Dr. George Lewis of ‘sam’: “Habits are formed through intentionality and repetition”

Habits are formed through intentionality and repetition. Build your routine to include physical, mental, and spiritual pillars. What’s even more key is to plan your days to collectively chip-away towards the major goals you have for the month, the year and the decade. Scheduling is about balance; we must take care of the smaller daily […]

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Habits are formed through intentionality and repetition. Build your routine to include physical, mental, and spiritual pillars. What’s even more key is to plan your days to collectively chip-away towards the major goals you have for the month, the year and the decade. Scheduling is about balance; we must take care of the smaller daily tasks and also challenge our minds to determine and reach for the big objectives!

As a part of our series about “How Athletes Optimize Their Mind & Body For Peak Performance”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Dr. George Lewis.

Dr. George Lewis developed sam®: sustained acoustic medicine as the only wearable ultrasound therapy to accelerate the body’s healing process. In building a team with Charley and Kia Thurber, sam® is now utilized for athletes in collegiate & professional sports. All 3 of us are former high-level athletes and now are fortunate to collaborate with sports-medicine providers throughout the nation to accelerate the recovery of many different injuries through this dynamic new technology.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Our readers would love to learn more about your personal background. Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?

Each of us grew up with big dreams for college and professional athletics. Fortunately, we had parents who utilized our drive for greatness to teach us the power of goal setting, hard work and faith in God. Throughout the ups & downs of pursuing something you really want; He is always present. We each were surrounded by siblings & friends who were competitive and gifted and taught us a great deal about working hard and how to win. Each of our big pursuits lead us to sam®; where we now work with athletes on a daily basis to heal and return to competing on the highest level.

What or who inspired you to pursue your career working with high level professional athletes? We’d love to hear the story.

As each of us transitioned out of sports at different points, our passion to help athletes met at the common point of sam® technology. Injuries had affected each of our careers and that of many of our friends and teammates. Further, we know what it’s like to grind inside of the training room with our Athletic Trainers and PT’s. There’s no one more selfless in the world of sports than an ATC. They pour their heart into helping athletes reach their goals and get back onto the field and take it personally. Those remain as some of our closest friends and mentors. To have a role in helping athletes prevent and recover faster from injuries & reach their goals is an honor. To help athletic trainers come through for their management and the athletes their working with is just as rewarding!

None of us can achieve success without some help along the way. Was there a particular person who you feel gave you the most help or encouragement to be who you are today? Can you share a story about that?

In our journey with sam® and athletics, we have had SO many great mentors and friends. There are too many to single out just one but we have gratitude for each of them as we’ve been welcomed into their facilities, shown the business of athletic medicine, and have collaborated on ways to expand research and innovatively expand our brand.

Can you share the funniest or most interesting mistake that occurred to you in the course of your sports career? What lesson or take away did you learn from that?

The funniest thing that has happened to us in our sports career so far is seeing everyone in their element at a major Collegiate Sports Medicine Event in New Orleans. We hosted a sam appreciation party with over 200 Division 1 Sport Medicine Professionals and it was a riot to see everyone on the dance floor after a rewarding year of working together!

What advice would you give to a young person who aspires to follow in your footsteps and emulate your career?

Chase your dream. Outline a plan to do so. Surround yourself with mentors and people who can share wisdom with you. Find ways to add value to other’s journey’s as well. Relentlessly pursue your dream. Be kind to everyone don’t be distracted by your peers. Instead, focus, seek wisdom, train and most importantly believe in yourself. Ask God to walk with you and show you His will for your life. Pray every day. Romans 8:31.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now? How do you think that might help people?

We are a research-based brand and we are working to augment the research we have available for the world of sports-medicine. Ultrasound is such a powerful therapy, and we are looking forward to impacting the future standard-of-care for soft-tissue injuries. In the coming year we are looking forward to releasing tons of applicable research for sports medicine!

OK, thank you for all of that. Let’s now shift to the core focus of our interview. As you know, athletes often face high stakes situations that involve a lot of pressure. Most of us tend to wither in the face of such pressure and stress. Can you share with our readers 3 or 4 strategies that you teach to optimize your mind for peak performance before high pressure, high stress situations?

As an athlete, you live for the big moment. You want to be at the plate with runners in scoring position and an opportunity to win the game. You want the ball at your feet for the penalty kick. You want the puck coming your way on the ice.

That mindset carries over to business. Each of us crave opportunities to grow the sam® brand in the world of sports. We are looking for ways to majorly impact athletes reaching their personal goals, extending the lives of their careers, and helping their teams compete for championships.

