a multiple Emmy nominated filmmaker, but also oversees some of the world's best podcasts.

It's Spartan has her own podcast. With branded content and also coaches podcasters in all walks of life. You're not only going to fall in love with Mary Abram's stories, but also the amazing human being that she is smart.

What's up. I feel like such a rock star with that introduction. love the open you guys do. That's so cool. The video, it's really nice. That's fun. When you've got somebody like you, that has a lot of content to choose from and, be able to pepper it in that's. That's awesome.

And we met on clubhouse. Clubhouse comes up every time. The last, I dunno, 10 shows that we've done and it's such a great way to meet people like yourself. But then I saw a video that you did on Instagram. And I was watching it, but of course un-muted and started listening to it. And I was like, wow, that voice, the boy.

That sounds awesome. I wonder if she does voiceovers and then I'm thinking to myself, of course, as a podcaster, as a tech nerd, I'm thinking, what's your set up? What's your Mike? What does she got? Because you had to, you didn't have the camera pointed at the mic like you do now. And then I found out. I speak into the same mic as you.

Why does my voice sound like butter? Like yours? What's the problem. You know what it is craziest thing. And I love telling people this, when I first got into this business, I was so camera shy that when I had to test the mic and say like one, two, three testing, my face would turn bright red. Like I couldn't even get on camera.

And it turns out. And then when I was editing, like years later, I'm editing and I did a scratch track. So for those that don't know, like you're doing an edit and you don't have your professional voiceover yet. And so the editor will just record their voice kind of time things out and they call it a scratch track.

And I did the scratch track and the client came in and she said she didn't recognize my voice. And she said, who did that track? That's the worst sounding narration I've ever heard. So the reason I tell you all that is to say you just gotta practice. Yeah. Put your headsets on doc in the mic, you try some different things.

You try different energy levels, different distance, different sides of the mic, different tone of voice, different energy. And like you figure out what and the great thing is you don't have to go live and no one else has to hear it. You can just plug it into your computer and just get, do those reps.

We talked to yesterday to Tali Shannon, and she equated the microphone as a dumbbell. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. The more you use it, the more reps you go through it, the more you're just more comfortable speaking, you're more comfortable here. Like it's the first time anyone's ever heard their voice speaking anywhere, right?

I'm sure it was horrifying, but. As a, as an editor, you've probably heard your voice a gazillion times. Are you your own worst critic or are you at this point? You're just like so crazy. I've I was able to like, get past a point. There was a point where it was just like, Oh God, it's my voice.

But I've now been helping other people do this for 30 plus years. I don't want to say I'm old, but I'm old. And and I realized it's. A lot of them were really bad at it when they started. And then I work with them and they get really good at it. And all of a sudden I was like, why don't I just do that with myself?

And so now I actually it sounds terrible. I like listening to myself when I have an episode of my show, I'll listen to it like two or three times, I'll be like, yeah, I liked this part. I liked it. Like I enjoy it now. Exactly. And I think a lot of podcasters don't realize that it's not just about some sort of promotion for themselves, but do you feel like.

You've gotten to meet such interesting people, made friends, such a, it's such a social sort of thing. It's such a, it's a smaller pool than I think a lot of people really. Yeah. Yeah. There's definitely, there's like the people that are into podcasting. And one of the things for me has just been like, it attracts.

A diversity of people because the subjects are almost infinite. But there's some kind of unifying thing about these people that they're, they want to express themselves in a way. And it's this mix of creativity and entrepreneurial mindset and independent. There's all these things that kind of work.

And so yeah, I love that. And then with Spartan up. So up until until COVID we recorded all our interviews in person and we've been doing it for eight years and we have something like 650 episodes. We made a lot of people. We met a lot of people. We went a lot of places. We had a lot of a lot of monopods left in taxi cab trunks, and all that stuff.

So all of these people that you've met and yeah, I'm sure like we should get in a Spartan up and unwrap that. Cause I'm super interested in that I'm going to, I'm going to nerd out galore when it comes to that. And the development of there's nothing. A podcast or likes better than someone nerding out on their stuff.

It's always makes me happier. So all of these things, people that are working on this, you probably are too humble to admit, but Spartan up is a massive podcast and it's not just about. If you're someone that doesn't know that casually knows what Spartan races are and it's, the super hyper aggressive, marathon superhuman kind of thing.

It is that, but the podcast is about mindset. And so even if you're not like some, Spartan warrior or whatever, you really can be inspired by a lot of people on this. So I'm curious, like you're working with these people and it was all in person. COVID happens. How afraid or how technologically inclined, where everyone did it just go into the ether and some people just couldn't do it virtually.

They couldn't do it remotely unless it was physical. Or how did that go? So w one of the interesting things is the guy that started Spartan race. He lives in Vermont, which is where I live. And that's how we met many years ago. Like actually before Spartan had started and I had a background in sports television, he was putting on events.

