I grew up lower middle-class in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania. At 12 I began training in Martial Arts. At 14 I started teaching traditional Karate and Kickboxing. At 14 I was also diagnosed as a Type 1 Diabetic. Lying on my bed, staring up at the ceiling, tears streaming down my face, squeezing my fists and abs in pain, I thought “Why me?”
Those three events (student, teacher, diabetes) drive me forward. I love learning. I love teaching. I love creating. Learning, teaching, and creating centers on health and fitness for me. These questions are my constant companions on my daily journey as a ‘human science experiment’.
- How can I improve my health?
- How can I help someone else increase their fitness and unlock more potential?
These are the results of my hard work:
- I keep an HbA1c that hovers around 6 % and the rest of my blood tests are excellent.
- I earned my 1st Black Belt at 16 and my 2nd and 3rd degree over the next five years.
- I’ve coached multiple fighters to local kickboxing championships.
- Over 20 years I’ve taught hundreds of individuals how to lose weight, grow their confidence, and unlock more potential.
- In 2004 I earned a degree in Computer Engineering from Villanova and will soon earn an MBA from Penn State.
- I’ve grown and managed teams and exceptional individuals in the US, Austria, and India to deliver critical healthcare software solutions.
- I’ve won multiple speaking competitions using inspirational stories on perseverance, self-awareness, obesity, and compassion.
Those stories are what make me the most proud, but not telling the stories. I love telling stories. I have dozens more to tell. What I love more is helping people create a better life. That’s rarely anyone’s goal. That’s probably not your goal. When you focus on small improvements in your health and fitness every day, sometimes you just realize it’s happening. When I see that transformation, it inspires me. I’m happy to be a part of the process and help in any way I can.
I believe all individuals can live a happy and healthy life by growing into the best version of themselves. My mission is to lead people towards their Best Self. I teach people about physical and mental fitness, inspire, coach, and guide them towards achieving their goals, and lead teams building systems that improve health. I do that because I don’t want anyone staring up at the ceiling wondering: “Why me?” I want everyone I meet to see what they want in life and ask: “Why not me?”
If you have a few minutes and want to add Rocky-like motivation to your day, watch the story of Mike McGettigan.
Check out my other award-winning speeches here.