Do you teach any special or particular breathing techniques to help optimize yourself?

Each of us our health focused and find different ways to prioritize breath. The power of focused breathing can slow things down for an athlete and an entrepreneur. Deep & controlled breaths while preparing or focusing help you achieve the ‘flow’ state. Some of the things that help develop this are yoga, prioritizing fresh-air breaks throughout the day, cold-showers/cold-tubs.

Do you have a special technique to develop a strong focus, and clear away distractions?

The most important things for a clear mind are to get some form of high-intensity movement in each day to ensure the mind is calm and the body is flushed. Secondly, when you map out each day to ensure you have your priorities straight, schedule set and have the ability to be with your family, that eases any potential anxiety or tension while working.

How about your body? Can you share a few strategies that you use to optimize your body for peak performance?

As we mentioned, make sure to push yourself physically at-least once per day; your body needs it! Other great hacks are cold showers in the morning, coconut oil pulling, fasting, eating within an 8–10-hour window, removing sugars & additives and excess ingredients from your diet, staying hydrated with purified water, using recovery tools (foam rollers, lax balls) and sleeping at least 8 hours per night.

These ideas are excellent, but for most of us in order for them to become integrated into our lives and really put them to use, we have to turn them into habits and make them become ‘second nature’. Has this been true in your life? How have habits played a role in your success?

Habits are formed through intentionality and repetition. Build your routine to include physical, mental, and spiritual pillars. What’s even more key is to plan your days to collectively chip-away towards the major goals you have for the month, the year and the decade. Scheduling is about balance; we must take care of the smaller daily tasks and also challenge our minds to determine and reach for the big objectives!

Can you share some of the strategies you have used to turn the ideas above into habits? What is the best way to develop great habits for optimal performance? How can one stop bad habits?

Our team, individually and collectively, each focuses on the efficacy of daily-schedules that are influenced by our long-term goals. Breaking down our monthly, quarterly an annual goals helps each of us organize and distribute how our days our planned.

High performance athletes often experience times when things are in a state of Flow. Flow has been described as a pleasurable mental state that occurs when you do something that you are skilled at, that is challenging, and that is meaningful. Can you share some ideas from your experience about how we can achieve a mind state of Flow more often in our lives?

There’s nothing quite like being in the state of ‘flow’ in the batter’s box. Athletics are full of failure. So, the rare moments that you feel grounded, focused and activated are incredible. In both sport and business, flow is the culmination of carefully cultivated routine that builds up our mental, physical and spiritual state. Confidence is bread from preparation and we have the mind set that no one will out prepare us!

Do you have any meditation practices that you use to help you in your life? We’d love to hear about it.

Each of us are believers in God. We each pray fervently that He’d use us to positively impact those we work with and work for.

Many of us are limited by our self talk, or by negative mind chatter, such as regrets, and feelings of inferiority. Do you have any suggestions about how to “change the channel” of our thoughts? What is the best way to change our thoughts?

Generally focusing on using each day as an opportunity to positively impact your colleagues, employees, clients and family will take your focus away from your own doubts and elevate your mindset onto the channel of activation.

Ok, we are nearly done. You are by all accounts a very successful person. How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?

As a team, we have the passion to help our nation’s heroes who have served in our military and are suffering from pain or chronic conditions. The veteran population is massively underappreciated and they face many of the same conditions that our athletes face. Interweaving these two worlds to allow servicemen and women to interact with athletes and share in the same healing strategies. Our goal is to help every single veteran with Sam® wearable ultrasound!

Can you share your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Why does that resonate with you so much?

“I’ve failed over and over again in my life, and that’s why I succeed” Michael Jordan

Resonates with me because failing correctly is the biggest key to gaining wisdom. Our culture is so sensitive to failures and how we look doing so. But in truth, the most developed skillsets are ones that have been tested, that have adapted and that have overcome. Failing correctly is the only path that can bring one to their true peak potential.

We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we both tag them 🙂

It would be incredible to spend time with Tom Brady. First and foremost, he is the ultimate winner. His work ethic to redefine what is possible is what I admire most. He is physically at his peak at 43 years old because he refused to listen to the status quo. Secondly, he is an excellent entrepreneur and focused on improving the body from within; through proper nutrition, exercise, recovery and mentality. That’s what we are all about at sam®; competing at the highest level and giving back through healing!

Thank you for these really excellent insights, and we greatly appreciate the time you spent with this. We wish you continued success.

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