We lived a half a mile apart in a town of 500 people. So it was pretty. And it was inevitable, but he temporarily relocated his family back to the farm in Vermont. So we were able to record a few things there. We did some socially distance stuff. We'd set up the podcast mix outside, put the headphones on, stay 10 feet apart and record.

We did some of that. But if you were to see my early setup, It was like very analog for a digital setup. If that makes sense, start ugly. That's what I'm always like. I just take the stuff I have, and and move it around. And one of the things, the great thing about doing Spartan up was so we would record all the episodes in person.

And the main host is Joe de Sena. He's the founder and CEO of Spartan and. Not only is he a super athlete, but he's also a busy guy he's starting this huge company. And there were moments where we'd be in a taxi cab, he's on a phone call. I've got all my equipment. So everything we had to do, the podcast with, I had to carry with me and I had to carry usually my overnight bag as well, because we never spent more than one night in one place.

So you're off the plane. You're taking a cab from the airport to somebody's office, where you're going to record a podcast and you've never been there before. And And so I'd have, my clothes and my camera and my microwave, like all my stuff. And and he'd be on the phone and he'd be getting out of the taxi and handed me his credit card as he walked away on the phone so I can pay for the cab.

So I'm, trying to pay and get all my stuff and, run it after him with all the equipment. Hence the monopods in the trunk on more than one occasion. But what it did was it was like talk about the dumbbell. It was like, repeat repeat, repeat. Every day could be five, 10, 15 interviews in a day.

A whole bunch of different locations, outdoor on the street in New York city, in an office, on an Island, on a ship, like in a taxi, we've done it all. And so you get to all the equipment becomes an extension of you and it really is. You forget that it's tech, it's just what you do.

You just figure, like what's the best tool for this solution and how do I make it work? And I would imagine having that experience that you did, and now you're working with a lot of other podcasters, right? You were in, and these are podcasts, not necessarily just starters, right? You're working with people that.

Are maybe afraid of or just don't understand like I can't do that. It's outside. It's here. That you can't do that. Guess what, you've done it, you've done it over and over and know how to do it. And again, it just comes back to that. Let's work for the reps.

Let's get yourself used to it. So much of it is people just getting past that so they can work on the content. So do you work with the podcasters on not necessarily all of that tech stuff, but like what they're talking about developing that whole game plan for them.

Here's what I like to tell people. This is a pencil, right? You can't write without a pencil, but nobody thinks that's what makes a writer. So yeah, I need a microphone, but that is not like what it's about. That's not, what's going to make you a great podcaster, yes. I certainly can. My big thing is a couple of things.

One is looking at your goal and when, I mean your goal, like not the big why, the deep, why, but do you want to make money off of this thing? Do you want to have great conversations? Do you want to meet people? Do you want to serve your community? Like, why are you doing it? And what are your resources and do they match, and then once that's all there and sometimes that is, do you buy a $75 mic or do you use a studio or, that's, there's that part of that resources and goals. And then you get into the whole what is the subject? How are you being strategic? How are you choosing guests? How are you working with the guests?

How do you elevate your conversations? To achieve your goals, but also just sound good, have a great conversation. Be interesting to the audience. That's the main thing, right? How do you keep it? Interesting. The other thing I think about is like the, I think there's a misconception generally when someone hears podcasts, they think that they're good.

There's the gazillion podcasts out there. And that there's just, and when we're, when I say podcasts, audio podcasts. So like grounded content obviously is. Is your podcast. I know you do video for the podcast, but I don't know if you necessarily have a video show for the correct. It's actually been really nice doing grounded content, which is more my personal podcast, and just doing audio.

It's actually freeing after 650 episodes of Spartan up, which are every single one is video. It's kinda nice not to have to deal with that, to be honest, to just focus on the conversation. And it's interesting, cause Marion, we know at pod Fest, there was a lot of talk about adding a video component to your podcast.

So I guess you've seen both ends and I think there's still space for both. I don't think it has to be an either or, what are your thoughts on that? Yeah, a hundred percent. For us, we actually get a significant number of views on YouTube. And I think what works on YouTube is different than what works in audio.

But again, for us, I suspect that a lot of people just go to YouTube because they don't want to deal with the podcast player or they don't know about it. It's like everybody knows how to do YouTube. And so I think a lot of people they're not necessarily watching. But they're using it. My kids play a song on, they want to find a song and they don't want to pay Spotify or something.

They open it up on YouTube. They play the song. I suspect a lot of people are just playing the podcast on YouTube, even if they're not focusing on the video. I just think like the more places you can be, you want to be where people are listening and the more places they can find you the better, a hundred percent, I'm a big fan of casting the net as wide as you could go.

It's like when Amazon launched podcasts, And I, you immediately go to the Amazon music player and you go to the web and you see it enemy. And, my nerd mind goes to and I'm comparing it to all these other podcast players. And then I think to myself, Oh, my gosh. Now the phone book just got like inordinately higher, right?

