Running Into Profits

Those jogging sessions you manage to squeeze in between work and home can do more than decrease your stress—they just might increase your bottom line. 

We all search for motivation to keep us in shape. But what if a trip to the gym could help you make more money? According to research by Dr. Mike Goldsby, an entrepreneurship professor at Ball State University, jogging pays off for small-business owners.

Goldsby studied 366 entrepreneurs to find the influence running and weight training have on sales volume as well as on external and internal goals. “We wanted to find out if time spent exercising was a trade off. Would it help the company or is it just another ball they are juggling?” says Goldsby?

The results? Entrepreneurs who run or lift weights reported higher levels of personal and professional satisfaction, autonomy and independence than those who don’t exercise. And runners reported significantly higher sales volume than their weight lifting friends. It makes perfect sense to Goldsby. “Running helps people redefine themselves. The ritual of going out there—no matter how you feel—carries over into the rest of your life. You develop this inner strength—that’s a lot of the formula for success.”

When optometrist and triathlon runner, Dr. Jim Sowders, purchased his private practice in 1983, the business was grossing $85,000 a year. Last year Sowders’ practice boomed, grossing more than $650,000. Sowders, who runs five to seven miles, five to six times a week, says running helps him accomplish more by blowing off stress from hectic days in the office. He’s such a jogging advocate that he gives his employees a weekly bonus equal to their hourly wage for each hour they work out, for a total of up to three hours per week.

In 1993, Jason Lenz started his business, Creek Run Environmental Engineering, by working out of his kitchen so he could stay home and care for his three young children. Now he and his 10 employees work in a 7,400 square-foot office, racking in more than $1.75 million in sales in 2003. How do they do it? Lenz says in part because of his daily jogs. “Running gives me a chance to reflect, prepare and focus on the task at hand,” says Lenz who, in between business and family life, plans to run his ninth marathon this year.

Copyright © MyBusiness Magazine.  All rights reserved.