Be Humble. You are amazing — until you think so. Humility does not mean that you cannot climb to the top of your industry, but it does mean that you should not stand on the pedestal letting others know how awesome you are for getting there. Never lose excitement for watching people put effort toward their goals. Congratulate the other team. Support people when they fail. Thank people when you succeed.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Rick Richey. Rick has been in the fitness industry since 2002 as a certified personal trainer, training manager, orthopedic massage therapist, college and university professor, fitness industry presenter, as well as a subject matter expert and talent for fitness industry educational videos and written content. He’s the co-host of the Omnia Fitness Podcast and owner of Independent Training Spot, personal training gyms located NYC. Rick is also the co-owner of Omnia RēCOVER which is a new wellness and stress recovery center in Manhattan.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?
I have been fortunate enough to work with several elite level athletes over the last 17 years who had access to recovery modalities that no one else had or heard of. I started brain-storming RēCOVER as a great idea that could make top tier recovery modalities accessible to regular people with reasonable pricing. We then found some incredible modalities along the way that have made us a hub for both elite level athletes and people who are trying to mitigate both physical and cognitive stress.
What does it mean for you to live “on purpose”? Can you explain? How can one achieve that?
When we were little, we would often use the phrase “on purpose” to explain what we either did or did not intend. I did not trip my brother on purpose, or with intention. Living “on purpose” means to live with intention, to have meaning, to have a path. This intention is a reflection of our core values, our efforts, our strategies, and our ambitions. For others to achieve an intentional path they should define what their ambitions are, what values they will not waiver on, and develop strategies and a work ethic that helps them successfully navigate that path. People are rarely successful “on accident”. Rather, successful people think growth, devise strategies, and work tirelessly to reach their goals “on purpose”.
Do you have an example or story in your own life of how your pain helped to guide you to finding your life’s purpose?
I have reoccurring bouts of impostor syndrome where I feel like I’m not good, smart, or educated enough. Perhaps this is why I cannot stop going back to school! These self-doubts have no doubt served me, though not acted as the primary driver, to become a better person, a life-long learner, and entrepreneur. I continually try to be in rooms where I feel like I don’t belong because everyone there is better at what they do than I am. Growing from the person that does not belong into one that can contribute and support others, even if on the fringes, is valuable.
The United States is currently rated at #18 in the World Happiness Report. Can you share a few reasons why you think the ranking is so low?
Too often we put an “if-then protocol” in place to achieve happiness. For instance, if I had “X” amount of money, then I would be happy. This is rarely the case because once that mark is hit another goal is almost immediately set and happiness is put on the other side of the new goal. Through mindfulness we can find our happiness first and then other things can come more easily. And if they don’t get that big windfall of cash you don’t care so much because you’re already happy.
How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?
One of our favorite modalities at RēCOVER is called NuCalm. It is designed to help shift people out of anxiety states and into a state of calm. It has been called “meditation in a box” for its abilities to shift minds into a deep meditative state, even if you do not or cannot meditate. For those that do meditate, they can go deeper and get there faster. A subsequent ability of this technology is that it can provide up to 2–3 hours of restorative sleep in a 30-minute session. This technology allows your body’s response to stress to be minimized while improving sleep patterns. We are one of the first places in the country to offer this commercially, and people have been loving it. This technology allows us to help people every day in one of the most stressed out, sleep deprived, places in the world — New York City. It’s not the world yet, but we’ve all got to start somewhere!
What are your 6 strategies to help you face your day with exuberance, “Joie De Vivre” and a “ravenous thirst for life”? Can you please give a story or example for each?
- Sleep. I have lost so much sleep in efforts to run businesses, go to school, teach courses, speak at conferences, and along with my wife raise three children. Now that our youngest doesn’t keep us up all night, I am very protective of my sleep. Fortunately, I go into work every day at RēCOVER. When I don’t sleep well or am stressed, the place where I spend most of my time has many ways to help me be at my best. When I am on a full charge, I can let others plug into my energy and they can benefit too.
- Life-long learning. Sometimes there are simple things we wish we could do better like manage time or plan ahead. These are not necessarily intuitive. Read a book, learn from others, develop skills. Learn a language or how to play guitar. Never stop learning. This is the ultimate “Joie De Vivre”!
- Be Active. I do not workout every day. However, there is seldom a day that goes by that I do not foam roll, stretch, run around and wrestle with my kids, or other purposeful activities to challenge my body. We have industrialized fitness to much that we think that we have to go to a gym or the like to get exercise. That is not true. Be active regularly.
- Metal Sharpens Metal. Be around people that make you better. Engage with others that you can benefit from. The value these people bring to your life is incredible and they can often help direct you which book to read or concept to study during your life-long learning journey.
- Find something amazing to fail at! It is prudent to be cautious and reserved, however, it is important to test yourself and fail. We have to redefine our relationship with failure. It is one of life’s most powerful and profound lessons. Go for a promotion. Start a business. Talk to someone “out of your league” — that’s how I met my wife!
- Be Humble. You are amazing — until you think so. Humility does not mean that you cannot climb to the top of your industry, but it does mean that you should not stand on the pedestal letting others know how awesome you are for getting there. Never lose excitement for watching people put effort toward their goals. Congratulate the other team. Support people when they fail. Thank people when you succeed.
Do you have any favorite books, podcasts, or resources that most inspired you to live with a thirst for life?
I have read The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho every couple of years for almost 20 years. It is a book that I give as a people that are having difficulty finding their path or purpose.
As for podcasts, I co-host the Omnia Fitness Podcast with my Business Partner, Aaron. We have worked as personal trainers for also 20 years each in a role where attrition is extremely high, and the average employment is 6–12 months. We talk about what has inspired us to do what we have done in the fitness industry while so many drop out. We get to talk to people that interest and inspire us every week.
I also listen to audio books. I get two books a month on Audible. One is educational whether it is one of the Great Courses series, or books on business, marketing, or behavior. The other book is entertaining, as I seek to strike a balance in everything, even during my down time.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote” that relates to having a Joie De Vivre? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” Anïs Nin
When I was deciding if I should open my first business several years ago, this quote haunted and helped me make one of the best entrepreneurial decisions in my life. The risk of not grow was more painful than the fear that I could lose everything. I only wish I had NuCalm back then, because it was a time of high anxiety. But I found something that aligned with my values, that I was ambitious about, and that I could attribute its success or failure back to my strategies and efforts so that, win or lose, I could be proud.
Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?
RēCOVER is only nine months old, so this is my new project. I am excited because we have generated a lot of attention in this short amount of time in large part because it helps people on so many levels: body aches, athletic performance, cognitive clarity, improved sleep quality, minimizing stress levels, and helping to rebalance the autonomous nervous system. We try to make it less about the tools we have and more about the people we serve. We want to know your story so we can then provide the right modalities to support you.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
Spend a few minutes each day thinking about what stresses you are going to welcome and what ways you will purposefully recover from your stress. We should be purposeful in stresses we put on our bodies with exercise and physical activities, as well as our mental faculties with work, education, and problem solving. We should be equally purposeful in seeking out recovery modalities to mitigate said stresses which include sleep, mindfulness practice, stretching and foam rolling, eating healthily, and seeking out additional modalities that can help facilitate how quickly, effectively, and efficiently your body mends. I want people to exist in a locus of control where stress is acutely welcomed, but never allowed to become chronic due of our purposeful attention to self and recovery. Pride comes from the challenges and growth comes from the recovery of them.