There's an amazing amount of people now that are listening to grounded concept that are listening to Spartan up. And so your reach just goes astronomically up from there. But I agree with you, I think as a podcast or that is maybe just doing pure audio and you want to get up on YouTube. I also think if you can do it relatively easily, repurpose it and just get it up there.

You're going to get some views. But I think the ones that the podcasters that are I don't want to say crushing it on YouTube, seeing some sort of impact on YouTube are the ones that are like saying, okay, I'm going to lean into this on audio and I'm going to lean into this YouTube.

And maybe it's a different version. That's a little more visual. That's luring people into the different avenues. And that's what I liked about like on the latest podcast you did this. Steve what's his last name? I'm sorry. Just this guy was ridiculous. He was hilarious. Oh yeah.

Yeah. You did a video on extincting Sam's yeah. Yeah, he's great. He was great. He's got a book called Bluefishing, which is which is a really cool book. That I should have, I didn't read the whole thing before I finished it after it. I wish I had finished it before. Cause it was so good. The podcast is called grounded content.

I just listened to her interview with Jessa Jessica Cuprimine, who is with she podcasts. It's an amazing. Interview and of course the Spartan up podcast as well, that we've talked about a Spartan race for the mind, which I think is as a killer. Yeah. It's life changing. There's it's so there's this idea that there's a, you're the average of your five best friends, right?

There's that you've heard that, but some of us can't always surround ourselves with the people that maybe are going to lift us up. And that was the idea behind the podcast. We're three days a week. And every time you listen, you're going to be elevated a little bit. And it works on me. Like I listened to it.

I listened to every episode, even if I recorded it, edited, it, produced it, whatever my role was in the episode, listen to everyone and it keeps me. From getting stuck in my own kind of spinning my wheels or getting stuck. It keeps me motivated, keeps me inspired. It gives me little nuggets tips. Like I use it totally.

That's the advantage of a lot of people are like, how can you be a video editor? How can you be an audio editor? How can you edit all of these podcasts? It was like, guess what if you're an entrepreneur, you get to choose your work. And so there's some of these clients that I get to work with, I get done editing a podcast.

I feel awesome. And I don't feel like I just got done with something that was work. It was, and it took a while to get through it, but You hear, even if you hear things over and over again, somehow you're hearing something different that made a hundred percent. So I'm interested if we could go backwards because I know you were massively involved in film and again, you may be too humble, but there's a lot going on with you in terms of what you did with filming.

And I know you were involved in, in, you said sports, so it was skiing probably. And. A lot of what you did filming what happened in Vermont and all of that. What, if you could maybe walk us through a little bit of that, but how did that move into the podcasting space?

I know you touched on, how is Spartan up and everything, but now you've just gotten this huge bug. Are you looking to go back into film or are you still doing a little of that? So what's going on there. Yeah. Yeah. That's, it's a good question. And it's one, I have to think about it a little bit, but look, the thing that I love to do is help people tell stories.

And help people make connections through their stories. And I like to do it with pictures. I like to do it with moving pictures. I like to do it with sound, film is all of them together. Podcast is just the sound. I It's fun and exciting. And honestly, it's probably the only career that would have kept me interested for this as long as it's been.

Because I've done things from standing at the starting line, oh, here's a great one. He used to shoot the the us freestyle nationals for skiing. And have you ever seen inverted aerials? That's when the guys go off the jumps like this and they're doing like flip, flip, flip, flip, so I had a camera position. The jump is like this, and I'm standing with my back to the jump looking straight up as the people flipping over me. Wow. So everything from that. To interviewing an insurance salesman and it's all interesting. And you get to, I've gone to South Africa and been on a Safari with land Rover.

I've gone to Greece and traveled in the Peloponnesian islands and visited traditional Greek weavers. All the crazy stuff was Spartan over the years. So it's a great career because if you're a curious person, like you said, if you like it. It doesn't feel like work. I always say don't tell my clients, but I would do this for free.

Your secret's out now too. Nobody else. And we talk about, we talked about the tech as it relates to podcasting, but in the film industry, it's insane. And, when you were doing more of the film stuff, it, and now there's what 10 cave cameras or whatever that are in the huddles of NFL games and these ridiculous, the tech is ridiculous, but in the end of the.

At the end of the day, it's like some people are getting great shots, photography, and great shots, filming with older cameras. They're just, they just know how to manipulate it and how to do it. And so how is tech. Is it parallel to what you're doing in podcasting? This is actually the thing about the pencil actually came years ago when I was working in video editing and people were freaking out because all of a sudden there was non-linear digital editing.

It became affordable. Everybody bought it. And they were like this is terrible. And it was like, it's not the equipment, it's not the edit system. All those trends are going to keep happening. And you can either freak out about it or you can just enjoy it. And you think about, the camera that I'm using, right?

