Crossing an icy pond

Crossing an icy pond

Crossing an icy pond

Having fun in difficult conditions

As a motivational speaker and polar explorer, I have to be able to walk the walk. Not just talk the talk. I’m working on psychological training for skiing to the North Pole. One of the problems is crossing open leads of water with thin ice on the Arctic ocean. How does one prepare for that? By crossing an icy pond, of course!

Before I go into the discussion for my motivation and why I would do such a thing, watch the video and see for yourself.

What makes crossing an icy pond fun

Now that you’ve watched the video, you can see what it’s like. Crossing an icy pond isn’t the most comfortable thing to do. The weather was good, so that helped. However, I was hoping for a snow storm to do this.


Because I wanted to train my mind in the worst conditions imaginable. That way, when I’m in the arctic and run into my first ice crossing, I’m mentally  and physically prepared to handle the situation.

Crossing an icy pond

Are you dedicated to your goal?

Mental preparation is one of the main reasons to train. You need to sharpen your mind and toughen your spirit. There are times when things will go wrong. Note that I didn’t say –IF-. I promise that things will go wrong somewhere. But that’s okay! Know that it will happen. When it does, you’ll be much better prepared to deal with the issue if you’ve trained properly.

I need to keep my mind ready to deal with anything, any challenge that comes up. Such as this. Crossing an icy pond in water that was about 33 degrees Fahrenheit was a tough way to train. Yet, when I’m in the arctic, the air temperature is minus 40 deg F, and the water is 28 deg F. I’ll look back on this and think it was a vacation.

Crossing an icy pond

I really was happy!

Grinding through that ice with screwdrivers (Craftsman tools are tough!) felt like dragging myself on asphalt. This isn’t an official use of screwdrivers, but they did the job. My knees and elbows ended up bloody after the affair. I shivered while walking all the way home. And I did it in a tshirt and shorts. How will you train yourself to reach your goals, whatever they may be?

Being a motivational speaker means I show people techniques to find their way through challenging situations. I teach how to keep a positive attitude while crossing their own icy pond. My speeches focus on achievement, performance, attitude, and finding a way through.

Why a motivational speaker slogs through ice

If I’m not motivated to do something challenging, how can I honestly help people get through their own challenges? I make sure to walk the walk, not just talk the talk.

Crossing an icy pond

Enjoying -30 deg F in Yellowstone

Entering that frozen water, I only hesitated for a moment as my body rebelled at the idea. But my Antarctic, Yellowstone in winter , and Greenland training helped me overcome my body’s resistance. This was a mind over matter problem. My body (matter) didn’t want to go in, but I (my mind) knew I needed to do this.

One of the tricks to facing down these challenges – just walk right up and step into the water. Put your foot in it. Yes, it’ll be cold. I promise! But once you’ve done that, you’re well on your way to making it through.

How’s that?

Taking the first step is the biggest challenge for most people. Once you get yourself in motion, momentum helps carry you a long way. Building up the speed might take a while, but getting yourself moving is key. The half-way mark wasn’t the middle of the pond. It was when I had both legs immersed in the water. Once my body was in the water, the most difficult part was over. Getting started.

Put your foot into the water and, as they say, cross the Jordan. Your elbows might be a little bloody, but give it your all. You can sleep well at night knowing you’ve worked on your goals as hard as you could.

And, above all:


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