Jarod Cogswell is a man who has not only overcome the challenges in his life, but he’s used the adversity, the pain, and the close calls as lessons to make himself a better person. In his own way, he’s taken all the things in his life and used them to make himself more grateful, more successful, and more able to help people become the best versions of themselves.
Jarod got started into fitness in his teenage years. He had an uncle who was a fitness maniac, and he got him into lifting. Jarod played sports so beyond the enjoyment he got from lifting, it was beneficial to his high school sports career. When he was 18, he got a job at a fitness club, and at 19 he became one of the youngest ACE certified personal trainers there was.
He was in college at this time, and he kept working at this club the entire time, working with clients, doing his class work, and living his life. After college he was offered a management opportunity as the director of Leisure Sports fitness club, and he took it. He worked there for a while, and then was offered a general manager position at another club, which he took. After his work as a general manager, Leisure Sports hired him back as a general manager of an entire fitness resort. This has given Jarod a huge amount of knowledge of the fitness industry, as well as hot to create and manage high-level teams.
In his personal life, Jarod has had his ups and downs, particularly with his marriage. He had a wife for many years but went through a messy divorce. Losing his wife and coming to terms with what happened took him to a whole new level of understanding and acceptance that he hadn’t had before, and shaped who he was as a person.
Also a major factor in his life is mountain climbing. Jarod has been climbing for many, many years, and he has truly had a serious impact on his life. He’s lost more than one friend to the mountains, and watching his friends die doing what they loved hit him very, very hard. He even had a close call when he was climbing Mt. Hood. He, and a group of others, got caught in a surprise storm while climbing. They couldn’t go back down, so they had to continue to the summit. When they got there, things were so dark they couldn’t see the easy way back down, so they dug a snow cave and hunkered down for the night. It was so cold, and they were shivering so hard, that they couldn’t fall asleep. At one point the hole to the cave they dog got snowed in, and Jarod had to kick it back open before they ran out of air. The mountain rescue team got to them the next day, but they almost couldn’t come out because of the severity of the storm.
This event changed Jarod dramatically. He thought about how selfish it was, as a husband and father, for him to be out there risking his life for something that was a hobby. He thought about what his family's’ live would be like without him, and how it would be if he left them behind.
This is one of the many things that has made Jarod realize how grateful he is for the things in his life, and it has shaped the man he is today.
Also, Jarod, during his time as a trainer, was on the show Alpha Warrior, where he trained members of the military. He said it was amazing to train our nation’s greatest athletes! But one of the greatest things that he got out of his time there is he met Yancy Culp who is a great friend with Joe De Sena, the founder of Spartan, who was actually just on the show a couple of weeks ago. Joe De Sena happens to be the founder of spartan, and Yancy had Jarod come with him to meet Joe, and together they started the DEKA obstacle course race.
Through many trials and tribulations, especially with the pandemic, Yancy and Jarod were able to get DEKA officially started with three different levels of race: DEKA Strong, DEKA Mile, and DEKA fit. The goal is to get people off the couch, and compete against themselves to keep moving forward and getting better. These have gained a lot of popularity, and are being run by people all over the world!
Please join us to see the full interview with Jarod. He has an incredible story, and he’s here to share his wisdom with all of us. Jarod, thank you for being on the show, we can’t wait to see you again!
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