My primary camera is I have another one behind the screen here that used to be like a 45 pound thing that sat on my shoulder and didn't do half of what that does. I couldn't shoot slow-mo I couldn't shoot stills. I didn't have the same range, the same light range, from light to dark. This thing, is I'm holding it.

My left hand. It's tiny, it's light. It's unobtrusive. I can shoot anywhere. What kind of camera are you using? Marion? That is a Sony office. 6,500. Again, it's not the most expensive, it's pretty similar to the . What is it? The 87 S but it's cheaper, but it does, as far as the image quality, it's exactly the same.

It doesn't have some of the bells and whistles, but if you know what you're, if you know what you're doing, a lot of people can just use this. You use their phones, a hundred cameras, the cameras that are in the phone, cameras. Yeah, it's an, it's like one of those things where boy, if I had that, when I was a kid, right.

Oh my gosh. Yeah. But you were asking about the technology, and that's the thing is like you can do so much more with less and you can get upset about it because you're getting left behind or you can get excited about it because there's potential. I like to tell this story, you have a second for what editing use.

We have as many seconds that you wanna, that you want to share with us. So you stop me if this gets boring, but this is okay. So you've done video editing or audio editing. So you're putting two shots together and you want to add 10 frames. First, first shot is a little too short. You say, add 10 frames.

So you go plus 10 hit return. So in film and the old days, If you wanted to add 10 frames, first of all, you had three people in the room because you had the editor, the assistant editor and the third assistant or second assistant, which was me in the old days. My first job. And so the editor would say, I want to add to this clip, the assistant editor would look up what film reel it was from.

And I would go and get a box off the shelf that had that reel of film from that shoot. And it also had the reel of sound that had been synced to it. And you would take these two reels and you would put it up on a special table that literally had two cranks that you would turn. And so you'd put the reels on there and you wind through it to, 15 minutes in where the shot was and you'd find the shot.

And you pull that down and you'd use the little, it was like a little thing you hit to cut the cut, the film open splicer. Yes. So I'd splice open the film, cut out the 10 frames. I'd have to put something called fill in there so that it stayed in sync with the audio. I put a 10 frame piece of fill in, wind it back, put the two reels in the box, but the box on the shelf take that piece of 10 frames and bring that to the editor and she could splice it in.

Wow. That's

editing that way in the old days. And there was nothing worse than handing that over and then finding out you did it wrong and then you go back and it's and there are, there is free software available right now for you to download whether it's DaVinci or whatever that does that in.

Nothing. And the great thing about it is you can now teach yourself because it is free. You've got your phone, you've got the free software. And with editing, you just do it. You look at it. Does it look right? No. Let me try this, do it again. You can actually, as long as you don't have the pressure of a deadline or a client, you can teach yourself the access to YouTube, right?

It used to be like, how do I learn this? I'm going to have to go to a university or I'm going to have to like find out somebody that could just do it for me. I think there's a store that they do that for you where I can, they can take all, whatever. Now, search it on YouTube somebody doing a hundred percent.

So it's a great source for, and you can watch YouTube at double speed, which is what I do pretty much all the time. Oh, that's the secret. I do edit at double sometimes faster speed. Don't tell anybody, Jim, then don't tell any of my clients that I added a double speed. You just told them, I guess I did cats out of there, Mary Marianne.

So you've made this transition from film to podcasting, which in and of itself is really fascinating. What do you really, what is it that you really enjoy about being. You're not only a podcaster, but you also have a business where you're helping people get started on their podcasting journey.

Can you tell us a little bit more about that as well? Yeah. Should I jump back and tell you how I got into podcasting? Or should we talk about yeah, that one. I don't know if you guys know Joe dissenter, who he is. He's the founder of Spartan race and he's a character in his own, right?

And and he was my neighbor. And as I said, I had a background in film and sports and lived down the street from him. So we started working together and his first book was coming out and he wanted to promote it. And he had been interviewed on a couple of podcasts to promote his book. And he found when he started traveling around the world, after that, when people came up to him that knew him, it was because they'd heard him on podcasts.

And so he said, we got to do this. And so he, and I just started trying some ideas and he's, being the way he does business. He's like, how soon can we do it? And I said, I don't know, we'll figure it out. So when I started the podcast, I was using all the, originally I was using all the film techniques, I had lavalier mics on wireless lavaliers was shooting it on film.

Multi-track all this stuff and I'm doing it on location. And we came up with a plan. At first we were going to do, there was a podcast at the time called barbell shrug, and there were four guys and they were CrossFit guys and they would go and they would do like mini films.

So we thought, all right we'll do four hosts. We did probably 20 episodes with these four hosts. And none of those have been aired.

No, it was sonically or content wise. Yeah. We had some great guests, unfortunately, like there was some nuggets in there that it's sad. They never happened, but we just did not get the groove. It was just, was not quite there yet. And then Joe thought he had the opportunity to interview Richard Branson and we thought that would be cool.

And so we went and went to his Island and that's a whole nother story. It's a great story. But we recorded that interview and that's when we thought, okay, here's a format that works, Joe. And I go travel around. He interviews the people, we come back and we had a set of four co-hosts.

And we would have them do an intro. And then at the end they would do a discussion about the topics and kind of their take on a response to what the interview was. And so that was our format right up until COVID we would do them that way. Success of the podcast has been amazing. Are there any stories that you've heard of people being impacted?

By the podcast. I know that you spoke it. I caught you're in, for those of you who are our fan girling. Like I am right now. There's a, your podcast movement talk is on YouTube. And some of those stories that you told about Spartan up and how that helped you in terms of. Resilience.

And some of the fears that you had, are there any of those stories you'd thought to maybe share here, think about this. One of the guys that we talked to early on, cause what, when you were. When I was getting ready for this, I thought, okay what are some of the guests? And I opened up, I actually was looking at some of the archival footage because we're actually going to do a series telling some of those old stories.

And so it was looking at some of the older stuff and there's this one guy, they call him Tony, the fridge. And he's he lives in England and he runs ultra marathons. And do you guys know what an ultra marathon is? Yeah, that's a very long, like five minutes. So yeah, so technically it's any, and all an ultra marathon is anything over a marathon.

Some are the a hundred miles, 200 miles, 500 miles. So this guy runs ultra marathons with a fridge on his back. Now it sounds absurd. But when you hear him speak, it'll give you goosebumps. It is so powerful because he talks about the metaphor of the burden that he carries for others. And then he carries for people that couldn't carry it themselves.

And he tells it like, I get goosebumps. Now he tells these stories of, cancer survivors or even family members. Who've lost a cancer survivor, somebody. And he says if I can do this, you can do it. I want to give up. I'm carrying this burden for you. And he has a stories of running into he's running over the Hills and there's a woman standing on the side of the road.

And she says she was waiting for him. And that her child had just passed away of cancer. And she, it meant so much to her that he was doing this. And he had actually fractured his foot and he kept, he said I, at that point I had to keep going, and he tells that just, I can't do the story justice, that, that guy, he tells very powerful stories.

So there's those kinds of stories. These just incredible people that have either chosen these struggles or those that haven't chosen them, people who were injured. People who were born with different conditions and how they have taken that and turned it into this super power.

Almost. There's a guy we interviewed pretty recently. You can look him up Shay sq, and at age six, he was burned all over his body. And he's now one of the top ranked Ironman athletes. And when he interviews, you he'll play a prank and he takes his ear off because he's got a prosthetic ear. But if you hear the stories, it's not just that this guy was burned as a child.

You hear? I had no idea what it's like to go through because, and I don't want to get too gruesome, but when you get severe burns like that the tissue doesn't grow. And so he had surgeries year after year, every, over 30 years, just the brutality of what he had to go through.

And it just gives you perspective. It, it puts your day to day struggles in perspective. And then we also have these guests that are almost like hackers. We have like guys like Andrew Huberman who are, he's a neurobiologist. And he talks about how dopamine works and how, getting sunlight will help you feel better and help you set your sleep cycle.

And so just getting all these little cues, it just keeps you on track. You get one little, like a little hint and it helps keep you. Moving forward and it has definitely impacted my career. Yeah, I can tell. And I can tell just how passionate you are about it. I think. W when the casual, and it's in the fitness category.

But I think so many fitness podcasts are about actual fitness. A J a train with a, maximum aerobic fitness, and, here's the nutrition aspect of that. And I'm sure you touch on those things, but there's so much that all of this is mental. All of this is so mental and.

I've run a number of marathons myself and one of the things that, that tricked not trick, but that was the tipping point for me. When I decided I'm going to do this is I have a relative who's done, I don't know, 12 different iron mans or something. And he was, I was running and he was like, telling me, you need to do a marathon, you to do a marathon, you need to do a marathon.

He finally, he just said this. He said, Chris, You're already running. All you got to do is just do the training. And I was like, wait a minute, what do you, he goes there, you just do the training. And when you get to the training, and then you just scaled down you're the marathon is just automatic.

You just have to have the mindset when you run the marathon, not to overdo it. Cause that's what everybody does. And then their first marathon, which I didn't bonk, I ended up yeah. I definitely felt I, I definitely nudged against the wall, but it was that hit me and he said, all you gotta do is do the training.

And then once I did it and just just shifted and just said, all right, I'm going to stay this course. I did it. And then I did it again and then I did it again. And then again, so I think so much of this is mental and so much. I love that you guys do this on a podcast because the video thing is, and what we're doing on video right now is also going to be on audio.

We're going to repurpose it for podcasts, but it's podcasting is so much more. Sometimes intimate, maybe it's an D people are in a different place. Maybe they're listening to it on their commute. Maybe they do like I do. When I go on my runs, I'll listen to podcasts or whatever. It's very different than a video that you may be thumbing by on your phone.

Or maybe putting up on the big screen while you're, got one eye open on the couch so to speak, but just fantastic podcast. I'm such a fan and I love that whole sort of. Mindset that it's not just about the fitness, right? It's not just about the nutrition. Those things are touched on, but it's really about taking these nuggets from people and applying it to everyday life really.

And it goes both ways, right? So there's the things, these life lessons that influence how you are as an athlete. But there's also the big part, which is the challenges that you take on and you overcome as an athlete or as a person doing an athletic endeavor, that you can then bring into the rest of your life.

So there's this guy. Do you know who Charlie angle is? Charlie is an ultra runner. He was in a film called running the Sahara. He's done. Unbelievable. Unbelievable feats. And he says, basically he does them because he wants to get to the place where he thinks he has nothing left and he wants to give up and then he wants to keep going.

And that essential kind of experience really ha he has found it to be life changing, and he's somebody who also runs as part of his recovery from addiction, but that that. We talk about that in Spartan, right? It's you go over obstacles literally and metaphorically, and there are so many people whose lives are changed by taking on that course, doing something.

They didn't think they can do doing it anyway and saying, okay, there's that bar that's been set. Now I know that I can do these things, and I can apply that to my job, to my family, to my studies. So that's our mission is it's that life lessons help you in sport. And those lessons from athletics help you in life.

Amazing. And I, I think, so many times people will go into the weight room and they'll, they'll the workout and they'll tear down their muscles and then the muscles get stronger, but they don't realize that, that they can apply that mentality to so many other things right there lines what, the way, what they do.

You almost have to, I don't want to say that, go through a struggle and force yourself into a struggle, you have to put yourself through something. To get to the other side, to be better of doing it in sports, right? You don't have to do something. That's going to be traumatic to your life or your family.

And, I may not be as extreme as the Spartan founder, but basically he says and there's a lot of truth to it, which is like, life is going to throw things your way. No matter how lucky you are, life is gonna throw challenges your way. And so if you can practice, like you said, like going to the gym, like using the microphone, like practice overcoming difficult situations, you're going to train those muscles, those, mental, energetic, positivity, whatever those are to handle the stress, to know you can come out on the other side.

And so he actually believes you should purposefully. Put yourself into struggle, put yourself into challenge, put yourself into failure and that these races, and other athletic pursuits like that, do that in a way that's safe. Nobody's life is at risk nobody's family or job or relationships, but you can put yourself in the face of struggle and you can overcome it and you can.

Just practice that process. It's interesting. Cause for me too, I see the parallels going through both Marine Corps, boot camp and officer candidate school and jump school. A lot of that is right. It's like it's to break you down to build you up and you have to face your fears and you sometimes do fail, but right.

You have to get back up and, I love the phrase too, right? Where you fail forward. Like you're never gonna be perfect. And I think where the Spartan I can see really helps people is it puts them into that challenge. That they have to gain some mental toughness to overcome. And to your point, if you can realize what you've just done, you can apply that to so many other things in your life.

And yeah, I just, when the Spartans started, I was already old. I know, I probably should think about it. Listen, I, and I want to be clear here. Like I'm, I am all in on this stuff, but I'm not a super athlete. I've got two teenagers and my boys and I starting when they were.

Eight or nine, we would go out together and we would do the Spartan sprint, which at Killington, it used to be, it was about five miles and it would take, it would take the top competitors two hours and it would take us four or five, but we'd just go out there and do it. And now they wait for me, I used to wait for them.

Now they wait for me and we still do it together every year. You can get these, this is the great lesson. All the ultra runners tell me. The mental game is the same, right? If for some people running a mile is a challenge for some people running 10 miles for some people running a hundred miles.

And as long as you're challenging yourself, Does it matter whether it's a marathon and ultra marathon, whatever. Yeah. It's a great point. Yeah. That you bring up Mary. I think some of it is it has to do with comparing yourself to others. So many, you could be inspired by ultra runners, whether it's David Goggins or, all of these people that are just, amazing people that are inspiring, but then you think, Oh God, I could never do that.

Like I just can't. And I think that message that you just talked about is, okay if you can't do that, you don't have to do that. What will challenge you? Is it two miles? Is it a half a mile? Is it, let's, find that and challenge yourself. And, Jim says this a lot get 1% better every day.

That's great. And I think that's, I think if you can, if you have that mentality okay. I ended on a plus. I didn't back up today. I got, maybe you get 5% better, one day. That's cool. That's great. And you should like, but the next day get 1% better. You just keep trying to challenge yourself to that.

And I love that message because I think too many times podcasters do this too. Compare themselves with somebody else. And, you know what I was just gonna go there is so I've actually harnessed this for myself. Like I start doing these challenges. And so for me, fitness-wise I say run them one mile every day.

It's not a lot, but I literally go out the door and go for a run every day I run a mile and it's as much An endurance challenge, in a way, cause it's rain or shine busy day, quiet day, go out, run a mile. But I took that same kind of structure and I did a, that's how I started doing video content.

I said, okay, I'm going to, when the pandemic started, I said, it's time for me to come out from behind the camera and and get in front of it. And I challenged myself. To do, I did a challenge to do three videos, and then I did a challenge to do a video every day for a month. And then, and so this stuff works, whether you're creating content or whether you're doing an athletic pursuit, you got to tell somebody and you got to tell somebody who you care, what they think about you, right?

Yeah. For me, that voice that was like, I have to keep my word was yelling louder than the voice that was saying really do you really want to do that? Do you really want to, and so it made me do it. Yeah, accountability is huge. It absolutely is. You can't. You can do it alone, but it's a lot harder.

You surround yourself with people that are going to help you sharpen those irons and whether it's content creation journey or, your partner for, for your fitness or your trainer or. Or whoever you're working with try not to do it alone. It's a little easier to do it, and that's a good thing.

I have, Jim fuse with me that I can, I could partner with with deal casters live because otherwise, this would be a complete and total failure. Marianne, I want to come back to Mary and what you're doing to help people with your business in regards to, if they're looking to get.

Podcast coaching, starting a podcast. How does that work actually that I, I was just thinking we've been having a great conversation. I've been enjoying it, but I feel like I haven't given any great information to people that are watching. One of the things that I think about when I help people with starting a podcast, it's actually super simple. I have my five steps, my five PS. And they, and I couldn't believe they all started with P when I started figuring this out. Okay. There's purpose. Why are you doing the podcast? And that to me, it's not your big, why, again? It's are you doing this? Because you want to meet people to monetize, to sell a class a to network because you want to express yourself because it's a creative expression.

There's a message you need to get out, serve your community, that part of the purpose. Okay. So that's your first P your second P is your point of view. What makes you unique? Who are you? Why do you stand out? What's your unique take on the world? That makes your podcast different from everybody. Else's how do you see things, third P process. That's not as exciting. Do you hire an editor? How do you book guests? All those kinds of processes. Who are your guests? How do you assess those? That's your third P fourth P is exactly what we've been talking about. Practice, right? Be confident, start out ugly. Chris says, just go start, practice, get better. You can practice before you launch or you can practice after you launch, but just keep practicing, keep running through the set of steps. And then number five, the fifth P is promote. You got to promote yourself. Cause if you just launch a podcast and you don't tell anybody about it, they're not going to find it.

And so you do those five things. And then when you finish them, you start again and you go back to the top and you start assessing and you go back through all five again and again. And that's that's the part, that's not the pencil, right? Again, the mic matters. You need a mic, you can't record yourself without it.

And you can get into it just like a great painter will know their brushes, and they'll know what brush matters for what occasion, but don't get hung up on that stuff. And if you do those five PS and you work through all those steps, that's how you'll find, find excellence.

That's gold. I think, and now seriously, it's like, there's too, there's so much, there's so much out there where people go, I know I need to start a podcast because podcasting is hot or I have a business and this other business has a podcast. So I need a podcast and. They just start plowing and they just fire up a, how do I start a podcast and Google and they get going and they, if they figure out their hosting platform and they buy the headphones and they buy the microphone and all of a sudden they got a podcast, but guess what?

Just because you have a podcast, doesn't mean it's a good podcast. And the purpose is so monstrous because it's okay, if you're an author, if you're a trainer, if you're like, whatever. It's do you want to sell more books? Do you want to drive more business for your, more revenue for your business?

Like you said, you talked about this early, build a community. Do you want to impact something? Do you want to get rich? Okay. That's what reason? It's a longer game, right? But it's a reason to start a podcast and then figure out who you're talking to solve their problems, be unique.

I love that. I love the point of view. It's not don't, but don't get hung up on it. It's when someone says be unique, then they think this person's doing that. This person's doing that. Just be yourself, but it could be a podcast or on the exact same topic, but it's you right.

It's new. So it's totally different. My voice is not for everyone. Phil's voice is not for everyone. Jim's for Mary and your voice is not for everyone. You don't make that stop you because you're going to be live in 90 countries and there's going to be people listening to you from India.

There's going to be people listening to you from. Kazakhstan. I can't believe the country lists that we see of these people that listen to our podcast and then you hear that feedback and you're like, God, that means the world to, to a podcast or to just hear how someone else has been impacted, because that can, sometimes it feels a little lonely almost as a podcaster, you record all that stuff and you throw it over the fence and hope someone's listening to it, but I, how do you work with podcasters to.

To get over that aspect of it. Yeah. You know what I love a friend of mine, Lisa Orkin, she's another podcast, or you might have heard of her, you might know of. And she had, we were doing a clubhouse chat and she said to somebody, they were talking about audience growth and getting started.

And she said that's the beautiful thing is when you start. Your audience is small. And as you get better, your audience grows. You wouldn't want to have the huge audience on day one because you're not ready for it. So get out there and just start, and then you start finding your audience.

And the other great thing is they will find you to a certain degree. You've got to promote it. You got to get out there. But the right people will trickle in and the people who you're speaking to and you're right, like it is like on clubhouse. You get that immediate feedback. And that's really helpful because you can workshop an idea and you get a sense of what the audience responds to.

But podcasting also gives you that space to really process your own ideas and find your own voice before you get way late and distracted by what everybody else is asking for. Because the first 10 people that listen. They may not be looking for what you want to give them. And that doesn't mean you need to change.

It might mean you got to find a different 10 people. And so it's all about again, it's like an iterative process. And so you start and you start thinking about why you're doing it. And like you said, it might be a business reason might be a personal reason. One of the clients I worked with, she said, this is the best training I've ever done for executive presence.

She actually never launched her podcast, but she said what, I've, what I have learned in terms of executive presence and how to speak from, in confidence and grounded and solid and clear what she learned that way really altered her career. Even though she never actually launched the podcast. So your reasons can be varied.

But if you know the reason, then you start tailoring that strategy. So that you can actually achieve those goals, whatever they are. This has been amazing Marianne and we knew it would, but thank you so much for for taking the time and sharing like the funds of huge gold nuggets. It's been an honor for For us to be able to share this time with you.

Thank you, Marian and let people know where's the best place to connect with you. Mad motion, everything mad motion is my website. I'm on Instagram at mad motion on Twitter. I'm even mad motion on LinkedIn. So just find me there. DME, do you have a favorite? Do you have a favorite platform? Where do you hang out?

I spend a lot of time on LinkedIn and a lot of time on Instagram. Those are great on Instagram. Of course we met on clubhouse, although I haven't, I haven't been on clubhouse that much. Maybe you have been, but we haven't. So we haven't joined each other in any any rooms, but we'll have to do that again.

Yes. Yeah, we should definitely do that. You guys make this really easy. I just want to say that this was fun. It was relaxed. You guys are super pro I'm learning a lot from just watching your setup and how you do it. Thank you. Thank you. All right. Take care of everybody. And as always, don't fear the gear.

About the Podcast

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Don't Fear The Gear!

About your hosts

Profile picture for Chris Stone

Chris Stone

I am driven to help inspiring brands and motivated entrepreneurs share their stories and maximize their missions via the power of podcasting, live streaming and digital marketing.

I founded Cast Ahead after the success of my own co-hosted podcasts changed my life. I receive great joy seeing others achieve their own financial, physical and spiritual success. Whether your business or passion is Commercial Real Estate or Pest Control – Motivational Speaking or Dungeons & Dragons: I’m driven by seeing you acquire the success in your business and/or passion project.

I truly believe that everyone deserves to be heard by using their own voice in their own way.

My goal is to be a team member with passionate entrepreneurs & ambitious businesses by integrating podcasting and/or live streaming into their business goals, educate their customers in a creative way – which will in turn attract more listeners, viewers & customers.

I’ve worked with numerous companies, corporate brands & regional startups to not only drive their podcasts into Apple Podcasts charts – but garnered multiple viable leads for these partners via podcasting & livestreaming that resulted in incremental revenue for their companies.

I have a long-standing history with audio & music in particular, having started my career at Sony Music in the 90’s before deciding to Cast Ahead into the future. I can’t wait for the world to hear your story!
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Jim Fuhs

Marketing the Marine Corps Way | Virtual Event Producer | Livestreamer | Podcaster | Speaker | Amazon Live Influencer | Digital Marketing Consultant

Marine Corps Leadership fuses with Marketing. 20 plus years of highly successful leadership experience as a Marine Corps Officer and bringing that to bear in the ever-changing world of Marketing and Technology.

As Marines, we learn to adapt and overcome, I bring this mindset to businesses to help achieve victories in the boardroom and in the marketplace.

The Marine Corps 5 paragraph order process (SMEAC) helps businesses produce results.

✅ Situation – What problem needs to solved
✅ Mission – goals, vision, and destination for businesses and organizations
✅ Execution – strategic and tactical plans needed to be implemented for success
✅ Administration & Logistics – The resources consisting of people, programs, and funding to support execution
✅ Command & Signal – The key people that need to communicate and make decisions and take actions to move the plan forward


❇️ Consulting – Using the Marine Corps Planning Process outlined above
❇️ Workshops – Provide training on the latest in digital marketing
❇️ Speaking – Expert speaker on a variety of social media topics
❇️ Virtual Event Production - Our team produces live events that create engagement, networking, and sponsorship opportunities for businesses and organizations
❇️ Remote LiveStream Production – Livestreaming production on a variety of platforms and a repurposing plan to go along with it.

▶️ Live Wednesdays on The Tim and Jim Show on YouTube
▶️ Follow on Twitter @fuhsionmktg and chat on #TwitterSmarter on Thursdays
▶️ Watch on Amazon Live on Dealcasters Live
▶️ Learn to live stream via the Launch Your Live podcast